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Still Waters

Self-driving lorries 'to get UK test in 2015'

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Fleets of self-driving lorries could be tested on UK roads as soon as next year, according to reports.

The technology allows a convoy of lorries to travel just a few feet from each other, with just the driver at the front in control.

http://www.bbc.co.uk...nology-28834774

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And another decently paid human job goes away.

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And another decently paid human job goes away.

Doesn't it seem odd that jobs that pay enough for a person to survive on, frequently seem to be "engineered out", while crappy jobs that don't pay enough seem to hang around for ever...

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Posted (edited)

<p>

Doesn't it seem odd that jobs that pay enough for a person to survive on, frequently seem to be "engineered out", while crappy jobs that don't pay enough seem to hang around for ever...

Not for much longer...this video has gone viral so many of you may have seen it. Robots in the workplace: self-driving cars are just the start of this silent economy killer.

Edited by Dark_Grey
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..."The thought of a lorry driver doing administration is, dare I say it, pie in the sky."...

No worries a robot will take care of that too.

Doesn't it seem odd that jobs that pay enough for a person to survive on, frequently seem to be "engineered out", while crappy jobs that don't pay enough seem to hang around for ever...

... Then theres some hope for a few at least.

...Robots are going to take millions of jobs over, and Bill Gates doesn't think we're prepared for the shift.

During a lengthy interview with D.C. think tank American Enterprise Institute (via Business Insider), Bill Gates commented on how software automation and robots will take over lower-wage jobs in the near future.

"Software substitution, whether it's for drivers or waiters or nurses... it's progressing," Gates said. "Technology over time will reduce demand for jobs, particularly at the lower end of skill set... 20 years from now, labor demand for lots of skill sets will be substantially lower. I don't think people have that in their mental model."...

http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/132980-Bill-Gates-Wants-You-to-be-Prepared-for-the-Massive-Robot-Workforce

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Posted (edited)

I can't see this working to well. What's to stop people hijacking them by simply walking out in to the road and forcing them to stop? Yea you can fit them with cameras, but by the time the cops (who are also slowly being replaced by automated systems) get there, the trailers will have been cleaned out and the robbers long gone. Or how about someone hacking them remotely to cause a massive accident? Anything using wireless technology is vulnerable and these will rely on it.

As for more jobs going, It's true. The population is going up, cost of living is going up, wages are going down and the quality of most jobs on the market is poor and don't last long (boarderline slave labour). If it carries on like this the only result is a revolution or civil war against the government, you only have to look at history. Cause and effect and all that :)

Edited by Finity
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People, economies, and policies are just going to have to adapt like they have in the past. When the industrial revolution started similar fears where going on about the majority of people losing their jobs and the damage it would do to the economy. But just like with how the industrial revolution took away a few jobs and in the end created far more so will the robotic revolution.

The jobs that will be created will be different then the jobs being taken and the people will have to learn a new skill set but that is life. We may be losing drivers, but they will be replaced with multiple programmers making better programs, tech staff to handle software bugs, maintenence staff to maintain all the new high tech stuff and to install it, and for lack of a better term hackers to provide security and to ensure the vehicles are not hacked into to. Those are just the jobs that I thought of off the top of my head that will in time replace the job being taken.

There is a general rule in technological advancement, if it takes a job it will generally create 10 more later.

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I doubt more than 1 driverless truck would be used, think of red lights, cross winds, road debris, pedestrians, driver error and blow outs.

I think it would be more realistic to have 2 trailers to 1 unit.

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How would such a convoy negotiate a motorway slip-road/roundabout ?

The lead driver would be way down the roundabout exit road, whilst the tail-end charlies are still on the roundabout approach road. How will they know which direction to go in ?

On entering the motorway, it might be safe for the lead vehical to move from the slip road to the inner lane. But by the time the tail-end charlie gets there, will it STILL be safe ? In the interval, oncoming traffic may have arrived. Do the tail-enders barge in regardless, or do they wait ? If they wait.. then the convoy would be split up, and may have passenger vehicles intermixed with it. What happens then ?

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I am really baffled why the UK seems to want to become the guinea pig for this. Glad I am not a lorry driver, seems it will be reduced to yet another minimum wage job when the amount of drivers out weighs the demand. If it works I give lorry driving 5 years at best.

Are the Government going to offer training for alternative trades since they seem so hell bent of automating their role?

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I would be a little concerned with so much tonnage hurtling down our motorways with nobody at the wheel. And we all know in the UK how crappy the signal can be on our phones once we hit the motorway so I hope this is a little more reliable :/

I think it is the inevitable progression of technology and one that is impossible to stop really but this seems rather ambitious rather quick.... we shall see..... and worry lol

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How would such a convoy negotiate a motorway slip-road/roundabout ?

The lead driver would be way down the roundabout exit road, whilst the tail-end charlies are still on the roundabout approach road. How will they know which direction to go in ?

On entering the motorway, it might be safe for the lead vehical to move from the slip road to the inner lane. But by the time the tail-end charlie gets there, will it STILL be safe ? In the interval, oncoming traffic may have arrived. Do the tail-enders barge in regardless, or do they wait ? If they wait.. then the convoy would be split up, and may have passenger vehicles intermixed with it. What happens then ?

It's not a case the lorries behind haven't got a driver, all the lorries have drivers. its just a form of cruise control. so the Driver of each lorry would be in full control of his lorry at junctions such as roundabouts and merging on to the motorway.

All this new system does is allow the lorries to connect to one another electronically. the Driver still steers the lorry. the only thing he is not doing while electronically connected is use the pedals. its a form of electronically connected cruise control between lorries. When two or more lorries are electronically connected via a link. The second lorry keeps pace with the lorry in front, if the lorry in front brakes the brakes on the second lorry also break at exactly the same time keeping a set distance between each lorry.

If for example lorry number three in the convoy reaches his motorway exit, he simply disengages the "link" (cruise control) and takes full control and proceeds to drive normally. however lorry number four now data links to lorry number two and takes the place of lorry number three. the gap closes to the set distance and all remaining lorries continue.

another example, a lorry joins the motorway and wants to connect to the convoy he gets on the CB-radio "rubber ducky", "rubber ducky" come in "rubber ducky" this is breaker one-9, both drivers open the electronic link, once the link is established breaker one-9's lorry is in cruise control at a set pace with rubber ducky. the driver still steers the lorry throughout. its only the acceleration and braking that's electronically controlled via the lorry in front.

Edited by stevewinn

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<p>

Not for much longer...this video has gone viral so many of you may have seen it. Robots in the workplace: self-driving cars are just the start of this silent economy killer.

it has happened before, in the begining of the century, people had same arguments against factories, and steam powered equipment. we all know how that ended

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It's not a case the lorries behind haven't got a driver, all the lorries have drivers. its just a form of cruise control. so the Driver of each lorry would be in full control of his lorry at junctions such as roundabouts and merging on to the motorway.

All this new system does is allow the lorries to connect to one another electronically. the Driver still steers the lorry. the only thing he is not doing while electronically connected is use the pedals. its a form of electronically connected cruise control between lorries. When two or more lorries are electronically connected via a link. The second lorry keeps pace with the lorry in front, if the lorry in front brakes the brakes on the second lorry also break at exactly the same time keeping a set distance between each lorry.

If for example lorry number three in the convoy reaches his motorway exit, he simply disengages the "link" (cruise control) and takes full control and proceeds to drive normally. however lorry number four now data links to lorry number two and takes the place of lorry number three. the gap closes to the set distance and all remaining lorries continue.

another example, a lorry joins the motorway and wants to connect to the convoy he gets on the CB-radio "rubber ducky", "rubber ducky" come in "rubber ducky" this is breaker one-9, both drivers open the electronic link, once the link is established breaker one-9's lorry is in cruise control at a set pace with rubber ducky. the driver still steers the lorry throughout. its only the acceleration and braking that's electronically controlled via the lorry in front.

That's a good explanation Steve and could be acceptable..until a microchip in the lead lorry decides to have a day off and do a sudden U turn and turn right when in the middle lane just as a car is passing, oh boy I think I will stick to the inside lane from now on.Oh..can't do that as there may be a driverless lorry up my tailpipe.

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It would make much safer to invest in driverless cargo trains.

Edited by taniwha

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it has happened before, in the begining of the century, people had same arguments against factories, and steam powered equipment. we all know how that ended

At that particular time we also had relatively moral and ADULT leadership in place to manage the changes. Care to imagine the outcome with today's version?

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I always felt the fuel protests that happened under the Labour Government started the ball rolling on an idea like this. The farmers and truckers scared the living daylights out of MP's with how hard they can hit the country. Farmers since then have been treated like dirt, I will never forget Tony Blair live on a special Question Time giving an answer to a question about them "I don't give a damn about the farmers". It was quickly covered over by the presenter.

Since the protests successive Governments have taken steps to ensure protests are made illegal. They also illegally trained 1500 army personnel to drive tankers without the necessary consultation. It doesn't bare thinking about that in the event of a protest the army would have been sent in to eject the self employed owner drivers of the tankers and commandeer their vehicles in some kind of marshal law scenario.

Unfortunately I doubt that any tears will be shed in Parliament if they end up in the doll queue, more of a relief they will soon have an automated work force that won't argue. They can then probably start the ball rolling on their very controversial 'Pay per mile' tax without any worry of truckers protesting.

The speed they are pushing this through maybe the roads for the rich scheme could be implemented in the next 5 years. The seeds are being sown, all new cars to have black boxes next year,, pay your road monthly in effect in October. I can see it coming, can you?

Edited by skookum

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it has happened before, in the begining of the century, people had same arguments against factories, and steam powered equipment. we all know how that ended

a

At that particular time we also had moral and ADULT leadership in place to manage the changes. Care to imagine the outcome with today's version?

Thanks, and then. I was just about to address his post. To everyone comparing this "revolution" to the industrial revolution, you are severely downplaying this. In the industrial revolution, none of those machines could think for themselves. None of those machines could do very complex tasks. Did you watch the video I posted? It contains footage of robots ready for market. There is an ipad-faced robot that serves tables and pours drinks (quite well I might add,) for the cost of 1 employee's measly salary. You buy it once, you never pay into it again (barring repairs, obviously.) No benefits to worry about, no sick days, no complaining or arguing...who wouldn't want an entire staff like that?

Also in the video, it addresses the claim that "we'll always need programmers and maintenance people!" Well, that's not necessarily true any more. There are people out there who's job it is to write programs that....write programs. Yes, even people like myself in IT might be out of a job one day when my company can just buy a piece of software that does exactly what I do now, but of course much better.

To quote that video one last time, it uses the analogy of the horse: when the motor carriage first hit the streets, the horses said "it will never catch on. Look at all the things we do for people - they can't replace all of that." ...and now horses are delegated to jobs like pulling people around parks and dancing in shows. The big fat difference this time is robots aren't just going to replace transportation - on a long enough time-line, there is nothing they won't be able to replace.

Side note: did anyone see that Japanese singing robot? Absolutely sold out concert hall. Yeah, even celebrities are done for.

Edited by Dark_Grey

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I doubt more than 1 driverless truck would be used, think of red lights, cross winds, road debris, pedestrians, driver error and blow outs.

I think it would be more realistic to have 2 trailers to 1 unit.

roads are narrow and people will complain

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