Car and Driver caught up with Foxx in Pittsburgh. The DOT chief, previously mayor of Charlotte, North Carolina, reflected on the promise of autonomous and connected cars, the recent Smart City Challenge, the massive increase in traffic deaths, the potential of the shared vehicles unfolding right outside the window, and more. What follows is a transcript of our conversation, lightly edited for grammar and brevity. — blog.caranddriver.com
Related stories in the Archinect news:U.S. Transportation Secretary Foxx on the troubled relationship between infrastructure and race: "We ought to do it better than we did it the last time"Uber lets you hail its self-driving cars in Pittsburgh later this monthColumbus, Ohio wins DOT's $50M Smart...
Starting later this month, Uber will allow customers in downtown Pittsburgh to summon self-driving cars from their phones, crossing an important milestone that no automotive or technology company has yet achieved. Google, widely regarded as the leader in the field, has been testing its fleet for several years, and Tesla Motors offers Autopilot [...] But none of these companies has yet brought a self-driving car-sharing service to market. — Bloomberg
Related stories recently in the Archinect news:Google, Uber, Lyft, Ford and Volvo join forces to lobby for autonomous vehiclesA look at the history and future of the American commuteNew study finds ride-sharing apps like Lyft and Uber have no effect on drunk-driving fatalities
If Mr. Ratti’s projections are correct, and self-driving cars can radically reduce traffic without cannibalizing existing mass transit—the hypotheticals pile up—it is possible that self-driving cars will make many cities livable in a way they aren’t now. Imagine if every U.S. city had a hybrid public-private mass-transit system on par with those in New York City or Washington, D.C., comprised entirely of self-driving vehicles. — wsj.com
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So a lot of us own or lease cars...But when the talk turns to autonomous cars – and it always does – I sigh. Our overcrowded highways really could use a break from human stupidity, and that human factor is behind nearly all of the fatalities and injuries and property damage we see strewn across our roads every day. Get rid of the human behaviour to save the human body! This is where autonomous cars make sense; but not all the world is a crowded, urban highway. — driving.ca
"The idea that you can replace the 10 trips with one autonomous car and travel less distance, that’s the biggest misconception," says Fagnant. "You can get rid of vehicles, but not vehicle miles traveled. Without ridesharing, there's an 8 to 10 percent increase in vehicle miles traveled based on simulations we've run in Austin. You’re not replacing trips [..] the vehicle has to bounce between locations, and relocate to where it’s needed. Those in-between miles will create a lot of extra travel." — curbed.com
Related stories in the Archinect news:How prepared are American cities for the new reality of self-driving cars?The U.S. just got $4 billion to spend on self-driving carsMore Americans are becoming "mega-commuters", U.S. Census stats show
[nuTonomy's] Level 4 autonomous vehicle "is designed to perform all safety-critical driving functions and monitor roadway conditions for an entire trip;" all you have to do is provide a destination and (possibly) open and shut the doors.
Google's autonomous cars, in contrast, are currently at Level 3, with limited self-driving automation [...]
[nuTonomy] is building into [its] decision-making engine the ability for cars to actually violate the rules of the road when it's necessary to do so — spectrum.ieee.org
More from the autonomous vehicle beat:The "Impossible" Car – Faraday Future's lead designer, Richard Kim, on One-to-One #17"In LiDAR We Trust" – Poking the subconscious of autonomous vehicles with special guest Geoff Manaugh, on Archinect Sessions #43This startup hopes to bring autonomous...
Since summer 2015, [Alex] Rodrigues and his team [at Varden Labs] have been tinkering with autonomous golf carts on university campuses...On the one hand, campus transit agencies, and particularly university ones, are uniquely posed to experiment with pricier autonomous vehicles...But these shuttles will also need maintenance...Plus, driverless shuttles will be the diving bell for a tricky, tricky question: how important are bus drivers? — CityLab
More on Archinect:Google's self-driving car hits bus and causes its first crashThe Ehang passenger drone might be another way people will get around town somedayU.S. says computers qualify as drivers in Google's autonomous vehicles; won't even have to go to the DMVThe U.S. just got $4 billion to...
The seven American cities that made the shortlist in the Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Smart City Challenge are now deciding their strategies for winning the $40m prize fund...Transportation is the focus, so judges will be interested in self-driving and 'connected' cars, as well as 'smart streets' fitted with sensors. The aim will be to cut accidents, reduce pollution and increase commuter convenience. — Global Construction Review
The DOT shortlisted seven finalists instead of the originally planned five. They are:Austin, TexasColumbus, OhioDenver, ColoradoKansas City, MissouriPittsburgh, PennsylvaniaPortland, OregonSan Francisco, CaliforniaThe winning city is expected to be announced in June.More related to transportation...
Google said on Monday it bears "some responsibility" after one of its self-driving cars struck a municipal bus in a minor crash earlier this month.
The crash may be the first case of one of its autonomous cars hitting another vehicle and the fault of the self-driving car. [...]
Google said in the filing the autonomous vehicle was traveling at less than 2 miles per hour, while the bus was moving at about 15 miles per hour. — reuters.com
Related stories in the Archinect news:U.S. says computers qualify as drivers in Google's autonomous vehicles; won't even have to go to the DMVThe U.S. just got $4 billion to spend on self-driving carsAdapting self-driving cars to the world of humansDawn of the self-driving car: testing out Tesla's...
To demonstrate an alternate application of their "parking assist" technology, Nissan has outfitted a herd of office chairs to find their own way back to their desks. With a single clap, the chairs swivel and move into position, like the obedient office drones that they are – watch below:Of...
U.S. vehicle safety regulators have said the artificial intelligence system piloting a self-driving Google car could be considered the driver under federal law [...]
"NHTSA will interpret 'driver' in the context of Google's described motor vehicle design as referring to the (self-driving system), and not to any of the vehicle occupants" [...]
Google told NHTSA that the real danger is having auto safety features that could tempt humans to try to take control. — reuters.com
The technological and legal impediments to making self-driving cars a reality on U.S. roads seem to be falling away – and as the regulatory market opens for business, so may more competition, with Google and California (which legalized self-driving cars in 2012) leading the way.More on the...
As last week's episode was taken up by Pritzker-hooplah, this episode takes a look back at the major news items of the last week(ish) and gets you caught up with what's been happening in Archinect news.We discuss: the recent photo exhibition on homelessness at USC (which closes tomorrow!); the...
Using cruise control, you can set the [Tesla] to a particular speed and it will accelerate and turn within a lane in a straight line. It will dodge cars attempting to swerve into your lane, objects that it can see, pedestrians or fellow drivers simply trying to swerve into you because you’re an obnoxious prick with a Tesla blasting Party Rock Anthem.
It can’t, however, direct you along every street... — The Guardian
Researchers estimate that driverless cars could, by midcentury, reduce traffic fatalities by up to 90 percent. Which means that, using the number of fatalities in 2013 as a baseline, self-driving cars could save 29,447 lives a year. In the United States alone, that's nearly 300,000 fatalities prevented over the course of a decade, and 1.5 million lives saved in a half-century. — CityLab
Accidents happen. But do they have to? Researchers estimate that driverless cars could save up to $190 billion in health-care costs and 50 million lives worldwide over five decades. For more of Archinect's coverage on changes in driving and car culture, check out these stories:• Traffic Lights...
This year, “connectivity” has supplanted “horsepower” or “torque” as the prevailing buzzword in Frankfurt. The talk is of self-driving cars, battery-powered cars, and information technology designed to link cars with data networks to make driving safer and more efficient.
Even though neither Apple nor Google is close to mass-producing a vehicle, nervousness about their intentions — which remain cloaked in mystery — is understandable. — the New York Times
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