How we will learn to trust driverless cars - Case Study 1

By many accounts, we are on the cusp of a new era. Boston Consulting Group expects the autonomous vehicle (AV) market to reach a value of USD 42 billion by 2025. Ford, Volkswagen, General Motors, BMW, Toyota, Audi, Nissan, Jaguar, Tesla and others have all announced the launch of fully autonomous cars by about 2020 or earlier.1 Yet, the very notion of a self-driving car requires trust on a number of levels. We allow technology to “take over” regularly in our lives, from devices as simple as an elevator or escalator to automated airport rail systems, subway systems and even amusement park rides. However, trusting our lives to a device that must make life and death decisions with near-perfect accuracy in an unpredictable world and at high speeds represents a quantum leap in the trust we must lend to technology. Of course, “drivers” of AVs are not the only ones concerned. Property owners, bicycle riders, pedestrians, and all other users of public roads will need trust to coexist with this new technology.

Figure 7.2. The four automation levels of self-driving cars

Source: US Department of Transportation

< Prev   CONTENTS   Source   Next >