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Self-Driving Cars - Heaven or Hell
(07-08-2018, 03:32 AM)Galen Wrote:
(07-07-2018, 12:32 PM)pbrower2a Wrote: Self-driving cars will make travel, especially long-distance travel. less expensive. With fewer collisions they will have lower insurance rates. They will allow people with such conditions as narcolepsy, sleep apnea, and epilepsy to drive. -- well, more technically, take a car. They will allow people to command a car after those people are no longer fit to drive. They will lead to fewer traffic tickets for speeding, red-light violations, and stop-sign violations. 

The problem is who controls the software and so ultimately controls the car.  You might want to consider what

Richard Stallman has to say about such things.  Then there is the little matter of vulnerabilities that exist in all software that could be used by the malicious.

As usual pbrower is incapable of thinking beyond the obvious.

As usual I start with the obvious in my desire to create a consensus that begins with rational analysis. That is not "a" philosophic position: that is the philosophic position.

I note that whenever one flies in a jetliner or takes either the train or a bus or embark on a boat, all of which are far safer than driving a personal automobile (let alone a motorcycle) one sacrifices control of the means of getting from place A to place B. Paradoxically, handing the authority of driving and even route selection to someone else obliged to drive the machine is statistically safer. Common carriers are safer means of getting around in the First World (which is not to say that I would ride in the back of a truck on a standing-room-only basis somewhere in the Third World). Between Michigan City and Toledo, the Indiana Toll Road and Ohio Turnpike (which John Steinbeck lambasted as "U.S. 80/90" , the dullest highway in America) is far less interesting than US 20. But US 20 east of South Bend goes through Amish country with all those quaint horses and buggies. The Old Order Amish do many things that violate some of the rational assumptions that both of us make about economic life and choices in personal expression.

I make assumptions whenever I drive a car -- that traffic laws and regulations are to be obeyed because violations are more likely to get me into an accident or intensify any accident that I might get into. Speeding does not really save time. Add to this, I have never had more than one drink before driving. I know also that, statistically, commute traffic on the Interstate (no matter how unpleasant) is far safer than the alleged "open road".

Yes, all software is vulnerable to hacking, design flaws, breakdown, and obsolescence. This too is obvious. If you dislike this, then rely exclusively upon dead-tree editions and do your calculations (this is possible for logarithms, square roots, and powers of e) by paper-and-pencil methods. It is inefficient, but so is the use of horses and buggies. I know enough to avoid the Deep Web, pornography, crank, and extremist sites.

I know your philosophical position -- that we are all vulnerable to liberal bunglers, so we might as well have faith in a market unaccountable to anyone except those who own and manage the assets because such people truly know what they are doing. Well, Meyer Lansky and John Gotti both knew what they were doing, and they did what they did very well. Need I remind you of the Russian Mafia, masters of economic crime. I prefer to avoid dealings with people strongly motivated to hurt, humiliate, or exploit me. I am convinced that a complete reversion to unregulated economics is nearly certain to lead to something like the Planet Mongo (the Flash Gordon universe), basically feudalism with high technology. Does jus primae noctis operate there? It may or may not have under feudalism.
The ideal subject of totalitarian rule is not the convinced Nazi or the dedicated Communist  but instead the people for whom the distinction between fact and fiction, true and false, no longer exists -- Hannah Arendt.


Messages In This Thread
RE: Self-Driving Cars - Heaven or Hell - by Galen - 07-08-2018, 03:32 AM
RE: Self-Driving Cars - Heaven or Hell - by pbrower2a - 07-08-2018, 10:32 AM
RE: Self-Driving Cars - Heaven or Hell - by Galen - 07-08-2018, 08:13 PM
RE: Self-Driving Cars - Heaven or Hell - by Galen - 07-09-2018, 01:58 AM

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