by futurist consultant Ersan Seer


Google’s Cars Will Change Everything – Driverless Cars (Part 1/6)

Google's Driverless Cars

This article is the first in a series about driverless, autonomous cars—that is, cars with the intelligence and technology to drive themselves (and you) safely to your destination—and how these vehicles will completely change your notion of travel, work and home.

  1. Google’s Driverless Cars Will Change Everything
  2. How Future Autonomous Cars Will Change Travel
  3. Automated Vehicles Will Change How We Work
  4. Automated Cars Will Redefine “Home”
  5. Design & Technology of Autonomous Vehicles of the Future
  6. Consequences of Intelligent Transport

Auto accidents will be rarer than lightning strikes. Cars will be ultra reliable; as safe for travel as tap water is for drinking.

Traffic jams will be fewer — and traffic won’t matter much anyway since you’ll be using that time productively.

Cubicles will be obsolete. Your car will be a mobile office, an extension of your home, and a car—all wrapped into one.

Look at how single-purpose landline telephones have developed into multi-dimensional cell phones. So too are cars evolving—as we speak.

Your driverless car will take you from place to place. But you won’t be driving it. You’ll be getting office work done while it drives you. You’ll have one extra hour of productive time every day—an hour you don’t have currently because you use it to drive yourself.

Cars will be parked on the sides of buildings. They’ll be ultra fast. Technologies currently being developed may actually get us up to land speeds of 4000-5000mph.

Mankind has been dreaming about driverless cars for a long time. And now a company has dedicated itself to spearheading the effort. Not just any company. A big one. Google.

When I heard that Google’s been working diligently on their driverless car, my ears perked up. They received a patent, and also the obligatory bad press. Driverless cars are getting ready to roll. Soon.

And ‘soon’ means… WHEN?

My best guess is that most of us will be traveling hands-free in 10-15 years (at least, we’ll have the option; how many choose to is another story).

Ford thinks I’m off by a wide margin. Ford predicts self-driving, traffic-reducing cars will be mainstream by 2017—and their opinion matters, since they’re working on a technology called Traffic Jam Assist which may end up being the de facto standard in driverless car safety.

Five years. Insane. I applaud Ford’s ambition. I hope they prove my estimates wrong.

Have I piqued your interest? Good. Wait til I show you what the future holds — not only in writing but in full-color concept art straight from the mind of yours truly, Ersan Seer. Just think of me as your tour guide for the future. 🙂

The Advent of Driverless Cars

Let’s start this journey 10-15 years from now, as driverless cars become widely affordable and popular. This monumental new technology will restructure our lives in exciting ways. What kind of changes can you expect? Read on.

Read next post →
Driverless Cars (Part 2/6): How Future Autonomous Cars Will Change Travel



Sidenote from the author:

Like the articles? Disagree with me? Tell me how I did in the comments below!

Ersan Seer

Ersan Seer is a futurist consultant, coolhunter, market researcher, strategic advisor, and concept artist. Ersan hungers to make the future world a more peaceful, survivable place.  → Read More & Book Ersan Seer

4 Responses to Google’s Cars Will Change Everything – Driverless Cars (Part 1/6)

  1. Sally Mason says:

    The “Bad Press” article brings up the important issue of liability (as well as insurance compensation) for ‘driverless car’ accidents. How will blame be determined and assessed, and who will pay damages, when the accident is the fault of a malfunctioning piece of technology or software? “Who’s responsible?” and “Who’ll pay?” become even more compelling questions when driverless car accidents cause permanent injury or death. I see the legal environment surrounding liability as the biggest bottleneck/stumbling block to this sublime vision.

    • Ersan Seer says:

      Good point… my best guess is it’ll all be considered product liability litigation. But what happens if you give the computer inaccurate data or directives? Are you at fault?

      What if a sociopath says, “Car, run the neighbor’s dog over.” The computer should know enough to decline, that that’s against the law.

      But what if he says, “Car, I’m having a heart attack. Take me to the hospital. Don’t slow down for that dog.”

      How will the computer determine the value of one life over another? Right, human > dog. Easy answer.

      But what if a gun-toting teenager starts running towards the oncoming car, and begins to lift his gun to point at the car? Will the car slow down? How will it choose?

      I’m not sure how these kinds of issues will be resolved, but they’ll have to be. Driverless car technology is gaining huge momentum… search online to see the major websites discussing it.

      And thanks for commenting Sally. 🙂 The next articles get pretty cool.

  2. The first “REAL” Dual-Mode Guideway System and Vehicles are actually being built now. Several Countries are also looking to buy into the idea, since the Highway System has reached its capacity potential. The site focuses on Vehicles, focuses on the Guideway System.

    Google’s Driverless Car idea is a marvelous technology demonstration, however, it only focuses on a single solution, whereas a Guideway System can rebuild a Country! And if building the Guideway is done correctly, it’s even cheaper than wasting money building highways! A Guideway System moves 12 times the capacity of a highway system at 60MPH.

    Google is battling the Automobile Industry regarding Driverless Cars. However, if Google used it’s technology in Non-Motorized Vehicles as “Semi-Driverless Vehicles”, there would be no “Industry” battle, and those users would be following the EXACT LAWS of the highway. They would even be better drivers than a “Licensed Driver”.

    We have REAL Non-Motorized Vehicles on the road, and a REAL Guideway System, we have had to deal with Police Officers and the LAW. Our Non-Motorized Vehicles are Street Legal, and the Police have no power to enforce “Motor Vehicle” regulations on these vehicles. Human Power is protected under the U.S. Constitution.

  3. Prediction: at no point (at least no point in any reasonably near future) will the technology be sufficiently glitch-free to allow for true driver-less cars. We will have cars with a very sophisticated auto-drive function, but a “driver”, who is alert awake and sober will always be required, so someone can take over if (when) things go haywire.

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