Life made easier: Thank you Autonomous Driving

By Ashwin

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Autonomous stainless glass car by Dominic Wilcox

Human safety is a priority in automotive design we produce technological advances to keep that occupants of the car safe. And yet we hear about the many accidents that happened in the world every so often due to lack of tolerance in traffic among fellow drivers and other road users, and now imagine a world where cars of the future is able to take you places with out the ever need of your input or worry about the dramas associated with driving, leading to further enhancement on the experience of vehicle-human interaction with use of technology. An area where ever since the industralisation of automobiles automotive companies have been trying to perfect, maybe through this method of anonymous interaction the mindset of driving can be changed for better user experience and behavior.

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Dominic Wilcox’s Sleeper Car version

Designers in the area of automotive and other design disciplines are encouraged to explore and express their visions in this area future of automobile for the masses through various competitions and design festivals, such as the London Design Festival 2014. One of the prominent designers to participate in this Festival is the London designer Dominic Wilcox who has large interest in area of human interaction, and believes in the “future where driverless technologies make the roads safe enough to drive vehicles made of glass” (Winston, A. 2014) and a car that would be computer driven much like the Google’s driverless car (Markoff, J. 2014). Wilcox’s concept involves the importance of having different possibilities of providing human interaction experience of a home setting such as having a “sleeper car” (car with beds installed inside), “mobile office, gym, a dining car and a sun bed car that could be programed to avoid routes with more cloud cover”. Taking this concept of individualized housing: taking your home with you, adds to the human interaction aspects of leaving as well. This form of vehicle interaction can be viewed not just under the umbrella of home space but broaden to the surroundings of the vehicle itself, in the sense overcoming of the complexity by the transport system and its rules for the safety of the user (which Wilcox relies on for his vision to be a reality) in a urban context. Where the style of road and travel would be changed and controlled due to the increase in vehicle use, by incorporating a car guide system similar to that of the current railways. Having a “guide cable in one lane of every motorway and multi-lane road and to developing the software to control the movement of vehicles over these cables.” (Brown, D.C. 2014) Brown further supports the Wilcox vision of an interactive experience, suggesting to “drive over the automatic lane and press a button when your car begins to follow the cable. You key in your destination and go to sleep, or read your newspaper, or get on with your work.” (Brown, D.C. 2014). This further emphasizes user safety by limiting the possibilities of highway accidents, traffic congestion and efficiency of road space used by these vehicles, and increase in improved vehicle-human interaction by making travel more pleasant for the user.

Rather than focusing on one form high-end technological solution, there is a need for a broader re-thinking of the future such as that of Wilcox and Brown and alter or improve to pay way for better future technological advances for better human technology interaction.

Bibliography

  1. Winston, A. 2014, Dominic Wilcox’s “car of the future” is driverless and made of stainless glass, Dezeen Magazine, Viewed on 23 October 2014 http://www.dezeen.com/2014/09/18/dominic-wilcoxs-car-future-driverless-stained-glass-dezeen-mini-frontiers-london-design-festival-2014/
  2.  Markoff, J. 2014, Google’s Next phase in Driverless Cars: No Steering Wheel or Brake Pedals, Technology, The New York Times, viewed on 23 October 2014http://www.nytimes.com/2014/05/28/technology/googles-next-phase-in-driverless-cars-no-brakes-or-steering-wheel.html?_r=0
  3.  Brown, D.C. 2014, ‘Invest in Autonomous Cars, Not Railways’, Engineering & Technology (17509637), vol. 9, no. 9, pp. 26-.
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