When computers drive cars:
~ Roedy (1948-02-04 age:69)
- Traffic lights would not be needed. Cars would interleave in what would look like an RCMP (Royal Canadian Mounted Police) musical ride.
- Because cars telegraph their intentions and share information about road conditions, accidents will be very rare, especially once manual drivers go the way of the horse buggy. This means cars can be built more lightly and hence get better mileage.
- Cars could be safely packed closer together bumper to bumper and side to side increasing the capacity of existing roads.
- Cars will get better mileage. Computers will avoid fuel-costly acceleration and braking. Cars will travel in tight packs that reduce wind resistance.
- You won’t have a single bad driver or an accident tying up traffic.
- Fog will not be a hazard since cars will see with multiple sensors (e.g. radar, sonar, infrared, laser) including radio communication with other vehicles further ahead and digital broadcasts of road and weather hazards. All cars in the vicinity will know what the other vehicles are planning to do.
- You can drive drunk, while having sex, while sleeping, while watching TV… in complete safety.
- Cars will simply not enter freeways if that would cause gridlock.
- No matter how inattentive you are, you won’t miss a freeway exit.
- You tell your car your destination and it gets you there, adjusting the route to road conditions as it proceeds.
- You will normally exit your car and leave your vehicle to find a parking space for itself, perhaps quite far away, in a very dense parking garage that few humans could navigate. When you want to leave, you summon your car electronically to pick you up at a convenient loading zone.
- You can send your car on errands without a driver, even transporting children and pets unattended.
- You can lend or rent out your car to others when you are not using it and have it come get you wherever you are.
- You may share a pool of vehicles of various sizes and specialities. You summon a vehicle of the desired type with a digital cellphone call.
- Your taxi won’t have a driver. The distinction between a taxi, a rental vehicle and a vehicle pool will disappear.