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Self-driving Cars

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on 21 January 2014

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Transcript of Self-driving Cars

What kind of effect will the use of autonomous cars have on the economy?
By: Caroline D. and Kelly J.
Jumping Off Point
In a
New Yorker Magazine
article called "Auto-correct", author Burkhard Bilger examines the progress of the self-driving car and forecasts its future. Specifically, the article focuses on the evolution of Google's driverless car. This article serves as the jumping off point for this mini-lesson which will investigate the pros and cons of self-driving vehicles.

Article: http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2013/11/25/131125fa_fact_bilger

The Future of Self-driving Cars

1. How will self-driving cars reshape society?

2. How safe are self-driving cars?

3. What kind of effect will the use of autonomous cars have on the economy?

4. Would self-driving cars affect the environment?

5. Are self-driving cars in the near future?

How will self-driving cars reshape society?
About the Google Car
With the development of self driving vehicles on the rise, we may soon live in a world where humans no longer drive. Some benefits of self-driving cars include:
less collisions
decreased # of deaths by motor vehicles
less congestion/faster commute
bad drivers are eliminated
multitasking during a commute
Although self-driving cars will yield less collisions, collisions are still possible.

Certain automotive companies (e.g. repair shops and maintenance shops) will lose business.
Since these cars will be controlled by computers, there will be more valuable data available.

Privacy could be threatened.
People may or may not accept these autonomous vehicles in their lives. Here is why:
The look of cities will change because people will start to live farther away from the job since the commute will be faster. Cities will also spread out over larger areas; therefore, dense cities will diminish.
How safe are self-driving cars?
Self-driving cars are computer-controlled vehicles which will eliminate human error roads; thus, car safety will increase.
There is still a possibility for problems even though road safety is predicted to increase with the development of self-driving cars. Examples of problems that could occur are:
Computer system failure
Data hacking
Our investigation starts with these five questions:
Some economic benefits of self-driving cars include:
People will spend less on insurance because of reduced car crashes
Predicted economic savings from
self-driving vehicles
Less wasted fuel (due to car idling) which means you get more fuel for your money
Self-driving cars can generate money to pay for themselves by serving as a taxi when not transporting their owners.
The cost of self-driving cars is currently pretty high. A car of this sort would cost about $100,000 or more. The sensors alone in google's driverless car are priced at $70,000. It may be a while before we see many of these cars out on the road.
DeChant, Tim. "Environmental Benefits of Self-Driving Cars." Per Square Mile. N.p., 24 Jul 2012. Web. 20 Jan. 2014. <http://persquaremile.com/2012/07/24/environmental-benefits-of-self-driving-cars/>.

Estes, Adam Clark. "What's Keeping Self-Driving Cars Off the Road?." Gizmodo. 24 Oct 2013: n. page. Print. <http://gizmodo.com/whats-keeping-self-driving-cars-off-the-road-1450916024>.

Google Car. N.d. Photograph. n.p. Web. 20 Jan 2014. <http://tippnews.com/wp-content/uploads/Google-Self-Driving-car.jpg>.

Google Car: It drives itself. N.d. video. n.p. Web. 20 Jan 2014. <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-nYhKD8leAg->.

NYC. N.d. Photograph. n.p. Web. 20 Jan 2014. <http://assets.inhabitat.com/nyc/wp-content/blogs.dir/2/files/2011/01/NY-Urban-Tech-Center-3-537x368.jpg>.

"Preparing a Nation for Autonomous Vehicles." 
Eno Transportation Foundation. N.p.. Web. 20 Jan 2014. <https://www.enotrans.org/wp-content/uploads/wpsc/downloadables/AV-paper.pdf>.

Silberg, Gary, and Richard Wallace. "Self-driving cars: The next revolution." 
KPMG. N.p.. Web. 20 Jan 2014. <https://www.kpmg.com/US/en/IssuesAndInsights/ArticlesPublications/Documents/self-driving-cars-next-revolution.pdf>.

Worstall, Tim. "How Will Google's Driverless Cars Change Cities? It Will Expand Them, Massively." 
Forbes. N.p.. Web. 20 Jan 2014. <http://www.forbes.com/sites/timworstall/2013/07/08/how-will-googles-driverless-cars-change-cities-it-will-expand-them-massively/ >.
Would self- driving cars affect the environment?
The ideal form of transportation in a perfectly sustainable world is public transportation, but self-driving cars have the ability to save energy. They can make split-second decisions to save as much fuel as possible.
Safety = Efficency
Self-driving cars can cut out human error and cause fewer accidents. A lower chance of a crash means less safety equiptment and a lighter car, and a lighter car is a more efficent car.
Are self-driving cars in the near future?
Realistically? No.
Self-driving cars are getting closer and closer to becoming a reality, but there's still quite a few issues. Self-driving cars have difficulties in situations like snow. If the car isn't driven by a human, there can be a lot of legal mess. Plus, the technology is still super expensive.
When will self-driving cars be here?
Companies claim they will be able to have affordable self-driving cars on the market by 2020, but it's doubtable. A self-driving car would cost at least $100k today. They will most likely be on existance within our lifetimes.
Full transcript