Driverless Cars, the Future?

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Driverless Cars, the Future?

Pippa Harpster and Abby Gallo

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Driverless cars are coming, that’s a fact. There are a multitude of good reasons to have driverless cars, but are we ready for them? Do we really need driverless cars? Sure, they are the “next” step into the future, but are they worth it?

We don’t think so. While computers are extremely intelligent, (more so than us most of time), they can’t always predict things like the weather or driver experiencing road rage or a drunken driver. Driverless cars are supposed to fix a human error like a car crash and are supposed to stop people’s bad habits like texting while driving, but there are just as many cons as there are pros.

For example, driverless cars are driven by a computer system, which can cause many security problems like people hacking into the driverless car’s systems and that could result in huge car crashes. Also, hackers could potentially steal the car’s data, which could result in major data theft. Mark Nocter at Arxan Technologies said, “A major cyber-attack on connected vehicles would take a terrible toll on human life…” Cars are now considered big wifi hotspots and they have lots of connected devices with lots of data on them. The most vulnerable areas of data are entertainment and communication systems. Also, maybe the car doesn’t have to be hacked. What if the car itself just glitches out and causes a crash? That could be even more dangerous than human-driven cars!

Another problem driverless car might have is, can they drive in different road conditions? We, humans, have adapted to different road conditions like snow or hail, but driverless cars,(which are driven by computers) can’t always adapt to unexpected weather conditions. Driving in the snow might not be that much of problem here in Seattle, but we always have to drive in the pouring rain and in other places like Boston, where they are testing driverless cars, snow could be a problem. The snow could make the roads icy or slippery, which would be very difficult for driverless cars because they don’t have a human to override.

The last issue we want to bring to your attention is the after-math of driverless cars, and how it affects the employees of companies like Uber. Some people’s main incomes come from taxiing other people around. If driverless cars work out, a lot of people could be out of a job. Driverless cars could potentially get rid of millions of Americans jobs. Driverless cars are an interesting idea, most people looking for a ride would prefer a driverless car to a human-driven car. Ride-sharing companies could potentially start using driverless cars any day now, but it would be very expensive compared to regular human-driven rides.

Although we don’t believe we are ready for driverless cars, they still have many pros as well, like eliminating bad driving behavior and is beneficial for senior citizens and disabled people. We don’t mean to say that driverless cars themselves are a bad idea, just right now they could do more harm than good.
So, in conclusion, we think that driverless cars are the far future, not the present.