Opinion

An Autonomous Future

By Akash Kumar

   The demand for unique and advanced technology has tremendously increased within the twenty-first century as numerous companies are scrambling to appeal the public with their cutting edge innovations. Companies such as Waymo, Tesla, Zoox, and Cruise Automation are contenders amongst a battle of autonomous vehicles. Each business has devoted the past several years to perfect the software used to command autonomous vehicles. While the desire for autonomous vehicles has always been an unrelenting thought for players in the technology industry, it is rapidly becoming a reality. Although they are a distance away from completing the task, this big undertaking will yield profitable results for whoever completes it.

   Autonomous vehicles can create better infrastructure for ground transportation by cohesively driving together, reducing traffic.  Cities like Los Angeles and New York would benefit from autonomous vehicles because of the substantial amount of traffic that these cities deal with regularly. Since autonomous vehicles will be rigorously tested in order to be released to the public, they will perform at or above the level of human drivers. As this technology enhances over time, cars will become far better drivers than ourselves and will be able to assist the disabled and elderly. Autonomous vehicles will also have a multitude of applications like passenger rideshare and freight delivery. In the U.S. we constantly face dangerous drivers who put others at risk. If we have autonomous vehicles available to the public, then safety will increase and traffic accidents will be reduced.

   Companies such as Tesla and Waymo are currently developing autonomous technology with highly advanced systems such as lidar sensors and 360-degree video cameras. Each company is taking their own unique path to self driving vehicles and I support it. Don’t you want our traffic infrastucture and driving experience to be improved? Some people would argue that these cars cannot possibly be safe because they won’t be able to predict every scenario. True as it may be, cars will generally do a better job than humans when combined with artificial intelligence.

   By creating autonomous vehicles we are inducing people to think harder and engineer better. Because autonomous vehicles are swiftly beginning to take a foothold, they will revolutionize transportation while putting us within safer hands. While we are still a long time away from mainstream autonomous vehicles, we will undoubtedly see a major positive change in our transportation economy. 

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