Grandma will not run over

Grandma will not run over

Grandma or child? Image: erincj338 / cc-by-sa-2.0

At present on autonomous vehicles is almost always asked if in the case of the trap the driverless car was rather over the old woman than the little child overriding. Monoton cars can make ethical decisions? Should you?

Last year, more than 26 are in Europe.000 people declined in traffic accident. There was still 135.000 seriously injured. While in the EU, 51 traffic lessons per 1 million inhabitants are to be lamented, Germany cuts a little better with 43 death trap. However, the first place in traffic safety occupy the Swedes with only 27 dead per million inhabitants. One of the main in the importation of driving assistance systems is to sustainably lower the number of traffic definitions. The company Volvo speaks, for example, from future cars in which no passenger can speak more than the active and passive safety of the vehicle will provide sufficient protection for all occupants.

It behaves differently if one takes into account the weaker road users. Sensors on the vehicle can recognize cyclists and even passers-by, but not with all imaginable accident scenarios. Against the passers-by, which runs between two parked buses on the strain, no herb nor sensor has grown. Therefore, the self-engineers break their heads of how even such persons could be recognized for free, with exploitation of the radio signal of their cell phones or with the help of video cameras from other vehicles, which then report the acute danger. However, it is probably clear that some types of traffic accident can not be avoided in the future. The question is, however, how to minimize the consequences.

In the case of the autonomous vehicles developed by my group, therefore always asked which alternative the autonomous vehicle was elected at an inevitable accident, in which it was only the decision to override a trace a child or in the neighboring track an old woman. In other words, the vehicle can make ethical decisions and decide for the rescue of the child, whereby the old woman was thinking about? Curiously, in such questions, the victim is always feminine, never an old Lord (and mostly a man asks the question).

On such a question in a short time to be able to can be used for me is always ungralievable, especially if a philosopher is sitting in the discussion round and he or she urged such ethical conscience from machines to such ethical conscience. That the technology has not yet achieved such a level, these conversation partners do not want to admit. From an omniscient philosopher, I was already taught on vehicle Kantianism at such a discussion round. That’s why I accept my opinion here on Telepolis, where you can spread to Veritas arguments in peace on the green table.

People and the ethical collapse

Before that, however, one must dismantle a legend, namely that people in such traffic scenarios or. Ethical accident situations behave. The best example, however, are in distress aircraft. How often do you read that a small commercial aircraft has landed on the highway? On the idea on the field or. Water to land come the fewest, as they think primarily to their own rescue and not to the hitherto uninvolved motorists. The following examples MOGEN show how people behave in extreme situations:

  • In 2014, a man and his daughter have been killed on the beach of Florida by a landing plane. Pilot and aircraft passengers remained unhurt.
  • Only last April has landed an airplane on the highway in California. A woman died in her vehicle and three more people who did not sow on the plane, were injured.
  • In Sudafrika, a plane tried to land on the highway in 2011 and collected a car. Only the inmates of the aircraft died.
  • In 1987, a cargo airplane landed with 18 horses and 12 people on the highway between Mexico City and Toluca for Rushhour. Up to 39 people died and a gas station that was striped by the landing plane, exploded. Pilot and Copilot, both US burger, survived. Four houses and 26 cars went up in flames.

Such examples illustrate what in any other context "ethical collapse" is called. It is not that the pilots of such aircraft had had only a few seconds for their decision. Mostly such a landing happens in sliding flight and it sometimes pass minutes.

There is also the problem of people who opt for a suicide. Transportation will then be used to the weapon, which unfortunately against himself against itself but also against uninvolved. There are drivers who wanted to force their suicide through a frontal collision with other vehicles. At the tragic case of German Wings machine, which is lucked in France 2015, probably remember most readers.

Of course one could say that this is mentally unstable persons, for the ethical limits of their own actions be blurred. But what can one say of motorists who regularly and without any need the maximum speed at a distance? In 2014, there was 45 in the strain traffic.000 inflate with personal injury, which were due to overhowed speed. In this country remains overhowed speed accident cause number 1. Up to 27% of the dead in the strain traffic are therefore too fast driving back. Who does not know someone who will inform you about the radar halls in the city via the navigation system, so that you can drive faster than allowed everywhere? Have you made with the person ever a ethical conversation?

And the ADAC! When the SPD chairman Sigmar Gabriel proposed a general speed limit for the highways, the ADAC strolled the European statistics to show that one in Germany was less risky ride. You like to compare apple with pears if it must be in the sense of free ride for free burgers. On the simple idea to prevent the lawn in general and pay attention to socially, because this transfers to the straws in the city, the ADAC does not come.

Years ago, someone has been attributable how many hours all drivers in Germany were losing when there were speed limits on all motorways. If one divides the number through the hours of a life, the number of "virtual dead", Which, of course, we want to avoid a waiver of the speed limit. The calculation meets me the same dubios, such as the Philip Morris for the Czech Republic. The Lawyers of Philip Morris have calculated namely how much the government is spent on the treatment of lung cancer effects, but also how much she saves from early death to pensions. Under the stroke, for the state treasury "profit" smoke.

As the examples show with the aircraft, an inevitable accident situation is the first reaction of many people, first of all to save their own skin. Rarely, maybe never, a driver will drive the abyss on the edge of a mountain trolley if he looks sublies a group of oncoming cyclists. People are not so selflessly knitted in most cases.

Passive and active security

Before we returned to the defenseless grandma in the middle of the track, we have to get started with a few collections for car safety.

As the accident statistics show, you can reduce the consequences of an accident by reducing the speed. The kinetic energy that has a vehicle is proportional to the product of the square of speed and mass. Since vehicles can drive far too fast, you need a sufficient upholstery for collisions. But you could build you much easier if you were developing concepts for urban vehicles that drive slower.

If you reduce the maximum speed in the city by 50%, reducing the energy of an impacting vehicle by 75%. In addition, the reduction of the mass of the vehicle, which then does not need so rough upholstery. Such concepts for urban vehicles (People Movers or. Shuttles) are currently proposed by universities and small startups. The so-called "Passive security" is automatically given in such vehicles.

However, if one was losing too much time in traffic? Not in Mexico City: There is the average speed of a vehicle (a week, during working time) say and write 7 km / h. In Berlin, it is 24 km / h, with much lower in the city center.

So you can drive slower and still arrive faster? Yes, by reducing the number of vehicles, which can also coordinate with public transport, and through "Car Sharing on Demand", So that the average occupancy of the cars can increase significantly over the current 1.3 occupants per vehicle.

Behind the development of autonomous vehicles is therefore, at least for me, a double motivation: increase the safety of the vehicle, which can capture traffic better over all around high-pricise sensor technology (active safety), and the transformation of the automobile in driverless taxis, which can be used shared by passengers, instead of the cars 95% of the time on the strain edge. This utopia for the city I have already completed in Telepolis (Autopie: Autonomous vehicles for car-sharing). This is the only reasonable solution for a megalopolis like Mexico City, where the cars traveling every moment, Stobstel on Stobstel, 5.000 Motorway kilometer fullen.

In summary, the vision for autonomous vehicles are the following: First, we needed much less cars in the city when these shared taxis were and optimally coordinated with public transport. Second, we can then drastically reduce the maximum speed, making the vehicles automatically safer, as the impact energy was clearly accumulated. Nevertheless, we all came faster than today to the destination, as the traffic was falling again.

The existing vehicles could also be lost by telecommunications and one "Collective touring" create. If I read in the vehicle, work with the computer or even sleep, then the time in traffic is no problem. The unproductive time of self-performance is then transformed in time for myself.

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