Autunomous car was considered to be one of the promising areas but after accidents occured in a row, the future of this car has become uncertain. ST introduces situations, prospects and noticable aspects regarding this. ................... Ed
Cars have had a major impact on our lives since the first car named ‘Patent Motorwagen’ was made by Karl Benz in 1886. After the appearance of the first car, automobile design underwent evolutionary changes over the years. It has now reached the realm of making an autonomous car, a vehicle that can guide itself without human intervention. This kind of vehicle has become a concrete reality and may lead our way to a new direction.
An autonomous car is equipped with various kinds of high technologies. It is a combination of sensor, mapping, recognition, and communication technologies. The sensors replace human eyes and ears, and they can accurately perceive the surrounding environment with those built-in camera, radar, rider sensor, and front sensor. With the info gathered from these devices, the car is able to operate properly in terms of steering, accelerating, and decelerating, according to its surroundings. It also has the ability to use a range of technology known as augmented reality in which a vehicle displays information to the driver in a new and innovative way.
Google is the leading company in this autonomous car industry. In 2010, they officially announced their plan to develop autonomous vehicles, and four years later, they released a prototype. They are making autonomous vehicles based on artificial intelligence ‘DeepMind’ (machine learning) which was also used in AlphaGo. Tesla, is also one of the leading companies in this industry. Their recent car, Model S with the autopilot system was a huge success. The CEO of the company said they have made the perfect hardware for an autopilot system, and are planning to release it before 2020. Other companies such as Intel, Hyundai, and Volvo are also joining on this development of an autonomous car.
However, a big accident happened in Florida that could negatively affect the whole industry of autonomous vehicles. The Tesla Model S, which was running autonomously, had a car accident and killed the driver, who was watching TV. As a result, concerns about the autonomous vehicle being safe to use have begun to rise. The car was able to detect another car coming from the opposite direction, but it was said that the accident was caused by recognizing the light being reflected by the white truck as sunlight. This accident tells us that we cannot trust computers one-hundred percent. Therefore, the autonomous car still has a long way to go.
There are a lot of advantages in using the autonomous car. It could change the whole paradigm of driving. Driving robots, replacing humans, can maximize efficiency in all areas of an automobile. Drivers, as well as many public transportations, are no longer needed. Unlike humans, autonomous vehicles driven by AI(Artificial intelligence) will precisely follow the guidance and regulation of roads, which could reduce the illegal acts and also avoid car accidents. The American English word ‘Automobile’ comes from the Greek word ‘Autos’ and the Latin word ‘Movere’. In other words, it has the meaning of ‘moving on its own’. The true meaning of an automobile has now just started.
Kim Seung-soo (ST Reporter)