Technology in Cars Today: Should There Be a Limit

To what extent do we have to give up control of our cars?

BHPian pd1108 recently shared this with other enthusiasts.

I read in a Guardian article that due to a technical issue with the app, hundreds of Tesla users have been banned from their cars. It got me thinking – how far should we give up control of our cars? Here is the link to the news.

Here is a list of things we have / are giving up:

  • Automatic gear change – or speed control to use
  • Cruise Control – or speed control
  • ADAS system – or driving control
  • Application-based utilities – or manage the car remotely

The list goes on. And that’s where we’ve already delegated control to technology.

So my question to my friends is when should we say – as much and not more?

Here is what BHPian TorqueMonster had to say about it:

I don’t think there should be a total limit on technology, just making sure that the technology becomes advanced and more usable in nature.

For automatic cars, they basically made driving easier for everyone. Gone are the days of primitive 3-4 speed automatic gearboxes (except Maruti which is still stuck on 4), now we have automatic gearboxes that are fuel efficient and even fun to drive, all of these things are a total godsend in town and for daily use. Automatics have taught thousands of people to drive, enticing people to use cars when they wouldn’t have bought them otherwise. It has relieved anyone who wants to drive cars but doesn’t like constant shifting, the ease that ATs provide is great.

Ditto with the cruise control. While not useful on most Indian highways, it helps to just nibble on highway miles when it can be applied.

As for ADAS, why would humans really oppose a technology that would make their travel safer? ADAS will make driving safer for humans. Even though technology takes precedence over driving, it is for a good cause of safe driving.

Application-based systems are only in their infancy and manufacturers who install them in cars are at a disadvantage as customers are stuck with pre-mature technology. But, in the future, as the world continues to control our phones, it will be very helpful.

I agree that Tesla’s app-based system isn’t the best, and definitely a downside. But in general, the automotive world has only benefited from the growth of technology, and to me, any limitation on technology is like deliberately ignoring what the future might be.

I just hope companies spend more time perfecting their technology, instead of throwing half-baked technology at consumers, to avoid incidents like the Tesla incident mentioned here.

Here is what BHPian aargee had to say about it:

Here are some of the things we gave up:

Due to the hill-hold assist functions, we may soon be missing the hand brakes as well.

The point is, as evolution progresses humans adapt for the greater good of mankind; the only limit is our imagination and as long as there are dreams, there is progress, there is evolution, there are no limits to technology.

Here is what BHPian railfanwithk750 had to say about it:

No amount of technology would hurt, as long as there is a human “overshoot”. An AI-based algorithm or a cloud-based application shouldn’t have 100% control over any aspect of our life, be it our cars, our TVs or our phones.

If the technology is there for “support,” I should have full control over whether to seek full support, partial support, or turn it off completely without affecting any other functionality of the gadget or device.

Here is what Ampere BHPian had to say about it:

In my opinion, there are three aspects to this:

  • As long as technology remains a good servant and does not become the master, we are good. And we have to let it stay that way.
  • The reliability of the technology is the biggest threat to its adoption. Dependence and reliability are two sides of the same coin.
  • Last, but not least, is the rate of its adoption. In confluence with the previous one, it is also inevitable that some sections will switch to the newer technology earlier than others. So as long as this technology is made for self-consumption there is no problem. But at a time when one must also depend on others for the success of technology, this is a larger community issue (ADAS is a case in point).

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