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article imageGoogle designs prototype of driverless car

By Sonia D'Costa     May 28, 2014 in Technology
Google has produced the prototype of a car that can drive through busy streets without a driver. The driverless car has attracted media attention chiefly for the features it lacks — steering wheel, brake, dashboard, and accelerator.
Sergey Brin, the co-founder of Google, announced at the annual Code Conference held recently in South Los Angeles that the giant company has designed and rolled out a line of driverless cars, which it plans to test on the streets of California during the next two years.
According to a post on Google’s official blog, the small cars do not have accelerators, brakes, steering wheels, and dashboards simply “because they don’t need them.” Google’s sensors and software perform all the tasks that a car driver normally does. The blog post further states that the cars “will be very basic” as the company aims “to learn from them and adapt them as quickly as possible.” Owners of Google's driverless car simply have to push a button to stop and start the vehicle and then sit back while it drives them to their destination. Google calls it “an important step toward improving road safety and transforming mobility for millions of people.”
According to Chris Urmson, who directs the company’s Self-Driving Car Project, the car eliminates the need to search for parking spots and also the dangers of drunk driving. He says that the company has plans to roll out 100 prototypes. This summer, the company will test earlier versions of its driverless cars, which were built with manual controls. If the tests are satisfactory, the company will hold a pilot program in California during the next two years.
Google claims that its driverless cars are safe as their sensors are capable of removing blind spots and spotting objects up to a distance of two football fields in every direction possible. To make them as safe as possible, Google has capped their speed at 25 mph.
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