Self-driving cars still face some roadblocks

driverless cars UK
Mark Boekraad
Geschreven door Mark Boekraad

Here are six unsolved challenges that stand between the technologies’ potential and reality:

As more than 800 engineers, software developers, transportation experts and other technical folks met last week in Ypsilanti to discuss the risks and benefits of autonomous and connected vehicles, they were raising more questions than finding answers.

Here are six unsolved challenges that stand between the technologies’ potential and reality:

1) Cybersecurity and privacy protection

Maybe this can’t be solved until there are thousands of pilot vehicles on our roads, but last week Wired magazine writer Andy Greenberg wrote about two cybersecurity experts who accessed a newer Jeep Cherokee’s computer brain through its Uconnect infotainment system and rewrote the firmware to plant their malicious code. The result: hip-hop began blasting through the stereo system, the AC turned to maximum force. Then the hacker’s code killed the transmission and brakes. We know autonomous cars will have even more software coding. One major attack and consumer confidence in the technology could be severely damaged.



Google tests self-driving cars in tricky situations


2) How much will these vehicles cost?

Established automakers are introducing progressively more advanced autonomous features in their most expensive models. Ride-hailing or other fleet-based services such as Uber or Lyft will try to deliver their service at a lower price than competing options.

3) Ethical considerations

How do software developers write code that distinguishes between the value of a child’s life and the value of a soccer ball when both suddenly dart out from between parked cars ? Or do you program the vehicle to stop as suddenly as possible in a way that could injure the driver ?

4) Motor vehicle safety codes vary

In certain states vehicles can cross a double yellow line if it necessary to get around another vehicle blocking traffic. In other states it is illegal.

5) How do established automakers market vehicles designed to deliver convenience more than performance?

As former McKinsey & Co. consultant Glenn Mercer said Tuesday, “Think about BMW. When you’re making the ‘Ultimate Driving Machine’ how do you market that you don’t need to drive?”

6) How does LIDAR (the remote sensing technology that guides autonomous cars) overcome the weather restrictions that limit its performance in snow and hard rain?

The best answer appears to be practice and better mapping technology, but the technology isn’t there yet.

Over de Auteur

Mark Boekraad

Mark Boekraad

Mijn naam is Mark en als autofanaat ben ik zeer geinteresseerd in de revolutie van de zelfrijdende auto. De zelfrijdende auto zal langzaam ingeburgerd gaan worden, maar dat zal zeker nog jaren duren. Ik lees nu al veel over dit onderwerp op binnen- en buitenlandse media. En zal dat de komende jaren blijven doen. Als je nog tips hebt of links naar interessante sites, dan hoor ik dat graag! Want samen kunnen we iedereen laten genieten van de opkomst van de zelfrijdende auto.


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