Musterlösung 2014: Mediation: Sprachmittlung: „Computer am Steuer, ungeheuer"
The autonomous Car – the car of the future?
Google engineers have come up with a revolutionary concept of a driverless car, the so-called „autonomous vehicle“. In Nevada eight prototypes are already on the road, but it is unlikely that the vehicle will be mass-produced any time soon.
The autonomous vehicle does without a human driver, as a computer is in control of the car. Laser systems and GPS take over the functions of the human senses and computer programmes process the data and steer the car. However, it is still possible for the human driver to switch off the automatic system: he only needs to touch the brake or turn the steering wheel.
What would be possible effects of the autonomous car? First of all, by reducing the risk of human error the autonomous vehicle increases road safety, the developers’ key aim.
However, potential customers might not like the idea of relying on computer systems and no longer being in charge. Likewise, driving would lose its emotional appeal and no longer be so much fun.
Apart from these psychological reservations, the co-existence of computer-driven and man-driven cars might cause confusion and lead to misunderstandings.
And yet, the autonomous vehicle can help protect the environment as it saves fuel. What is more, by preventing accidents and resulting traffic jams it could help save precious time and thus increase productivity.
To conclude, although it is unlikely that computer-driven cars will replace man-driven cars in the near future, some of the new technologies will surely appeal to car manufacturers and could be used to increase road safety.
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