Self Driving Trucks!?!?

Autonomous Trucks (Wow what a concept!)2017-mercedes-benz-actros-autonomous-truck-fleetConversation Between me and my Dog.

By Nicholas Ross, Service Advisor for 2nd-to-None-Service

So self-driving trucks are going to be on the road soon, and everyone and their dog has an opinion on what this means.  Is this going to be the end of the trucking industry as we know it?  Will this be a new golden age where drivers can run a business out of their truck while delivering loads?  Will this turn into a Stephen King story and the trucks run amok and try and kill everyone on the road?  I’ve been reading up on this at home and talking it over with my dogs.  They are a bit confused on several issues, such as, What the hell and why I’m not giving them treats, but they’re good listeners (except for the deaf one). So here are their questions and my answers.

Dog: Who decided this was a good idea?
Me: Right now, we have several major companies working on these robots and numerous other companies trying to get into the game and a lot of issues coming up because of it.  In fact, the drama surrounding this is actually pretty interesting to read about.  You have Engineers jumping ship between companies and the inevitable lawsuits that follow.  But, at the moment, you have 2 big companies with actual trucks on the road.  Volvo’s Otto, which is the most German sounding name ever, is delivering beer in Colorado.  You also have Tesla, who has their robot truck delivering robot fridges between Texas and California.  I find it funny that one robot is bringing other robots to market, while the German truck is transporting beer.  I don’t know if this is intentional or not, but I love it.
Dog: Can I have a treat now?
Me: No. Sit!
Dog: *Sits* so what do the drivers do then?
Me: *Pets puppy* Good question.  Drivers for now are needed to be on the truck.  No way in hell are they going to just trust an unproven machine on the roads.  They even have a huge police escort every time it goes on a beer run.  The drivers are also needed for the back roads.  Right now, the computer is only able to handle highways and not even that well.  Apparently, the recognition software needs some work.  Right now, it can’t tell the difference between a DOT officer and a hobo flagging you down for a ride.  Sounds like the easiest way in the world to steal a truck.

Dog: You didn’t answer my question.
Me: Right!  Well, they sit in the back doing whatever.  For the tests to be considered successful there has to be no one at the wheel.  Which means that it’ll take at least 30 seconds for a driver to get into the seat and react to anything that the computer can’t handle.  A bit scary if you ask me.
However, this does leave the driver with a lot of time to do other things.  Play x-box, set up new deliveries, even run a second business out of their truck.  Not a bad thing to do even if the companies start paying lower salaries.
Dog: Why would the company do that?
Me:  Because companies would throw their employees into a snaky pit of spikes if it made good financial sense.  Things must balance out. What are the companies’ future plans and how do those plans correlate with the advancing times?  If the companies don’t change with the times they could find themselves out of business.
Dog: But what about all the employee force that are losing their jobs because of the change in technology?
Me: Great Question! What do we do now? We have to become part of the Entrepreneur force in this great country.  It’s our turn to start new and exciting businesses!
Dog: Right! *Wanders to the door* Sounds kind of scary to me.
Me: OK, we can be done for now. *Opens door and throws ball* Go get it boy!

catch-ballThank you for reading hope you enjoyed!

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~ by 2ndtononeservice on January 24, 2018.

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