Thursday, August 15, 2013

self-driving cars

Self-driving cars have long been the dream of commuters and trial lawyers looking for sueable entities with more assets than the average accident-prone citizen. Experts are predicting that, much like Cold Fusion and Artificial Intelligence, they're only a few years away from clearing the last technical hurdles.

One great aspect about self-driving cars, declares their backers, is that they will pave the way for congestion-free cities, as our new overlords massive coordinating computerized intelligences will organize and optimize traffic flow. This will pave the way for a grand utopia wherein we use less gasoline and have blissful lives, living out our lives in the America of our dreams, where there are no cats, and the streets are paved with cheese.

One reason these predictions are sure to succeed is that there already exists a segment of society who somehow feels it worth it to spend an hour or more propelling themselves in a car, each way, to their place of employment, either because they have chosen to live in a city full of hobos and despair and they work in a pleasant sunny paradise in view of the mountains, or they work in those miserable cities, and are priced out of a reasonable home, where reasonable is defined by the number of boxes of stuff they can fit in their garage, or the size of the lawn they can maintain on weekends when they have time to view it.

Imagine what these people will do when the last shred of constraint is suddenly removed from their insatiable appetite for misery. If you're willing to spend two hours in a car driving, how long are you willing to spend in a car that drives itself? Never bet against seasoned commuters. These are the people spend their lives battling traffic in a horrible aluminum darwinian den of despair. I dare you to drive 101 NB at 9:00 AM on any day of the week. Just try it. How can they stand it? Are they having nervous breakdowns right now? Why are they not all screaming in despair?

Giving them the option of being ferried to and from their work like the lords of Axiom isn't going to do a thing for traffic. If you want to drive anywhere from the hours of 7-10 and 3-8, you're going to have to move to Idaho.

2 comments:

Nettie said...

Streets are paved with cheese...ha ha

Unknown said...

Idaho once had a back log of traffic...but 3.66 min later we changes lanes and were moving along again