Humans like to blame computers for their mistakes. It’s the “dog ate my homework” excuse of the digital age.
Search giant Google is turning that notion on its head, though, after its famed ‘driverless car’ was involved in a minor accident earlier this month.
Google says the car’s human occupant is to blame for the wreck, which included five cars. No injuries were reported.
“Safety is our top priority. One of our goals is to prevent fender-benders like this one, which occurred while a person was manually driving the car,” a Google spokesperson told Business Insider.
Initially it was reported the computerized car caused the accident, but Google released a statement saying the human occupant was manually driving when he rear-ended another Prius near the company’s Mountain View, Ca., headquarters.
Various tech blogs have been on the story like LulzSec on an open port on a Pentagon computer. You can almost hear the disappointment (or is it disbelief?) in the article on Jalopnik. They seem to be rooting for Google’s failure like Steve Jobs.
Is Google lying? I doubt it. There seems to have been plenty of witnesses.
But the day a driverless car finally does wreck, there’s going to be a very confused cop writing up the police report. I’m guessing they don’t teach that at the police academy.
Perhaps more troubling: If a driverless car has a human driver … can we really call it a driverless car?