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Mar5-12, 02:23 PM
P: 1,414
@ dipole,
Actually, I was just joking. Maybe I watch too much scifi.

I think it's a great idea to develop the technology, however I'm not sure why we need (or why there would ever be viable market for) robot cars and/or robot drivers. Aren't there enough people out of work already?

To comment on a few of your points:
Quote Quote by dipole View Post
We have machines that operate autonomously all the time ...
It's one thing to put a plane in the open sky on autopilot for a while, but auto traffic is another thing. Lots of variables.

Quote Quote by dipole View Post
... trains are capable of driving themselves ...
They're on a track.

Quote Quote by dipole View Post
... most of the technology and goods you own were probably built or assembled using robots at some stage of their manufacture...
Doing very limited, repetitive tasks.

Quote Quote by dipole View Post
If machines can offer a real improvement to human transportation by driving on roads autonomously, why is this a bad thing?
A big if. But assuming that acceptable robot driving technology is someday developed, who's going to be able to afford to buy it? Would it put a certain segment of the population out of work?

Quote Quote by dipole View Post
Is a robot really less trustworthy than some teenager who's texting/blaring music/chatting with friends/and being reckless all at the same time while driving? We allow them to drive, and in fact the number one cause of deaths among young people is car accidents.
This assumes that robot cars/drivers are going to be implemented on a massive scale wrt individual vehicles.

A simpler solution to the problem of teen driving is to raise the driving age.