It has become pretty clear during the last couple of years, that the “Autonomous Driving” is a glance at what the future of cars is expected to be. Different manufacturers are coming up with crazy ideas, which therefore brings competitiveness and we all know how good that is and how vital for the development of a certain technology aspect.
Companies like Tesla, Audi, Huawei, BMW and many others are working on the idea of creating the best and safest car that would do everything for you and will be with a “brain” that could be controlled by a third-party device, such as a smartphone. These ideas have both good and bad sides, but for now, everything seems to be going in the right direction, for making those concepts come to use in near future and I am really interested at how it will work out on and affect people.
One lucky YouTuber, Karl Konrad, came across an event which showcased the newest work of BMW, which is an autonomous driving car with exceptional artificial intelligence, that left me mind-blown. He went through 5 levels of cars, each level getting more and more sophisticated, as the last being the level with no driver on the assigned seat, so the BMW i3 was moving on its own! It would scare for sure someone working on a Drive-Thru…
What did the TED 2018 show about BMW cars?
As I said, the event was choreographed in 5 different levels, starting from the less-autonomous to the highest autonomous grade. Level 2 showcased a good-looking, powerful and really intelligent BMW M550i, which was capable of auto-driving itself for 50 seconds! This may not “wow” you, but if you think how useful could it be in heavy traffic, you may start acknowledging also how sophisticated was it to create.
When you start the self-drive mode, the car turns on all the sensors for moving vehicles and it reads whether there are any on your sides, front or rear. Also, it navigates itself by detecting and reading the white lines, which are part of the road markings. Just think of how many crashes happen due to the lack of drivers attention… with this technology build in a car you’d have 50 seconds of “hands-free” and your car will not be left unattended and it may save your life or life of others.
The other thing which surprised me about the BMW M550i was how it managed to ignite its engine just by the driver pressing the touchscreen button on the car key and then set a command for it to drive itself backwards and get out of the parking spot, This may be really helpful if you are in an overcrowded situation and someone decided it is good to block your access to your door… it happens to all drivers at some point in time. These are small things that will start the butterfly effect and we will be able to see even more functions coming from cars in near future, I bet it! This work between cars and computers shows how people start to trust and relate to the robotic presence, which is appearing in our daily lives even more and more lately.
The topping of the whole event was the BMW i3, which was showcased on the Level 5. This car is literally able to be controlled by your smartphone and comes to pick you up right from the spot, not just only to get out of a parking lot spot. The BMW i3 was full of technology and is a pure work between art and science. On the interior it was phenomenal and on the exterior, the car even had a dashboard which greets you by showing “Welcome [driver’s name]”. From the very same dashboard, you can even lock the car with a fingerprint.
CoPilot is how the technology has been named and is basically a software, which is the brain of the whole autonomous driving BMW i3. I really love the fact how it has been created and the idea behind it, because it will reduce, in my opinion, the accidents on road for sure! People will stop doing dumb mistakes and will not take the lives of others because they didn’t take precautions of driving fatigue, not paying enough attention to the road situation and many other small factors that influence our driving skills. I am really looking forward to seeing all this technology come to real life.
Will we be able to see those cars soon?
I am sure that we will be able to see them soon on the market, and by “soon” I mean that we’ll see them in the next 3-4 years from now. I do not think that it will be well accepted by all people and it will surely take up some time to be introduced to the mass. Therefore, there would be a lot of laws that would be changed, especially in the traffic law system. Such things require time, but as it is for the good cause I am sure that it will be accepted fast and hopefully no accidents happen until then because this might play a huge role into people’s perception of auto-driving cars.
My opinion is that we should embrace such ideas and work on them to become real because it would play a huge role not only to the development of further types of technology, but it would save lives and we should be working exactly towards this direction. We have had enough of technology being used wrong and the right way to use technology is to help us, instead of harming and working towards us. The BMW i3 and BMW M550i are great cars, along with all the models of Tesla, Audi, Huawei and others, so I think that we already have started something big and in the course of 3-4 years, it will develop even more. I really like how competitive it gets and how all those rival companies work on projects that are completely different, having as an example the Porsche Panamera that was being operated by a Huawei P10 smartphone, which was showcased just a month ago!
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