Given the existence of a skill set that helps avoid accidents, it is quite rational for individuals who possess that skill set to choose their own judgement over a random chance of technical failure.
You would rather increase your risk of dying than give up driving? Humans have random technical failures all the time, more than a machine that is built to minimize them. You are, I think, human.
In addition, as Percy, points out. We are making sure that the others on the road aren't doing utterly dumb things. There would be an immediate increase in over all safety by getting me out from behind the wheel. (and I drive over on the island fairly often )
Fortunately, in this case, you can have your cake and eat it too. There will be a proliferation of tracks for those who enjoy driving. There are already for the very rich and one is being built near you as we type.
These will be able to be done for a smaller cost to the users because there will be a much higher volume of customers.
My car is too damned quick to be really usable to half it's capability (or mine ) and it would be fun to have access to somewhere to push it a bit more.
I would rather see the costs of this stuff put into demanding driver ed and testing. The half or so of the populace that would be summarily booted from the ranks of drivers would create the critical mass necessary for efficient public transit. Win-win.
Well, you obviously have no clue about what is politically possible. It's going to be hard enough to mandate autobots (you read it here first ). To actually remove the convenience of an independent car from half the drivers (and you are being way to optimistic about people's abilities) won't fly.
Over time the tracks will fade as very few people have an interest in the cost of owndership of a car worth taking on them. In fact, over time the autobots will be the public transit. I am told that Uber has told Google and Tesla it will buy the first half million cars they can put on the road.
From what I understand and guess of the technology the autobots can beat any but the few professional drivers of race cars from a safety point of view now. It won't take long before they can beat everyone, including you.
And call me a cynic but I expect that if people have a choice between self-driving cars and driving themselves, it's the idiots who will be behind the wheel.
I agree, however the idiots will quickly be paying insurance rates 10 or 20 times higher than those who live the driving to "them". That will discourage a large number of idiots.
After a number of years it will automatically be manslaughter and a jail sentence if you are driving and anyone is hurt for whatever reason. Or insurance companies will simply deny coverage if you are caught driving just like they do if you are DWI now. That will also discourage them.
Way down the road there won't be a steering wheel and the problem will be solved.
ABE And as TED video shows the cars are already able to forcast and handle some idiotic behaviour. More than most of us can (maybe even all of us soon since the cars will communicate and be able to "see" what is happening 100 m away and around corners. Not something you're going to be able to handle.
I don't know enough to be sure of any guesses about the future but what I think is happening is the automated driving systems are gradually moving up. At first they are better than the inattentive driver not looking ahead and they autobrake. This happens today. Are they successful every time? No. Are they successful more than the average driver? Ah, I don't think we have the statistics available on that but if they are not they will be in very few years.
The systems will not be perfect for a long, long time, I agree. But they have a pretty low bar to leap. Can they get better than the average driver in the majority of scenarios? Not such a difficult task.
Some disruptive technologies have tipping points built into the adoption process. Once that point is reached, however slowly, things suddenly go very, very quickly. I've driven all 3 of the Tesla models and after my Audi my next car will not be a gas burning dinosaur. What it will be and when is still to be decided. If battery costs continue as they have then the tipping point for EVs will be 3 to 5 yrs out. Only a minority of people will want anything else after that.
With autonomy of cars I think the tipping point will be when your insurance to drive without the "AI" on will be too expensive. This will go from not an issue to a deciding factor all of a sudden. When will that be? I'd guess 2 to 4 years. It won't be that we will have level 4 or 5 capabilities necessarily. It will just be that driving without the car helping out will be expensive, then too expensive and then prohibited.
As hinted at by Tesla's numbers (and though biased they may know more than anyone - they have 1/4 of a million devices gathering statistics out there) there may be enough to change insurance within the next few months even.
We aren't all on the same page as to how we are visualizing the next few years.
Some are talking about level 4 or 5 autonomy meaning the cars may not have a steering wheel and sleeping in the back seat is acceptable and normal. I think we may get there sooner than some do (and I have been through an IT career too). Percy is right that there will still be deaths but if they are way less than letting humans drive we're going to have to adjust to that or stick with killing lots and lots of people.
For the 2020's I'm seeing more of a level 3/4 autonomy where people will still have to "drive" and be attending to the cars behaviour a lot of the time (or all). However, I see a scenario where we will not be allowed to turn off the autopilot. Instead we will be able to override it for short periods of time only and we better be able to justify out taking over after the fact.