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Posts Tagged ‘driverless car’

The Path Toward a Driverless Nation

August 10th, 2012

Google self-driving Lexus RX 450h

Thirty years ago, eight in 10 Americans ages 17-19 had a driver’s license. Today, it’s six in 10.

That’s the lead to a story at ScienceDaily, which goes on to give lots more stats about the decrease in licensed drivers in this country.

Many teens today don’t care whether they drive or not, and that percentage will probably just continue to drop. In today’s world, when kids can drive on Xbox and instantly connect to friends through technology, the need and desire to move about in the real world is diminishing.

While that’s great for the safety of America’s teenagers, it’s terrible for our car culture. In 20 years ask a guy about his first car, and he’s likely to respond, “A 2012 Ferrari 458 Italia, from GranTurismo on my old Xbox 360.”

Add Google’s self-driving cars to the mix, and car passion is at serious risk.

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Google Wants 1 Million Driverless Miles

October 24th, 2011

Inside a driverless car

Remember when Google was just a search engine?

I still remember the first time I saw the Google homepage. It was in 2001, and I worked at an ad agency. One of the hip designers had the sparse, mystifying, cryptic page constantly displayed on one of his Power Mac monitors. I looked at that page and wondered what it was. I wondered what would happen if I were to click the “I’m Feeling Lucky” button.

I’d never seen a website so devoid of content and wondered if I’d be able to use it, if I was even allowed to, or if it was just for people who had been given¬†specific¬†instructions on how to operate the¬†instruction-less web tool.

Then I got brave and searched my first Google search. I didn’t click “I’m Feeling Lucky,” because I wasn’t, plus I didn’t know what would happen if I did.

It all seems so silly now, especially since all of humanity “Googles” things nearly as often as we take a breath. (Have you tried the “Chuck Norris” I’m Feeling Lucky search? Funny stuff.)

My point is, Google was the coolest, most useful website ever created. But that was before Google got too big and earned more money that it knows what to do with. Now, Google is meddling in things it shouldn’t be messing with. Smart phones are one, I think. The other is driving.

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