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What’s tapping the brakes on self-driving cars?

On Behalf of | Oct 19, 2020 | Car Accidents

And that’s not that’s all bad. Notwithstanding developers’ overt disappointment that self-driving cars aren’t a flatly done deal on America’s roadways, the gains made thus far are still impressive and bode well for the future.

Granted, they have turned out to be far more modest to this point than what many industry insiders and commentators had hoped for. Consider the oft-referenced and notably bold statement made by former U.S. Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx in 2016. Foxx lauded next-stage developments linked with autonomous technologies and declared without reservation that self-driving cars in final form would be ubiquitous across the country by 2021.

Well, that date is rapidly approaching, with the secretary’s declaration having turned out to far more whimsical thinking than a realistic assessment. A recent in-depth article on the subject matter published by the digital media company Vox points to “a lot of knotty problems to solve that are conspiring to delay the arrival of the technology.” Surfacing problems relevant to every type of issue are reportedly “giving engineers fits.” There is clearly a massive amount of work still to be done.

But, as noted, that reality shouldn’t spawn abject negativity for self-driving advocates and the public in general. The bottom line stressed by Vox is that, while the race is not going to be quickly won, material gains are being systematically forged with technological enhancements that literally drive safer outcomes.

Consider this: Adaptive cruise control was an unknown concept just a few short years ago. Ditto enhancements like assisted steering and emergency braking.

We’re getting there, notes Vox, although the finish line will mark the end of a marathon rather than a short all-out dash.

 

And not that’s all bad. Notwithstanding developers’ overt disappointment that self-driving cars aren’t a flatly done deal on America’s roadways, the gains made thus far are still impressive and bode well for the future.

Granted, they have turned out to be far more modest to this point than what many industry insiders and commentators had hoped for. Consider the oft-referenced and notably bold statement made by former U.S. Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx in 2016. Foxx lauded next-stage developments linked with autonomous technologies and declared without reservation that self-driving cars in final form would be ubiquitous across the country by 2021.

Well, that date is rapidly approaching, with the secretary’s declaration having turned out to far more whimsical thinking than a realistic assessment. A recent in-depth article on the subject matter published by the digital media company Vox points to “a lot of knotty problems to solve that are conspiring to delay the arrival of the technology.” Surfacing problems relevant to every type of issue are reportedly “giving engineers fits.” There is clearly a massive amount of work still to be done.

But, as noted, that reality shouldn’t spawn abject negativity for self-driving advocates and the public in general. The bottom line stressed by Vox is that, while the race is not going to be quickly won, material gains are being systematically forged with technological enhancements that literally drive safer outcomes.

Consider this: Adaptive cruise control was an unknown concept just a few short years ago. Ditto enhancements like assisted steering and emergency braking.

We’re getting there, notes Vox, although the finish line will mark the end of a marathon rather than a short all-out dash.

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