Google Unveils Self-Driving Car

Maybe I’m getting old. But the more technology gets added to stuff that doesn’t need it, the stronger my resolve to never use said technology becomes.

Intel’s going to make a wearable t-shirt.

Google has an ugly self-driving car. I’m a fan of autonomous cars in principle, since they may make personal car ownership obsolete. But the prospect of getting in a car manufactured by an advertising company—and granting that company access to my driving habits, in-car entertainment preferences, not to mention home and work addresses—gives me pause to say the least.

I’m no luddite. The car I currently drive is one of the most advanced mass-market automobiles ever produced. I’m all for technological progress. I’m just wary of the companies arranging the 1s and 0s and all the implicit limitations and biases they introduce.

Happy almost-June.

Where Do Self-Driving Cars Get Their Morality From?

Nicholas Carr ponders a scenario:

So you’re happily tweeting away as your Google self-driving car crosses a bridge, its speed precisely synced to the 50 m.p.h. limit. A group of frisky schoolchildren is also heading across the bridge, on the pedestrian walkway. Suddenly, there’s a tussle, and three of the kids are pushed into the road, right in your vehicle’s path. Your self-driving car has a fraction of a second to make a choice: Either it swerves off the bridge, possibly killing you, or it runs over the children. What does the Google algorithm tell it to do?

Things get really interesting in the comments. (Never thought I’d say that.) Worth a look.