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Self Driving Cars - Will they hurt the airlines?

Self Driving Cars - Will they hurt the airlines?

Old May 13, 15, 2:29 pm
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Self Driving Cars - Will they hurt the airlines?

OK...OK. My co-worker and I both travel for work and we have debated this question.

Will autonomous cars hurt short haul airline routes?

We both say "Yes" and here is why, IMHO.

I currently work 4 hours by car from my base office. I travel from my home to this office every Monday morning by getting up at 4am and driving to the office. I then work all week and drive home either Thurs or Fri afternoon. I could fly from my home city (ILM) to the other city (CLT) but by the time I figure up the costs and time, driving wins out. My co-worker does the same but his drive is 5.5 hours.

The drive time to ILM from my home , parking, waiting 30 minutes to board, 1 hr flight, 30-60 minutes to drive from CLT to office it just does not make sense. Not to mention the additional cost to my project budget. You are looking at 2.5 - 3.5 hours just to fly.

So.... My coworker and I were talking about self driving cars. If we had one like the Mercedes prototype then we see a HUGE down turn in regional flights. If I could truly sleep , or work, or watch TV...etc while driving then the comfort factor would change to the car vs. the plane.

That is my 2 cents... now obviously the longer drives past 5-6 hours plus, the paradigm changes but I am interested in the boards opinion.

I apologize if this was talked about or started before....


ILMpax
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Old May 13, 15, 2:48 pm
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Might nudge me gradually in the direction of driving on that hypothetical 4-5 hour drive. I already drive a lot of those trips anyway, so I'm probably not the ideal person to ask. I'm already willing to drive a little longer than most, simply because I like control and comfort and hate the variability that flight delays present.

Plus I don't think I'll ever actually sleep while Google drives me around.
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Old May 13, 15, 9:12 pm
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Originally Posted by ILMpax View Post
If I could truly sleep , or work, or watch TV...etc while driving....
You will not be able to sleep in your car while it is driving, at least not any time in the next 20-30 years. The technology is nowhere near that good, and won't be for a LONG time.
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Old May 13, 15, 9:21 pm
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Originally Posted by pinniped View Post
Plus I don't think I'll ever actually sleep while Google drives me around.
You wont be able to unless you have installed ....... in your google car, imagine targeted adverts based on your route and weaknesses. Will advertisers be able to pay so you get routed past their store? "Why are we going this way.. oh Starbucks... stop, I need caffiene!"
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Old May 13, 15, 11:43 pm
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Originally Posted by planemechanic View Post
You will not be able to sleep in your car while it is driving, at least not any time in the next 20-30 years. The technology is nowhere near that good, and won't be for a LONG time.
With a semi-self-driving car, which sounds something like advanced cruise control, then won't drivers be likely to fall asleep even if they are not supposed to? How will the driver's alertness be maintained?
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Old May 13, 15, 11:47 pm
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Originally Posted by WillTravel View Post
With a semi-self-driving car, which sounds something like advanced cruise control, then won't drivers be likely to fall asleep even if they are not supposed to? How will the driver's alertness be maintained?
I wouldn't be surprised if they would be required to have a dead mans vigilance device in them like a train does.
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Old May 14, 15, 12:39 am
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I agree. LA to Vegas is about 4 hours. I've never flown this route, always driven it. I can't understand why people fly unless they're just too lazy to drive.
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Old May 14, 15, 1:06 am
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Originally Posted by DaveInLA View Post
I agree. LA to Vegas is about 4 hours. I've never flown this route, always driven it. I can't understand why people fly unless they're just too lazy to drive.
Sunday nights. That's why people fly.
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Old May 14, 15, 1:26 am
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Originally Posted by DaveInLA View Post
I agree. LA to Vegas is about 4 hours. I've never flown this route, always driven it. I can't understand why people fly unless they're just too lazy to drive.
I guess if we choose to fly somewhere instead of drive for whatever reason (even if it is four hours), we are all lazy. Glad you cleared that up DaveInLA
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Old May 14, 15, 3:01 am
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Originally Posted by planemechanic View Post
You will not be able to sleep in your car while it is driving, at least not any time in the next 20-30 years. The technology is nowhere near that good, and won't be for a LONG time.
Pessimist.
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Old May 14, 15, 4:13 am
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Self driving cars won't be around for a while. I read somewhere that 6-10 percent of riders ralphed because of motion sickness. Something to do with being a passenger.

Plus recently, Google revealed that they've had several crash.
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Old May 14, 15, 4:36 am
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Originally Posted by WillTravel View Post
With a semi-self-driving car, which sounds something like advanced cruise control, then won't drivers be likely to fall asleep even if they are not supposed to? How will the driver's alertness be maintained?
There are already lots of microsleep detection technologies in use. I know of applications already use them in most heavy mining machinery anyways. They sound an alarm in the vehicle and at the monitoring / dispatch centers when detecting microsleep events.
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Old May 14, 15, 7:24 am
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Originally Posted by skyvanman View Post
Quote:





Originally Posted by DaveInLA


I agree. LA to Vegas is about 4 hours. I've never flown this route, always driven it. I can't understand why people fly unless they're just too lazy to drive.




Sunday nights. That's why people fly.
Haha, I leave Sundays around lunchtime.
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Old May 14, 15, 8:22 am
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Interesting question. Since cars already compete with airlines for certain distances, trips, routes, etc. I would imagine the increase would have to come mostly from people who would drive but either want to be able to maybe relax or work while driving or just don't want to be actively driving for X length of time. Maybe that would include some who would only drive, say, 4 hours but would be willing to do 6 in a self-driver.

It's hard to think the above group of people would be enough make much difference, but that's just my guess.

And, the self-drive cars would need to have increased in quantity to a critical mass, large enough to be a real threat. That may happen eventually but it seems like a long way off at this point.
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Old May 14, 15, 12:38 pm
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If and when fully self-driving cars are available I would be much more likely to drive 4-8 hour routes that I regularly fly today.

I stress "if and when" because there are multiple barriers. First, there's the technology piece. Second, there's law, including the question of who's liable when various kinds of driver aids don't do what they're expected to do. Today the expectation largely is that the driver remains alert and in control at all times. Changes to law will almost certainly lag the availability of technology.
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