I have been musing lately about breaking the law. Is it ever necessary? Should we ever do it?
Take driving. How often do we intentionally break the law while we drive in our daily lives? It may have to do with speed, or crossing double lines, passing on the right, or any number of other minor infractions.
Many who are thinking about autonomous vehicles are discussing how they will save many lives since they will stay within the traffic laws and be able to react more quickly than humans to different traffic situations. Fair Enough.
Now I read that many of the features in autonomous vehicles can be placed today in the cars that require human drivers. Only about 40% of the cars on earth have anti-lock brakes. What about autonomous breaking control and speed controls.
Let’s take speed controls. The idea is that maps and controls can be downloaded so that you cannot go faster than the speed limit set by the government on any road or highway. In fact, the controls listed above are being mandated in cars sold in Europe beginning this year.
What if the speed limit is 60 mpg and I want to pass a semi going 55. How long will it take to pass if I am limited to 60? What if I need to get to the hospital with a sick child? What if I’m being chased by robbers? All these seem to be legitimate reasons to exceed the speed limit.
But if I cannot exceed the limit due to state mandated rules that are built into my car, then what?
It seems to me that we need to think about these issues. Technology is making many things possible. But should they be?