Motion sickness to hinder autopia

Add another to the list of unappreciated hindrances to autonomous driving. See the last entry. It’s new information.

The override button. Surely every car, no matter how smart, will have a manual override. Your life could depend on it. Sometimes you simply MUST commandeer your car to get yourself out of harm’s way. But if there’s an override available, surely it will be abused. So we’ll always have to deal with people riding “bareback” and messing up the flow.

The desire to drive. Think it will ever go away? Not a chance.

Crime. Idle hands are the devil’s workshop.

Old cars. Until the roads are free of “dumb” cars that require a driver — and that could take a century — car travel will have to cater to the lowest common denominator.

Pedestrians. Ever drive through Manhattan? It’s you versus them. If your car politely defers to them, you’ll be sitting there at a green light. And the next green light. And the next green light.

Poor infrastructure. No car can read signs and road markings that don’t exist, or have been deftly vandalized so that 30mph says 80mph.

Cognitive distraction. If you let your guard down while the car drives itself, your reaction time to an emergency — one that the car can’t dodge — is dangerously bad. You might as well be drunk. And surely people will be exactly that — not to mention nude.

Balloon boys. If cars require almost no input to move around, some cars will end up sailing down the highway with a thoroughly confused and frightened guest on board.

Litigiousness. No need to elaborate on this one.

Motion sickness. Some people get queasy when they’re not driving. And it gets much worse when they try to read or do anything besides look out the windshield. So says a University of Michigan study. So for these people, how much freedom can be gained inside an autonomous car? They won’t be engaged in driving, but won’t be able to really disengage either. What fun.


2 thoughts on “Motion sickness to hinder autopia

  1. vfxx says:

    Poor infrastructure. No car can read signs and road markings that don’t exist, or have been deftly vandalized so that 30mph says 80mph

    I’m curious about mountain roads. If one side is a wall of rock and the other side has no guardrail or paint lines (it happens) can the sensors tell that a cliff is eminent? On a smaller scale, potholes.


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