63

How Will Self Driving Cars Affect Our Motorcycle Use

Will motorcycles be banned from public highways in our near future?

Over the last two years Google has been quietly, (and some say illegally) testing a fleet of autonomous vehicles that navigate the highway without any direct input from human drivers.   Sebastian Thrun, director of Google’s autonomous vehicle research program, wrote that the project had achieved 200,000 miles of driving without an accident while cars were under computer control.

This week the State of Nevada finalized a few modifications to its rules of the road that will allow robotic driven vehicles to be driven legally on its highways.

Several automakers are deploying sensor based safety systems that help prevent accidents.  Some simply alert the driver, and others go so far as to correct drivers actions, or inaction.  Adaptive cruise control and emergency braking help prevent collisions.  Blind-spot detection, adaptive headlights and night-vision assistance systems are also offered in a number of 2012 models.  However, what Google is doing makes these advances seem as rudimentary as the improvement from bias ply to radial tires.

Ask any motorcyclist who has a few miles under his or her belt, and they'll tell you they've had someone turn left in front of them which either caused them to wreck or resulted in panic braking.  Once this technology becomes mandatory, and most vehicles on the highway are auto driven, accidents involving human error will plummet, making it safer to ride a motorcycle.

One of Google's auto-pilot vehicles

But, as the saying goes, there's the rub.  Human error accounts for almost all the 33,000 deaths and 1.2 million injuries that now occur each year on the nation’s roads.    The financial impact is staggering.

In 2008, AAA did a study and estimated traffic accidents cost Americans an estimated $164.2 billion dollars annually.  Those costs are borne by each of us in the form of auto and health insurance premiums,  emergency and police services, property damage, lost productivity and quality of life.

Vehicles that drive themselves will be able to avoid 99% of all accidents,  eliminating those costs, saving us all money, reducing stress, and giving us back hundreds of hours that is now unproductive time spent behind the wheel.

But, hold on a minute.  If cars, trucks and buses are all on auto-pilot, that leaves only a small minority of road users, namely the motorcycle community with the free will and distracted driving capabilities to throw a monkey wrench into the system.

That leaves only one conclusion.  Just as Henry Ford did to the horse-drawn carriage with the Model T, Google's auto-pilot technology signals the (beginning of the) end of the motorcycle as a transportation vehicle on our nation's highway.

With a financial incentive in the billions of dollars, the insurance lobby of the future will ultimately pressure the federal government to enact laws that restrict where "self-directed" vehicles are allowed.  (more after the poll)

Sven A. Beiker,  executive director of the Center for Automotive Research at Stanford University told National Public Radio, on NPR's Morning Edition, there are "significant issues" to overcome before anyone can accurately predict a future when we will see completely autonomous vehicles.   Right now the computers and cameras cannot recognize a police officer, or highway construction worker who is directing traffic to proceed in a way that is illogical or counter intuitive to the best route input into the computer's guidance system. Then there is the vulnerability of the guidance systems, global positioning satellites, to jamming by hackers and cyber terrorists.

Google watchers and those with inside knowledge of the technology believe auto-pilot vehicles will first be deployed as delivery vehicles, taxis, and buses.  How quickly the technology transitions from utility vehicles to personal vehicles is anybody's guess at this point, but the sad truth is that once a tipping point is reached, say 75% of vehicles are running on auto-drive, the push to rid the highways of "dangerous self driving vehicles" will begin in earnest.   In the NPR report, the author even alludes to a "future ban" on human operated vehicles.

When that happens, so will your ability to pick a destination on a map, load up the motorcycle and head out across this great country with your only worries being rain, bugs and that distracted driver who turns left in front of you.

 

 

 

Web Staff

63 Comments


  1. Howdy! I just want to offer you a huge thumbs up for the great
    information you have right here on this post.
    I’ll be coming back to your website for more soon.


  2. 67510 476734Some genuinely good and utilitarian data on this internet internet site , also I believe the style and style holds very good attributes. 55275


  3. Its like you read my mind! You seem to know a lot about this, like you wrote the book in it or something. I think that you could do with a few pics to drive the message home a bit, but instead of that, this is wonderful blog. An excellent read. I’ll certainly be back.


  4. 157791 208594never saw a web site like this, relaly impressed. compared to other blogs with this write-up this was definatly the very best website. will save. 898008


  5. I just want to mention I am all new to weblog and definitely loved this blog site. Probably I’m planning to bookmark your website . You certainly have very good articles. Cheers for sharing your web page.


  6. I just want to mention I am all new to blogging and definitely enjoyed your web page. Likely I’m going to bookmark your site . You definitely have perfect posts. Many thanks for sharing with us your blog site.


  7. I simply want to say I’m all new to weblog and absolutely enjoyed you’re web site. Likely I’m likely to bookmark your blog post . You really come with impressive articles. Regards for sharing with us your blog.


  8. I simply want to say I am new to blogs and actually liked your blog site. Likely I’m likely to bookmark your blog post . You actually have very good articles. Regards for revealing your website page.


  9. I just want to mention I am new to blogging and definitely liked your blog. More than likely I’m planning to bookmark your site . You certainly have superb writings. Thanks a lot for sharing with us your blog.


  10. I simply want to say I’m very new to weblog and seriously loved your web page. Almost certainly I’m want to bookmark your blog . You certainly come with perfect articles. Thank you for sharing your webpage.


  11. I simply want to say I am new to weblog and honestly enjoyed your website. Almost certainly I’m likely to bookmark your website . You actually have perfect article content. Thanks a lot for revealing your website.


  12. I just want to tell you that I am new to blogs and really savored your blog. Probably I’m going to bookmark your blog . You surely have amazing articles. With thanks for sharing your webpage.


  13. I simply want to say I am just all new to blogs and definitely liked you’re blog. Very likely I’m want to bookmark your blog post . You surely have outstanding stories. Thanks a lot for sharing with us your web site.


  14. I just want to mention I am beginner to blogging and site-building and absolutely enjoyed this web blog. Most likely I’m want to bookmark your site . You actually have wonderful posts. Thanks a lot for revealing your web page.


  15. I simply want to mention I am new to blogs and absolutely enjoyed your web blog. Almost certainly I’m likely to bookmark your blog post . You actually come with very good stories. Cheers for revealing your web-site.


  16. I just want to tell you that I’m newbie to weblog and really savored this web blog. Very likely I’m want to bookmark your blog post . You amazingly have excellent well written articles. With thanks for sharing with us your blog site.


  17. I just want to tell you that I’m newbie to blogs and definitely enjoyed this web site. More than likely I’m likely to bookmark your site . You amazingly come with great article content. Thanks for sharing with us your website.


  18. I simply want to mention I am very new to weblog and actually savored your web page. Probably I’m going to bookmark your site . You really have awesome posts. Many thanks for revealing your blog.


  19. I just want to tell you that I’m all new to blogging and certainly savored your blog site. Almost certainly I’m going to bookmark your blog post . You actually come with superb article content. With thanks for sharing with us your webpage.


  20. Thanks for the auspicious writeup. It if truth be told was once a amusement account it. Look complicated to far introduced agreeable from you! By the way, how could we keep up a correspondence?


  21. I simply want to tell you that I am just newbie to weblog and honestly savored your web site. Probably I’m planning to bookmark your blog post . You certainly have excellent posts. Bless you for sharing your website page.


  22. Thank you a lot for providing individuals with a very splendid possiblity to read in detail from here. It is often so excellent and also full of amusement for me personally and my office acquaintances to visit your blog a minimum of three times every week to study the newest tips you have. And lastly, I’m just certainly fascinated with your fantastic tips you serve. Certain 3 points on this page are unquestionably the simplest we’ve had.


  23. Hi would you mind letting me know which web host you’re utilizing?
    I’ve loaded your blog in 3 completely different
    browsers and I must say this blog loads a lot faster then most.
    Can you suggest a good internet hosting provider at a reasonable price?
    Thanks a lot, I appreciate it!


  24. Hi there! Do you know if they make any plugins to assist with SEO?
    I’m trying to get my blog to rank for some targeted keywords but I’m not seeing very good gains.
    If you know of any please share. Thank you!


  25. Just want to say your article is as astonishing.

    The clarity to your post is simply cool and i could suppose you are knowledgeable in this subject.
    Well along with your permission let me too grasp your
    feedd to keep updated with coming near near post.
    Thanks 1,000,000 and pleazse keep up the rewarding work.

    Alsoo visit my site candida diet recipes (Hyman)


  26. I ѡаs curious if you evеr cоnsidered changing tҺe structure օf үoսr website?
    Its vеry wеll writtеn; I love wɦat youve ɡot to say.
    But maƴbе yоu cοuld ɑ little more in the way of content so people could connect
    ѡith it ƅetter. Youve ǥot an awful lοt of text fοr only
    having 1 oг tѡo images. Maybе you ϲould space іt ߋut better?


  27. Woah! I’m really enjoying the template/theme of this website.
    It’s simple, yet effective. A lot of times it’s very difficult to get that “perfect balance” between usability and visual appeal.
    I must say that you’ve done a amazing job with this.

    Additionally, the blog loads extremely quick for me
    on Chrome. Exceptional Blog!


  28. Yoou can also use other ways and tactics to get free fans for your page like invitations, group communities,
    online events and advertising. Upon usijng Facebook for the first
    time, they will find it hard to copy with the informal language and word tones which Facebook
    prefers. There are also people who will onlly be your friends if you buy something from them as a condition.


  29. Hi there just wanted to give you a quick heads up.
    The words in your post seem to be running off the screen in Opera.
    I’m not sure if this is a formatting issue or something to do with web browser compatibility but I
    thought I’d post to let you know. The design and style look great though!

    Hoope you get the issue resolved soon. Cheers

    my webpage: seo company tampa


  30. whoah this weblog is fantastic i love studying your posts.

    Stay up the great work! You realize, many individuals are
    searching around for this info, you could help them greatly.


  31. This piece of writing presents clear idea for the new users of blogging, that genuinely how to do blogging and site-building.


  32. Fantastic beat ! I would like to apprentice at the
    same time as you amend your website, how can i subscribe for a blog web site?
    The account aided me a appropriate deal. I have been a little
    bit acquainted of this your broadcast provided vibrant clear
    concept


  33. Your way of telling the whole thing in this piece of writing is really
    nice, every one be able to without difficulty know it, Thanks a lot.


  34. yeah i agreed this, self driving cars create difficulties for bikers thats why i use Maximum Shred for gaining extra intelligent ability which provides me best focus to my brain… to take safe decision.


  35. Traffic is one of the issue in most of developing issue and for this researchers keep on going research in different ways to over come this problem. Like in the country of Nevada have legally approved that robot will drive automobile to avoid accidents.


  36. "Vehicles that drive themselves will be able to avoid 99% of all accidents,"

    In my decades of driving (and riding), I've never had a collision. So for me, it would eliminate 0 car crashes. (Funny how most of the careful drivers never do, and reckless drivers frequently do.) You could also eliminate a significant percentage of accidents if you put breathalyzers on all car ignitions, but is it politically feasible to do? That's the question.

    "reducing stress"

    I for one do not think that it would be less stressful being inside a car outside of my own control. Most psychologists seem to say that being happy is directly related to being in control yourself. Are automobile passengers notably less stressed than drivers? Even when it's convenient, people tend to avoid carpooling. I certainly don't see people ever choosing to be passengers, when they are capable of driving.


  37. Obamas dream! Big brother watching and taking care of you! Works great in Europe!


  38. Actually South Korea banned motorcycles on highway in 1972 during the totalitarian regime under President Pak who was a general of Korean Army. The excuse was motorcycles were slow and dangerous which is lie.

    In 1971, total number of dead people by traffic accident in South Korea was 26. The number of death increased up to 10,000+ in 1991. Four hundred times more death than 40 years ago.

    A country that only allows cars on highway become the number one country of traffic accident in the world. How can it be? South Korea is worst place of driving out of 40 OECD countries for years.

    My recent post 10 Staggering Facts Behind Apple’s Foxconn Factory


  39. Personally, I think they should spend less time and money on self-driving vehicles and more on high speed trains. I will never give up riding, and train travel is so prevalent in the rest of the world, it only makes sense, too bad there's not more attention to it for the US.


  40. This wouldn't affect only motorcyclists not being able to use our nation's roadways. How many people own classic cars/hot rods that they are not about to quit driving or trade in for a high-tech (and likely very expensive) vehicle? I ride and I love hot rods and I don't see this happening without a lot of noise from those who want nothing to do with it. Hybrid vehicles were "the way of the future" too but I don't know a single person who owns one or wants one and I don't think they'll want one of these either. Doubt that either of these technologies will be mainstream in my lifetime.


  41. I can't imagine that this will come along any time soon.

    Sure, for the vast, empty distances of the middle of the USA, a self-driving vehicle would do just fine. But if you've ever come to the UK and seen our incredibly complicated road network – especially the roads in our cities who's street plans are over 2000 years old – and there's not a snowball's chance in hell that modern AI could navigate our roads safely.


  42. This sounds like the flying cars prediction. They can do it, but it isn't economically realistic. Who would be liable if there were an accident? The liability is way too high. If they do ban " self-drive" vehicles, hopefully they will be chasing me down in one too. Sometimes the best option is not always the safest.


  43. Great article, agree with it in general. I have posted about it on my blog.

    Although I think that 'self directed' vehicles will eventually be banned on public roads in 15-20 years I think there will still be a space for riders to use racetracks, national parks and deserts.

    We still use horses 100 years after no longer needing them, surely we will still be riding 100 years from now?
    My recent post The End of Motorcycles?


  44. Does anyone remember all of the software bugs in the Prius after it was introduced? This is a nice story about a perfect world of machines that will never screw up. I've worked with electronics my whole career working in factory automation and new product development for commercial products. Only a politician would believe that we can make robots cars of this magnitude that will never cause an accident. Heck my cell phone can't get through the day without locking up what would happen with cars having to reset themselves on the open road at high speed? Remember the old joke about how Microsoft could never make cars? No would buy a car that you would have to stop, rollup all the windows and restart it all the time to keep it going. Do they really think that Americans who love to drive are just going to give up their cars for self driving vehicles? The safetycrats want to live in this bubble of perfect safety. That is not living that is existing.


  45. I can't even begin to believe that this will happen in my lifetime!! Kinda reminds me of George Jetson in his auto pilot flying vehicle. **NOTHING** can replace a human driving their own vehicle… there are too many errors that could occur to make this idea feasible. And take away my right to drive my motorcycle?? Over my dead body!!!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *