Future Vehicle Intersections May Ditch Stoplights
February 21, 2012 10:02 AM
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Automated cars would call ahead and schedule a time for the intersection
Some major technology firms see the future of the automobile as a much more automated device that can navigate on its own without a driver. There are, however, differing visions of what those automated vehicles of the future may look like.
Google sees those
as needing no driver and being standalone with sensors and GPS capability to successfully navigate the roads that we have today without human interaction. Others see a more automated type of vehicle where the intersections and roads themselves tell the vehicles when and where to go.
A computer scientist working at the University of Texas at Austin named Peter Stone is working on technology that will help fully automated vehicles reduce traffic and navigate intersections safely. Stone believes that future intersections won’t need stoplights or stop signs. Instead, a virtual traffic controller that schedules when the vehicle stops and when it starts would manage automated vehicles.
"A future where sitting in the backseat of the car reading our newspaper while it drives us effortlessly through city streets and intersections is not that far away," says Stone, a professor of computer science at The University of Texas at Austin.
Stone is creating AI computer systems that will allow the autonomous vehicles to call ahead and reserve a space and a time at the intersection. An automated intersection manager would then approve the request and the vehicle and move through the intersection during its allotted time. The idea is that by scheduling these automated vehicles in such a way, there will be very little stopped traffic reducing traffic jams and allowing for faster transportation between two places.
"Computers can already fly a passenger jet much like a trained human pilot, but people still face the dangerous task of driving automobiles," Stone says. "Vehicles are being developed that will be able to handle most of the driving tasks themselves. But once autonomous vehicles become popular, we need to coordinate those vehicles on the streets."
University of Texas at Austin
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RE: Pedestrian interface
2/21/2012 2:41:24 PM
LOL sorry but it's not going to happen.
When you look at Europe and the United States impending economic collapse, which will drag down the entire world economy for decades to come, do you honestly see an age of technological enlightenment coming anytime soon?
Cars that drive themselves? Flying cars? Transformers? Please...
And definitely happen? I remember back in the 1980's we talked about the year 2000 and all the glorious things science would bring us by that time. Guess what? Virtually NONE of those predictions came true. Hell in the 1930's everyone thought we would be flying around in spaceships by now and going shopping on the Moon!
"Paying an extra $500 for a computer in this environment -- same piece of hardware -- paying $500 more to get a logo on it? I think that's a more challenging proposition for the average person than it used to be." -- Steve Ballmer
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