Sunday, May 17, 2015

Google’s Self-Driving Cars Will Hit California Streets This Summer

Get ready, Mountain View, Calif.:  your city is about to become the testing grounds for Google’s fleet of self-driving cars!  The prototypes, which look a little like The Jetsons–inspired kid’s pedal cars, will make their debut on public roads in just a couple short months.

Although many Mountain View residents aren’t exactly stoked that Google has taken over their city, the cars were designed to decongest traffic and make parking less of a nightmare, which is pretty sweet.  The electric vehicles (or EVs, as the cool kids call them) are also supposedly safer for bicyclists than human-driven vehicles.  These prototypes will come with removable steering wheels, accelerator pedals, and brake pedals, which are not currently in Google’s final vision for the cars, reports The Verge.
Google says that the fleet has logged almost a million miles on the road, or what [project manager Chris] Urmson characterizes as “about 75 years of typical American adult driving experience.”

“We’re looking forward to learning how the community perceives and interacts with the vehicles,” says Urmson, “and to uncovering challenges that are unique to a fully self-driving vehicle — e.g. where it should stop if it can’t stop at its exact destination due to construction or congestion.  In the coming years, we’d like to run small pilot programs with our prototypes to learn what people would like to do with vehicles like this.”
Read more at Google’s Self-Driving Cars Will Hit California Streets This Summer

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