Alex Roy Digest 5.11.16: No Steering Wheels, Uber For Gas, People Are Dangerous

11 May


Transportation Communist/Gizmodo contributor Alissa Walker is back with another pro-Autonomous Driving article, Why Self-Driving Cars Should Never Have Steering Wheels. Citing Google’s Chris Urmson, she adds some predictable commentary to his argument that Self-Driving Cars basically should launch at Level 5. Don’t know your Autonomous Driving (AD) Levels? Here’s a nice chart from SAE. I’ll say this one more time…technology can solve a lot of problems, but it can’t solve for human nature. I don’t think it matters whether AD is Level 5 capable. People want to feel agency, however untrained they are in the art of driving. Article coming…

“Uber for Gas” seems like the worst idea ever, and yet here it is. Seriously? Gas is not very profitable, at least not for gas stations. That’s why gas stations have stores. And snacks. And fast food. Mobile gas trucks? The company is called Filld, and it sounds like a business with a finite life span. It might be take decades, but eventually internal combustion is going away. Maybe I’ll reach out and ask Filld to explain themselves. Maybe. Something tells me they’ve got some legal problems ahead, and might be a little busy.

Robot Cars Aren’t Dangerous…People Are. My friend Ed Niedermeyer nails it again. How’s THIS for a neat summation? The rise of robot drivers won’t introduce new hazards onto the public road so much as it will give us a scapegoat that we can condemn without implicating ourselves. Yup. There it is.

Alex Roy is an Editor-at-Large for The Drive, and author of The Driver and set the 2007 Transcontinental “Cannonball Run” Record in 31 hours & 4 minutes. You may follow him on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Leave a Reply