As introduction to the podcast, some of this material is reprinted from a post earlier today. Scroll down for the audio file or links to access it on iTunes or PlayerFM.
“The promise of autonomous vehicles is great.”–Dan Lipinski
“My opinion is that it’s a bridge too far to go to fully autonomous vehicles.”–Elon Musk
Wait–what? The man who thinks he can send humans on a one way trip to colonize Mars within 10 years, thinks fully autonomous vehicles are out of our reach? The Elon Musk quote above is from 2013. I would be surprised if he still feels that way–but who knows?
Segue to this morning, at the Intelligent Future interactive track at SXSW 2018 in Austin, TX. Nobody on the panel entitled “Who takes the wheel on self-driving car safety” suggested we won’t get there. But there was plenty of caution on how, how fast, and how far we go in doing so.
Most notable were comments by Andrew Reimer of MIT. He foresaw a gap of 50-100 years before fully autonomous cars–no human intervention–take over the lion’s share of driving, globally. His issues were not just technical; they included trust, complexity, infrastructure and good old fashioned habit. He was certain that manual driving would probably never completely go away. He sighted the example of a high end sports car owners wanting the enjoyment of driving.
“It might just be hobbyists,” he said, but made it clear that in some shape or form, the human factor is likely to survive for a very long time.
A session on “Quantum Computing: Science Fiction to Science Fact,” was somewhat misnamed. While the history of its theoretical origins were recounted by D-Wave’s Bo Ewald, the session really focused on the current trends and developments leading toward a 10-year or so future horizon.
Ewald recounted how iconic physicist Richard Feynman first imagined quantum computing in 1981, published the first paper on it in 1982, and gave a talk on it at Los Alamos in 1983. Ewald was head of computing at Los Alamos in 1983 and met Feynman at that talk. Sheldon Cooper, eat your heart out.
A sessiojn autonomous systems covered much of the same ground that was addressed in Seeking Delphi podcasts with Richard Yonck (#12) and John C. Havens (#17). last year. But one of the presenters, Liesl Yearsly of Akin, had an interesting means of illustrating how the material will affect us.
SXSW Minicast #1, March 10, 2018
YouTube slide show of SXSW 2018 Mini-cast #1