The French to allow self-driving cars
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Thread: The French to allow self-driving cars

  1. #1
    1000+ Posts gerry freed's Avatar
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    Default The French to allow self-driving cars

    Development of self-driving cars in France is held back by lack of legislation surrounding their use.
    There is a European directive allowing test vehicles on the road from 2015 and France has decided to follow suit. The restriction is that a real human being has to have two hands on the wheel and in the event of the car hitting one in front he will be considered liable.
    Carlos Ghosn estimates that the technology will be ready in 2018 and the market will start to adopt them in 2020.
    Driving licences will be abolished in ????

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    Quote Originally Posted by gerry freed View Post
    Development of self-driving cars in France is held back by lack of legislation surrounding their use.
    There is a European directive allowing test vehicles on the road from 2015 and France has decided to follow suit. The restriction is that a real human being has to have two hands on the wheel and in the event of the car hitting one in front he will be considered liable.
    Carlos Ghosn estimates that the technology will be ready in 2018 and the market will start to adopt them in 2020.
    Driving licences will be abolished in ????
    I guess I accept that self-driving cars (and trucks) are the future, and I'm pleased that it's probably not my future, but I can't help reflecting on the wisdom of handing over complete control of driving to programmed processors. Any of us with experience of the electronics in froggy cars over the last 25 years might share my concerns. I know that whenever we step onto a commercial flight our fate is largely controlled by computers, but at least there are still two guys up there pushing the buttons.
    What will happen when the electronics on these vehicles degrade, and start to fail. What about stray electromagnetic radiation effects on the programming, and the possibility of some loony hacking the software? Food for thought.
    roger

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    The software isn't stored on magnetic media.

    When I see some of the banana benders doing U turns at lights in crowded Sydney, and Canberrans who insist on stopping on motorway on-ramps, I start looking forward to automatic control.

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    The A380 and even it's predecessors have no physical link between the pilots and the controls, the entire 540 TONNES is flown by wire. I've no idea who made the electronic impulses that are sent and received back and forth up and down the wires, but they seem pretty robust........
    Don't it always seem to go that you don't know what you've got 'til it's gone............

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    1000+ Posts FIVEDOOR's Avatar
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    I can't imagine that any amount of programming/testing will be able to come up with code to deal with every potential situation which may be encountered in traffic and the correct timely action in response. I am yet to see a bug/error free computer program.
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    1000+ Posts Kim Luck's Avatar
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    That's why there is triple and even more redundancy. Signals are constantly checked by several autonomous systems against what is expected and the majority then overrules any error. Otherwise, how would you keep 540 tonnes in the sky without looking stupid?
    Don't it always seem to go that you don't know what you've got 'til it's gone............

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    1000+ Posts FIVEDOOR's Avatar
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    I was talking of cars, not planes.
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    The kind of systems required to run self driving cars (SDC) will be required to have the same kind of redundancy or even more of it than aircraft. They will also be required to have an enormous amount of sensory equipment. Error margins on the road involve millimetres, not metres so the systems involved for SDC will be even more sophisticated than anything on commercial airliners.
    Don't it always seem to go that you don't know what you've got 'til it's gone............

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    1000+ Posts gerry freed's Avatar
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    The equivalents of fly by wire and air traffic control are being contemplated. In the first the car accepts a destination and works its way as would a human driver throught the dynamics of the route, the obstructions and the other vehicles. In the ATC model, one's transport needs are given to a central computer which optimises the vehicle used and the route, while managing each vehicle in the knowledge of what it has the others doing.
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    1000+ Posts Kim Luck's Avatar
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    I can just imagine twenty million Frenchmen belting around Paris with their car horns controlled by a central computer!
    Don't it always seem to go that you don't know what you've got 'til it's gone............

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    And all controlled to toot in unison.......

  12. #12
    1000+ Posts gerry freed's Avatar
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    You have lost the plot. The use of the klaxon was restricted by legislation some years ago and is rarely heard except in genuine emergencies or wedding processions.
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    You're right I have lost the plot... I'm in Italy where the continuous use of the horn seems to be compulsory....

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    1000+ Posts REN TIN TIN's Avatar
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    The technology needed for self-drive cars is far more complex than that needed for aircraft.
    Once an aircraft is in the sky there are no intersections, train crossings, traffic lights, pedistrians, children, stray animals, or other traffic half a metre away from them. They don't have potholes, wet roads, icy roads, snow covered road, twisty roads, traffic accidents, rock falls etc.
    The computer needed to keep a plane in the air is relatively simple and there have been autopilot systems used for decades.
    The computer needed for effective (and safe) control of a car is complex and would cost far more than the car itself. It's not hard to bury the cost of a computer in an aircraft worth millions of dollars but not so easy for in a car less than say, $40K (or even several hundred $K). Self drive cars might be good as a technical project to prove it's feasible but there won't be self drive cars sold on the general market anytime soon. There will of course be certain driving functions computerised, (self-park, collision avoidance, etc) but a commercially available complete "no-one in the drivers set" self drive car ain't going to happen in the lifetime of most of us here.

    Cheers
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    1000+ Posts Kim Luck's Avatar
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    Mercedes and Scania are currently developing driverless trucks. Well, sort of. Mercedes see their truck with a "driver", assisted by all the current vehicles safety features like collision avoidance, lane scanning, auto braking etc, but able to relax and put his feet up whilst "driving" and do the paperwork whilst Scania see merit in "platooning", ie having a driver in the lead truck which the autonomous ones follow. The main idea seems to be to reduce the wages component of road transport which appears to be as high as 27% of total freight cost. Now if you'd like to take "platooning" to it's logical conclusion, you could consider Pilbara iron ore trains. One driver, 680 wagons and 82,000 tonnes of cargo 7.353km in length. That's "platooning" I'd like to see carried out on the Hume Highway!

    Don't it always seem to go that you don't know what you've got 'til it's gone............

  16. #16
    1000+ Posts gerry freed's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by REN TIN TIN View Post
    The technology needed for self-drive cars is far more complex than that needed for aircraft.
    Once an aircraft is in the sky there are no intersections, train crossings, traffic lights, pedistrians, children, stray animals, or other traffic half a metre away from them. They don't have potholes, wet roads, icy roads, snow covered road, twisty roads, traffic accidents, rock falls etc.
    The computer needed to keep a plane in the air is relatively simple and there have been autopilot systems used for decades.
    The computer needed for effective (and safe) control of a car is complex and would cost far more than the car itself. It's not hard to bury the cost of a computer in an aircraft worth millions of dollars but not so easy for in a car less than say, $40K (or even several hundred $K). Self drive cars might be good as a technical project to prove it's feasible but there won't be self drive cars sold on the general market anytime soon. There will of course be certain driving functions computerised, (self-park, collision avoidance, etc) but a commercially available complete "no-one in the drivers set" self drive car ain't going to happen in the lifetime of most of us here.

    Cheers
    Ren
    The complexity of the sensors and the software is not simply related to price. The volumes in the auto industry would quickly bring the prices down to the smart phone/tablette level. The big challenge is not technology but legislation as it cannot be introduced easily on an incremental basis. The other challenge which even effects simple implementation like self-parking is the legal issue of liability in the event of an accident. In spite of those unresolved issues all the major car makers are following the lead of Google and actively doing research on the possibilities.
    The French legislation change is a catch-up. The Americans have been testing self-drive cars on public roads for over a year.
    I have no data on the longevity of AF contributors but as I accept Ghosn's estimate and he has been pushing for this legislation, I hope that many of us are still alive in 2020 and even 2025.
    Europe is anxious to improve transport without major public infrastructure investment within the present context of congestion, pollution and parking problems. I see the evolution of self-driving vehicles as a part of integrating private vehicles into multiple modality transport options. The taxis systems will change or die and products like Uber will become a transport booking service in which you demand to go from A to B and something will arrive to get you there- your own car, someone elses, a taxi, a bus or even a bike. The computer system to manage the logistics is modest compared with those that manage the telephone networks or the Internet. The costs amortized over 100 million users will be trivial per journey. As the systems become integrated so the level of regimented traffic will rise, taking advantage of the options of passing the control of the vehicle to its brain or the control of the roadway.
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    I reckon the self driving car is the ultimate pointless gadget for the must haves. So it is sure to be big.

    Via the aussiefrogs App
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    1000+ Posts gerry freed's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew Ch View Post
    You're right I have lost the plot... I'm in Italy where the continuous use of the horn seems to be compulsory....
    Italy still drives "con brio", France has come to prefer silent funereal processions. In Italy a red light still means danger, accelerate across the junction faster. In France it means " How many more changes before this queue gets across the junction?"
    In France the Autoroutes have long white lines painted on the side and it is an offence to leave a distance less than one line between two successive vehicles. On the UK Motorways one drives at 10ks over the limit with the bumper of the truck in front hidden by your bonnet.
    Europe is far from unified in its road manners.
    Last edited by gerry freed; 8th July 2014 at 06:40 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kim Luck View Post
    . Now if you'd like to take "platooning" to it's logical conclusion, you could consider Pilbara iron ore trains. One driver, 680 wagons and 82,000 tonnes of cargo 7.353km in length. That's "platooning" I'd like to see carried out on the Hume Highway!
    interesting numbers, and ones you might like to consider when suggesting that pilbara iron ore trains somehow show that rail is a good alternative to trucks for regular freight.

    Quote Originally Posted by gerry freed View Post
    I hope that many of us are still alive in 2020 and even 2025.
    .
    given that is only 6 to 11 years away, i should darn well hope most current AF members are alive!
    especially me.

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    Who was it that said some years ago that in the future the copilot would be replaced by a dog. The purpose of the dog was to bite the pilot if he touched anything, and the pilot was there to feed the dog.
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    I can see it now, a future where you leave your house in your mobile capsule, join with other capsulated denizens, until you reach your appointed/arranged destination, break off for coffee, toilet, or whatever, then get delivered back to your home capsule. Should you reach your expiry date enroute, the capsule will automatically detour to a disposal point (cemetery. cremation point) and your credit card automatically debited for routing transit costs, carbon disposal offset, cleaning costs as your transit capsule is re-assigned to the next lucky user.

    Ken
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kenfuego View Post
    I can see it now, a future where you leave your house in your mobile capsule, join with other capsulated denizens, until you reach your appointed/arranged destination, break off for coffee, toilet, or whatever, then get delivered back to your home capsule. Should you reach your expiry date enroute, the capsule will automatically detour to a disposal point (cemetery. cremation point) and your credit card automatically debited for routing transit costs, carbon disposal offset, cleaning costs as your transit capsule is re-assigned to the next lucky user.

    Ken
    At that stage I hope balance of my credit card is -$0.50 .

    I would hate to die and leave the Government any more money to "take" off me.
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  23. #23
    1000+ Posts gerry freed's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kenfuego View Post
    I can see it now, a future where you leave your house in your mobile capsule, join with other capsulated denizens, until you reach your appointed/arranged destination, break off for coffee, toilet, or whatever, then get delivered back to your home capsule. Should you reach your expiry date enroute, the capsule will automatically detour to a disposal point (cemetery. cremation point) and your credit card automatically debited for routing transit costs, carbon disposal offset, cleaning costs as your transit capsule is re-assigned to the next lucky user.

    Ken
    AutoLib in Paris is pretty close to that now.
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    Quote Originally Posted by gerry freed View Post
    AutoLib in Paris is pretty close to that now.
    Grant that Gerry, Disneyland also had a working model when I took the kids there 20 years ago, it wasn't that exciting though trundling round a track following another mocked up car, and to be truthful I'm not doing handsprings at the prospect of having adventure, exploration and freedom taken out of driving, perhaps when I am ancient and not up to driving "normally" this will get my ticker going!!

    Ken

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