While the world is only just getting used to the idea of driverless cars being on the roads around us, not many know that some of the first autonomous cars were driving around all the way back in 1986. This research culminated in a mammoth 158km trip on the German autobahn, navigating at speeds of up to 175km/h without any human intervention.
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Our self-driving car future may be farther away than the hype suggests. Besides Tesla, self-driving car developers depend on an expensive piece of technology called LIDAR, a laser-based radar that allows an autonomous vehicle to see the road.
There are cheaper options, but the MIT Technology Review explains that these more-affordable solutions won't deliver the kind of data that's necessary for self-driving cars to operate at highway speeds.
Elon Musk’s plans for the coming decade are nothing short of ambitious. Among other things, Tesla‘s CEO has promised to dramatically increase car production, launch several completely new cars, and conquer self-driving vehicles by 2020. Here’s a closer look at what exactly Musk has promised Tesla will accomplish during the next few years.
So far, self-driving cars have a safer driving track record than most humans. This seems impressive, but part of the reason they're safer is because we suck at driving. We're in a hurry, we get angry, and we take unnecessary risks. In those areas, self-driving cars have a few things they could teach us about being better drivers.
While the world is only just getting used to the idea of Google's driverless cars being on the roads around us, not many know that autonomous cars were driving around all the way back in 1986. This was thanks to one pioneering German man with a vision for giving the gift of sight to computers -- Ernst Dickmanns.