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This paper discusses autonomous (computer-controlled) vehicles, assessing their social effects and other aspects of the technology.
Autonomous Vehicles Introduction The modern automobile has undergone significant changes since theneighborhood mechanic was able to make most of its repairs with a wrench Today the advent of computer technology has made many of a car\'s functionsautonomous through the use of computer chips and circuit boards Autonomyis defined as the car making driving decisions without intervention of ahuman and some of the functions that it already exists in include cruisecontrol antilock brake systems lane change warnings and obstacleavoidance systems zg ner Stiller
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An autonomous vehicle that makesa mistake on a high-speed freeway or at a busy intersection can cause amulti-vehicle pile-up or pedestrian death or injury, for example.Moreover, although autonomous vehicles are designed and tested to be safeunder what are deemed "normal operating conditions," there can be"unforeseen mechanical failures" that can result in "close calls," there isa low tolerance for such errors (Dresner & Stone). Technology Requirements Technology requirements for an autonomous vehicle such as Boss includethe capability to mount numerous sensors and computer modules as well as acomplex onboard software system. This means that-like Boss-any autonomousvehicle would need to be built from the ground up in a design appropriatefor these requirements, as retrofitting an existing vehicle would belaborious, if not impossible. Inaddition, there are bound to be situations that these vehicles are notprepared to handle. Autonomous vehicles may be usableby criminals but they are no more to blame for crime than any other toolthat a criminal might use, like the telephone or the Internet. Can the owner of an autonomous vehicle go to jail forvehicular homicide if his vehicle causes a fatal collision? Autonomyis defined as "the car making driving decisions without intervention of ahuman," and some of the functions that it already exists in include cruisecontrol, antilock brake systems, lane change warnings, and obstacleavoidance systems (Özgüner, Stiller, & Redmill 397). "Autonomous ||driving in traffic: boss and the Urban Challenge." AI Magazine, 3 .2 (Sum||2 9), 17-28. 2. 4. The software architecture must be capable ofgenerating "route-level planning, context-sensitive local decision making,and sophisticated motion planning to produce safe, intelligent actions forthe vehicle" (Ferguson, Baker, Likhachev, & Dolan). Introduction The modern automobile has undergone significant changes since theneighborhood mechanic was able to make most of its repairs with a wrench.Today, the advent of computer technology has made many of a car's functionsautonomous through the use of computer chips and circuit boards. If a driverless vehicle and another vehicle vie forthe same parking spot, will the driverless vehicle be able to recognizethis and back off? According to Lin, Bekey, and Abney(84), "Some technologists have suggested that, by 2 29, robots will demandequal treatment before the law with humans-and believe that this demandwill be granted." 5. Thispaper will examine the state of autonomous vehicles today and provide aglimpse of what may await in the future concerning this technology. Like any other manmade device, an autonomous vehicle is subject toerrors and failures. Scribd. This is an article by IEEE members, so the quality of the technical assessment is high.Urmson, Chris; Whittaker, William "Red." "Self-Driving Cars and the Urban Challenge." Intelligent Systems, 23.2, (Mar/Apr 2 8), 66-68. Its primary sensor is a top-mountedVelodyne HDL-64 lidar that provides dense range data around the vehicle,with laser range finders serving as virtual bumpers (Urmson, Baker, Dolan,Rybski, Salesky, Whittaker, Ferguson, & Darms 19). Autonomous Vehicles 1. Moreover, adevice that promises to take more people off the streets, give them moreleisure time, and more time to spend with family is worth itsdisadvantages. The problem is that when the device is a driverlesscar, these problems can cause disasters. A vehicle that can navigate traffic, parallel park,and make decisions about what to do at an intersection is both more complexand potentially more dangerous. Urmson and Whittaker (66) state that"Autonomous vehicles will improve traffic safety, increase fuel efficiency,and help reconnect the elderly and disabled to our society." People willbe able to send their cars to the grocery and the pharmacy to pick up foodand prescriptions, or to the local garage for auto repairs and oil changes,thus freeing up significant amounts of time that used to be spent doingtedious chores. Moreover, the criminals could get inone car while the loot goes in another, so that even if the criminals arestopped, they will not have possession of the stolen goods. It musthave substantial artificial intelligence, but not enough to become a roguedevice. The ACM Portal is the official portal for the Association for Computing Machinery, so the relevance of this web site and article for the paper is high.Ferguson, Dave; Baker, Christopher; Likhachev, Maxim; Dolan, John. Autonomous military systems have longbeen in use, but autonomous vehicles such as driverless jeeps can savenumerous lives by testing roads for land mines, picking up and deliveringmen and supplies, and serving as decoys to throw the enemy off the trail ofoccupied vehicles. Description of Operation One of the best-known autonomous vehicles to date is the Boss, whichoperates by "build[ing] a model of the world around it in real time" thatis used to "generate safe routes and motion plans both on roads and inunstructured zones" (Urmson, Baker, Dolan, Rybski, Salesky, Whittaker,Ferguson, & Darms 17). Whilethe risks and objections to autonomous vehicles must be addressed, they donot outweigh the concept's advantages. New developments arestill emerging, including warning devices that alert the driver againstintersection collisions and aids for parallel parking and bus precisiondocking (Özgüner, Stiller, & Redmill 397). "Mitigating catastrophic failure at intersections of autonomous vehicles." ACM Portal. Do robots have rights? The more power autonomous vehicles are given, the more they are to befeared. This lengthy report was prepared for and sponsored by the Department of the Navy, Office of Naval Research. Nontechnical Hindrances Nontechnical hindrances to autonomous vehicles can be expected.People will fear them until they have been proven safe, and law enforcementwill have to find ways to deal with driverless vehicles; will they issuethe speeding ticket to the vehicle and leave it on the driver's seat? What about theuse of autonomous vehicles in crimes? Owners of autonomous vehicles will not die in car crashes if theyare sitting at home while their cars are driving to the grocery store, andthey will not get stranded in icy weather. Intelligent Systems is a publication that focuses on artificially intelligent systems such as robots and autonomous vehicles; it is another IEEE publication.|Urmson, Chris; Baker, Chris; Dolan, John; Rybski, Paul; Salesky, Bryan; ||Whittaker, William "Red;" Ferguson, Dave; Darms, Michael. When ill, people may be able to program their cars to takethem to the hospital rather than waiting on an ambulance, although theabsence of lifesaving equipment and technicians will make this riskier.Likewise, it may be possible for autonomous vehicles to take children toschool and soccer practice, but again, without parents to watch what thechildren do, this could be risky. Boss has 17 different sensors with a 36 -degree field of viewaround the vehicle that detect light and range, as well as radio detectionand a global positioning system (Urmson, Baker, Dolan, Rybski, Salesky,Whittaker, Ferguson, & Darms 19). On the other hand, the safetyof other drivers on the road could be compromised if the autonomous vehicleincurs a computer glitch or other failure, and there could be sticky legaland ethical problems associated with determining where the responsibilitylies if such a vehicle were to injure someone or be used in a crime. These vehicles would make goodgetaway cars; they could come when summoned, haul away the loot, and hideor keep moving to avoid detection. "Autonomous Military Robotics: Risk, Ethics, and Design." California State Polytechnic University. There has also been "limitedoperational deployment" of such autonomous vehicles as "truck convoys anddriverless busses in enclosed areas" (Özgüner, Stiller, & Redmill 397).The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, or DARPA, staged acompetition to "develop autonomous vehicles capable of safely, reliably,and robustly driving in traffic," and the winner-the Boss-is a 2 7 ChevyTahoe with a complex artificial intelligence system built in (Urmson,Baker, Dolan, Rybski, Salesky, Whittaker, Ferguson, & Darms 17). The ethical and legalimplications of driverless vehicles have yet to be fully defined and workedout, as well. "Systems for Safety and Autonomous Behavior in Cars: The DARPA Grand Challenge Experience." Proceedings of the IEEE, 95.2, (Feb 2 7), 397-412. An important feature of Boss is that it can safelyhandle not only abnormal situations but also glitches in its system(Urmson, Baker, Dolan, Rybski, Salesky, Whittaker, Ferguson, & Darms 17).The vehicle is computer-controlled through electric motors that activatethe brake pedal, gear shift, and steering column, as well as through acontroller area network that conducts bus communication with the enginecontrol module (Urmson, Baker, Dolan, Rybski, Salesky, Whittaker, Ferguson,& Darms 19). 2 8. "A Reasoning Framework for Autonomous Urban Driving." This article mainly deals with the Boss autonomous vehicle and its system architecture.Lin, Patrick; Bekey, George; Abney, Keith. 6. They willprovide personalized transportation for the elderly, the handicapped, andchildren, and they will relieve people of many of the boring tasks thatconsume so much of our free time. There are a multitude of decisions that the averagedriver must make that an autonomous vehicle needs to be programmed for, andit is unlikely that it will be programmed for every one of them, at leastinitially. General OneFile. 3. 2 8. Gale. Societal Effects The societal effects of completely autonomous vehicles will be bothbeneficial and deleterious. Works CitedDresner, Kurt; Stone, Peter. It deals primarily with the ethical implications and inherent risks of using autonomous vehicles and other robotic systems for the military.Özgüner, Ümit; Stiller, Christoph; Redmill, Keith. This will make more leisure timeavailable to be with family and relax, both activities that improve qualityof life. Apollo Library. A vehicle that is responsible for carryingthe elderly through town to doctors' appointments or taking children toschool and back must be capable of protecting its precious cargo. Behind its operation isa software architecture consisting of 6 processes, each of which belongsto one of four major components-perception, mission planning, behavioralexecution, and motion planning (Urmson, Baker, Dolan, Rybski, Salesky,Whittaker, Ferguson, & Darms 2 ). Assessment The advantages of autonomous vehicles are significant. || || | | || | || | | || | || | | A vehicle whose only job is to cart shoppers from one end of astore to another does not pose much of a risk, because its programming isrelatively limited.
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