Dodge Shouldn't Be Scared of Robot Cars

Dodge is apparently getting a little worried about what's going to happen when our cars are driven by robots. What will happen to the joy of driving, they ask?

Let me just say that damn, I want to live in that future right now. It's got an automated Jello dispenser!

Dodge seems to be concerned that when our cars go autonomous (and they will), they'll suck all the joy out of driving. But did you notice how there's that obligatory "professional driver on a closed course" notice at the bottom of the equally obligatory "driving is fun" scene? Yeah, that's when driving is fun. On those rarer and rarer occasions when you've got an exciting and empty stretch of road and time to enjoy it.

For most people, most of the time, driving is a chore. The whole objective of driving is to get from one place to another quickly, and that's increasingly impossible thanks to either traffic or long commuting distances or both. No matter how expensive or fun your car is, I can't imagine that stop and go traffic will ever be enjoyable, and that's why we should all be looking forward to autonomous cars. Instead of just sitting there, wasting time, you can work. Or sleep. Or watch TV. Autonomous cars will turn wasted time into productive time, and even enjoyable time.

The other reason to look forward to cars with an autonomous component is because commercials like these show that aforementioned "professional driver on a closed course." The reason they put that in there is because if you drive like that outside of a closed course, you're likely to get arrested and/or hurt someone, since not only is it against the law to change lanes without signaling (really, it is), I'm also pretty sure that the car blew right through a red light at the 0:45 second mark. Fortunately, when we're all driving cars with artificial intelligence, they'll be able to keep us in one piece even when we've got idiot drivers like the one in the commercial on the road.

Of course, this is all a little bit tongue in cheek (even the dig at Google), but there's some underlying seriousness here as well. It's not like cars of the future are going to just abandon the steering wheel and pedals; autonomy will be an option. You'll be able to decide whether you want to plod through traffic at 7am or have your car do it for you, and when you find yourself alone on a beautiful stretch of road, by all means, have a blast... And try not to let it get to you that your car is almost certainly a better driver than you'll ever be.

Via [ Autoblog ]

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