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GM Brings IT Dev Back In House; Self-Driving Caddy In the Works

timothy posted about 2 years ago | from the oh-christine dept.

Businesses 171

dstates writes "Want a good job in IT? Detroit of all places may be the place to be. GM is bringing IT development back in house to speed innovation. Among other initiatives, a self driving Cadillac is planned by mid decade. Ford is also actively developing driver assist technology and is betting big on voice recognition. Ann Arbor has thousands of smart cars wirelessly connected on the road. Think about all those aging baby boomers with houses in the burbs and no desire to move as their vision and reflexes decline. The smart car is a huge market. Seriously, Detroit and SE Michigan have good jobs, great universities, cheap housing and easy access to great sports and outdoors activities."

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Free dystopia (4, Funny)

concealment (2447304) | about 2 years ago | (#41892737)

I'm fond of Detroit, but it's worth mentioning that it could be a set from Blade Runner.

Re:Free dystopia (0)

neokushan (932374) | about 2 years ago | (#41892829)

Or Robocop.

Re:Free dystopia (4, Informative)

boristdog (133725) | about 2 years ago | (#41893073)

Fun Fact: Much of Robocop 2, ostensibly set in Detroit, was filmed in Houston. I have no idea why. Probably because of winter, though, which only marginally exists in Houston.

Re:Free dystopia (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41894323)

Odd.....I was under the impression a lot of it was filmed in Toronto. I used to work in the office complex that served as "Detroit" police headquarters.

Re:Free dystopia (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41893101)

funnily enough where I live is being used as a set in the new Robocop

#Canada

Re:Free dystopia (4, Funny)

lennier1 (264730) | about 2 years ago | (#41893149)

In part because due to the high crime rate the real place has become too dangerous to film a movie there about a dystopian crime-ridden Detroit.

Re:Free dystopia (1)

neokushan (932374) | about 2 years ago | (#41893175)

Can you provide a source to this? Because I'd absolutely love for it to be true.

Re:Free dystopia (1)

Creepy (93888) | about 2 years ago | (#41894237)

You can probably find it via search. I remember Detroit ranked #2 on a Huffington Post list of most crime ridden places in America. Relatively close up Hwy 75 to Flint Michigan was #1 (I went to Troy as part of a job, which is in between the two up Hwy 75), and St Louis Missouri was #3. I think #4 was Memphis, not sure of #5.

Re:Free dystopia (1)

neokushan (932374) | about 2 years ago | (#41894329)

Oh absolutely, I don't doubt that - what I meant was, is there a source to say that FILMING there was too dangerous, specifically relating to the Robocop reboot?

Re:Free dystopia (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41892833)

Most of the places that have the tech jobs are not located in the bombed out areas. Most of the "big 3" tech facillities are located in the suburbs.

Re:Free dystopia (2)

tgd (2822) | about 2 years ago | (#41893085)

I'm fond of Detroit, but it's worth mentioning that it could be a set from Blade Runner.

Well, on the upside, if you enjoy having variety in your living situation, you can buy a whole block fairly easily. You can have a house for every day of the week!

Huge Challenge (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41892747)

General Motors has some of the most backwards and misguided technology standards I have ever had the misfortune of being involved with. Anyone who decides to take the plunge and go work for them needs to understand that America's Automotive Companies haven't got a technological clue. Go check out the forums at DealerRefresh.com and see what incredible idiots are considered "Internet Experts". Sad, so sad.

Re:Huge Challenge (2)

Talderas (1212466) | about 2 years ago | (#41893433)

Ignoring vehicle technology, the companies are way behind the tech curve when it comes to supporting their business. I work in an automotive related industry and based on my experience on how we've interfaced with the big three (GM, Chrysler, Ford), Chrysler is the best position. The fleet business for the big three is a significant portion of their business and I'm honestly surprised that they haven't taken more efforts to support this. Just to explain how the fleet business works (at its most basic level). A large company which has a fleet of vehicles will contact a leasing company to get their vehicles (a lot of fleet do not purchase their own vehicles). The leasing company, in turn, will then handle getting the truck into the company's hands. Often times these fleet vehicles must undergo some amount of upfitting before the end company will get them. This may be as simple as some decals. So the leasing company gets an upfitter to do that work. The trip of the vehicle in question then is often Manufacturing Plant to Upfitter to Manufacturing Plant to Rail Car to end destination depot onto a car hauler and to whatever staging area is used for the company to pick the vehicle up.

Chrysler has been, since about 2009, attempting to track where their vehicles are until they reach the final destination. That means when they're on a car carrier train car, at some upfitter doing work, on a car hauler, or if they've arrived at a dealership. They've also been smoothing out their shipping process by outsourcing some of their final shipment processes (like printing monroney window stickers) to upfitters who do work on their vehicles before they ship to dealerships. I've seen no similar efforts on GM or Ford's part so perhaps this is a sign that GM is going to try to get a better grasp on their chain.

Oh boy... (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41892767)

Ford ... is betting big on voice recognition.

A driver gets cut off, yells "fucking asshole!"
Car: "Now fucking your asshole"

Re:Oh boy... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41893021)

"Why is no one using our trolly system anymore? This is San Francisco!"

Re:Oh boy... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41893627)

Like the IT from south park

I'm here! (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41892777)

The great thing about Detroit is that it is *always* on the comeback but never actually back. They built the "Renaissance" how long ago?

But, really, we are at rock bottom. Even though housing prices are way up, they are still just 80 percent [standardandpoors.com] of what they were in 2000. I bought a mansion in 2011 and now it is worth about $70k more than I paid for it (which was a pittance).

As long as you stay in the nice places of the metro area, this is a nice place to live and the most affordable. Just get used to 8 months of winter followed by muggy summer.

Target Market (2)

Nerdfest (867930) | about 2 years ago | (#41892783)

The Cadillac still seems to be targeted at old people, and based on the way I see most driven, self driving Cadillacs will be a huge benefit to motorists everywhere. The last time I saw the interior of one, it looked like all navigation and controls had been made large enough to be operated by someone with extremely poor vision. I shuddered. Yes, I realize most of them have a lot of power, but it's exceedingly rare that one is driven like it has.

Re:Target Market (2)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about 2 years ago | (#41892987)

The Cadillac target market seems to be eerily similar to the cognac target market: a combination of old, at least vaguely affluent, white guys and young hip-hop aspirants. I don't know how it happened.

Re:Target Market (4, Funny)

gstoddart (321705) | about 2 years ago | (#41893221)

The Cadillac target market seems to be eerily similar to the cognac target market: a combination of old, at least vaguely affluent, white guys and young hip-hop aspirants. I don't know how it happened.

Price, and marketing. Cadillac has always been sold as up-market luxury. Hell, the name is almost synonymous with luxury in America ... "this is the Cadillac of (item)" conveys quality and luxury.

So the slightly older and affluent folks are the obvious choices because they have the money to buy one, and because older affluent folks have always bought Cadillacs. That's how they know they're affluent. :-P

I think that carried over into the nouveau riche because of the same cachet ... in some circles, if you've made it, you drive a Cadillac. And, since they tend to make larger cars, people who need a little room (like pro athletes) go for them.

I largely think of them as for old men, wise guys (think Sopranos), people who want to put 21" rims, and mommy-tanks (the Escalade).

For me though, it's one of the last vehicles I'd want to own, but that's just personal taste. They're mostly massive cars.

Though, it is always amusing to see a Cadillac or a Hummer that someone has pimped out with huge rims and massive amounts of chrome -- there's a Hummer H3 in my area which has the most gigantic chrome spinners I've ever seen, and every piece that could be chromed has been. Seen the same thing applied to Caddies as well.

Re:Target Market (2)

Lord Grey (463613) | about 2 years ago | (#41893355)

You clearly have not test driven a Cadillac CTS-V. 556hp V8, 0-60mph in 4.0 seconds. Not a track car, but it gets the job done.

Some of the "slightly older and affluent folks" appreciate that.

Re:Target Market (4, Funny)

Nerdfest (867930) | about 2 years ago | (#41893461)

That would be especially awesome on a stock car track, with the left turn signal left on.

Re:Target Market (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41894251)

No, no, no.
The RIGHT turn signal!

Re:Target Market (1)

gstoddart (321705) | about 2 years ago | (#41893691)

You clearly have not test driven a Cadillac CTS-V

You're absolutely correct, with a list price of FROM $64,515 - $74,910 [cadillac.com] , it's a lot more than I'd spend on a car unless I suddenly became a lot more well off. And in that price range, BMW has some fine offerings.

And, really, my perception is that, like most North American cars ... it can go hella fast in a straight line, but can't corner worth shit. I'm sure that's not true any more, but the few Cadillacs I've ever driven in have that overly mushy ride which I can't stand.

Hell, I could probably buy two really nicely equipped cars for the price of a single Cadillac, and I've not reached the point where I'd entertain spending the kind of money we're talking about on a car. Then again, I want all wheel drive and cargo space ... so a Subaru Outback would suit my tastes a little better. :-P

Re:Target Market (1)

iamgnat (1015755) | about 2 years ago | (#41894407)

You're absolutely correct, with a list price of FROM $64,515 - $74,910 [cadillac.com] , it's a lot more than I'd spend on a car unless I suddenly became a lot more well off. And in that price range, BMW has some fine offerings.

Actually it is an exceptional price for what it is compared to the German options. Speaking of BMW the CTS-V is a competitor with the M5 which costs about a third more. If you are looking for a high performance (but not track) coupe or sedan, it shouldn't be ignored. And here in the States if you want a bad ass wagen then it's the only game in town. Unfortunately the wagen's cargo area is ridiculously small and the horrid MPG made it a non-starter for me when I needed a new "traveling with the dogs and kid, but have fun the rest of the time" car.

And, really, my perception is that, like most North American cars ... it can go hella fast in a straight line, but can't corner worth shit. I'm sure that's not true any more, but the few Cadillacs I've ever driven in have that overly mushy ride which I can't stand.

This is still true for most American "sports" cars, but GM has been doing wonders with the Vette for a few years now so that it is actually a real competitor on the track and they took much of that knowledge into the CTS-V. It performs on par with the BMWs (and I'd argue better than the Mercs).

Personally I like the German cars as they fit what I want the best, but the CTS-V is nothing to ignore simply because it's American.

Re:Target Market (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41893755)

I usually see them driven 0-30 in about a 25 seconds.

Re:Target Market (2)

tgd (2822) | about 2 years ago | (#41893107)

The Cadillac still seems to be targeted at old people, and based on the way I see most driven, self driving Cadillacs will be a huge benefit to motorists everywhere. The last time I saw the interior of one, it looked like all navigation and controls had been made large enough to be operated by someone with extremely poor vision. I shuddered. Yes, I realize most of them have a lot of power, but it's exceedingly rare that one is driven like it has.

If Cadillac sold a self-driving car for $100k, I'd be in line day one for it, and I'm not old. I just have a very long, stop-and-go, miserable commute. It'd be worth every penny of that kind of price, if not just for my long term sanity.

Re:Target Market (1)

stabiesoft (733417) | about 2 years ago | (#41893369)

Maybe about a decade ago. Caddy changed focus with the GEN-I sigma platform CTS/CTSV. The GEN-II sigma platform in 08 on the CTS and 09 CTS-V was aimed squarely at BMW 5/M5. In fact until the new M-5 this year, the M was trounched by the CTSV. Now the new ATS is aimed at the 3 series with a V version probably out next year. The new GEN-III CTS is due out next year with a V version probably the year after. The MRC's in the ATS and CTS-V are amazing. They offer a very firm planted ride while not being overly harsh. Most car rags describe the bmw's with the firm sport suspension as being too harsh of a ride, and the regular suspension is not as planted as the caddy's MRC's. So no I think your incorrect in thinking caddy is still targeting old people. Shoot even the bieb's (cringe) has a CTSV coupe in his stable.

Seriously... (0, Offtopic)

Buchenskjoll (762354) | about 2 years ago | (#41892785)

A caddy is a guy carrying golf clubs. How about giving us non-americans a break?

Re:Seriously... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41892867)

How about you go find your own non-US version of slashdot or shut up?

Re:Seriously... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41893247)

As an American AC I'd like to apologize for the previous AC's post. I for one would like to welcome our foreign interest overlords.

Re:Seriously... (2)

Flavianoep (1404029) | about 2 years ago | (#41893029)

I've just imagined this scene: [Driver:] Follow that Caddy. [Computer:] There are no golf courses nearby.

Re:Seriously... (4, Funny)

RaceProUK (1137575) | about 2 years ago | (#41893923)

A caddy is a car carrying golf clubs.

FTFY

Fears of Self-Driving Cars (5, Insightful)

MyLongNickName (822545) | about 2 years ago | (#41892801)

I love the idea of self-driving cars. I will talk about it with people and frequently, I will get the response "the idea of computers driving scares me". My response: "the idea of humans driving cars scares me more".

Re:Fears of Self-Driving Cars (1)

mwvdlee (775178) | about 2 years ago | (#41892889)

How about the idea of cars driven by computers created by humans?

Re:Fears of Self-Driving Cars (2)

h4rr4r (612664) | about 2 years ago | (#41893129)

Still easier to verify and test than a human.

Re:Fears of Self-Driving Cars (2)

Errol backfiring (1280012) | about 2 years ago | (#41892899)

Not me. I'm a programmer. Most humans have had a mom who, without any commercial "efficiency need", devoted years and years into raising a sensible human who is capable of responding to anything unexpected. A lot of programs do have a commercial "drive" that causes them to be released into the wild long before they are mature and up to the task they should be able to perform. I might trust an open source program, but only if I could test it first in some kind of emulator. Acceptance testing with your life is just not, well, acceptable.

Re:Fears of Self-Driving Cars (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41893041)

Well, people take flights every day in airliners that at (at least, part of the way) being flown by computers via autopilot - but no one seems to be very concerned. I think, when we talk about self-driving vehicles, people are getting the impression that these vehicles are going to be driving around with absolutely no human intervention whatsoever. Is that really the case, or are we actually talking about something like engaging an autopilot once the car has left the driveway or local streets?

Re:Fears of Self-Driving Cars (2)

alen (225700) | about 2 years ago | (#41893265)

planes fly in an almost straight line

see how a computer drives in NYC where people are always cutting you off, the lane paint is almost gone, etc

Re:Fears of Self-Driving Cars (1)

modmans2ndcoming (929661) | about 2 years ago | (#41894121)

Try reading up on the advancements in this area of computer science. They have a JonnyCab level of tech right now.

Re:Fears of Self-Driving Cars (1)

Kjella (173770) | about 2 years ago | (#41893287)

Well, people take flights every day in airliners that at (at least, part of the way) being flown by computers via autopilot - but no one seems to be very concerned. I think, when we talk about self-driving vehicles, people are getting the impression that these vehicles are going to be driving around with absolutely no human intervention whatsoever. Is that really the case, or are we actually talking about something like engaging an autopilot once the car has left the driveway or local streets?

For a flight take-off and landing are the two most dangerous parts of the flight, cruising on autopilot at altitude is very safe. For cars it's pretty much the opposite, sure you can bruise a bumper in your driveway but pretty much all the nasty accidents happen underway.

Re:Fears of Self-Driving Cars (1)

modmans2ndcoming (929661) | about 2 years ago | (#41894137)

what are you talking about? They land on auto-pilot all the time.

Re:Fears of Self-Driving Cars (1)

DriveDog (822962) | about 2 years ago | (#41893319)

When I read about the Google cars that drive around with a human behind the wheel just in case, I KNOW that in the real world, people will be reading the newspaper, watching videos, taking naps, anything BUT monitoring what the car is doing. Usually aircraft only encounter heavy traffic near ports, while autos encounter it everywhere, and even on the empty back roads, a deer might just jump out from the ditch unexpectedly. I love the idea of having my car take me to work, but I don't trust that I'll pay attention the entire time. If I did, why would having the car drive be of much use? I suppose the likely middle ground is that the car drives, but there are a multitude of independent sensors and alarms that engage the human in potentially dangerous situations. I don't trust that the other guy is going to wake up in time.

Re:Fears of Self-Driving Cars (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | about 2 years ago | (#41893147)

All humans have reaction times that suck. All humans will have periods when that time is even longer or they are distracted.

I agree open source would be best.

Re:Fears of Self-Driving Cars (3, Insightful)

Eevee (535658) | about 2 years ago | (#41893225)

...a sensible human who is capable of responding to anything unexpected.

It must be nice wher you live, 'cause around here the typical driver's response to anything unexpected seems to be to crash. Actually, for a lot of drivers, the response to expected things seems to be to crash as well.

Acceptance testing with your life is just not, well, acceptable.

You do realize you're doing acceptance testing of every driver around you all the time, right?

No fear here... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41893783)

You do realize you're doing acceptance testing of every driver around you all the time, right?

That's why I drive a dual-axle, 4 wheel drive, crew-cab Ford Super Duty F-450 [ford.com] pickup truck.

Nobody messes with me on the road, and they always get the heck out of my way promptly, especially with a blast of the Nathan P3L Airchime [jacksonper...oducts.com] horn installed in the truck. :-D

Re:No fear here... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41894135)

I live in a rural, farming area and, here, that is considered an old folks vehicle :)

Re:Fears of Self-Driving Cars (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41893371)

You lack depth.

Re:Fears of Self-Driving Cars (1)

Speare (84249) | about 2 years ago | (#41893469)

Obviously, lots of testing is going on, and will continue to go on. They use a methodology a lot more reasonable than your "I need to test-drive it" sensibilities, but yes, you'll be able to test drive before you buy your own autocar.

Walk into any Wal*Mart, Tesco, or other low-end mass market department store. Look at the way they communicate, how they decide on things to buy, and how they deal with navigating the aisles. Realize that over half of the people you see in that store drove cars to get there. Rethink your position that most people were raised to be a sensible human.

In other words, remember that half of humanity is below average.

Re:Fears of Self-Driving Cars (1)

DerekLyons (302214) | about 2 years ago | (#41893573)

Not me. I'm a programmer. Most humans have had a mom who, without any commercial "efficiency need", devoted years and years into raising a sensible human who is capable of responding to anything unexpected. A lot of programs do have a commercial "drive" that causes them to be released into the wild long before they are mature and up to the task they should be able to perform.

Acceptance testing with your life is just not, well, acceptable.

This.
 
Self driving cars are a foray into something never really seen before commercially - near or beyond Space Shuttle levels of reliability, in real time, operating a wide variety of hardware (makes and models of car), in a stunningly wide range of operating environments (weather and traffic conditions). I'm not filled with optimism.

Re:Fears of Self-Driving Cars (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41893611)

Human response to something unexpected - Random selection of
Option a. Panic, swerve blindly, possibly into something.
Option b. Panic. Brake as hard as possible, possibly too late

In a panic situation, the action is decided without taking into account any real options - is there room to swerve safely? If I brake as hard as possible, will I stop? A computer could take these variables into account, a person in panic mode cannot. Give me a reasonably well tested computer over a panic stricken idiot every time.

Re:Fears of Self-Driving Cars (1)

slew (2918) | about 2 years ago | (#41893863)

Most humans have had a mom who, without any commercial "efficiency need", devoted years and years into raising a sensible human who is capable of responding to anything unexpected...

There are humans that didn't have moms, or humans that had moms that didn't raise sensible beings, and many human aren't particularly capable of responding to unexpected driving events (in the various mental states that they choose to drive), yet the state still issues these humans driver's licences, and people willingly get into cars with those humans as drivers.

The point of fear that many folks have about turning their lives over to machines is that folks don't feel that they can predict what they will do, or if they will be ultimatly responsible for the failures that occur as a result of the machines action. Some people had the same fears about "horseless carriages". It's not that these fears are unfounded, but sadly the risk is just the price of progress. Some folks jumped on those "horseless carriages" right away, others never did and treat them as the encarnation of the devil, but most folks waited until the tech was shown to be useful and affordable until they jumped in and as a result in the USA we have 8 cars for every 10 people...

Re:Fears of Self-Driving Cars (2)

SJHillman (1966756) | about 2 years ago | (#41892925)

I was involved in a big debate about this. A lot of people said that even if self-driving cars were proven to have a fraction of the accident rate of human drivers, people still wouldn't trust them because of those few times something *could* go wrong. It makes no logical sense, but I suppose it's similar to flying in an airplane (which is also significantly safer than driving, statistically) - it's that lack of control that's the scary part. If something goes wrong, you want to be the one controlling it.

Re:Fears of Self-Driving Cars (4, Insightful)

Kjella (173770) | about 2 years ago | (#41893203)

A lot of people said that even if self-driving cars were proven to have a fraction of the accident rate of human drivers, people still wouldn't trust them because of those few times something *could* go wrong.

Many if not most accidents are caused by someone being careless, stupid, tired, distracted, drunk or high. That means most people most of the time think they're driving much safer than average, either because they're not any of the things above or think they're not - that particularly applies to careless and stupid. To gain public acceptance you must beat "idealized" humans, that even if you're cautious, forward thinking, well rested, alert, sober and in every way fit to drive a car an AI has 360 degree vision, millisecond reaction time and all sorts of advantages that you can't beat. You're not competing against the actual accident rate, you're fighting people's perceived - and often imaginary - risk of an accident.

Re:Fears of Self-Driving Cars (1)

jabberw0k (62554) | about 2 years ago | (#41893207)

Airplane control systems need not concern themselves with discerning between a ball bouncing across the road (probably to be followed by a child) and a bouncing discarded Big Gulp (to be followed only by a raccoon)... nor are they concerned with whether it is better to brake, or accelerate, or where to pilot the vehicle in the case of the aforementioned ball. Nor are they concerned with attempting to guess which, if any, of the pedestrians on a crowded sidewalk might suddenly jaywalk, or drop a bag of groceries into the street. Show me, please, a computer that could even begin to do any of that, and then we can talk about self-driving cars.

Re:Fears of Self-Driving Cars (2)

meta-monkey (321000) | about 2 years ago | (#41893315)

Baby steps. Perhaps the first self-driving systems would only be permitted on highways where there are no pedestrians (or if there are, they're there in violation of traffic laws).

Five monotonous hours on the interstate? Self-drive.

Five blocks on city streets? Drive yourself.

Re:Fears of Self-Driving Cars (1)

RaceProUK (1137575) | about 2 years ago | (#41894005)

The first steps have already been taken - see VW's City Emergency Brake. Other manufacturers are developing similar tech.

Re:Fears of Self-Driving Cars (2)

phoebus1553 (522577) | about 2 years ago | (#41893423)

but I suppose it's similar to flying in an airplane (which is also significantly safer than driving, statistically) - it's that lack of control that's the scary part. If something goes wrong, you want to be the one controlling it.

Then I suggest you never fly in a modern commercial airliner. From an uncle's stories flying many an Airbus for United, you have 0 ability to perform an evasive maneuver in one that is outside the bounds of 'comfort for the passengers.' Want to throw it into a dive or a hard corner? Nope, that must be an incorrect command from the yoke, we'll just go ahead and give you the predetermined limit for that action instead. Here you go, a nice steady decline, that's what you really meant.

Your garden variety Cessna isn't in that category, but those big ones you've actually been in are worse than a car for absolute control.

Re:Fears of Self-Driving Cars (1)

SJHillman (1966756) | about 2 years ago | (#41893995)

From a passenger's perspective, they have just as much control in an Airbus as they do in a Cessna - zero. It's that lack of control (as a passenger) that makes people nervous when flying that is analogous to being a passenger in a self-driving car.

Re:Fears of Self-Driving Cars (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41894223)

Your garden variety Cessna isn't in that category, but those big ones you've actually been in are worse than a car for absolute control.

And the crash and fatality rate for Cessna (and all other small/private) planes is much worse than for airbus (or boing).

Re:Fears of Self-Driving Cars (3, Insightful)

Izmunuti (461052) | about 2 years ago | (#41893425)

While oftware bugs will probably cause some catastrophic accidents from self-driving cars, in the grand scheme of things they would probably be safer.

What will really kill them in the US, at least, is lawyers. If I rear-end someone, who's at fault? Me, and my insurance company gets to pay. When a computer-driven Google-car rear-ends someone, who's at fault. Me? Nah, I was half-asleep, listening to music, brushing my teeth, watching videos, etc. _I_ wasn't driving. Hey, Google wrote the software....they have a lot of money....

Case in point: the media coverage and lawsuits of the supposed Prius accelerator malfunction. That was just a single drive-by-wire element. A fully autonomous car will get trampled flat by the thundering herds of lawyers.

Ad (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41892815)

What is this, an advertisement for Detroit?

Re:Ad (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41892895)

It's a last minute pitch by an Obama supporter.

Self driving Caddys for old people (3, Funny)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about 2 years ago | (#41892841)

With turn signals that are always on? And will they remind the "driver" where he is going and why?

Re:Self driving Caddys for old people (1)

nschubach (922175) | about 2 years ago | (#41893179)

And will they remind the "driver" where he is going and why?

You are going to your in-laws because you hate yourself.

You are going to the store because you need food to live.

Re:Self driving Caddys for old people (1)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about 2 years ago | (#41893337)

You are going to the store because you need food to live.

That reminds me, they're going to need a self driving shopping cart also. First stop? Depends...

Nice places to visit also... (3, Informative)

RocketScientist (15198) | about 2 years ago | (#41892843)

Michigan is a beautiful state. Once you clear Detroit you get a sportsman's paradise with fishing, camping, and hunting in some very scenic and well tended state and county parks. The summers are very temperate (rarely gets into the mid 90's) and the humidity is pretty comfortable.

The winters are...more interesting. Not horrible, but lots of snow and cold.

Re:Nice places to visit also... (1)

vlm (69642) | about 2 years ago | (#41893089)

Basically, its Wisconsin, but with a couple more feet of lake effect snow, and the eyesore / mindsore of Detroit. Wisconsin has a couple neighborhoods in Milwaukee and Racine and to a lesser extent Madison that you need to stay away from and those neighborhoods drag our demographic stats down, but at least we don't have an entire city as a sacrifice zone (although Milwaukee is getting worse every decade). I believe Wisconsin has something like 10 lakes for every 1 lake in Michigan.

You can get the best of both worlds by living in the U.P.

Also the midwest is very cheap, which is great if you have a decent job. You'll get offered about 25% less than a sand state salary. Don't worry about it... my house costs about 1/10th of the equivalent in Mountain View, although the crime rate here is lower and we have better schools and no traffic/commute problems. Your average computer grunt in the midwest has roughly the same quality of life / lifestyle as a sand state executive.

Culturally / Racially its about 90% like being in the German Black Forest except we speak English. I kid you not. Lots of old German guys with carpentry stuff in their garage like my neighbor and pristine front lawns and little old ladies baking pies and stuff. Lots of tourist traps and ethnic food restaurants. There's so many German restaurants in WI they don't even consider German to be ethnic food, everybody, even the illegals, eats brats and saurkraut and and drinks weiss beer.

Also see the three month long summer festival season in Milwaukee. Not my thing, but millions will crowd the lakefront every year to drink $8 beers and peoplewatch.

From a religious standpoint its not like the "south" at all. We have lots of Lutherans who behave in a much more civilized manner than the stereotypical southern state evangelical.

Re:Nice places to visit also... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41894149)

So Basically, its Germany, but with worse beer, and the eyesore / mindsore of being in the USA...

Re:Nice places to visit also... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41894417)

Not even close. I have spent decades in the paces mentioned. Germany has the least snow, the U.P. has the most by far. Wisconsin is very isolated, Michigan not so much. Sportsman's paradise? Depends on where you mean. If you like wilderness, there is little of it south of Canada. Sure it may look it, but pick a direction and you will hit a road in under an hour. The mid-west is very cheap? Nevermind the great lakes region is not the mid-west, it is cheaper than the coast, but the salaries match. Sure you can get a decent house for 150k in some areas, but you will know no one from IT director to to CEO that makes 80k. It just doesn't happen. 20k is considered livable, 35k decent, and 45k a good salary. Expect to commute a couple hours a day to find the mix of 'want to live' and 'can afford' at the same time. In the winter expect your commute to consume a quarter of your day in Michigan and Wisconsin. In the U.P. you wont have any commute because there are no jobs up there come the winter.

Thousands of people die every year (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41892847)

As a result of getting hit by self-driving cars. When they become more popular, more people will die from self-driving cars than drunk drivers. Think about that.

Also, a nuclear device could have been used to terminate Hurricane Sandy before it did all that destruction. Lives could have been saved if the President had the gonads to drop nukes on Sandy.

Need Self-driving cars (2)

neokushan (932374) | about 2 years ago | (#41892863)

As someone with a bad enough sight problem that I'll never ever be allowed to drive, I yearn for the Self-driving car. For the love of almighty fuck, I just want to be able to get to work without having to deal with buses and trains. And yeah, fuck you, other commuters, fuck you all.

Re:Need Self-driving cars (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41892915)

Why do I suspect the other commuter feel the same way about you? Tourette's much?

Re:Need Self-driving cars (1)

ledow (319597) | about 2 years ago | (#41893121)

If you don't earn enough to take a taxi everywhere, then you'll be unlikely to ever afford a self-drive car even when they are legalised across your entire country.

Seriously, it's nice to dream, but you'll probably be retired before you can afford a self-drive car if you're not already earning enough money to. And that's ignoring the problems of insurances, recalls, etc. that are almost bound to hit the self-drive industry at some point after they are "approved".

You're more likely to work from home before that happens. You're more likely to be retired before it happens.
You're more likely to afford your own taxi-journeys / personal chauffeur before you can afford one of those.

There is not, on planet Earth, a single company licensed to sell self-drive cars to the general public, or a licensing structure for them, or an insurance structure for them, or a liability structure for them (which, if established to go against the companies that make them, could destroy the market literally overnight).

We are actually technically closer to all owning our own all-in-one boat/car/plane vehicles than a self-drive car. Because you *can* buy one of those now, they *aren't* stupidly expensive, and you *can* get appropriate licensing / testing / insurance for them TODAY.

The problem with reading sci-fi is that you'll hardly ever get to experience the things you read about, and the ones you do will be quite boring and mundane and not what they could be ("Talk to anyone in the world over the airwaves!" - Yes, I can today, but that causes immense problems itself - spam calls, etc. - and costs a lot to do for no other reason than there's no international telecoms carrier, "Flying cars!" - we have them. But you still need FAA licensing, filing a flight plan, an runway to land on, etc.).

By most probabilities, it won't happen until you're too old to take advantage of it. Accept it, move on.

Re:Need Self-driving cars (1)

neokushan (932374) | about 2 years ago | (#41893409)

There is not, on planet Earth, a single self-driving car that works in all conditions and is capable of navigating any road (Even without a map). However, just because it doesn't exist does not make it impossible. The same goes for the licensing/testing/insurance aspects - it may not exist today, but the same could be said about cars themselves when they first existed. Self-driving cars have the capacity to be safer, more efficient and faster than current cars are. Most accidents are caused by humans in some way - human error, humans being drunk, humans just plain being stupid. While I anticipate that some problems will arise with self-driving cars, that's no reason to write them off entirely. It may take some time, but eventually (and sooner than you think) they will become part of the mainstream. I genuinely expect them to make insurance premiums drop rather than increase.

There's no reason why they have to be so expensive, either. Seriously, why do you expect them to cost (what I presume you're hinting at) tens of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands, more than an existing car? Especially given that most of the technology that will go into it already exists.

Re:Need Self-driving cars (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about 2 years ago | (#41893763)

cost of taxis varies greatly from place to place.

plenty of people can afford nice cars who coudn't afford to take a cab everywhere because the cab costs 120 euros an hour.

Re:Need Self-driving cars (1)

FatAlb3rt (533682) | about 2 years ago | (#41893805)

You should probably write GM, Google, and any number of other companies working on this a sternly-worded letter of advice. They probably don't even realize that you have it all figured out already.

Meanwhile, learn to think outside the box, dream a little, and believe that things can, and do, actually change. We'll see this stuff by the end of the decade. Maybe not full-fledged self-driving cars, but more stuff will become automated: interstate driving, car following (we're already seeing this!), and then eventually point-to-point. Early adopters will fund the R&D and the price will quickly come down.

Re:Need Self-driving cars (1)

hawguy (1600213) | about 2 years ago | (#41894297)

If you don't earn enough to take a taxi everywhere, then you'll be unlikely to ever afford a self-drive car even when they are legalised across your entire country.

Seriously, it's nice to dream, but you'll probably be retired before you can afford a self-drive car if you're not already earning enough money to. And that's ignoring the problems of insurances, recalls, etc. that are almost bound to hit the self-drive industry at some point after they are "approved".

I can't (reasonably) afford to take a taxi everywhere today - I'd be spending about $1000/month in cab fare to get to work every day, and that ignores longer weekend trips. But I fully expect to be able to buy a self-driving car when they become common.

When self driving cars become common, they won't be significantly more expensive to build than non self-driving cars. By then, cars will already be "fly by wire", so with the addition to a camera pod on the roof, maybe some other sensors (laser rangefinders?) and a software upgrade, the car can be made self-driving. And when those sensors are made in the millions, they'll become more affordable.

The software will need to be paid for somehow, but it's better to sell 5 million cars with a $1000 price premium than sell 100,000 cars with a $20,000 price premium.

Huzzah! (-1, Flamebait)

AmazingRuss (555076) | about 2 years ago | (#41892887)

I've always wanted to inhabit a post-apocolyptic wasteland ruled by unions. Now's my chance.

Re:Huzzah! (1)

captbob2002 (411323) | about 2 years ago | (#41892989)

Maybe you should actually see the Detroit metropolitan area before passing such judgement.

Re:Huzzah! (1)

nschubach (922175) | about 2 years ago | (#41893295)

Re:Huzzah! (1)

raind (174356) | about 2 years ago | (#41894001)

Last week went fishing for perch on warm fall day, it was great, this is 20 minutes away and ate them the next day. You can do this year around.
http://www.lakestclair.net/index.php?/forum/5-fishing-reports/ [lakestclair.net]
In the summer you can go to :
http://www.detroitjazzfest.com/ [detroitjazzfest.com] or
https://www.google.com/search?q=bell+isle+images&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&aq=t&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&client=firefox-a#hl=en&client=firefox-a&hs=TpR&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&spell=1&q=belle+isle+images&sa=X&ei=VC6ZUJvHJOiy0QHtlIGgDA&ved=0CB4QvwUoAA&bav=on.2,or.r_gc.r_pw.r_cp.r_qf.&fp=d1f3ab650e43904f&bpcl=37189454&biw=1138&bih=527 [google.com]

I seen deer at a park 20 minutes the other direction surrounded by suburbs.

So like watching tv news, googling will only get you a fraction of the story.
 

Cost of living (1)

ewg (158266) | about 2 years ago | (#41892923)

WSJ recently reported average base salary for Google engineers as $128K. You can finance the same lifestyle in Ann Arbor with $79K.

http://www.bestplaces.net/col/?salary=128336&city2=52603000&city1=50668000 [bestplaces.net]

Re:Cost of living (3, Interesting)

DriveDog (822962) | about 2 years ago | (#41893475)

Well, no, I can't finance the same lifestyle in Detroit at any price. It's not available in Michigan. For those who like what I consider bad weather, go for it, by all means. But aside from the bombed-out Detroit proper, the area is bitterly cold and grey in winter without a break. Living there year-round is not for everyone no matter how much they clean it up. Cities in cold climes grew 60-120 years ago because it was easier to generate heat than escape it, but now the warmer climes have A/C, so such places will never again see their former glory.

Some people like that climate. That's wonderful. They might love it there.

Re:Cost of living (1)

raind (174356) | about 2 years ago | (#41893655)

People here appreciate the seasons. We also appreciate the abundance of water. Thanks to global warming Lake St. Clair didn't even freeze over last year and it's a shallow lake by Michigan standards.

As for IT in the area, I think it's who you know just like anywhere else.

Re:Cost of living (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41893811)

...Cities in cold climes grew 60-120 years ago because it was easier to generate heat than escape it, but now the warmer climes have A/C, so such places will never again see their former glory.

Temperate climate has moved north about 140km in the last 100 years. Northern latitudes may see a renaissance by the end of this century.

Re:Cost of living (1)

HornWumpus (783565) | about 2 years ago | (#41894169)

In the 80's 3M spent a lot of time and effort recruiting engineers out of California. 2% were still there at the end of the second winter.

Re:Cost of living (1)

Dmritard96 (1268918) | about 2 years ago | (#41894009)

When I have been to the bar area it sure does seem nice compared the midwest. mountains, ocean... If you are at all into the outdoors the midwest pretty much sucks between november and april. Then when it warms up a bit there is well - lots of corn? Yes the cost of living is lower, but I might argue so is the quality.

*Also, the WSJ report was based on glass door right (too lazy to go look)? I find glassdoor doesn't do a good job of ensuring that people report their salary and title combination accurately. For a lot of companies there are generic software developers that could have been listed as software dev1, software dev2 and vice versa. Not saying the number is wrong, i don't know, I am just hesitant to take it them too seriously. Also, the bonuses that googlers get paid seem to be quite high (again according to glassdoor) - most places won't do anything similar even adjusted for regional COL variation.

I am in chicago and it is fun for the midwest but if my fiance would let me I would probably go running to either coast...

declining ... (1)

noshellswill (598066) | about 2 years ago | (#41892967)

History teaches that unwilling **seniors** will take declining vision and reflex and shove it up your azwhole ... baseball-bat style ... just before the self-driving car gets Molotoffed..... betcha ...

The Rest of the Story (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41892993)

GM is just hiring all the HP (formerly EDS) contractors that already work for GM. It's not as if they creating thousands of new IT jobs.

Mod parent up please... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41893807)

This is exactly what's going on.

Re:The Rest of the Story (1)

HornWumpus (783565) | about 2 years ago | (#41894179)

Good thing someone is. EDS is a resume stain. Straight to the bin.

Here today gone tomorrow (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41893093)

As much as I enjoy career hopping for gain. Being involved in a project that has a good chance of failing prominently may not be rewarding on the resume. But then again if you make it work then good.

Then again... (1)

HerculesMO (693085) | about 2 years ago | (#41893301)

It is Detroit. Highest rate of crime in the country.

But good luck with that. You destroy a local economy by outsourcing everything and then try to rebuild by insourcing, then you might have a hard time to get good engineers right off the bat.

Great sports??? (0)

Trails (629752) | about 2 years ago | (#41893585)

The tigers got swept

Re:Great sports??? (1)

Dmritard96 (1268918) | about 2 years ago | (#41894261)

In the world series...

It's a trap! (3, Informative)

Anon E. Muss (808473) | about 2 years ago | (#41893587)

Anybody thinking of getting an IT job at GM should talk to somebody who worked under Randy Mott at one of his previous gigs (e.g. Wal-Mart, Dell, HP). You won't find many fans.

Yeah but.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41893967)

You'd be in detroit....
That... is not really worth any ammount of money. you'd have to spend it all on security, lojack, a gun, bodyguard, bulletproof items and cars...

Despite what the hipsters will tell you... detroit is a nasty shithole now. You couldnt pay me enough to live within 50 miles of it anymore.

hooooorah no can they please pay back double... (1)

bigwavedave33 (1148677) | about 2 years ago | (#41894125)

This is total Michigan propaganda. the Big 3 have been dead for years. They know they are on a sinking ship. Before they hire all these on shore IT folks could they please pay double back the bailout monies from profits made by overseas branches only.

FWIW, careers.gm.com (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41894227)

The website that advertises the GM jobs is http://careers.gm.com/

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