Ghost Drivers for Autonomous Cars

How would you react if you found yourself face-to-face with a driverless car?

While the nod of a driver instantly lets you know that you can cross the road, there is no self-evident equivalent in the language of automated vehicles. The automaker Ford has created a buzz in recent days by sending out a driverless car into the streets of Washington D.C. Was it a slip up? This is what observers thought before realizing that the experiment, led by Virginia Tech University, had the hallmarks of a well-planned operation. A “ghost” driver was seated at the wheel of the car, but he was made invisible to pedestrians by being cleverly disguised… as a car seat. Was it a bad joke? On the contrary, it was a vision of the (near or far?) future, which will require the reinvention of the mode of communication between pedestrians and cars.

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