Google shows off its self-driving vehicle prototype

Google shows off its self-driving vehicle prototype
Highlights

Google shows off its self-driving vehicle prototype, Google has been working on the driverless vehicle project for quite some time, and Google released a detailed update of its progress in May.

Google has been working on the driverless vehicle project for quite some time, and Google released a detailed update of its progress in May. But back then, the vehicle shown was just a mock-up. "It didn't even have real headlights," reads a statement from Google. It may take some getting used-to for those of us who've lived our whole lives driving or riding in human-operated cars. Normal operational hardware like steering wheels, gas, and brake pedals, are completely absent from the prototype because "they don't need them."

Driver error accounts for the lion's share of automobile accidents. By shifting the vehicle operation over to a computerised system with safety redundancies built-in, Google looks to remove the single most dangerous part of the driving equation: human error.

The company will be spending the holidays "zipping around" its test track, but residents of Northern California can expect to see the tiny, cartoon cars ferrying passengers around on the streets with the beginning of the New Year.

There are still temporary manual controls in place while Google's test drivers shave any potential rough edges off the automated systems.

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