- About Weevil
- Issue #14
- Issue #13
- Issue #12
- Issue #11
- Issue #10
- Issue #9
- Issue #8
- Eating Up Time: the Clock Carnivory Comes to Town
- Focus on Transport
- Solo: the Pedal-Powered Car
- Airships: Back Without a Bang?
- Don't Move a Muscle
- Power Plants
- On the Commute with Optimus Prime
- The Future is Coming... on Stilts
- The Car with Wings
- Google, You Can Drive my Car
- Vertical Tourist Transporters... to Space?
- Horse Power
- Milk - the Cure for Lactose Intolerance
- Allergic to Life
- Mind: Your Own Business
- US Military: Building Robots for a Scarier Tomorrow
- Very Alternative Fuels
- Boogie Worm-daland
- The Greater Hamster of Alsace - A Tragedy in Several Acts
- Science is Weird: There Flies Another Quantum
- Vampire of the Issue
- Cryptozoology: The Mysterious Goat-Sucker
- Issue #7
- Issue #6
- Issue #5
- Issue #4
- Issue #3
- Issue #2
- Issue #1
|Google, You Can Drive my Car|
|Written by Daniel Röthig, Illustrated by Nicola Kleppmann|
|Monday, 07 March 2011 23:23|
Google is many things. It entered our lives as a disconcertingly speedy Internet search, with a clean layout and a friendly name. Soon, it was sending our emails, letting us edit our documents online, syndicating our blogs, and translating our Japanese websites into... something that do not create syntactically a grammatical way. Even if you haven't used Google as a gateway to sensual inspiration, chances are that your collected search history knows you better than your closest meat-based confidants.
One big difference between Google and evil omniscient killer robots has always been the fact that you could just take a step away from your laptop should binary malice crave your blood. These days are over. For now, Google has taught the Machines to come driving for you.
Taking a regular Toyota Prius, and equipping it with a video camera, radar sensors, and a laser finder, Google has created a street-ready driverless car. With an uplink to Google's extensive map database, as well as an unfathomable slab of dark digital intelligence, this system was designed to navigate autonomously through cities, reacting to any possible traffic situation.
Then, being the responsible multi-billion-dollar corporation that they are, Google un-leashed its beast on the public (and busy) streets of Los Angeles, letting it drive for a total of 140,000 miles. The Machine was among us, undetected, with only one recorded accident – another car bumping into Google's Prius. Perhaps they were trying to get a closer look at the evil red glow coming from the driver's seat.
About 1.2 million people are killed in car accidents every year. With Google's automated technology behind the wheel, it is argued we could reduce this number by half, minimizing carbon emissions along the way. While this is certainly a fantastic prospect, I can't quite see people wanting to put their lives in the hands of their search engine. At least, not quite that directly.
Daniel is a fourth-year physicist who applied to Google with the words: 'Hail to the Machine God-Kings'.
|Last Updated on Wednesday, 09 March 2011 19:40|