The Aug. 3 Real Estate article “Reality is going to stall the rise of driverless cars for some time” predicted driverless cars are a generation from reality on D.C. streets because of the challenges they face navigating complex obstacles such as pedestrians and traffic circles. I disagree. The advances in artificial intelligence and small radars have been remarkable.
Technology companies such as Google, Uber and Amazon, and car manufacturers such as GM and Tesla, are all in on autonomy. They are closing old, traditional plants to tool up for self-driving cars. It may seem impossible, but drive the latest Tesla and use its “hands-free” features to see what’s possible even today.
It is not a stretch to imagine a gradual rollout of self-driving cars in the District, beginning with some kind of slow-speed bus or taxi. I am willing to wager a cab ride to the Washington Monument from Georgetown in a self-driving taxi five years from today, or I will walk the route instead.