Future of Private Plates

Discussion in 'General Board' started by mat, Jan 12, 2018.

  1. Edwin

    Edwin Well-Known Member Exclusive Member

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    Tesla claim* that all new model Teslas will have the capacity to be upgraded to fully self-driving in software when the time comes. In other words, they allegedly have all the cameras, sensors and processing power necessary to achieve full autonomy once the software side is figured out.

    (*I am not suggesting they are lying. But to my knowledge they don’t have a Level 5 autonomous vehicle even in prototype form so their statement should be taken as a “highly educated guess” - they could yet come unstuck if achieving full autonomy turns out to need something they’ve not made provision for.)
     
  2. Domain Forum

    Acorn Domains Elite Member

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  3. scottmccloud

    scottmccloud Well-Known Member Full Member

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    At first, I think how uncomfortable I'd be sharing the road with self-driving cars.

    Then I remember we all share the roads with people like this.

    [​IMG]


    And this may sound a bit daft, but what about motorbikes?

    I can imagine being driven around in a self-driving car.

    But 70mph on a self-driving motorbike would be terrifying.
     
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  4. mat United Kingdom

    mat Well-Known Member

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    It may be 270mph on the self-driving motorbike if all goes to plan :D
     
  5. scottmccloud

    scottmccloud Well-Known Member Full Member

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    Think I'll walk.
     
  6. mat United Kingdom

    mat Well-Known Member

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    If self driving cars work, there will be no real need for speed limits.
     
  7. Edwin

    Edwin Well-Known Member Exclusive Member

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    Actually I think self-driving cars will have to be redefined as something else. Unlike trams or trains they’re 100% point to point. Unlike buses, you don’t have to share. Unlike taxis, there will be no reason to configure them like a car. Why face forward with your feet jammed into a small space when you can stretch out in a comfy room on wheels? Journeys will become hugely more productive, whether for work, play - or just sleep and relaxation.

    On an average commute of 90 minutes a day, ex-drivers (now self-driving car passengers) will regain over 300 hours of work or leisure time. That’s like gaining an extra 13 days holiday a year.
     
  8. Systreg

    Systreg Well-Known Member Acorn Supporter

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    I know what you mean, and I understand the cars will have a lot of sensors etc on them, they'll probably also have fail-safes to bring a car to a halt in a safe way in case of a failure.

    But, what if a car is travelling along a motorway at 70mph, and the sensors or something to do with the fail-safe has a catastrophic failure, at that point, the car becomes a missile with a mind of it's own, shoot across lanes and cause multiple fatalities, if it's run by tech, it's not 100% safe and free from error, anything could happen.

    Personally, I don't even like being driven by a human, I've been involved in a couple of bad accidents, one where I could easily have died or got seriously injured, but luckily I walked away with just a bruise that covered my whole thigh, so I'm not keen on driving since then, once a car goes beyond 40-50mph my insides are knotted up.
     
  9. Edwin

    Edwin Well-Known Member Exclusive Member

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  10. mat United Kingdom

    mat Well-Known Member

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    Yep I do agree, it is kind of like with flights a lot of it is autopilot but you still always want someone in the cockpit just incase, even if the whole flight was automated.

    In your example if the fail-safe has a catastrophic failure, you will probably have to dial a support number and get through to a call center where they hardly speak any English "have you tried turning off the car sir" while you are flying along at 100mph :D
     
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  11. Edwin

    Edwin Well-Known Member Exclusive Member

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    What you’re describing happens every day with humans at the wheel. But AI can’t get distracted, doze off, spill coffee on itself, bicker with passengers, sneeze, suffer a heart attack, get confused, get road rage from a perceived slight, etc etc ie all the myriad of human flaws.

    So you’re left with tech failure (probability is low but non zero, but you can bet a massive amount of energy will be poured into working out how to make systems fail gracefully) and mechanical failure (which cars are already susceptible too, so no change there.)
     
  12. mat United Kingdom

    mat Well-Known Member

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    You can imagine that if a car is having a real problem, it gives off a signal and all other cars within a certain distance of it also decrease their speed or keep a distance while the problem is resolved etc, if their is even any need for that.
     
  13. mat United Kingdom

    mat Well-Known Member

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    If the car was to become a missile with a mind of it's own all the other cars will be able to instantly counteract its movements and you would hope the roads will have some kind of fail safe to bring the out of control car to a stop without any need for the cars onboard computer etc.
     
  14. ian

    ian Well-Known Member

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    Ahhh, this reminds me of the regular debate with the officers of the law why having no front reg plate on my car is any different from no plate on the front of motorbikes. By law (or is that regulation), I have to, but bikes don't. Not one was able to justify a ticket, but that may be down to the car, rather than my ability to win a debate.

    Registration plates have no long term purpose, by that point, vehicles will send out constant signals to notify whomever needs to know, what they need to know. Doesn't seem to stop their values going up.

    The same question could be put for domains, and I fear they'll one day be obsolete.
     
  15. Systreg

    Systreg Well-Known Member Acorn Supporter

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    @Edwin, yes, but all of those flaws are expected to happen with humans, and a human driver having a heart attack, would be akin to a self driving car having a circuit/chip that burns out, same possible bad end result.

    As you say, there's also mechanical failure, that would affect both human and self driven cars in the same way. If a wheel fell off, anything can happen, a car travelling at speed and losing a front wheel and/or part of suspension could dig in to the ground and flip the car. Having a great computer system on board trying to manage a situation would fail as the car is in the air, as it will be completely random as to what the car will do after such a failure.

    They will have run computer simulated models and taught the car the best thing to do in a wheel loss situation, but if you drove a thousand cars along the same road, all at 70mph, and each had a small explosive charge placed on the wheel to make it fall off, I bet no 2 cars would take exactly the same course after if falls off.

    There are too many different computations of what could happen next, and no matter how well a self driven car might have been taught, on a busy motorway with human and self driven cars running side by side, the car has the potential to smash into the next lane, and those human driven cars wouldn't be able to react in time, and I doubt the self driven with their sensors would either.

    I can't think what sort of fail-safe the actual road would have for an out of control car? Maybe they could install hydraulic rams embedded in the road, that when picking up something bad happening on their sensors, would force a solid wall upward from the road for the car to hit and stop it :)

    Assuming that it was at such a date in the future when all the cars on the road were self driven cars, then perhaps they could counteract an out of control cars movements, but not if there were human driven cars on the road with them.
     
  16. ian

    ian Well-Known Member

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    Well, it would perhaps be able to email your will to the solicitor, or transfer funds out of the joint account away from the missus whilst in mid-air. Or fill the car with strawberry jelly. Not saying its possible, but could be handy.
     
  17. dee

    dee Well-Known Member Acorn Supporter

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    I'm waiting for the invention of 'nag' less cars before shelling out
     
  18. Edwin

    Edwin Well-Known Member Exclusive Member

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    If you’re genuinely worried about self-driving cars, don’t read “Robopocalypse” or the nightmares will never stop
     
  19. dee

    dee Well-Known Member Acorn Supporter

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    @Edwin have you seen the boston dynamics stuff. Amazing robotics stuff....military funded probably.



    started with "big dog" a few years ago.
     
  20. Edwin

    Edwin Well-Known Member Exclusive Member

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  21. Edwin

    Edwin Well-Known Member Exclusive Member

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    Yes. But I think that sort of thing is a gimmick. It also gives a false sense of security, in that even the best of their devices looks gawky and a bit awkward (and is certainly far from all-surface, all-situation ready)

    We are far more likely to be eclipsed by machines sitting in a server farm than we are by stuff squeezed into a device meant to replicate human or animal movement and behaviour.

    That’s why I have to grit my teeth every time I see a media report about how the “robots are coming” then they show some kind of clunky quasi-toy like Pepper or Aibo, or the creepy gynoid family made by that Japanese professor and the talking heads have a good giggle about how crude they are.

    None of them are true signposts on the way to superhuman AI, because making something that seems exactly human is likely to be far far harder than making something better-yet-different. In other words, remove the completely artificial constraint of trying to replicate us fleshies, and the sky’s the limit.