You know the first thing I’m going to buy when I have enough money?
It’s not that I dislike driving, I just do not want to have to drive if I don’t have to.
I want a chauffer, not so that I can be self-important or because I have so many places I need to be chauffeured to and from, but so that I can get on with work, or read, or write, without the drudgery of actually have to drive myself from one place to the next. It’s not laziness either. Driving, like many activities, is a complete waste of time for most of the time.
But right now, I don’t have the funds, so how about considering other options?
Bus? Train? Taxi? Public transport is too inconvenient and too slow and requires too much thinking. Taxis are too costly and still inconvenient.
No, what I want, is the ability to walk out of my door, the car is there, ready to go, I hop it, I go places. I need a chauffeur.
Failing that, I need a self-driving car. Completely automatic. I hop in, I tell the car verbally where I want to go, e.g. “Nearest McDonald’s” or “Take me to work” or “Take me home” and the car knows where to go, instantly starts up, calculates the route, and off we go in comfort and safety and all to arrive in a timely fashion.
And I think I’ve figured out how to get one.
I see a vast network of people driving cars all day long across the streets and freeways of Los Angeles. But these drivers, these people at the steering wheel of the car, they’re not actually in Los Angeles.
Here’s how to achieve the self-driving cars of the future.
We outsource the driving.
With GPS, cellular networks, a couple of cameras for vision, and some very simple software, someone sat at a cheap computer terminal in a remote part of the world, earning far less per day than me, can be paid a reasonable sum of money to drive a car from point A to point B. And the great thing is, once they’ve finished the driving, the driver is ready to remotely operate someone else’s car in some other part of the world. I see vast cubicle farms of people remotely piloting vehicles all over the world.
No clever artificial intelligence, no worries about recognising objects in the road, completely self-driving, self-parking, voice activated vehicles that cost just a dollar or so per day to operate. Would you pay a dollar, less than a cup of fancy coffee, to have someone drive you to and from the office whilst you relax and read the paper?
We’re outsourcing so much other stuff, why not do the same with driving?