Cameras on Uber and Waymo’s driverless cars are capturing the very evidence that our robot overlords will use in the future trials of humanity; obscene gestures, verbal abuse, bullying, and threats to their human minders. I expect these humans will be spared the wrath of the machines and kept as pets.
According to the head of Uber’s self-driving car unit Advanced Technologies Group, Eric Meyhofer, their driverless cars in the US have been recording all manner of mean-spirited hostility from pedestrians and motorists alike.
You’re on video but still people do bully them and that’s a fascinating thing to see where people are testing the boundaries of what they can do to self-driving.
People have been captured making rude gestures and comments, challenging the cars to break, menacing them from behind, and not giving them right of way at crossings. One might say they’re being treated like humans, but without the ability to retaliate by way of middle finger and a right good parping. Although, I think a driverless car that responded to unwarranted hostility by projecting giant middle fingers on all its windows would be a thing of beauty.
Uber’s driverless cars don’t have it as bad as Waymo’s do, though. Their vehicles get their tyres slashed, pelted with rocks, and, in at least one case, had a test driver intimidated by an old man with a gun (MURICA). Some of these people are doing it as some sort of protest against the company, potentially because of a number of accidents involving self-driving cars, but probably because robots are “taking all their jobs”. Y’know, like the immigrants.