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Are some innovations just playful concepts?

24/10/2018

Over the last few years artificial intelligence has soared and with that has propelled the idea of autonomous cars. Is this just a playful concept which will struggle to be executed well? When it comes to Autonomous cars there are 5 defined levels and these are: 1. Driver assistance 2. Partial Automation 3. Conditional Automation 4. High Automation 5. Complete Automation Currently, we are at level 2 automation. So what this means is computers within the car take over multiple functions such as speed and the steering systems. They do this my using multiple data sources with the car like sensors and cameras, the computer within the car analysis his data systematically and weaves the speed and steering function together leaving just the diver to be on alert for if and when they will need to take over. The new model 2018 S-class can be classed as a level 2.5, it takes over directional, throttle and brake functions whilst using detailed sat-nav data to automatically brake around corners. It also keeps a set distance from the car in front and sets-off once traffic jams clear, all whilst the driver remains idle. We can expect to be at full level 3 by the end of 2020 as new features are more people work on the technology. To achieve this level which will allow all aspects of driving to be done for you but the driver will be on hand to intervene, ultra-highly refined mapping will need to be done. New logic will have to be added to computers processing and next-gen sensors will have to be developed (which are currently in the works). Audi have said there new A8 model is the world’s first level 3 autonomous vehicles, however due to current laws within the UK they have not been allowed to enable it in the UK. We can expect to be at level 4 by 2022, however level 4 will only be available within metropolitan areas such as New York City and London. But, in order to fully get to this level the laws will have to be re-amended and looked at. The issue here though is not whether it will be a positive impact; it is whether the human will really want automated travel. We barely trust our neighbour these days, how can we all of a sudden change the human psyche to be receptive of a computer which is in control of our safety. There are still many kinks in the change which need addressing and many sceptics believe autonomous vehicles will not be in full function till at least after 2030.

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