By Jim Oaks – 01/07/2017

Recently, I was watching ‘Dana Carvey: Straight White Male, 60’ on Netflix, and listening to him rant about “millennials”. I had to laugh when he got to the part about kids saying “I’m not to good at calling people on the phone, can you do it for me?”. I went through this with my kids, but I made them do it themselves. I always looked at raising my kids in the sense that I was raising them to be adults, not kids. I wanted them to be able to be responsible, functioning members of society.

I also enjoy watching ‘Last Man Standing’ with Tim Allen. I think what I enjoy so much about that show is how he makes fun of the younger generations, and how they have to be babied.

We coddle everyone. Heaven forbid someone’s feelings get hurt, or people have to actually do something for themselves. It can be easy to overlook the increasing laziness that plagues our world when it doesn’t directly affect us. But this issue of self-driving cars is really becoming a personal concern of mine. 

I enjoy my vehicles. Whether is tackling a trail, or just feeling the acceleration on the highway, it’s one of the many things that make this country great. Owning and driving a vehicle is one of the great privileges in our American way of life. But….in as little as a decade, this could be made obsolete.

I recently read where thirty of the world’s top scientists are scheduled to meet at UC San Diego in February to discuss the toughest challenges in robotics and automation, including how to make driverless cars safe for a mass audience. 

Henrik Christensen

The experts are being brought together by Henrik Christensen, the prominent Georgia Tech engineer who was hired in July to run UC San Diego’s young Contextual Robotics Institute.

Mr. Christensen gave an interview to The San Diego Tribune and was asked whether children of the future will own and drive cars the way in which we have become accustomed. His answer was ““My own prediction is that kids born today will never get to drive a car. Autonomous, driverless cars are 10, 15 years out. All the automotive companies — Daimler, GM, Ford — are saying that within five years they will have autonomous, driverless cars on the road.”

He’s serious to. You may have read in our forum about Ford building the ‘Next-Generation Autonomous Development Vehicle‘. The article discusses Ford’s recent Ford Fusion Hybrid autonomous development vehicle. As stated in that article, Ford is committed to offer a fully autonomous vehicle in 2021.

Ford’s self driving Fusion

Are we really that pathetic and lazy, that we have to make self driving vehicles? Someday, the Federal Government will probably mandate them in order to save lives. It seems the more technology advances, the more were distracted while driving. Now we have people driving around trying to catch Pokémon’s on their phone. Hell, I’ve been distracted by message boards over the highway telling people to focus on their driving. Let’s distract people from their driving, with a message telling them to focus on their driving. How much technology, it too much technology?

Will hackers see this as a new challenge? Imagine driverless vehicles taken over by hackers. Or driverless vehicles programmed by hackers that go after other driverless vehicles! 

This growing trend in society reminds me of the 2006 movie ‘Idiocracy‘. I really hope that’s not where we’re headed.

Will there come a time when our trucks become illegal? Will we have to break them out of impound and escape to a trail? Will the kids born today know what it’s like to go wheeling? God help us.

Will the kids born today know what it’s like to go wheeling?


More Articles: