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Source: (consider it) Thread: Distracted driving
no prophet's flag is set so...

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quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
I do lots of long journeys, but irregularly (and long is 200 miles+. All the Australians are laughing at me now.), and I've noticed my ability to keep going has diminished. Obviously, I have work-arounds for that - stop often for short periods of time, plenty of tea and snacks, interesting things on the radio or mp3 - and I haven't rammed a bridge support yet.

But I'm genuinely looking forward to the day I can just type in the destination into the navcomp and have the damn thing drive me there. I'm not (I don't think) by any means in the bottom 10%, but I'm aware that my ability at the end of a journey is quantifiably eroded compared to what it was at the start.

This is exactly the wrong attitude I believe. The journey mustn't be an inconvenience and something to have over as speedily as painlessly as possible. It is part of a day, it is an important activity, and must be considered not as something to be endured. You want Star Trek's beam me up. Impatience, annoyance and resentment are things when driving which create risk. Driving is as important as anything else in a day's activities.

And no 200 miles is not far nor long.

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chris stiles
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quote:
Originally posted by Jane R:
There is no way of reducing the number of road traffic accidents to zero. None. Even self-driving cars are only as good as the software they are programmed with. And guess who creates software?

Making the roads as safe as they are now is perfectly achievable, and I already drive. I also work in IT, so am fairly familiar with software.
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Jane R
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200 miles is a long drive in the UK, no_prophet. Over here straight roads are rare (even motorways aren't completely straight, although the curves are usually fairly gentle). 200 miles here will take you through dozens of towns, villages and cities. Once you're off the motorway you have to contend with winding country roads, complicated junctions and (in many town centres) one-way systems that only a local can negotiate with confidence. Many rural roads are single-track (only enough room for one vehicle, if you meet someone one of you has to reverse into a passing place) and the ones that aren't are so narrow you just have to pray you don't encounter a lorry. And they're busy. Probably far busier than any Canadian roads, outside the major cities. All of these factors combine to make driving on British roads much more demanding and tiring than driving in the wide-open spaces of North America.

We sometimes go on holiday to Ardnamurchan Point in the West Coast of Scotland. I've never checked how far it is from York in miles, probably somewhere between 300 and 400. But it takes us the whole day to get there.

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balaam

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quote:
Originally posted by chris stiles:
Roll on self driving cars.

Like this Volvo?

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cliffdweller
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quote:
Originally posted by Erroneous Monk:
What I mull over is whether the penalty for texting/using mobile in hand while driving should be the same regardless of consequences, all other things being equal.

So I can see that it might be regarded as less serious to break the law and use your phone on a road with good visibility, few pedestrians etc. And more serious to do it on a fast unpredictable road.

I don't think so.

The thing is, it can be even more dangerous on a slow road-- where you're driving on "auto pilot" and don't feel as vigilant-- where an unexpected bicyclist or pedestrian can catch you unawares.

And then there's the way habits grab hold. If you text on quiet roads you're going to build a habit that's going to take hold and be more likely to text on a busy road or with unfavorable weather conditions. And then enforcing such a subjective law will be difficult as well.

Better to be clearer about not touching a cell phone or electronic device while driving, full stop.

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no prophet's flag is set so...

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quote:
Originally posted by Jane R:
200 miles is a long drive in the UK, no_prophet. Over here straight roads are rare (even motorways aren't completely straight, although the curves are usually fairly gentle). 200 miles here will take you through dozens of towns, villages and cities.

It's a matter of experience I think, and what you get used to. That's little different than most highways from Manitoba to British Columbia after you're off the TransCanada highway. We travel half of this one this one weekly both directions in the summer (about 240 miles). It's 2 lanes of traffic each way, grid roads (gravel farm roads) intersect every 2 miles, and at each of the intersections and towns we're slowed down to between 40 and 60 km/hr (i.e., 40 mph or less). You cannot trust anyone stopped on a grid when you're coming down the highway. No shoulders on the road for about half of it (i.e., there's the travel lane and then a ditch). We have to watch out for deer and at this time of year, combines (KOM-bines, farm machinery). Winter is more of a challenge.

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lilBuddha
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quote:
Originally posted by balaam:
quote:
Originally posted by chris stiles:
Roll on self driving cars.

Like this Volvo?
Or the Tesla that ran itself into a lorry at speed whilst its driver watched vids on his mobile. But these are erroneous bits of data. The self-driving car is in its infancy. Soon, they will be much better than humans and much safer.
The safest and most efficient scenario is driverless cars which are centrally controlled. There will be crashes and there is the potential for large pileups. But the overall accident and death rate will be lower.
Economic forces will be the biggest obstacle to implementing such a system.

[ 14. September 2017, 15:33: Message edited by: lilBuddha ]

--------------------
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If it's not here soon, I might be done
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Schroedinger's cat

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And I think it is important to realise that deaths and seriously injury on the road have plummeted over the last 50 years.

I have known a few people involved in accidents that 10 or 20 years earlier would have been fatal. So we are substantially safer today than we were. It probably means that we are a lot more complacent when driving.

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lilBuddha
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quote:
Originally posted by Schroedinger's cat:
And I think it is important to realise that deaths and seriously injury on the road have plummeted over the last 50 years.

I have known a few people involved in accidents that 10 or 20 years earlier would have been fatal. So we are substantially safer today than we were. It probably means that we are a lot more complacent when driving.

We are safer because of technology and the emphasis on safety in vehicle design. The same driver in a modern car will have a lower probability of an accident. I'm not certain that makes us more complacent or not. Our baseline is different to our parents and especially our grandparents.

[ 14. September 2017, 17:51: Message edited by: lilBuddha ]

--------------------
So goodnight moon, I want the sun
If it's not here soon, I might be done
No it won't be too soon 'til I say goodnight moon

- A. N. Parsley, D. Mcvinni

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Lyda*Rose

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# 4544

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quote:
Originally posted by no prophet's flag is set so...:
quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
I do lots of long journeys, but irregularly (and long is 200 miles+. All the Australians are laughing at me now.), and I've noticed my ability to keep going has diminished. Obviously, I have work-arounds for that - stop often for short periods of time, plenty of tea and snacks, interesting things on the radio or mp3 - and I haven't rammed a bridge support yet.

But I'm genuinely looking forward to the day I can just type in the destination into the navcomp and have the damn thing drive me there. I'm not (I don't think) by any means in the bottom 10%, but I'm aware that my ability at the end of a journey is quantifiably eroded compared to what it was at the start.

This is exactly the wrong attitude I believe. The journey mustn't be an inconvenience and something to have over as speedily as painlessly as possible. It is part of a day, it is an important activity, and must be considered not as something to be endured. You want Star Trek's beam me up. Impatience, annoyance and resentment are things when driving which create risk. Driving is as important as anything else in a day's activities.

And no 200 miles is not far nor long.

Judgmental much?

Doc Tor has obviously thoughtfully addressed the problem and come up with methods of dealing with it. But feelings are feelings, so huzzah for you being able to turn them on and off like a spigot. Everyone doesn't have a stoic depth of character.

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Leorning Cniht
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# 17564

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quote:
Originally posted by no prophet's flag is set so...:
This is exactly the wrong attitude I believe. The journey mustn't be an inconvenience and something to have over as speedily as painlessly as possible. It is part of a day, it is an important activity, and must be considered not as something to be endured.

You're absolutely right - I do want a teleporter. Driving is boring. It's not something I do because I want to drive - it's something I do because I want to get to my destination efficiently and conveniently.

Like doing the dishes - I don't enjoy washing up. I do it, because I like eating food, and want to have clean plates, pans and so on ready for the next use. But washing up is certainly a thing to be endured. Because I don't like doing it, I own a dishwasher, which takes a lot (but not all) of the effort away.

quote:
Driving is as important as anything else in a day's activities.
What's that got to do with the price of fish? Getting the dishes clean is important too, but that doesn't make it any less sucky, or mean that I wouldn't gladly hire someone to do it for me if I had stupid amounts of money.

If you offer me something that has the convenience of driving my own car, but gets me there faster, I'm sold.

If you offer me the opportunity to have the computer drive while I sit back and watch, that's a harder sell (I get motion sickness, so I can't use the time I spend sitting in a car for anything even if someone else is driving, so the only advantage of me having a human or computer chauffeur is if it's much faster or safer). And driving is pretty safe as it is, so the extra safety introduced by a computer, or by a more competent, well-rested driver, isn't worth all that much to me.

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lilBuddha
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# 14333

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quote:
Originally posted by Leorning Cniht:
And driving is pretty safe as it is, so the extra safety introduced by a computer, or by a more competent, well-rested driver, isn't worth all that much to me.

The 1.25 million people who die yearly from vehicle collisions aren't worth your minor inconvenience of a little boredom? Nice. Perhaps you mean just in the US, where you live. That is only ~30k, so not so bad then.

--------------------
So goodnight moon, I want the sun
If it's not here soon, I might be done
No it won't be too soon 'til I say goodnight moon

- A. N. Parsley, D. Mcvinni

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Leorning Cniht
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# 17564

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quote:
Originally posted by lilBuddha:
The 1.25 million people who die yearly from vehicle collisions aren't worth your minor inconvenience of a little boredom? Nice. Perhaps you mean just in the US, where you live. That is only ~30k, so not so bad then.

Where on earth did you get boredom from? I'm not bothered about being bored.

Let me clarify a bit for you:

1. I get motion sickness. As a consequence, I can't use time sitting in a car for other purposes. For example, I can't work in a car.

The consequence of this is that I don't gain by having someone else (person or computer) do my driving. People who are able to work in cars, on the other hand, would derive a significant benefit from having a human or computer chauffeur.

People who will gain an extra hour or two of useful time each day by having a computer driver are going to be willing to pay money for that. I don't have a gain, so I'm not prepared to pay for it.

2. A significant fraction of those 30K deaths per year are caused by people driving drunk or at excessive speed. I can control my exposure to that risk by choosing not to do that.

I suppose a computer-driven car would offer me a small benefit if it would drive me home from the bar, as I'd save a little bit on taxis. But it's rare that I go out drinking somewhere that's further than walking distance from my house.

2b. I drive about 7,000 miles a year, and I tend not to drive at either times of peak traffic, or at times of peak traffic-pedestrian interference. I also tend not to drive in places where there tend to be opportunities for surprise pedestrian-traffic interaction.

Add all these up to produce my personal baseline accident risk, which is quite low. If you just take the current US death rate (10 per billion miles), you'd predict that I'd kill 0.00007 people per year, and I'm prepared to knock off a factor of several for the other risk factors. Say something less than 0.00001 people per year.

So what I would gain by spending $x,000 on a computer driver is presumably a significant reduction in that number - maybe the computer is 10 times better, and would only kill 0.000001 people per year. Maybe it's 100 times better.

But the upper limit on the gain I expect is 0.00001 people per year. In crude financial terms, various bodies value human life at between $5 and $10 million each. If I take the upper number, it says I should be prepared to pay $100 for the computer.

I have a suspicion that it'll cost a little more than that.

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Doc Tor
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quote:
Originally posted by Leorning Cniht:
If I take the upper number, it says I should be prepared to pay $100 for the computer.

I have a suspicion that it'll cost a little more than that.

You won't get a choice. It'll be illegal to drive a human-operated vehicle on the highway.

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lilBuddha
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quote:
Originally posted by Leorning Cniht:
Where on earth did you get boredom from? I'm not bothered about being bored.

Then why is this:

quote:

1. I get motion sickness. As a consequence, I can't use time sitting in a car for other purposes. For example, I can't work in a car.

if you will not be bored just sitting there?


quote:

2. A significant fraction of those 30K deaths per year are caused by people driving drunk or at excessive speed. I can control my exposure to that risk by choosing not to do that.

Your exposure...you. Driverless cars would eliminate other people dying, but this is not important to you?

I love driving, driverless cars would be Hell for me.* However I will accept them for the better of all. And I don't even like most people.


*Well, not in stopped traffic, but in most situations.

[ 15. September 2017, 00:38: Message edited by: lilBuddha ]

--------------------
So goodnight moon, I want the sun
If it's not here soon, I might be done
No it won't be too soon 'til I say goodnight moon

- A. N. Parsley, D. Mcvinni

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simontoad
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I think it's true that we have a reduced ability to drive long distances as we age. I think its our capacity to concentrate that becomes impaired. Police here also target drowsiness and will prosecute you for single-vehicle accidents if you survive. Not sure what offence they use.

When I was young, I could drive Melbourne - Sydney with a stop for lunch and a servo coffee when refueling at Gundagai. These days, it is definitely change driver every two hours. It's about a 10 hour drive, unless you go temporarily insane and decide to drive over the Snowies. That's not as much fun as it used to be though, since they sealed the road.

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Rossweisse

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I would like to have an computerized driver. Since my first cancer diagnosis, I can no longer make the four-hour drive from one side of the state (where I live) to the other side (where I once lived) by myself easily or safely. If I couldn't read, I'd listen to music - really listen to it. That's hard to do when your primary attention is properly on the road.

I bought a new car last year precisely to get the safety features not on offer when my old car was built nine years before, chiefly a backup camera and lights to show me when a car is in my blind spot. (Okay, and satellite radio.)

I figure it will keep me safer, yes, but it will help those around me as well.

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Leorning Cniht
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quote:
Originally posted by lilBuddha:
Then why is this:

quote:

1. I get motion sickness. As a consequence, I can't use time sitting in a car for other purposes. For example, I can't work in a car.

if you will not be bored just sitting there?

Ah. It's not about boredom at all. It's that if I could use the time in which my body was traveling to work to do something useful (work, for example) then I could recover an hour of time a day to do something else useful / fun in.

It's not that I'm bored by sitting in a car and don't want to be bored - it's that travel time is wasted time, and if I could recover an hour a day, that would have value.

But in my case, I can't use that time for anything, so it has no value for me.

quote:

Your exposure...you. Driverless cars would eliminate other people dying, but this is not important to you?

I'm discussing my personal incentives to get a driverless car, not whether I think they should exist at all. And in the case of whether my personal car has me driving or a computer driving, the odds of me dying and the odds of someone else dying because of me are rather strongly correlated (and both are included in the figures I quoted.)

And for me personally, going driverless doesn't make sense. I don't get any personal gain from not driving, and the reduction in deaths caused by removing my driving is not big enough to be worth the increased cost of the car. I'd save a lot more lives by taking the premium I'd pay for a computer driver and spending it on a health clinic for the local poor, or on our local homeless shelter.

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Leorning Cniht
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# 17564

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quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
You won't get a choice. It'll be illegal to drive a human-operated vehicle on the highway.

And at that point, I'll just have to suck it up. But there will be a transition period - there will be several years where driverless cars are legal, and commercially available, but are not mandated. Any practical introduction of computer-driven cars has to have a time period of something on the scale of the lifetime of a typical private car during which human-driven and driverless cars share the road, in order to be politically possible.

Unless my lifestyle changes significantly, I'll be in one of the human-driven cars.

Once you make human-driven cars illegal, you should be able to increase travel speeds quite significantly, which I would benefit from.

My kids will learn to drive. It's quite possible that for my grandkids, learning to drive will be like learning to ride a horse. That doesn't upset me.

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chris stiles
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quote:
Originally posted by Leorning Cniht:
And at that point, I'll just have to suck it up. But there will be a transition period - there will be several years where driverless cars are legal, and commercially available, but are not mandated.

It'll probably become insurance driven long before that - and history shows that if there is the will, the percentage of older cars on the roads can be reduced quite significantly in short periods of time.
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Karl: Liberal Backslider
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I see this slightly differently.

I look forward to driverless cars. They will not:

1. Overtake me with a fag-paper clearance;
2. Overtake and then turn left across my path;
3. Shout "Fucking Wanker" because I'm on a bike;
4. Shout ignorant bullshit about road tax;
5. Overtake then slam their brakes on because of oncoming traffic, blocking my path.

I hope they don't go faster, however, because that may well negate the positive benefits I outline in making the roads more suitable for non-motorised users.

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Moo

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quote:
Originally posted by Leorning Cniht:
But there will be a transition period - there will be several years where driverless cars are legal, and commercially available, but are not mandated. Any practical introduction of computer-driven cars has to have a time period of something on the scale of the lifetime of a typical private car during which human-driven and driverless cars share the road, in order to be politically possible.
<snip>
Once you make human-driven cars illegal, you should be able to increase travel speeds quite significantly, which I would benefit from.

Around here many people drive very old vehicles because they can't afford anything else. Since they live in very remote spots, they need vehicles. It will be a long time before second-hand self-driving vehicles will be available at low prices. (The people I'm talking about can't afford new cars.)

Moreover, I suspect that self-driving vehicles have not been tested on winding mountain roads.

Personally, I would welcome self-driving cars. I'm in my eighties and I can still drive locally and long-distance. However, this happy state will probably not last forever. I know elderly people who gave up their homes and moved into retirement communities because they could no longer drive.

Moo

Moo

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Ricardus
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quote:
Originally posted by Karl: Liberal Backslider:
I hope they don't go faster, however, because that may well negate the positive benefits I outline in making the roads more suitable for non-motorised users.

The increased speed, AIUI, derives from the fact that two computer-controlled cars can negotiate wirelessly with each other at junctions instead of one having to come to a stop and wait for the other.

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Then the dog ran before, and coming as if he had brought the news, shewed his joy by his fawning and wagging his tail. -- Tobit 11:9 (Douai-Rheims)

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Gwai
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And that is why many bicyclists in this country imagine we will eventually have to get little chips so that cars can see our bicycle.

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A mate of the wind and sea.
If they think they ha’ slain our Goodly Fere
They are fools eternally.


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Doc Tor
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Driverless car sensors include sonic, radar and laser scanners. Pedestrians won't need RFID chips and neither will bikes - the system is designed so that the car doesn't collide with anything, animate or inanimate.

(Of course, you could essentially block traffic and cause gridlock by inflating black bin liners and releasing them near a busy junctions. They mostly can't tell what it is they might be running into.)

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no prophet's flag is set so...

Proceed to see sea
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Re driverless cars. So let's consider the Selfish Driverless Car (SDC) and the Altruistic Droverless Car (ADC).

Both cars are travelling along and at an intersection, there car with 4 people. SDC hits them, killing all 4 because it prioritizes preserving itself and its driverless driver. ADC avoids killing them and drives off the road hitting a tree, killing its driverless driver.

We could have other scenario where SDC kills a cyclist to avoid a head-on collision with another car, but ADC hits the head-on vehicle to preserver the life of the cyclist because cars have all this protective equipment

I'd be really interested how this is all going to work. And the VW diesel scandal tells us we cannot trust car makers re programming.

Re the cyclist, the chip thing is only going to enhance the programming's choice to kill them or not to kill them. It is much better to have proper cycling infrastructure such that cyclists do not have to ride in the car lanes. Much like we don't make pedestrians walk in the car lanes. Though I'd like to personally hack all driverless car programming and make them into the Altruistic model.

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Leorning Cniht
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If we're all travelling by computer-controlled car, we can make our towns and cities look different. We won't need storefronts to attract the passing driver, because nobody will be looking, so we can hide major car routes round the back or even underground.

But perhaps the biggest gain is that we can move the car parks. If I have a computer car, there's no reason at all why it can't drop me off at the entrance to the shopping centre, and then drive 5 minutes away to the big carpark to park itself.

When I'm finished with my shopping, I can summon it to pick me and my bags up.

And once you do that, moving away from personal cars to computer-driven taxis starts to look more attractive, although I suspect it's hard to make a computer-taxi system degrade well in times of peak demand.

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lilBuddha
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quote:
Originally posted by chris stiles:
It'll probably become insurance driven long before that - and history shows that if there is the will, the percentage of older cars on the roads can be reduced quite significantly in short periods of time.

There are multiple problems here. One is that the adoption of driverless cars will contained by economics. The poor will be the last to be able to afford them and the most disadvantaged by forced adoption. IMO, your perception of older cars being off the road faster is a combination of several factors. The cars of your late youth/young adulthood likely don't subliminally factor as old to you. Styles have progressively become iterative more than radical, so guessing age is more difficult.
Cars last considerably longer now that the more distinct pre-80's cars, which are the ones that have been removed from the road.
My daily driver is a Toyota MRS. People not familiar with is think it much newer than its 17 years.

--------------------
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If it's not here soon, I might be done
No it won't be too soon 'til I say goodnight moon

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Doc Tor
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We should also bear in mind is that electric vehicles have a body life of 50 years+. Consumables (like batteries) will have to be replaced more frequently (10 years or so?).

If you buy an electric, driverless car, it could see your kids inherit it from you when you die.

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Karl: Liberal Backslider
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quote:
Originally posted by no prophet's flag is set so...:
Re driverless cars. So let's consider the Selfish Driverless Car (SDC) and the Altruistic Droverless Car (ADC).

Both cars are travelling along and at an intersection, there car with 4 people. SDC hits them, killing all 4 because it prioritizes preserving itself and its driverless driver. ADC avoids killing them and drives off the road hitting a tree, killing its driverless driver.

We could have other scenario where SDC kills a cyclist to avoid a head-on collision with another car, but ADC hits the head-on vehicle to preserver the life of the cyclist because cars have all this protective equipment

I'd be really interested how this is all going to work. And the VW diesel scandal tells us we cannot trust car makers re programming.

Re the cyclist, the chip thing is only going to enhance the programming's choice to kill them or not to kill them. It is much better to have proper cycling infrastructure such that cyclists do not have to ride in the car lanes. Much like we don't make pedestrians walk in the car lanes. Though I'd like to personally hack all driverless car programming and make them into the Altruistic model.

Out in the country pedestrians walk on the carriageway because there's no-where else. In the UK, at any rate. Either way you're just not going to get these miles of segregated cycleway. Car lanes do not exist; cars use multi-purpose lanes shared with (variously, depending on the road) horses, cyclists, pedestrians and other motor vehicles.

I would suggest that if a driverless car has to make a decision between crashing into another car (or a tree) or a cyclist it has already encountered a serious programming error. It should not be able to get itself into that situation in the first place. Especially once the other cars are also driverless.

[ 15. September 2017, 17:23: Message edited by: Karl: Liberal Backslider ]

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sharkshooter

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quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
We should also bear in mind is that electric vehicles have a body life of 50 years+. ...

I guess they don't have to salt the roads in the winter in your area.

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Leorning Cniht
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quote:
Originally posted by Karl: Liberal Backslider:

I would suggest that if a driverless car has to make a decision between crashing into another car (or a tree) or a cyclist it has already encountered a serious programming error. It should not be able to get itself into that situation in the first place. Especially once the other cars are also driverless.

Driverless car proceeding along road at normal legal rate of progress. Driven car or bicycle coming in opposite direction, on the other side of the road.

So far, so normal.

Oncoming driver suddenly swerves into driverless car's path (driver was avoiding the frog in the road, dropped a lit cigarette in his lap and is a bit distracted, is turning into his road / home / field, and forgot to look for oncoming traffic, or some variation of "is an idiot".

Driverless car can't brake in time, but might swerve into the ditch. Not its fault. What does it do? This generates np's scenario quite simply.

[ 15. September 2017, 19:49: Message edited by: Leorning Cniht ]

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Doc Tor
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quote:
Originally posted by sharkshooter:
quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
We should also bear in mind is that electric vehicles have a body life of 50 years+. ...

I guess they don't have to salt the roads in the winter in your area.
I guess aluminium behaves differently in yours.

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Doc Tor
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quote:
Originally posted by Leorning Cniht:
Driverless car proceeding along road at normal legal rate of progress. Driven car or bicycle coming in opposite direction, on the other side of the road.

So far, so normal.

Oncoming driver suddenly swerves into driverless car's path (driver was avoiding the frog in the road, dropped a lit cigarette in his lap and is a bit distracted, is turning into his road / home / field, and forgot to look for oncoming traffic, or some variation of "is an idiot".

Driverless car can't brake in time, but might swerve into the ditch. Not its fault. What does it do? This generates np's scenario quite simply.

There will be a few years where, yes, this scenario is possible. Then large parts of the road network will simply be closed to human-driven vehicles, and those are not have speed restrictions placed on them. Then there will only be old airfields and race tracks where a human-driven vehicle is permitted.

It doesn't solve the problem entirely. But all the same, mostly.

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Ricardus
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Also, presumably a driverless car that swerves still knows where it's going.

If I swerve in that circumstance, then it's pot luck where I'll end up, but a driverless car has a better chance of ending up in the narrow patch of grass next to the tree.

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Then the dog ran before, and coming as if he had brought the news, shewed his joy by his fawning and wagging his tail. -- Tobit 11:9 (Douai-Rheims)

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rolyn
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quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
quote:
Originally posted by sharkshooter:
quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
We should also bear in mind is that electric vehicles have a body life of 50 years+. ...

I guess they don't have to salt the roads in the winter in your area.
I guess aluminium behaves differently in yours.
Conventional vehicles are no longer built to last much more than 20 years, with most being traded in long before that.

Not that the technology isn't there to make them last longer, it is probably done to help the economy by keeping car manufacturer going. Either that or it has been decided that one way to stop spendthrifts running knackered motors into the ground is to ensure the bodywork crumbles.

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Doc Tor
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quote:
Originally posted by rolyn:
quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
quote:
Originally posted by sharkshooter:
quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
We should also bear in mind is that electric vehicles have a body life of 50 years+. ...

I guess they don't have to salt the roads in the winter in your area.
I guess aluminium behaves differently in yours.
Conventional vehicles are no longer built to last much more than 20 years, with most being traded in long before that.

Not that the technology isn't there to make them last longer, it is probably done to help the economy by keeping car manufacturer going. Either that or it has been decided that one way to stop spendthrifts running knackered motors into the ground is to ensure the bodywork crumbles.

Internal combustion engines have a limited shelf life, because of all the tiny explosions it has to contain. Electric motors - especially modern brushless ones - can pretty much keep going forever, with the replacement of a few bearings.

There's been very little point in using anything but pressed steel - cheap, and with treatment, corrosion resistant - because weight and longevity haven't been much of an issue. It is now.

Yes, the car industry has previously relied on planned obsolescence to churn the market, but that's becoming increasingly difficult to maintain. Once cars are electric and driverless (you do realise that Uber are using people as a stop-gap until then, right?), that model will collapse.

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chris stiles
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quote:
Originally posted by lilBuddha:
There are multiple problems here. One is that the adoption of driverless cars will contained by economics. The poor will be the last to be able to afford them and the most disadvantaged by forced adoption.

I'm not discounting - or necessarily being particularly sanguine - about the downsides of such an outcome. Personally I think all the problems you raise (and a number of others) are very valid ones. Nevertheless, on a purely economic basis I can see such a situation coming about.

quote:

IMO, your perception of older cars being off the road faster is a combination of several factors.

I'm not basing it on perception necessarily. In the UK there have been two occasions over the last 20 years that pushed the adoption of newer cars, which led to the average age of cars falling noticeably. The first was the end of the sale of leaded petrol in 2000. The second was in 2008/2009, when the industry was on it's knees and the government offered financial incentives to scrap older cars. Neither are necessarily models for mass adoption of automated cars, but both show the effect of even moderate political will.
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chris stiles
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quote:
Originally posted by chris stiles:
quote:
Originally posted by lilBuddha:
There are multiple problems here. One is that the adoption of driverless cars will contained by economics. The poor will be the last to be able to afford them and the most disadvantaged by forced adoption.

I'm not discounting - or necessarily being particularly sanguine - about the downsides of such an outcome. Personally I think all the problems you raise (and a number of others) are very valid ones. Nevertheless, on a purely economic basis I can see such a situation coming about.
and let me add that I don't think transportation policy - at least in the way in which it's set - is particularly aimed at making things easier for poorer people who need transport.

So I can completely see governments allow divergent insurance on the basis that it's 'the market in operation'.

I'm not necessarily saying this is the way things should be.

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lilBuddha
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quote:
Originally posted by Ricardus:
Also, presumably a driverless car that swerves still knows where it's going.

If I swerve in that circumstance, then it's pot luck where I'll end up, but a driverless car has a better chance of ending up in the narrow patch of grass next to the tree.

Yeah, I don't think so. I will take your word for your lack of attentiveness and skill, but why would a driverless car know anything about the surface it was not driving on? How could it see and understand the terrain differential? driverless cars currently see vertical obstacles and know where the lanes are. They are at least two, very large, steps away from the type of artificial intelligence needed for the scenario presented.
Of course, many humans appear to be as well, so...

--------------------
So goodnight moon, I want the sun
If it's not here soon, I might be done
No it won't be too soon 'til I say goodnight moon

- A. N. Parsley, D. Mcvinni

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lilBuddha
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quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
Internal combustion engines have a limited shelf life, because of all the tiny explosions it has to contain. Electric motors - especially modern brushless ones - can pretty much keep going forever, with the replacement of a few bearings.

Some electric motors are designed to be serviceable, some are not. Whilst Elon Musk might claim a million miles, more conservative estimates are less than half that. Still more miles than most ICE and with less service, but not forever. Batteries have a limited life and are very expensive. Since they have not yet reached the maturity stage of petrol engines, this is likely to be the case for a long time.
There there is the rest of the vehicle. Most people don't purchase new(er) vehicles because the engine or gearbox is dead, but because other parts begin failing. A/C, suspension parts, interior degradation, etc. Cost/frequency of maintenance. ¹
And the electronics. Electronics² age. Not just the software, but the hardware as well. And, as the computers in a car are not something most consumers can easily create themselves - £ching$ching€ching
Oh, and aluminium isn't corrosion proof and is susceptible to salt water. Less so than steel, yes. But it has other stress factors that steel does not. Susceptibility to corrosion and stress depends on the alloy and conditions of use. The more resistant, the more expensive. But automakers will only use the best, I'm sure. And they will work to minimise cost, of course.


quote:

Yes, the car industry has previously relied on planned obsolescence to churn the market, but that's becoming increasingly difficult to maintain. Once cars are electric and driverless (you do realise that Uber are using people as a stop-gap until then, right?), that model will collapse.

As I mentioned above, obsolescence isn't merely the drivetain. If the automobile industry cannot move units, the unit cost will increase.
The only scenario in which the lower income folk are not completely fucked in this scenario is government-run transportation far beyond buses and trains.

¹And the market for used electric vehicles? You wish to buy a car when the most expensive components are about to need replacing?
²And I wager the auto industry will go the way of farm and heavy equipment: Vehicles will require authorised service centres to replace parts. Even out-of-warranty, non-electronic parts. Which means more sand.

--------------------
So goodnight moon, I want the sun
If it's not here soon, I might be done
No it won't be too soon 'til I say goodnight moon

- A. N. Parsley, D. Mcvinni

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Doc Tor
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Most people change cars because their previous one is a pile of crap and doesn't work any more. That does very much involve the engine and the gear box, and that's two things an EV doesn't have. It has a motor which produces maximum torque at zero revs.

Battery tech will be sorted. Second hand batteries will go into houses/storage farms.

As for the rest of it? It's fixable.

Car manufacturers are desperate to keep us on the model of private ownership, or private leasing. That's fine as long as cars do not drive themselves. As soon as they do, all bets are off. There's no point in me owning a car if I can use my phone to call one to my house when I want it, that'll take me where I need to go, and then bugger off again without me having to worry about rental costs or depreciation or insurance or tax or parking charges. My return journey will be similarly facilitated. There might be a subscription model, where I pay a monthly fee to a car pool, but otherwise I'll be paying for the time I'm in the car, and nothing more.

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mousethief

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quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
Most people change cars because their previous one is a pile of crap and doesn't work any more. That does very much involve the engine and the gear box, and that's two things an EV doesn't have. It has a motor which produces maximum torque at zero revs.

Zero revs is off. Ain't no torque when it's off.

quote:
Battery tech will be sorted. Second hand batteries will go into houses/storage farms.
And leak into the groundwater.

quote:
As for the rest of it? It's fixable.
Argumentum ad hope.

quote:
Car manufacturers are desperate to keep us on the model of private ownership, or private leasing. That's fine as long as cars do not drive themselves. As soon as they do, all bets are off. There's no point in me owning a car if I can use my phone to call one to my house when I want it, that'll take me where I need to go, and then bugger off again without me having to worry about rental costs or depreciation or insurance or tax or parking charges. My return journey will be similarly facilitated. There might be a subscription model, where I pay a monthly fee to a car pool, but otherwise I'll be paying for the time I'm in the car, and nothing more.
And that price will skyrocket because as car makers sell fewer units they will have to raise costs to stay in business (as lilBuddha said), and the car rental places will pass that cost on to you.

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“Religion doesn't fuck up people, people fuck up religion.”—lilBuddha

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Doc Tor
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At times like this, I'm reminded that the head of IBM said that the world market for computers would be five machines.

You're wrong. Not demonstrably wrong, but wrong all the same. Just how wrong is the only variable, but I'm putting my money on somewhere between 'very' and 'extremely'.

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lilBuddha
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quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
Most people change cars because their previous one is a pile of crap and doesn't work any more. That does very much involve the engine and the gear box, and that's two things an EV doesn't have.

I didn't say drivetain failure was never a cause for replacement, just that it isn't the main one. BTW, my MR2? I can replace the motor and gearbox for well less than he cost of an EV battery. Essentially having a new car to last another couple of decades.
I do think your reasoning is much as mt said: Argumentum ad hope.

Oh, and the ageing power system is not currently set up for all electric vehicles. The cost of getting it up to speed isn't small. And how are those new plants going to be fired?

IMO, hybrid vehicles are the next, rational step, not electric.
But we are wandering off-topic, aren't we?

--------------------
So goodnight moon, I want the sun
If it's not here soon, I might be done
No it won't be too soon 'til I say goodnight moon

- A. N. Parsley, D. Mcvinni

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Ricardus
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quote:
Originally posted by lilBuddha:
quote:
Originally posted by Ricardus:
Also, presumably a driverless car that swerves still knows where it's going.

If I swerve in that circumstance, then it's pot luck where I'll end up, but a driverless car has a better chance of ending up in the narrow patch of grass next to the tree.

Yeah, I don't think so. I will take your word for your lack of attentiveness and skill, but why would a driverless car know anything about the surface it was not driving on? How could it see and understand the terrain differential? driverless cars currently see vertical obstacles and know where the lanes are. They are at least two, very large, steps away from the type of artificial intelligence needed for the scenario presented.
Of course, many humans appear to be as well, so...

Well yes, but we are proposing a future in which the technology has advanced to such a degree that an all-driverless world seems possible.

Unless we propose there is something magical about rod and cone cells, there is no absolute reason why a computer couldn't reproduce their functionality if there was the will to do so, and unlike a human being, a computer's eyes don't have to have a limited field of vision, nor a reaction distance of 88 feet at 60mph.

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Then the dog ran before, and coming as if he had brought the news, shewed his joy by his fawning and wagging his tail. -- Tobit 11:9 (Douai-Rheims)

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Doc Tor
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quote:
Originally posted by lilBuddha:
Oh, and the ageing power system is not currently set up for all electric vehicles. The cost of getting it up to speed isn't small. And how are those new plants going to be fired?

By the power of nuclear fusion. You know, that big burny thing in the sky that sleets terawatts onto the planet daily and heats the ground unevenly making the wind blow.

Yes, hope. But hope will get us there. What you're offering won't.

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lilBuddha
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quote:
Originally posted by Ricardus:
Well yes, but we are proposing a future in which the technology has advanced to such a degree that an all-driverless world seems possible.

An all driverless world is possible now.* If money were no object, that is. AI does not need to be more advanced. For it to be safe it does. But the costs and logistics are crazy. Individual self-driving cars are not the answer. Ones that can be regulated by a central control are. But we are talking major expenditure for such systems.
quote:

Unless we propose there is something magical about rod and cone cells, there is no absolute reason why a computer couldn't reproduce their functionality if there was the will to do so, and unlike a human being, a computer's eyes don't have to have a limited field of vision, nor a reaction distance of 88 feet at 60mph.

It isn't the eyes, but the processing of information that they transmit. You, a human of at least reasonable intelligence, is capable of assessing much more than the most sophisticated computer. Speed of reaction is only part of the equation.

This is a fairly simple situation, much less complex than the swerve into a terrain change or cyclist, and yet the autopilot failed.

*Or at least very soon.

--------------------
So goodnight moon, I want the sun
If it's not here soon, I might be done
No it won't be too soon 'til I say goodnight moon

- A. N. Parsley, D. Mcvinni

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Doc Tor
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quote:
Originally posted by lilBuddha:
I can replace the motor and gearbox for well less than he cost of an EV battery.

Also, the cost of an EV battery has fallen 80% in six years. It was (at the start of 2017) ~$227/kWh. I've seen figures as low as $150/kWh for the Leaf.

Do you think that price will go up or down?

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lilBuddha
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quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
By the power of nuclear fusion. You know, that big burny thing in the sky that sleets terawatts onto the planet daily and heats the ground unevenly making the wind blow.

OK. So how much available power do you think the UK has in solar radiation? How much power is required to service the existing homes and businesses and how much to fuel vehicles? How many fields and mountains are you willing to cover so you can motor around your city? Solar is not the answer. At best it is part of the solution.
quote:

Yes, hope. But hope will get us there. What you're offering won't.

Hope is a valuable component of one's outlook, but it does not trump practicality. A sunny outlook of what one wishes doesn't counter how things work. Recognising the natural outcome of current trends is a necessary step in changing them. Hoping things might work out, isn't.

--------------------
So goodnight moon, I want the sun
If it's not here soon, I might be done
No it won't be too soon 'til I say goodnight moon

- A. N. Parsley, D. Mcvinni

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