Quantcast
Jump to content

Flash Sale + Social Proof


Flash Sale + Social Proof


Flash Sale + Social Proof

Cars with Brains - - - The autonomous car... are we ready for the possibilities?


Gonzo

Recommended Posts

Cars with Brains

 

Cars have had some form of a brain in them since the early 80’s, and those brains have steadily increased in capabilities since then. Instead of just setting timing issues or injection pulse widths they now can do just about anything you can think of for controlling fuel consumption and emissions. And, you can bet tomorrow’s cars will have even greater computing power than those today. One of the latest (if you haven’t already heard about them) innovations is the self-driving car, or what is sometimes referred to as the “Autonomous vehicle”.

 

An autonomous vehicle basically means a car that can navigate the road, avoid obstacles, and plan the most strategic path to your destination. Sounds futuristic doesn’t it? It’s not, it’s the real deal. Right now we can give a car the ability to navigate the nation’s highways without human intervention, and it’s obvious they use some form of GPS or internal guidance system to track their position. And, to do the job right the car has to be aware of not only all the traffic conditions, but the weather conditions as well. This allows them to be “self-aware” and have the ability to reason which route is better than another. But, to what level of awareness and reasoning are we willing to give to these electronic marvels?

 

They actually are more like a rolling robotic device rather than an automobile at this point. And, being "self-aware" something has to govern their reasoning processors to ensure they are not going to put you in harm’s way. This is where the three laws of robotics the noted science fiction writer Isaac Asimov developed years ago might need to apply.

 

No. # 1 - A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm.

No. # 2 - A robot must obey orders given it by human beings, except where such orders would conflict with the First Law.

No. # 3 - A robot must protect its own existence, as long as such protection does not conflict with the First or Second Law.

 

Think about it, a self-thinking mode of transportation that can not only decide the route, but also make the decision whether it’s safe to travel at all. Here’s a hypothetical situation to ponder: Let’s say that in the future every car on the road is an autonomous vehicle, and it’s in the middle of winter. The snow is 4 foot deep and drifting even deeper somewhere along the route you’ll be taking, but only slightly snow covered where you live. Basically the roads are impassable at some point, but you don’t know this. You hop in your car and tell it to take you to grandma’s house. The car calculates the different possible routes, but cannot find a safe path to your destination at this time. Should the car even allow you to get out of the garage? What if the car refuses to move? Are the three robotic laws in affect at this point?

 

What if, for instance, you needed to get to town ASAP, let’s say for a prescription that is a matter of life or death, or your wife is going into labor? You jump in the car and tell it to head to the pharmacy or hospital and to STEP ON IT! Would the car say, “I’m sorry, but I cannot exceed the posted speed limit.” ??

 

I suppose there would be a feature that would allow you to override the programming that tells it to obey traffic laws to some degree. But, if each and every car is aware of each and every other car, what is going to happen when you go cruising through the next stop sign without slowing down at all? (Assuming the other car’s crash avoidance systems are operating correctly.) Well then… if the other cars know, I’ll bet Mr. Policeman will know too!

 

Here’s something to think about. Should total control be left up to the computer in the car, or should the driver have the final say regardless of the outcome? Should failure and poor judgment be left up to the human, or should the computer override their requests? Many a movie has predicted the eventual outcome of what could happen if the three basic laws of robotics aren’t adhered to. Could we be heading in this direction? At this point … all is possible.

 

As a technician, I’ve seen some crazy electronic current flow through unrelated circuitry cause all kinds of weird and unimaginable faults. With that in mind, and then throw in that we are talking about an autonomous vehicle what are the possibilities of a failure like now?

Even with the systems that are out in the market place today, such as “auto-parallel parking” these systems have fail safes that basically turn the feature off if a problem arises within its system. However, it’s hard to imagine every possible glitch has been covered by the engineers. You’d think they have covered it all, but if that’s the case … why do I still see electrical problems that aren’t covered in any of the diagnostic manuals today? And, if all the glitches are already sorted out what do we need recalls for? It’s a scary thought.

 

There’s no doubt as we go further into the electronic age, even software updates and some recalls might be just an internet download away from being sent directly to your car. (Telematics for example.) Even with the advancements in technology, autonomous cars may still be far from ready. However, taking into account “Moore’s law”, which states computing capabilities will double every 18 months… it might be a lot closer than we think.

 

It would be something to jump ahead another hundred years and see what we’ve done. Good or bad. I might rather go back into history to the days of the horse and buggy instead. Of course, a horse has a mind of its own too, and if you did manage to get into a dangerous situation with a horse and buggy chances are you’re both going to be in trouble. Now, if you tried the same thing with an autonomous car, the car isn’t likely to buck and run off leaving you stranded there. Then again, the outcome may actually depend on how the three robotic laws are interpreted in those cars with brains.

 

 

 

 


View full article

Link to comment
Share on other sites


Flash Sale + Social Proof


Flash Sale + Social Proof


Flash Sale + Social Proof

Interesting topic today, Gonzo. It is been on my mind a lot too about the future of our industry. The autonomous car will come. To what degree and how it will evolve is anyone's guess. You bring up great points, especially about the driver taking control under certain situations.

 

One thing's for sure, for us "older guys", we may be looked upon the same way the blacksmiths were viewed 100 years ago.

 

Interesting thought?

 

PS: Always enjoy your articles!

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

A hundred years from now if somebody read this article I'm sure they would say... "What an idiot." Because ya know, somehow the future electronics, engineers, and mechanics find a way to make it all work.

 

I think I'll fire up my blacksmith furnace... could use a fall back career ya know.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

gonzo: I think the future will not be electronics as we know it today but some other form will be invented that will do more with less and will replace the form of electronics that we see in cars today.. Care to venture what that might be? I don't!

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think the autonomous car will have as much influence in the marketplace as the hybrids do. Until fuel is so expensive or depleted I don't believe they'll be a factor.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Have you checked out Joe's Latest Blog?

    • By Joe Marconi in Joe's Blog
         7
      There are many things to consider when creating a marketing plan. Among them are establishing a budget, what forms of media should be used, and whether traditional advertising, such as TV, radio, and print, is still relevant.  And of course, how much should be allocated to social media and digital advertising?
      All the above are essentials to any marketing plan. However, the first step is ensuring that you have a healthy workplace and that your employees understand your company’s culture and the overall mission and vision. 
      We all know that happy employees create happy customers. No form of advertising can overcome a toxic workplace with unhappy employees. If your employees are not creating an amazing customer experience, your marketing plan will not work.
      Advertising and marketing may bring in customers, but the people in your company creating an amazing customer experience will be the most important component of your marketing plan.  It’s the customer experience that sells work and gives the customer a reason to return. 
      Creating an amazing employee experience, which creates an amazing customer experience, is also the most cost-effective part of your marketing plan. In fact, it cost next to nothing.
  • Upcoming Events

    No upcoming events found
  • Similar Topics

    • By TTP

      Premium Member Content 

      This content is hidden to guests, one of the benefits of a paid membership. Please login or register to view this content.

    • By Joe Marconi
      Back in the 1990s, some shop owner's feared that fuel injection, 100 mile spark plugs, the elimination of the Distributor cap, rotor and extended fluid services would be our demise. But, that didn't happen. 
      Now I hear many in our industry state that "There is no needed work on an electric vehicle, they are problem free." 
      My opinion, let's not fall into thinking that the EV car will run forever of even for years without needed service.  The EV still has tires, suspension, brakes, and a whole new area of opportunities. It will be different, but there will be a need for the Automotive Technicians and for repair shops.
      Your thoughts? 
       
       
    • By Eric Roberts
      Hi guys just  a short one this! As garage owners present or past how do or did you cope with the "can you just" brigade. This is the customer male or female (or otherwise) who just asks if "you could pop a light bulb in for me please". I no it could be a slow day, then this would not be problem, but does it annoy you. We had one in the other Saturday. A guy pulled in and wanted us to check  knocking on the rear end. The car was road tested and on the ramp for two hours on a busy Saturday morning.
      Eventually we found a broken coil spring on the front of the car! I am sure there are much worse stories than this but it really gets me mad sometimes?
    • By carmcapriotto
      Why is adapting to technology important? Look around you. Keeping up with the latest technology is key to any successful enterprise. It is a requirement today. It increases flexibility, streamlines operations, and helps you adjust your forward progress. I'm with Chris Cloutier and Craig ONeill at ASTE 2022, and we discuss the four ‘Ts’ … technology, touch, trust, and transparency. The inspiration for this episode stemmed from Tracy receiving a video from an orthodontist's office and how it can be easily implemented in our industry.  Chris Cloutier is co-owner of Golden Rule Auto Care in Dallas Texas and CEO of Auto Tex Me. Listen to Chris’s previous episodes HERE. Craig O'Neill, VP of Training, Autotextme.com. Listen to Craig's previous episodes HERE  Key Talking Points
      Using videos to do your inspections and business discussions Technology plus touch equals trust or transparency Get service advisors to set expectations at the beginning of a visit. Connect through technology without having to waste time- send a text message that points to an email to open a video.  You now have secured two main lines of communication for this person Pre-sell, pre-sold User-generated content does not have to be perfect; it just has to be personable Educating customers with one minute videos Level one, basic data. Your name, the information to reach you. Level two, discuss the vehicle transactional data related to why the visit's coming in. Level three, the relational data, how are you using this car? Are you going on any trips? Making the person a client, not customer
      Connect with the Podcast: Aftermarket Radio Network Subscribe on YouTube Visit us on the Web Follow on Facebook Become an Insider Buy me a coffee Important Books Check out today's partner: Learn more about NAPA AutoCare and the benefits of being part of the NAPA family by visiting www.NAPAAutoCare.com
         
      Click to go to the Podcast on Remarkable Results Radio
    • Advertise your services or products to passers-by attracting them towards your business
    • By Joe Marconi
      A recent Auto Leap Survey revealed that 64% of shop owners are looking to retire in the next 10 years. (Link below to survey) 
      So, I want to take an informal survey of our  ASO members:
      How long have you been a Shop Owner? When do plan on retiring?   
       


  • Our Sponsors










×
×
  • Create New...