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Thread: Google's self-driving cars have been involved in 11 accidents

  1. #17
    I R Toff Pandi! TAKTAK's Avatar
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    Re: Google's self-driving cars have been involved in 11 accidents

    Quote Originally Posted by DanceswithUnix View Post
    Sadly my drama was in a borrowed automatic so no clutch and whilst clearly I had to turn the engine off I wasn't sure what the auto box was going to do (answer: emit large amounts of smoke but apparently suffer no lasting damage). It was also on a dual carriageway, so 70mph but happened just before the start of a long hill down to a busy & backed up roundabout.

    A surprising number of people have said that they wouldn't know what to do if they had been in that situation. I usually suggest that being in that situation tends to clear the mind quite rapidly, and I'm sure they would cope

    Edit to add: In your example, dipping the clutch would just get the engine bouncing off the rev limiter and would probably freak people out even more. Just turn it off, if your breaks are as good as a Clio then you will need every bit of engine breaking you can get as things like ABS and power steering are now turned off.
    For a manual I'd go with clutch in, engine on, brakes on. I'd rather have no engine breaking and 100% brakes rather than reduced braking efficiency thanks to shutting off the master cylinder. In addition, the steering lock could kick in as it's very easy to accidentally remove the key as a mechanical action while switching the engine off (especially if panicked)!
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    The late but legendary peterb - Onward and Upward peterb's Avatar
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    Re: Google's self-driving cars have been involved in 11 accidents

    The interesting and exciting think about driverless cars is the ability to drive closer together at speed because the reaction times of the electronics are much faster than humans, so you shouldn't get the standing waves of speed fluctuations when a driver at the front of a line of traffic brakes, and the effect ripples down the line, and is still rippling when the drive at the front speeds up again.

    In effect it would create a virtual close couple train, with the coupling being made by controlling both the relative speed and distance between two adjacent cars, and the overall speed of the convoy controlled by the lead and tail cars. Other cars could join and leave as thir journey dictates. Much higher road utilisation and potentially faster journey times.
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    Re: Google's self-driving cars have been involved in 11 accidents

    Quote Originally Posted by Percy1983 View Post
    Same here, So I take my 3DS and get on the bus.

    Shows as safe as these cars are you can't stop people hitting them, same goes with a good driver.
    The buses are on the same roads with squishy meat bags behind the wheel, just no seat belts and hard metal bars everywhere. I'm happier in my car! Besides my commute is 25-30 mins by car, or around 1.5hrs hours and fair bit of walking by uncomfortable public transport.

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    Senior Member Xlucine's Avatar
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    Re: Google's self-driving cars have been involved in 11 accidents

    If the power brakes are done by vacuum, rather than electronics, you'll still have assisted braking for a while with the engine turned off.

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    Re: Google's self-driving cars have been involved in 11 accidents

    Quote Originally Posted by peterb View Post
    The interesting and exciting think about driverless cars is the ability to drive closer together at speed because the reaction times of the electronics are much faster than humans, so you shouldn't get the standing waves of speed fluctuations when a driver at the front of a line of traffic brakes, and the effect ripples down the line, and is still rippling when the drive at the front speeds up again.

    In effect it would create a virtual close couple train, with the coupling being made by controlling both the relative speed and distance between two adjacent cars, and the overall speed of the convoy controlled by the lead and tail cars. Other cars could join and leave as thir journey dictates. Much higher road utilisation and potentially faster journey times.
    That's the best nail on the head for driverless cars. It's not about being lazy on the commute or anything like that, it's about making our roads far more efficient, "safe"* and faster.

    *This is my only qualm, for every electronic safeguard there's an electronic countermeasure to compromise the system. I'm only uncomfortable with driverless cars in the sense that remote control can be overridden. But then this can be completely made defunct with an incar kill switch to manual control.

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    Re: Google's self-driving cars have been involved in 11 accidents

    Quote Originally Posted by Xlucine View Post
    If the power brakes are done by vacuum, rather than electronics, you'll still have assisted braking for a while with the engine turned off.
    If your throttle is stuck wide open engine on / off will make no difference to the amount of vacuum and thus assist generated.
    Diesels use a vac pump off the cam and this will also be unaffected by turning off the fuel pump.

    Alot of modern cars now have start/stop buttons and in the case of a runaway engine they tend to be about as useful as a chocolate teapot.

    Renault did have a problem for a while were a diesel engine would start to burn it's own engine oil.
    The cars had ignition cards instead of keys which were locked in the dash and had start/stop buttons that did nothing to help.
    Thankfully most failures occurred when the vehicle was stationary so in manual cars you could put it in top gear hold on all the brakes and dump the clutch.
    Auto's you just had to put it in neutral, hope the handbrake worked (not convinced about these electronic ones!) get out and wait for the inevitable lunging of the engine (it didn't take long to burn all it's all and sieze when doing 5500rpm)

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    root Member DanceswithUnix's Avatar
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    Re: Google's self-driving cars have been involved in 11 accidents

    Quote Originally Posted by Xlucine View Post
    If the power brakes are done by vacuum, rather than electronics, you'll still have assisted braking for a while with the engine turned off.
    Well in my case that was a bit moot.

    You see, in a 1.2 Clio it takes a while to actually notice that the throttle is stuck open, acceleration being as yawn inducing as it is. So I dabbed the brakes to shed a little speed, and it didn't slow me down but simply maintained my current speed. That alerted me to having a problem, but braking against the engine rather than the weight of the car was more than the puny little pads could cope with. In my usual car I would have noticed a stuck throttle instantly and the vented disks all round would have coped better.

    I suppose that is my worry, how pared down in cost are driverless cars going to be? Hopefully electric vehicles will be more likely to fail safe, but we aren't there yet so I can see small IC engines being used.

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    Re: Google's self-driving cars have been involved in 11 accidents

    A particularly interesting observation by the Google car safety drivers is that "In any given daylight moment in America, there are 660,000 people behind the wheel who are checking their devices instead of watching the road".
    The answer in in Google's own hands, lock devices whilst in motion. It would also cut down on annoyance in trains and buses. Even for navigation, there should be no need to change settings whilst on the move.

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    Re: Google's self-driving cars have been involved in 11 accidents

    Quote Originally Posted by shaithis View Post
    I do feel that this is heading towards a driverless future
    Probably no in our lifetime. I'd like it myself, since I never understood the joy of driving, but I know many people who enjoy driving and that isn't going to go away any more than automatic car has not replaced manual car.

    Quote Originally Posted by Brian224 View Post
    The answer in in Google's own hands, lock devices whilst in motion. It would also cut down on annoyance in trains and buses.
    If you are referring to sound (music/game), then I doubt it'll change anything. Assuming that locking devices even a viable option (I doubt it), people would just opt to other non-locking alternatives. Here in Japan we have a very, very large commuting population, and in the Tokyo area commuting 1.5 hour each way is more the average than the exception. A lot of people play games or whatnot in the underground (viable since mobile internet works), but everyone know to turn the sound off to not annoy the person next to them. People just need to learn basic manners.
    Last edited by TooNice; 13-05-2015 at 02:09 PM.

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    Re: Google's self-driving cars have been involved in 11 accidents

    Quote Originally Posted by Animus404 View Post
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    Re: Google's self-driving cars have been involved in 11 accidents

    Quote Originally Posted by Brian224 View Post
    The answer in in Google's own hands, lock devices whilst in motion. It would also cut down on annoyance in trains and buses. Even for navigation, there should be no need to change settings whilst on the move.
    That's a terrible solution. What about the passengers who are using their phones?

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