Despite a mainly positive view of AVs, it is apparent from several comments that my concerns, regarding the "rollout" of the technology, are well-grounded.
Good point, Alias. A future containing such a legion of drivers and their personal "freedom" machines does, however, sound rather like the current situation (too many vehicles, not enough freedom), and quite dystopian compared to the future which could be had, where private vehicles could be mostly replaced by mass transit and shared rides/vehicles. Such a possible would require foresight and planning, of course, and is therefore unlikely.Alias wrote: ↑March 25th, 2018, 12:00 pmYes, if I could afford it.Would you buy and/or use an AV? Why/why not?
I am 71, with failing eyesight and intermittent hearing problems. In a few years, I will not be competent or safe on the highway.
That means I have to give up my home in the country, or get someone else to drive me into town for medical appointments and supplies. An AV would assure me the freedom and independence I very much don't look forward to losing.
I strongly suspect that, after taxi and delivery fleet owners, the biggest market for these cars will be old people. And we are legion!
At what point will it be fair to pay attention to the number of fatalities involving AVs? Should we wait for the number to rise past a certain threshold, or address the issues in the planning stages - like now? Can we be sure that pedestrian fatalities will decrease with the uptake of AVs? Whose assurances are we to rely on?Alias wrote: ↑March 25th, 2018, 12:00 pm
I find it - not odd; I suppose all novelty is newsworthy - unfair to make such a production-number out of the single traffic fatality involving a robot car, while the media paid no attention to the 120 or so pedestrian fatalities involving human-driven cars on the same day.
I think there ought to be a deep distrust of car-makers, and their supposed regulators. I'm thinking about VW here, but the point I originally tried to make was to do with the extremely slow, and incomplete, incorporation of available life-saving technology. eg Mercedes invented technology more than 20 years ago which would prevent rear-end collisions - how many cars have that today?
My suspicion is that while technological change is inevitable, market forces will (in the now-to-be-assumed absence of proper regulation) determine the way in which aspects of technological "progress" are adopted, ignored, or available to only a few.
Another well-made point, Alias. Do you think the proportion of 'tedious, stressful, soul and health-killing jobs' is decreasing over time, though? Do you think there could be unemployed , or otherwise-employed, people out there who might like the sound of working as a bank teller?Alias wrote: ↑March 25th, 2018, 12:00 pm
Yes, a whole class of jobs - millions of jobs - will disappear. That happens with every technological advance, and the societies of the near future will have to deal with it. Many other computerized and automated services and processes are so normal that people don't even notice their dependency. Not much of an outcry against automated bank-tellers these days.
They might even learn to reassign people now working at tedious, stressful, soul and health-killing jobs to rendering much-needed aid to their fellow human beings.
Here we have the heart of the issue, the fuss that I think we should be dealing with. How exactly will the traffic system be organised? Who will ensure that 'cities will become a whole lot safer, cleaner and more pleasant'? How will the replacement, by those wealthy enough to afford it, of private conventional vehicles with AVs do anything to ensure such a rosy outcome?