Self-Driving Cars – Really?

Apparently, billions of dollars are being spent on the development of self-driving cars.  It’s not necessarily a bad idea, I just wonder if anyone really thought through the potential problems before committing to this project.  For example, what if my car speeds though a red light and the traffic camera takes a picture of me in the passenger seat; who gets the ticket? If someone flips off my car for cutting them off, will it be able to respond? How will the car handle a four way stop (humans can’t even figure out who goes when)?  Will I be able to send my car out at night as an Uber driver? If my wife yells at it to slow down will it listen either? Will the car get to decide what station is played on the radio? Will the car know to pull over if a police car turns on its lights, or will I be a helpless passenger in a White Bronco caravan?

There are certainly positives.  On long car rides parents will be able to text and beat their kids in the back seat without jeopardizing everyone’s safety. Drunk driving rates should plummet (but drinking rates will rise since no one will have to be a designated driver). There should be less street racing; I don’t think cars are inherently competitive or egotistical.

I’m no Elon Musk, but I think all that money could be spent on more practical auto applications, like a self-washing/self-vacuuming car? Or development of a legitimate “new car” smell fragrance? I’ve got it, windshield wipers that actually last more than a month! Better yet, flying cars.  How about a robot that finds your keys so you can actually go somewhere? I’m sure it will all work out. Maybe I won’t even need to have a car. I’ll just bribe the neighbors’ car to drive me around when they’re not using it.