The State of Driverless Cars

The New York Times comments… in 2010.

I submit that if you changed that article’s date to 2015, not a whole lot else would have to change.  Google’s business plans have become slightly less hazy, but everything related to the technology sounds just like driverless car articles five years later.

This isn’t to say that there have been no advances in the last 5 years.  There pretty clearly have.  Rather, I’m saying:

  1. This is a technology with a lot of dazzle, and where a lot of the difficulty is in 1% cases.  This makes it pretty easy to show something to a journalist which they interpret as very, very impressive.
  2. There is no real reason to believe that we have an accurate understanding now of how far driverless cars are from being road-ready.

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