A Look-See: Automated Driving Tech

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Here’s a look at some of the almost-automated driving tech you’ll find in many new cars, not just high-end cars like the 2019 Mercedes E-Class sedan which I’m using to show you how it works.

This stuff isn’t just coming. It’s already here. And it presents a number of interesting conundrums, or Catch-22s. For example, is the driver supposed to pay attention to driving – or not? If not, why involve him at all? And if yes, why tempt him to not be involved with tech that takes over driving?

My teeth begin to ache…

. . .

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      • Hi Eric,,, Kind of what I thought….

        Went through it again… Only word I see as a possible problem is B o n d a g e. I’ll steer away from it. On other sites I see words censored that is totally stupid,,, for instance D i c k’ s” like in the store or Cheny. I’m not even sure this post will make it.

        Anyhow, no big deal,,, the comment simply rehashes stuff people should know but never seem to think about it. Most love Digital but never look at what evil they’re doing with it.

        But they’ll figure it out soon enough…..

  1. Isn’t it amazing how ‘technology’ always results in more bondage. Of course it’s always for our safety. Digital has become our new overlord. Everything we do is monitored or ‘assisted’. We are tracked wherever we go by license plate readers, cell phone / car GPS, and car camera’s keep tabs on us as while enroute. Millions of cameras watch our every move once we arrive. I counted over a hundred camera’s in a Walmart. Outside at least twenty, some now in the middle monitor the parking lots. Again, all for our safety.

    Our children are now required to have a tablet and cell phone in schools, each used to track them and get them used to the bondage. They use the phones to pay for lunches and school activities. Some schools are actually using implanted RFID chips. They are monitored at home by the phones built in cameras and microphones which can be turned on remotely. Even home wireless alarm systems are easily hacked and your own equipment used to monitor you. Many folks are doing this voluntarily,,, for their safety.

    Government Stasi agencies are recording every post on the so called social sites like Facebook. Recording every comment we post like this one and every site we go to…. for societies safety of course. Every time there is a shooting or bombing we beg the government to impose even more control us even when previous controls we begged for didn’t work. I can assure you that every time there is an event where many lives are lost the government apparatchiks smile. More gun control, more travel restrictions, more intense screening at airports, bus and train stations,,, even better, more wars?

    One can see the intense study on so called AI. Governments are throwing tons of your tax receipts at this research. Media is daily preparing us for the robots to take over all production and services. Once the robots are capable whether it be five years from now or a hundred and can satisfy the wants and needs of the upper crust, I’ll let the reader determine what the human serfs fate will be.

    Hint: It won’t be utopia….

    • Good reading, and I will not call it a rant. This joint is mainly about cars but with an anarcho libertarian bent, which is the perfecta that drags me here.
      As an aside you mention TSA feckin’ you over in bus stations and to board a train. It was not that long ago when I could take a rifle in hardcase on carryon baggage for a long trip to Montana. A conductor asked me if it was loaded and he took my word that there was no ammo as it was in my separate bag. Who in hell is going to shoot up a train from Milwaukee to Libby, Montana? These TSA creeps are there to learn how to mess with decent people to get them accustomed to goomint stomping. I never take a trip unless absolutely unavoidable any more. The bastards and fat coons sense my utter hatred for them and on a business trip I will end up in one of their pens

    • The users who don’t understand computers see some nerd doing some interesting task on the command line. They could learn how to do that, but it takes time. So they ask the nerd to automate the task and make it easier for them. The nerd sees an opportunity for profit or social gain and comes up with a solution that will work well enough for the users who asked. Then one of the users complains about something, but again, instead of learning the underlying programming, complains to the nerd again. Now the nerd, feeling empowered, demands some assistance in fixing and/or adapting the program for the new user. it doesn’t take long until the nerd sees an opportunity to make dumptrucks full of money. So he goes off on his own, pitching his idea to a VC firm. The VC firm throws a suitcase full of money at him (her? they?) but only if he follows the success formula, so he has to get a bunch of “experts” who no nothing about programming, but are basically über users, adding their 2 cents and bloat.

      Now the once simple program is a giant mess of GUI, features and worthless processor cycles. All those people cost money, but that flies in the face of “cheap,” so third party advertising is brought in to make up the shortfall. Pretty soon the company sees more revenue from advertising than they did from purchases, so the decision is made to offer it for free. Now the goal is to match users and advertisers, not keep the product good. Because ads are placed in an on-demand auction, always-on connections are required. Once you have a device always on the network, it makes sense to off-load processing to a central server (OK, it doesn’t but that’s what everyone is taught). And besides, it means more people can use your software on old or lower powered hardware. So the software is rewritten, and the user interacts with what amounts to a terminal for the server. Users still complain, but the software (now “code”) is so convoluted it cannot change without a cascade of other problems created. And there are so many people involved in developing that it takes longer to agree to a meeting to discuss the change than it does to actually make the change. All this costs big bucks, so more advertising, perhaps “in app purchases” or monthly subscriptions are added, again with another layer of complexity that does nothing to make the product better.

      Meanwhile some college kid writes the same old CLI function that does the same thing as the bloatware, gives it away on Github, and the cycle repeats.

      This is what is called “the tech economy.”

  2. Texas says you can party hearty in a bus type thing as long as you’re no closer than 2 feet to the driver. I know this cause I know a guy who quit truck driving and started a service to haul people to sports games, specifically at first, Cowboy games. I bet you don’t get the same deal in a car.

    But when I first saw it I was reminded of a scene in Anchorman 2 where the old crew is traveling in an RV and Will Ferrell is driving. He goes back and starts to interact with everyone else. Then one of them asks if he’s not supposed to be driving. He replies he’s put it on “cruise control”. That was about the time one popped up and said “Doesn’t that just keep the same speed?” at which point the thing went off the road and rolled several times. Of course, just to add something even more stupid they had bowling balls in there with them so when it rolled several times…….


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