Google's Self-Driving Car Licensed to Hit Nevada Streets
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Google's self-driving car snags first-ever license in Nevada
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CA Department of Motor Vehicles: History of CA DMV
Human error is a tremendous problem when it comes to the operation of automobiles. Every year thousands of people die in the United States, and there is a great deal of hand-wringing about how this persistent problem might be best addressed. The folks at Google have come up with a novel solution to this conundrum: a self-driving car. This week, Nevada issued a driver's license to a modified Toyota Prius that may change the world of driving in a rather curious fashion. Modified by Google engineers, the car (along with seven others) was issued a red license plates with an infinity symbol. Each car will have two Google employees on-board, and they will have the ability to override the computer controls. Among other pieces of equipment, the car has laser radar mounted on the roof and in the radiator grill which helps detect pedestrians, cyclists and other vehicles, effectively creating a virtual buffer zone around these obstacles to its movement. After its initial test runs through Carson City and the iconic Strip in Las Vegas, the cars will travel thousands of miles around the Silver State as a way of continuing to improve the vehicles' operation.
The first link here will take visitors to a piece from this Tuesday's PC World about this new self-driving car, or "autonomous vehicle." The second link takes interested parties to an article from the Christian Science Monitor's Matthew Shaer about this recent announcement, complete with a nice image that shows what the car "sees" when it is on the road. The third link will whisk users away to an article from the Register that includes a nice bit of commentary from the Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles director Bruce Breslow on why he decided to use the infinity symbol on the license plates for these vehicles. Moving on, the fourth link leads to the official announcement regarding these vehicles and their licenses from the Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles. Finally, the fifth link leads to a fascinating piece from Auto Green magazine about General Motors's work on creating a two-person vehicle for the "mega cities of the future." The final link leads to a bit of historical exposition from the state of California on the history of drivers licenses in the Golden State.