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Old 10-09-2013, 02:16 PM   #1
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Default Ford car takes control of steering to avoid collisions

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-24464480

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A car that takes control of the steering wheel when it detects the risk of a collision is being tested at a research facility in Germany.

Ford said the Obstacle Avoidance system first warned the driver of danger and then took charge if they did not react.

The firm said the equipment had been fitted to one of its Focus-branded vehicles as part of a project involving other carmakers and suppliers.

One analyst said it was a staging post on the route to "driverless cars".
The system scans up to 200m (650ft) ahead by using three radars, a number of ultrasonic sensors and a camera, which are all installed in the vehicle.
An additional built-in display shows a warning sign and sounds a chime. Then, if necessary, it applies the brakes, scans for a gap in the road ahead, and steers to avoid a crash.

Equipment in the car warns the driver that the vehicle is about to take control of steering

"You're driving down the road and a pedestrian or something comes out from either side of your vehicle from your peripheral vision where you don't have a good look at it," said Bard Samardzich, vice-president of product development at Ford's European division.

"Obstacle Avoidance can sense that the pedestrian or that object is coming across the front of your vehicle. If it doesn't sense you responding accordingly in your vehicle by braking or manoeuvring, it will take over."
The firm showed off the tech at a facility in Lommel, Belgium, earlier this week.

Safety race

The new technology builds on safety features already offered by Ford.
Last year it introduced Lane Keeping Alert, a feature that vibrates the wheel - but does not take control - if it detects the driver is drifting out of a lane without using an indicator.

Ford aims for the facility to work at speeds of more than 60km/h

Ford's existing Active City Stop facility also aims to reduce the severity of collisions by applying the brakes if it detects an object in front of the vehicle. But it works only if the object is static or travelling less than 30km/h (19mph) faster than the car.

By contrast, the company said the new tech was being tested at speeds of over 60 km/h (38mph).

Other manufactures involved in the project at Aachen include BMW, Fiat, Daimler, Volvo and Volkswagen. They will share data from the tests to develop systems of their own.

Volvo - which is owned by China's Geely - has already introduced its own pedestrian and cyclist alert system, which sounds an alarm and applies the brakes. The firm told the BBC in March that it was now adapting the system so it would soon be able to recognise animals.

'Significant step'

There may be resistance from some to the idea of a car taking control from its driver.

But Ford points out that fewer than one-third of all drivers involved in rear-end collisions had attempted to steer clear of the accident, according to data collected by Germany's Federal Statistical Office.

With that in mind, one independent analyst said it should not be too hard for manufacturers to convince motorists of the innovation's benefit.

Ford showed off the technology to the press at a track in Lommel, Belgium

"The logic behind the technology is impeccable - anything that can avoid a potentially dangerous situation that can cause injury or death sounds like a good piece of equipment," said Tim Urquhart, senior analyst at consultants IHS Automotive.

"Obviously it will come at a price. But there will be less resistance to a piece of technology like this than there will be to the concept of totally driverless cars.
"But autonomous vehicles are already being tested by Google, Daimler and others, and taking steering control in an emergency situation is obviously a pretty significant step along the road."

Ford said more tests were needed and it was not yet ready to announce a launch date for its Obstacle Avoidance system.
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Old 10-09-2013, 03:13 PM   #2
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And so this stupid **** starts...

I'm liable to go on a rampage one day when the nanny state is officially in full swing.
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Old 10-09-2013, 03:25 PM   #3
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And so this stupid **** starts...

I'm liable to go on a rampage one day when the nanny state is officially in full swing.
You would have said the same thing about ABS in the early 80s. How can you be surprised that cars will continue to get smarter and capable of providing greater safety? While you are a superior driver who doesn't need these nanny crutches, the vast majority of drivers do not drive for a hobby or activity but rather as a means of transportation. *We* need all the help they can get.
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Old 10-09-2013, 04:17 PM   #4
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And what happens when there's a car in the oncoming lane, at speed? There is only so much information a computer can make decisions on. Right now, they do not have the ability to gather enough data to make the correct decision, 100% of the time. Do I kill the family in the oncoming lane? Or slam on the brakes and force a rear-end collision? ABS brakes is not a valid comparison. There is a LOT more at play with adaptive cruise and collision avoidance. There are even moral decisions that come into play that a computer will never be able to make.
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Old 10-09-2013, 04:19 PM   #5
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I just see this as a means to more liability and more costs.

What is the point of being responsible?

Soon it will be the "right" of any person of any age to "drive".

I'm all for safety, but where does this active safety push stop?

Peace,

Greg
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Old 10-09-2013, 04:33 PM   #6
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I can't wait for the first time this type of collision avoidance system sends a car and its occupants over a cliff, "by accident". Either that, or the first instance of someone cracking into the system and performing "assassinations by faulty steering" remotely.
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Old 10-09-2013, 04:58 PM   #7
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I can't wait for the first time this type of collision avoidance system sends a car and its occupants over a cliff, "by accident". Either that, or the first instance of someone cracking into the system and performing "assassinations by faulty steering" remotely.
This, pretty much.

Automatic braking crash avoidance systems I can somewhat understand, taking the wheel is a whole other ballpark; about to rear end a car, swerves into head on collision with cement retaining wall/oncoming car/cliff/tree/whatever. The system could theoretically react and swerve back, but still it's way too dangerous to assume it will make a better decision than the eyes of a driver who can find a better run off.
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Old 10-09-2013, 05:42 PM   #8
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And so this stupid **** starts...

I'm liable to go on a rampage one day when the nanny state is officially in full swing.
Whine all you want, but this is the PRIVATE MARKET INNOVATING.

Nissan already demoed this too. I would not mind a car that drives itself, but cars that take over when the driver appears to be stupid make me more worried.
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Old 10-09-2013, 06:06 PM   #9
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And what happens when there's a car in the oncoming lane, at speed? There is only so much information a computer can make decisions on. Right now, they do not have the ability to gather enough data to make the correct decision, 100% of the time. Do I kill the family in the oncoming lane? Or slam on the brakes and force a rear-end collision? ABS brakes is not a valid comparison. There is a LOT more at play with adaptive cruise and collision avoidance. There are even moral decisions that come into play that a computer will never be able to make.

It says the system looks for a gap and steers the car to that gap. To me that means it would shoot for that "gap" in between the hazard it's avoiding and that oncoming vehicle. Makes me a bit nervous as this is new. I do like EyeSight though and trust it fully(knowing it's limitations).


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I'm all for safety, but where does this active safety push stop?
It doesn't. Ever. Well, unless they come out and say there were ZERO traffic deaths "this year".
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Old 10-09-2013, 06:11 PM   #10
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You would have said the same thing about ABS in the early 80s. How can you be surprised that cars will continue to get smarter and capable of providing greater safety? While you are a superior driver who doesn't need these nanny crutches, the vast majority of drivers do not drive for a hobby or activity but rather as a means of transportation. *We* need all the help they can get.
Not at all. That is simply improving brakes, the same way DI improves engine efficiency. Especially since I can still choose to stop braking any time I want. It's a distinct improvement to a system the same way a DCT is a distinct improvement to a system, that I still ultimately have control at the end of the day. Same with power steering and numerous other improvements.

This is a nanny that tries to fix retardation and attention span by removing control.
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Old 10-09-2013, 06:43 PM   #11
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This is a nanny that tries to fix retardation and attention span by removing control.

So, that unforeseen boulder that falls off the side of a mountain in front of the persons car that takes them by complete surprise makes them retarded. OK.

That goes for a lot of unforeseen situations. Not just a falling boulder.
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Old 10-09-2013, 07:00 PM   #12
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So, that unforeseen boulder that falls off the side of a mountain in front of the persons car that takes them by complete surprise makes them retarded. OK.

That goes for a lot of unforeseen situations. Not just a falling boulder.
Right, so lets protect against space debris falling out of the sky by making roofs harder and giving helmets that can take <statistically significant and realistic value Scrappy can probably answer>.

People die. Stop trying to stop every feasible case. It's actually essential people DO die or we're gonna have a tough time with resources.
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Old 10-09-2013, 08:40 PM   #13
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Not at all. That is simply improving brakes, the same way DI improves engine efficiency. Especially since I can still choose to stop braking any time I want. It's a distinct improvement to a system the same way a DCT is a distinct improvement to a system, that I still ultimately have control at the end of the day. Same with power steering and numerous other improvements.

This is a nanny that tries to fix retardation and attention span by removing control.
So you must go on a rampage when you see cars with Eyesight, or radar, or active cruise control or cameras... The market wants these features, as they get tested and sorted they will be implemented, most likely with high success. You seem to think the average driver ("retarded, lack of attention") will somehow be a better driver without safety features. Many drivers bomb down the road today texting away, at least if they have Eyesight they might not rear end you.

Driving is a means to an end for most of the population, "dumbing it down" is exactly what they want.
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Old 10-09-2013, 09:03 PM   #14
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Right, so lets protect against space debris falling out of the sky by making roofs harder and giving helmets that can take <statistically significant and realistic value Scrappy can probably answer>.

People die. Stop trying to stop every feasible case. It's actually essential people DO die or we're gonna have a tough time with resources.

Seriously?

Subaru had an in dealer story/advertisement how an Outback saved the owners life when a boulder came crashing down on his car. Would this stop that particular case? Dunno. Heck, even that freakin article showed that scenario. And just like my last statement(which you seem to completely miss or ignore), whatever situation occurs. How about the random tire blowout on a car in the oncoming lane that veers over into yours. If it was your mother in the car with these "nannies" and it saved her life, would you at least sing a different tune then? Or just say bye mom. Think before you answer that one so people will take you seriously.
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Old 10-09-2013, 10:56 PM   #15
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If it was your mother in the car with these "nannies" and it saved her life, would you at least sing a different tune then? Or just say bye mom. Think before you answer that one so people will take you seriously.
She's going to die someday through some avoidable means that something could have saved if caught earlier.

In the case you outlined, I'd be extremely sad for an unbelievable amount of time. My life and all aspects of it would suffer, but that's because I'm weak for that aspect of my life. Mourning is mourning. I never bother with what ifs and I don't let fear of accidents rule my life. I certainly won't be scared of the potential likelihood for something like this to happen because I just don't know the statistics nor care to. If there was something like "65% of people who drove did this" and she decided to drive, I might have a different story. I don't know. I just know that right now billions of people drive daily and DON'T die, and she's been at it almost 50 years now. Lucky? Maybe. Worth investing in paranoia? Show me where this will save a substantial amount of life proportionate to the cost and prove it will be fault tolerant first and that I can override it and take my own life into my hands if I so desire. Most likely impossible for you to do based on current % deaths from driving across our country.

I am mostly reactionary in nature to the unfortunates of life and live believing everything is going to go on and get better day to day. Call me optimistic, but I've never been concerned with the consequences or safety issues of things like most people seem to be. I'm certainly higher risk than most.

In the end, I still wouldn't want something like this in place. I use statistics, and even when it affects my life because I get lucky and become one of the .001% or whatever of any random thing that happens, I don't regret not playing it safer. I simply think it was just bad luck statistically, which is all it was.
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Old 10-10-2013, 12:39 AM   #16
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I want an autobrake feature on future cars of mine, and will even compromise on other things in order to get it, if that's what it takes.
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Old 10-10-2013, 11:05 AM   #17
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And what happens when there's a car in the oncoming lane, at speed? There is only so much information a computer can make decisions on. Right now, they do not have the ability to gather enough data to make the correct decision, 100% of the time. Do I kill the family in the oncoming lane? Or slam on the brakes and force a rear-end collision? ABS brakes is not a valid comparison. There is a LOT more at play with adaptive cruise and collision avoidance. There are even moral decisions that come into play that a computer will never be able to make.
you mean just like the scene in I-Robot where the robot has to make a decision on who to save?

I think were better off spending money on educating drivers to be better drivers, rather than make them more like a zombie.
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Old 10-10-2013, 02:05 PM   #18
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She's going to die someday through some avoidable means that something could have saved if caught earlier.

In the case you outlined, I'd be extremely sad for an unbelievable amount of time. My life and all aspects of it would suffer, but that's because I'm weak for that aspect of my life. Mourning is mourning. I never bother with what ifs and I don't let fear of accidents rule my life. I certainly won't be scared of the potential likelihood for something like this to happen because I just don't know the statistics nor care to. If there was something like "65% of people who drove did this" and she decided to drive, I might have a different story. I don't know. I just know that right now billions of people drive daily and DON'T die, and she's been at it almost 50 years now. Lucky? Maybe. Worth investing in paranoia? Show me where this will save a substantial amount of life proportionate to the cost and prove it will be fault tolerant first and that I can override it and take my own life into my hands if I so desire. Most likely impossible for you to do based on current % deaths from driving across our country.

I am mostly reactionary in nature to the unfortunates of life and live believing everything is going to go on and get better day to day. Call me optimistic, but I've never been concerned with the consequences or safety issues of things like most people seem to be. I'm certainly higher risk than most.

In the end, I still wouldn't want something like this in place. I use statistics, and even when it affects my life because I get lucky and become one of the .001% or whatever of any random thing that happens, I don't regret not playing it safer. I simply think it was just bad luck statistically, which is all it was.
Your first statement I highlighted: With that mentality, has she ever taken any medicine in her life when she was sick? If not, maybe she could have died from being sick. Heck, even before you were born. Yes, we will all die. A lot from accidents(even avoidable accidents). I personally don't want to die from some other (idiot) persons bad driving, or that unfortunate situation they couldn't avoid(or me) if there was an option to have the safety features to avoid it. And I surely wouldn't want to have to suffer the loss of family members from the same causes if it could have been avoided.

Your second statement I highlighted: That is one thing I would never call you based off your statements here on NASIOC.


Shoot, just go and ask anyone(or all) who has been saved by these "nannies" and see if they think it's worth the money.


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you mean just like the scene in I-Robot where the robot has to make a decision on who to save?

I think were better off spending money on educating drivers to be better drivers, rather than make them more like a zombie.

A lot of money is already spent to do that. Did THAT work? Now you want to throw more money at it? At the risk of getting points, I ask if you are a Democrat?
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Old 10-10-2013, 02:42 PM   #19
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Shoot, just go and ask anyone(or all) who has been saved by these "nannies" and see if they think it's worth the money.
Of course the people saved by it will like it. They're the ones who benefited from it. The same way a cancer patient who would never be able to afford hundreds of thousands of dollars on a procedure REALLY likes their insurance and other's just pay that person's bill because they're scared it will happen to them.

That is anecdotal evidence. Use statistics. Human life does indeed have value, and is differentiated by how valuable you are to society. Sorry to break it to you all, but think of society like a body where it's not gonna cry if it loses a few cells. It just keeps going not caring. That is the mindset people should have with regards to human life and things like this.

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A lot of money is already spent to do that. Did THAT work? Now you want to throw more money at it? At the risk of getting points, I ask if you are a Democrat?
Not directed at me, but I'd rather just ban more people from the road so they pay for it but don't get to use it unless they get motivated to learn this stuff themselves, instead of using incentives. Less people on the road is win-win for me.
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Old 10-10-2013, 11:50 PM   #20
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Of course the people saved by it will like it. They're the ones who benefited from it. The same way a cancer patient who would never be able to afford hundreds of thousands of dollars on a procedure REALLY likes their insurance and other's just pay that person's bill because they're scared it will happen to them.

That is anecdotal evidence. Use statistics. Human life does indeed have value, and is differentiated by how valuable you are to society. Sorry to break it to you all, but think of society like a body where it's not gonna cry if it loses a few cells. It just keeps going not caring. That is the mindset people should have with regards to human life and things like this.




Not directed at me, but I'd rather just ban more people from the road so they pay for it but don't get to use it unless they get motivated to learn this stuff themselves, instead of using incentives. Less people on the road is win-win for me.
OK. Lets put it this way. By the time it is mandatory on every vehicle(if ever) and you have no choice, it will be lighter and cheaper and most likely it will always have an off switch. So, until then, I'd say enjoy your car you don't have to have it on...
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Old 10-11-2013, 08:16 AM   #21
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A lot of money is already spent to do that. Did THAT work? Now you want to throw more money at it? At the risk of getting points, I ask if you are a Democrat?
By educating I dont mean the Text Can Wait TV commercials. I mean, for this particular topic, they need to train the driver better. Getting a license over here is a joke.

Maybe you disagree with this but, I myself practice recovery maneuvers while sliding on the snow. I do this on empty parking lots obviously. This practice actually saved me last year when my car lost traction and I ended sideways on the road.
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Old 10-11-2013, 12:03 PM   #22
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Maybe you disagree with this but, I myself practice recovery maneuvers while sliding on the snow. I do this on empty parking lots obviously. This practice actually saved me last year when my car lost traction and I ended sideways on the road.
This is absolutely right up the alley that people should have to demonstrate competence in. I see people daily who take normal right hand turns at maybe 5-10 mph and all I think is that those people don't understand the limits of a car and are going way under because they're scared and/or wouldn't know how to act if something unplanned were to happen. That kind of driving and mind set should be banned. You should be cautious about losing control of your vehicle, but if ou're driving at anything under maybe 50% of the capacity and capabilities of your car in terms of things like acceleration while merging onto interstate, the turn I outlined, etc, you shouldn't be ****ing driving. Grow some balls and learn the actual limits.

There should be skid pads, tracks, cone courses, and all such things that force people to get into bad situations and recover before they get to drive on the road.

I learned the exact same way. Because I'm a car nut and dicked around constantly in things like mall parking lots on snow days when no one else was bothering to drive.
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Old 10-11-2013, 02:01 PM   #23
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OK. Lets put it this way. By the time it is mandatory on every vehicle(if ever) and you have no choice, it will be lighter and cheaper and most likely it will always have an off switch. So, until then, I'd say enjoy your car you don't have to have it on...
An off switch doesn't mean much if it can be programmed to be overridden. I still think that "assassination by faulty steering" is still a very real possibility with such a set-up. I'd prefer that the directional control of the vehicle be kept 100% with the driver.
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Old 10-11-2013, 04:12 PM   #24
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By educating I dont mean the Text Can Wait TV commercials. I mean, for this particular topic, they need to train the driver better. Getting a license over here is a joke.

Maybe you disagree with this but, I myself practice recovery maneuvers while sliding on the snow. I do this on empty parking lots obviously. This practice actually saved me last year when my car lost traction and I ended sideways on the road.
I agree with you and I would do such a thing and force my kids to do such a thing. The reality of it is most won't unless there is a financial penalty which would take a law that won't get passed because it would be wildly unpopular and wouldn't be taken seriously anyway. Was that a long enough sentence?

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There should be skid pads, tracks, cone courses, and all such things that force people to get into bad situations and recover before they get to drive on the road.
Absolutely.

You should see what the Japanese have to go through to get a license. Unless it has changed over the years since I was there.

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An off switch doesn't mean much if it can be programmed to be overridden. I still think that "assassination by faulty steering" is still a very real possibility with such a set-up. I'd prefer that the directional control of the vehicle be kept 100% with the driver.
If you turn off EyeSight, it is not going to do a dang thing. At all. I would think that if the driver hit the off switch, then the car "overrides" that and the driver ends up injured or dies, there would be a lawsuit. Don't think the manufacturer would do something like that.

I ask this question. Has any of the current "nannies"(that are optional still) linked as a direct cause of death yet? Any?
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Old 10-11-2013, 05:05 PM   #25
lymphomaniac
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Justy, you're missing the point. If the logic is programmed into a computer, then the logic can be corrupted - either through accidental means, or through malicious intent.

The thing with this proposed system is that it sounds like it ignores the driver's inputs, and handles the accident avoidance by its programmed logic. So, for example, if it detects a potential collision, one possible outcome is that it takes control of the brakes and steering (and maybe the throttle?), and directs the vehicle to a location where it deems it to be "safe". What's to stop someone from finding a way into the system, and reprogramming the logic to reduce or eliminate the threshold involved with potential crash detection - or to treat a gap as an obstacle or vice versa - or even worse, to purposely cut off all driver input and plow straight ahead?

I'm all for having "nanny" technologies that help the driver maintain control of the vehicle in emergency situations, but this technology is one that takes control of the vehicle away from the driver.
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