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clrmoney
clrmoney
12/14/2016 3:40:02 PM
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IOT connects with consumers
Internet of Things targets a certain age group and that's great dor them to get cosumers and exposure. They have a great marketing and adveting to get consumers.

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Ariella
Ariella
12/14/2016 4:49:49 PM
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Re: IOT connects with consumers
<Close to half of those surveyed fired up their phones in the middle of the night. > @Mike and that brings us to a modern version of the chicken or egg question. Do they fire up their phones because they can't sleep, or is the insomnia itself triggered by phone use? There are studies on this as you can see here: http://www.medicaldaily.com/why-you-should-disconnect-your-smartphone-after-9-pm-blue-light-blocks-melatonin-leads-poor-sleep

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mhhf1ve
mhhf1ve
12/14/2016 7:07:59 PM
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Re: IOT connects with consumers
I'm somewhat skeptical of the blue light from smartphones disrupting sleep.. not that people aren't suffering from sleep disorders, but how much of the effect is from smartphones. 

I suppose we'll see in the near future what happens with teenagers who are using smartphones at an incredibly high rate. (In MY day, we didn't even have the internet... and we walked uphill both ways in the snow to/from school....)

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Ariella
Ariella
12/14/2016 8:13:44 PM
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Re: IOT connects with consumers
@mhhf1ve I recall reading about a particular form of temporary blindness associated specifically with phone usage in bed. See http://gizmodo.com/two-women-go-blind-after-checking-phone-in-bed-1782485530 In that case, it's not the blue light but not using the two eyes together: 

 The issue is that both women checked their phones with one eye on the screen and the other covered by a pillow. Where the phone eye adapts to the light by being less dilated, the pillow eye is more dilated and adapts to the dark. After the phone is switched off, the phone eye takes a while to adjust to the dark and catch up to the pillow eye, causing the feeling of temporary blindness. There wasn't any true vision loss, but it was an effect similar to how we feel "blind" right when we go into a dark room after being outside.

As people continue to use phones more and for more extended periods of time, we may start noticing other ways it may impact health. Of course, there's also the posture issue see http://www.nytimes.com/2015/12/13/opinion/sunday/your-iphone-is-ruining-your-posture-and-your-mood.html?_r=0 So perhaps we should all be making New Year's Resolution to limit or pay closers attention to our own phone use. 

Speaking of you back in the day, to build better posture in her children, one of my aunts had them site on backless stools. I'm not sure it worked, but the idea was to force them to hold themselves up rather than leaning back. I'm  not sure she had them walk uphill in the snow, though.

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Mike Robuck
Mike Robuck
12/15/2016 11:11:50 AM
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Re: IOT connects with consumers
But what they really need to ask is how many consumers use their smartphones in the bathroom? :)

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mhhf1ve
mhhf1ve
12/15/2016 11:24:13 AM
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Re: IOT connects with consumers
Ha! I think I've seen some reports where they randomly sample phones for bacteria that you'd find in a restroom-- and the results suggested that smartphone use near toilets must be much higher than anyone would want to admit. (Which is why self-reported surveys about embarrassing things are always somewhat inaccurate....)

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Ariella
Ariella
12/15/2016 12:25:41 PM
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Re: IOT connects with consumers
@Mike Honestly, some things I'd really rather not know.

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DHagar
DHagar
12/15/2016 8:25:59 PM
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Re: IOT connects with consumers
@Mike - from my "observations" that number is a majority - a practice I highly disapprove of - but I am definitely in the minority!

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mhhf1ve
mhhf1ve
12/14/2016 7:11:41 PM
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Self driving cars..
The future is really just around the corner now with self driving cars. Uber is testing autonomous cars in San Francisco now.. and Tesla is about 18 months away from having hundreds of thousands of cars on the roads that are "self driving capable" that are recording data that will help train algorithms that will make self driving cars possible.

If the iPhone transformed tech since just 2007... Tesla and self-driving cars will transform tech in 2017? 

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afwriter
afwriter
12/14/2016 11:04:29 PM
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Re: Self driving cars..
I saw an article today that said that self driving cars are now on the streets of San Francisco.  I know that Ford and, I think, Honda are also working on their own versions of the self-driving vehicle.  I wonder how long it will be before this is a standard feature in every new car.

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Ariella
Ariella
12/15/2016 9:28:44 AM
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Re: Self driving cars..
@afwriter I don't think it will be a standard feature for all cars -- at least not for the next 10-20 years. I think what you may find are some automous features for safety -- like stopping a car when it senses something in the way -- but not fully automonous, self-driving ability in all cars.

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mhhf1ve
mhhf1ve
12/15/2016 11:10:24 AM
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Re: Self driving cars..
Some safety features already use lidar and other sensors that can also be used for autonomous driving, but so far, they're optional for the most part. It'll be quite some time before cars come with standard sensors and standard software for autonomous driving. Just look at how many manual transmission cars are sold today! It's taken decades for automatic transmission to be the dominant type of vehicle powertrain.

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Adi
Adi
12/15/2016 10:30:59 AM
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Re: Self driving cars..
@mhhf1ve - personally I think we will see self-driving take off, but probably in the private taxi sector. Not sure it can happen as soon as 2017 but maybe in select cities -- there's a few trials running in SF as you mentioned and in Pittsburgh, with Uber. And Google has talked about launching Waymo commercially as a taxi-type service...though timelines and plans have changed a few times so not sure of current status.

Also -- didn't SF ban self-driving Uber vehicles..or there was some kind of issue with them not being licensed by the city...?

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mhhf1ve
mhhf1ve
12/15/2016 11:20:27 AM
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Re: Self driving cars..
Uber definitely has a head start on self-driving taxis. But I think that lead could change if/when Tesla releases its autonomous driving platform-- since it will have a distributed network of its cars wherever Tesla owners live. In the SF Bay Area, that could be a real advantage since Tesla cars are relatively common.

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DHagar
DHagar
12/15/2016 8:30:20 PM
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Re: Self driving cars..
@mhhf1ve - Tesla will be a driver - also the SF area has already become familiar with the Google cars and the innovation models of self-driving cars from Stanford.

I was exposed to the technology behind the self-driving cars and became a "believer" that the autonomous functions - where applied - are truly safer than human controls.  I don't necessarily expect to read the newspaper and sit back and leave the driving to my car, but I am comfortable increasingly relying on the autonomous functions.

I think it will be a natural adoption for milennials.

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mhhf1ve
mhhf1ve
12/15/2016 9:06:33 PM
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Re: Self driving cars..
> 'a natural adoption for milennials..."

I think autonomous cars will also be a great tool for seniors who might otherwise be dangerous drivers if left to their own devices. Plenty of senior citizens are trapped within a zone of driving comfort, but they wouldn't necessarily be if their cars could safely transport them. 

Sure, there are problems with "fancy user interfaces" that seniors might not immediately get on board for.. but if it's done properly, then I think the AARP would heartily endorse this technology.

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DHagar
DHagar
12/15/2016 9:35:35 PM
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Re: Self driving cars..
@mhhf1ve - great application and vision.

Yes, seniors would be able to be self-sufficient with that level of mobile support.  Additionally, you can program the cars to limit the miles, conditions (ie weather), speed, etc., according to the physical and cognitive ability.  Truly a win-win!

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mhhf1ve
mhhf1ve
12/15/2016 9:15:52 PM
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Re: Self driving cars..
> "...became a "believer" that the autonomous functions - where applied - are truly safer than human controls."

DHagar, I'm curious -- how did the tech convince you? There has been at least one deadly accident with a semi-autonomous car, and fully autonomous cars are quite in existence yet. So there's some reality gap for autonomous cars to jump from semi-autonomous to fully-autonomous, and that's not a insignificant gap. It's like the Uncanny Valley for computer generated graphics.. where artificial people aren't really believable until right when they are. 

I'm optimistic that autonomous cars will be the future and lead to far fewer car accidents, but I'm not exactly sure how we'll get there.. or how quickly it'll happen. I think we'll have semi-autonomous cars for a long time until the tech basically proves itself statistically -- by "taking control" and saving lives like Toyota's vision of a "guardian angel" AI behind its cars.

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DHagar
DHagar
12/15/2016 9:43:52 PM
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Re: Self driving cars..
@mhhf1ve - I fully understand.  And first of all, I don't think we will ever be solely autonomous (ie Google cars), but autonomous self-driving dependent.

I was exposed to the Stanford team that designed the self-driving cars and participated in a series of review of technology, algorithms, etc.  I was initially opposed to the far-fetched concept.  What I began to discover in looking at the technology is that increasingly the technology vs. human functions have a safer and consistent result.  The computer consistently accounts for real-time variables (ie weather, traffic, alerts via digital signals), is not distracted by the variables - and so calculates a better course - including slowing down when conditions change.

Like Watson - cognitive computing - the net results put the technology ahead of the accuracy of human decision making.

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mhhf1ve
mhhf1ve
12/15/2016 10:32:45 PM
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Re: Self driving cars..
I agree that autonomous cars have the potential to be safer on the roads than human drivers -- and that's almost a no-brainer given that robots don't get distracted or sleepy or drunk, etc.

However, every so often, I'm concerned that a rare event will cause mass chaos with autonomous cars that wouldn't happen with humans. Like if there was a terrorist event that crashed something into something -- would autonomous cars be locked into staying on the roads if the roads themselves were dangerous? eg. what would happen if a bridge went out? I can just imagine the horror of robot cars plunging people to their deaths because the AI didn't comprehend what a destroyed bridge meant.... 

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DHagar
DHagar
12/16/2016 5:44:17 PM
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Re: Self driving cars..
@mhhf1ve - great question.  Actually there is an answer to this scenario.  You "connect" the data points to integrate "live" situational awareness that then can override the routine data feeds and instructions.  So you would create an "event management" capability to follow the instructions - and/or be connected with an override.

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mhhf1ve
mhhf1ve
12/19/2016 5:12:52 PM
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Re: Self driving cars..
> "Actually there is an answer to this scenario."

Hopefully, there is a way to avoid the unknown-unknown situations with AI -- because it's something we're going to have to address in several areas, not just in autnonmous cars. Once we hand over controls to "smart" machine learning algorithms, we still have to figure out what to do when those smart AI programs run into something no one's anticipated. The AI can't just drop the controls back into the hands of a human (or even a group of humans) without warning! 

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DHagar
DHagar
12/19/2016 7:48:45 PM
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Re: Self driving cars..
@mhhf1ve - absolutely - I don't think people will be comfortable with an either/or with AI/Human Intelligence.  Like simple "cruise control" - I think the key to public comfort will be the ability to disengage from AI into override control by Human choice.  That operates on AI but leaves controls in the hands of humans.

 

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Ariella
Ariella
12/20/2016 6:10:57 PM
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Re: Self driving cars..
<I don't think people will be comfortable with an either/or with AI/Human Intelligence. >

@DHagar I'm inclined to agree with you. They may like having the AI option but wouldn't want to suspend their own ability to control altogether.

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DHagar
DHagar
12/20/2016 9:00:44 PM
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Re: Self driving cars..
@Ariella, good points!

Yes, I believe we still view Human Intelligence as superior to the AI - whether it is true or not.  In some cases it is and in others the consistency and pure calculations of AI offer better solutions - but we still like know we are in charge to make that final decision.

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Ariella
Ariella
12/20/2016 9:49:35 PM
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Re: Self driving cars..
@Dhagar Indeed. AI has been making headlines quite a lot lately, and it is coming into its own as a way to aid marketers and customer service reps. But it is still regarded as a tool rather than as a replacement for humans. It may be currently regarded as the computer that retrieved answers to question in the 1957 (nearly half a centuy before Google!) movie "Deskset." It wasn't meant to put the women who worked the office out of a job but just to make them more efficient.   

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DHagar
DHagar
12/20/2016 10:11:08 PM
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Re: Self driving cars..
@Ariella, I like your perspective!  We will truly be smart if we figure out how to use AI to augment the Human Intelligence - but we have to find new ways of learning in that mode.

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Ariella
Ariella
12/21/2016 9:00:14 AM
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Re: Self driving cars..
@DHagar to keep up with the potential of technology, we may have to devise and adopt new models of interacting, to bring the human and machine capabilities together for optimal results.

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DHagar
DHagar
12/21/2016 8:33:19 PM
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Re: Self driving cars..
@Ariella,  I think that is very true and really the new opportunity to truly transform the systems and the public use.  I believe that is where the new work and opportunity begins.

Great focus!

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JohnBarnes
JohnBarnes
12/21/2016 10:09:17 PM
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Re: Self driving cars..
Amplifying DHagar here, something that isn't immediately obvious because we're not used to it yet is that a fast enough set of processors and memory, with a varied enough database of memories, will be much less a creature of habit than a human driver. We tend not to think about how many of the low-level components of our activities are habitual, but they are deeply so, so much that we have a hard time thinking about them if we have to.  (How do you know this letter is a B? How much do you let out the clutch, how quickly, to start out from a stop light in first gear, and how much do you vary that if there might be glare ice? How do you get a baby safely from the sofa into your arms? Etc. etc. etc.)

Humans do most things via an assemblage of habits -- but the assembly itself is also a set of habits. Machines are, or soon can be, fast and flexible enough to solve every problem ad hoc with something like an optimal solution for each situation. (Small dog suddenly in road. Solve with brake? Swerve? Take foot off accelerator and wait to see where dog is going? Swerve and brake to stop faster or further from dog? You only have so much time and changing your mind takes some of that, so you get one try. The machine could very well go brake--no swerve--no swerve back--okay now brake--now throw reverse into partial bootlegger turn--hard brake--okay, stopped, dog unhurt--in the same time it took you to choose between braking and swerving. And you probably won't have any reason to do a bootlegger turn ten times in your life, whereas your car will remember how to do one perfectly, even adjusting for a patch of ice on the road or loose gravel, and have it as an option.

We tend to think of robots as being robotic, but in the long term, "robot" is going to mean "extremely fast and flexible with a lot of options."

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Ariella
Ariella
12/22/2016 8:44:13 AM
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Re: Self driving cars..
@JohnBarnes you bring up an issue that actually has ethical ramifications for programming autonmous cars. It may be just about instinctual for us to brake for animals (there used to even be a bumper sticker that declared that). However, there are situations in which braking or even swerving to avoid hitting an animal or even a person can cause more damage because there's a car right behind you as well as in the place you'd swerve into. That brings up the Trolley Problem. Do you avoid hitting something at all costs, even if it means that greater damage to human life would occur? Do you make a calculated decision to go ahead and hit the dog or even a person because there's no way of avoiding it without risking the life of everyone in your car?  A computer can go through all these scenarios and odds pretty quickly but would still need programming to direct in a no-win (at least not with no caualties) scenario.

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JohnBarnes
JohnBarnes
12/22/2016 3:02:56 PM
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Platinum
Re: Self driving cars..
Ariella, Yep, and because another advantage of self driving cars will be their ability to constantly network (so that your car knows that the car 200 yards out front around the curve just hit a deer), they'll have to solve philosophic questions with much more information than we have to cope with--knowing that the car behind has a baby in it and the one to the side contains an uninsured driver trying to make it to the first day on a job after a year of unemployment. You'll be lucky if it doesn't know the squirrel's life story too!

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Ariella
Ariella
12/22/2016 3:21:42 PM
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Re: Self driving cars..
@JohnBarnes I'm glad I'm not the one who has to make the call on when a program has to decide who is to be sacrificed so others may live. It is a serious question with no easy answers. Elsewhere I suggested that Spock's statement of Vulcan belief (basically Utilitarianism) could provide a guide because in that case you're just going for the many versus the few or the one without factoring in other value questions (like the ages of the people involved).

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JohnBarnes
JohnBarnes
12/22/2016 3:52:12 PM
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Platinum
Re: Self driving cars..
Ariella, I think a better system might be to create rules that produce, on the average, results that least outrage the person's relevant community. And I can even sort of see a vision of how that could be done over time. Which is giving me an idea for a story I think.

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DHagar
DHagar
12/22/2016 10:23:48 PM
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Platinum
Re: Self driving cars..
@JohnBarnes, I love your further analysis.  Exactly - it is at an entirely different level.

The capabilities of machine learning - AI - establish a structure that actually builds more on facts that can be learned and then directed by human decisions.  I believe it opens the doors to both more "efficient' decision making as well as better results from the decisions we make.

You should lead an AI Institute - your vision is excellent!

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dcawrey
dcawrey
12/20/2016 7:38:33 PM
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Platinum
Re: Self driving cars..
There is certainly a place for autonomous cars - especially in traffic! One of the most annoying things about cities, traffic is one reason why I would want a car to drive itself. 

That being said, I'd still be quite interested in having a car I can drive. The open road is still alluring to me...

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mhhf1ve
mhhf1ve
12/15/2016 10:35:23 PM
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Re: Self driving cars..
> "I don't think we will ever be solely autonomous (ie Google cars)..."

I'm not that pessimistic. I think there will be certain locations that will be completely autonomous. Maybe we'll even have designated areas where only autonomous vehicles can go. Because the mix of human drivers and AI drivers could be more dangerous than separating them....

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DHagar
DHagar
12/16/2016 5:49:07 PM
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Platinum
Re: Self driving cars..
@mhhf1ve - actually that makes great sense.  You could switch to autonomous mode (like hybrids) in certain sections and/or under certain conditions. 

That sounds like a real plus on long highway stretches.

Great idea - hold onto that!

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mhhf1ve
mhhf1ve
12/19/2016 5:16:12 PM
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Platinum
Re: Self driving cars..
> "...switch to autonomous mode (like hybrids) in certain sections and/or under certain conditions."

Ohio is already testing a designated section of road for autonmous trucks, and I'm sure there are other states looking into how to test autonomous truck shipping lanes, too.

https://www.dot.state.oh.us/news/Pages/SmartMobilityCorridor.aspx

I think we might get autonomous highways before Elon Musk can build any Hyperloop trains or dig any "boring" tunnels to avoid traffic.... 

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DHagar
DHagar
12/19/2016 7:52:32 PM
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Platinum
Re: Self driving cars..
@mhhf1ve - excellent example!  Good for Ohio - that's the way to build the solutions.

I am with you on the Hyperloop!  If we don't get a better model, Musk will create a "state of the future" solution!

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srufolo1
srufolo1
12/15/2016 11:53:13 PM
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Platinum
Autonomous Cars
Autonomous cars scare the heck out of me. When exactly is this supposed to happen? I can't imagine a mix of autonomous cars and people-driven cars on the Long Island Expressway on any given day. I think the sensors on the autonomous cars would "crash and burn" on that stretch of road. Also, concerning people checking their smartphones in the middle of the night, PHEW! I thought I was the only one. This must be a new disease. I guess it gives us all an excuse to suffer from insomnia. I think social media has created an addiction of sorts. I, for one, don't understand my compulsion to keep checking to see how man "likes" I've gotten on a post.

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mhhf1ve
mhhf1ve
12/16/2016 11:08:35 AM
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Platinum
Re: Autonomous Cars
> "I can't imagine a mix of autonomous cars and people-driven cars on the Long Island Expressway on any given day."

If you've ever seen a Tesla on the LIE... then there's a chance a semi-autonomous car has shared the road with you. 

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srufolo1
srufolo1
12/16/2016 12:21:23 PM
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Platinum
Re: Autonomous Cars
@mhhf1ve I'm not sure if I've seen a Tesla on the road. I'll pay attention next time. It's amazing how those cars are programmed to respond if someone short stops or whatever. I would still feel uncomfortable in one, but I don't have to worry because I wouldn't be able to afford an autonomous car anyway.

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mhhf1ve
mhhf1ve
12/16/2016 2:10:44 PM
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Platinum
Re: Autonomous Cars
> "It's amazing how those cars are programmed to respond if someone stops short.."

Yes. I saw a Tesla video of its radar systems -- and they're apparently capable of detecting vehicles TWO cars ahead by bouncing EMF off other cars somehow? So the cars are looking farther down the road than just the car ahead.

Still, I haven't been in a (semi-)autonomous car yet. Maybe I won't be as optimistic when I see that it drives worse than a teenager with a fresh license..... 

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