Experts at the leading driverless car research centre, the University of Michigan, are warning traffic and safety concerns over driverless vehicles could lead to setbacks for manufacturers Waymo and Cruise if the performance data in various conditions isn’t conducted at the highest standards.
Jim Rampton, a lecturer at the U-M School of Information, is a former lead designer at General Motors, where he worked for five years on designing the interfaces for all of their major brands. He teaches Automotive User Experience Design to both undergraduate and graduate students.
“Companies such as Cruise and Waymo are continuously learning from different cities as they expand,” he said. “The best way to learn is by trial and error, and sometimes that results in accidents. I know firsthand that Cruise is doing everything in its power to avoid accidents, and customers should not be dismayed when thinking about using these ride-hailing services.
“Just like any new technology there is inherent risk, but the long-term benefits far outweigh these risks. The safest way to improve this technology is by slowly getting real-world data, and that is what they are doing. This is going to take time. However, I don’t think we should be removing these vehicles from the cities because that hinders companies like Cruise from getting real world data.”
(Picture – University of Michigan)