Google's Self-Driving Car: No Steering Wheel, No Brakes

Google's prototype for a completely automated car radically changes the driving experience from actively controlling the vehicle to removing even the option of steering, accelerating, or braking.

What's the Latest?


Google's prototype for a completely automated car radically changes the driving experience from actively controlling the vehicle to removing even the option of steering, accelerating, or braking. The technology company is planning to build about a hundred prototypes for a small pilot program scheduled to begin later this summer in California. During the tests, safety drivers will retain the ability to control the vehicle should something unexpected happen. Each car has two seats, a space for passenger belongings, buttons to start and stop the engine, and a screen that shows the route. 

What's the Big Idea?

Google says that the car's sensors are capable of navigating passengers safely to and from locations without any assistance at all. "The early prototypes have sensors that remove blind spots, and can detect objects out to a distance of more than two football fields in all directions, which is especially helpful on busy streets with lots of intersections. They’ve capped the speed of these first vehicles at 25 mph." The prospect of driverless cars calls into question many of our everyday practices. Can unlicensed drivers operate an automated car? If there is an accident, who is at fault?

Read more at Kurzweil AI

Compelling speakers do these 4 things every single time

The ability to speak clearly, succinctly, and powerfully is easier than you think

Former U.S. President Barack Obama speaks during a Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee rally at the Anaheim Convention Center on September 8, 2018 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Barbara Davidson/Getty Images)
Personal Growth

The ability to communicate effectively can make or break a person's assessment of your intelligence, competence, and authenticity.

Keep reading Show less

This 5-minute neck scan can spot dementia 10 years before it emerges

The results come from a 15-year study that used ultrasound scans to track blood vessels in middle-aged adults starting in 2002.

Mikhail Kalinin via Wikipedia
Mind & Brain
  • The study measured the stiffness of blood vessels in middle-aged patients over time.
  • Stiff blood vessels can lead to the destruction of delicate blood vessels in the brain, which can contribute to cognitive decline.
  • The scans could someday become a widely used tool to identify people at high risk of developing dementia and Alzheimer's.
Keep reading Show less

Preserving truth: How to confront and correct fake news

Journalism got a big wake up call in 2016. Can we be optimistic about the future of media?

Videos
  • "[T]o have a democracy that thrives and actually that manages to stay alive at all, you need regular citizens being able to get good, solid information," says Craig Newmark.
  • The only constructive way to deal with fake news? Support trustworthy media. In 2018, Newmark was announced as a major donor of two new media organizations, The City, which will report on New York City-area stories which may have otherwise gone unreported, and The Markup, which will report on technology.
  • Greater transparency of fact-checking within media organizations could help confront and correct fake news. Organizations already exist to make media more trustworthy — are we using them? There's The Trust Project, International Fact-Checkers Network, and Tech & Check.
Keep reading Show less