Dawn of the Dead?

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Dawn of the Dead?

Postby Rope-Pusher » Mon Oct 29, 2012 8:47 pm

The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers sent out a press release earlier this month in which they claim that by 2040 75% of the vehicles on the road will be autonomous.
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But, the dawn of the self-driving car seems like a good time for driving enthusiasts to ask a question that will shape the experience of driving for the sake of driving in the years to come: Is driving still about going faster?

Because if it is, and buyers of performance cars continue to accept more and more automation in the name of greater speed, we'll end up being automated out of the performance driving equation.

A dual-clutch automatic can shift faster than a human can shift—and in some cases it can shift before the driver even knows a shift is necessary. But when it comes to which is more enjoyable to actually operate, a real manual transmission wins every time.

Sure, it's cool to pretend you're an F1 star for an hour or so. But before long, you realize that shifting gears with the tip of your outstretched finger makes you look and feel ineffectual, sterile and utterly miserable. The little click that sounds from those plastic petals is the sound of everything vital in the driver's own character being erased.

But we've been talking about preferring conventional manual transmissions for years and they still aren't selling. They aren't even being offered for sale all that commonly.

Automakers would prefer to make just one transmission for each car. Though automatics are generally more expensive to build than manuals, making just one transmission is cheaper than making two, even if the one you make is the pricier one. Because automatics sell, and return better fuel-economy numbers, the automakers are working very hard to convince drivers that today's automatics are the product of “better thinking.”

We're told that those miserable little paddles make your car faster, and because to some, faster always means better. (It might also be that some car buyers and even some auto writers are now too lazy, or too old to enjoy operating a manual transmission, but let's pretend it isn't.) So, if we operate under the assumption that we made our left legs vestigial because the car does shifting faster and better, we should think about what we'll do when the car can do everything better.


Read more: http://www.autoweek.com/article/2012102 ... z2Ajqr1E33
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Re: Dawn of the Dead?

Postby stickicivi » Wed Oct 31, 2012 2:15 pm

I feel the same way. I'm young and new to stick, but I always wanted to learn because I thought manuals were just faster. Now I am hearing drag racers utilizing automatics and supercars that come in automatic only (the new nissan). I've quickly realized that standard driving is so much more than the fast aspect, and I appreciate it for its fun aspect and even as young as I am (21) I don't think anyone will ever convince me that an automatic anything is more fun, even if it is faster.
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Re: Dawn of the Dead?

Postby Squint » Sat Nov 03, 2012 4:43 pm

stickicivi wrote:I feel the same way. I'm young and new to stick, but I always wanted to learn because I thought manuals were just faster. Now I am hearing drag racers utilizing automatics and supercars that come in automatic only (the new nissan). I've quickly realized that standard driving is so much more than the fast aspect, and I appreciate it for its fun aspect and even as young as I am (21) I don't think anyone will ever convince me that an automatic anything is more fun, even if it is faster.

+1

Also, I like your sig with the bicycle :lol:
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Re: Dawn of the Dead?

Postby Shadow » Sat Nov 03, 2012 10:45 pm

Rope-Pusher wrote:The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers sent out a press release earlier this month in which they claim that by 2040 75% of the vehicles on the road will be autonomous.
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Never gonna happen. Not even close.

When I was a kid, I thought we'd see flying cars (Jetsons style) by the time I was 40. In fact, that's what Popular Mechanics magazine claimed back then. By 2040, we probably won't see many more autonomous cars than Google has in its fleet today.
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Re: Dawn of the Dead?

Postby Rope-Pusher » Sat Jan 12, 2013 12:13 am

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Re: Dawn of the Dead?

Postby Rope-Pusher » Sat Jan 26, 2013 2:17 pm

...and Dust to Dust

Google Poses Serious Competitive Threat to Auto Industry

Two giants are beginning to wage an epic battle for the soul of the auto industry, and yet hardly anyone seems to take notice.

One entity is the traditional auto industry. The other is led by Google and other mostly non-automotive technology companies. The battle is over self-driving cars.

According to “Self-Driving Cars: The Next Revolution,” a recent study by KPMG and the Center for Automotive Research, if autonomous vehicles replace conventional ones and became driverless family taxis in the future, the type of engine they have and the unique driving dynamics they might exhibit becomes unimportant.

And if autonomy makes crashes a thing of the past, then the need for highly engineered body structures and passive safety features such as airbags is eliminated. Vehicles then become simple mechanical devices that can be built by just about anyone. The only important parts are the electronics and sensors, and these all could be made by Google and its suppliers. So Google takes over the auto industry, outsources the greasy parts to whomever and the old-fashioned auto industry turns to dust.

http://wardsauto.com/blog/google-poses- ... c4enews=42
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Re: Dawn of the Dead?

Postby Rope-Pusher » Sat Jan 26, 2013 4:34 pm

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Re: Dawn of the Dead?

Postby Rope-Pusher » Wed Feb 06, 2013 9:36 pm

From Autoline:

"When the new S-class Mercedes comes out later this year it’s going to be the first car ever with a limited form of autonomous steering. Mercedes calls it Distronic Plus with Driver Assist. When a driver engages the adaptive cruise control, the car will automatically do the steering. But it will only work as long as the driver keeps his or her hands on the steering wheel. There’s a sensor that shuts it off if your hands are not on the wheel. I’ve got to believe the lawyers forced the engineers to add that because there’s no technical reason why that’s needed. But this shows that autonomous driving will be here faster than most people expect and now Mercedes will be able to claim it was the first in the world to offer this technology, albeit in limited form."

http://media.daimler.com/dcmedia/1-921- ... 0156402142
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Re: Dawn of the Dead?

Postby Shadow » Wed Feb 06, 2013 10:01 pm

So....autonomous steering, but only when the driver has his hands on the steering wheel? That might be the most stupid & pointless automotive advancement of the year! LOL

What's next, a faucet that will turn itself on or off, but only if the user holds on to the faucet handle?
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Re: Dawn of the Dead?

Postby tankinbeans » Thu Feb 07, 2013 3:58 pm

Shadow wrote:So....autonomous steering, but only when the driver has his hands on the steering wheel? That might be the most stupid & pointless automotive advancement of the year! LOL

What's next, a faucet that will turn itself on or off, but only if the user holds on to the faucet handle?

Adaptive cruise, as long as you keep your foot firmly on the accelerator?
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Re: Dawn of the Dead?

Postby Shadow » Thu Feb 07, 2013 5:54 pm

tankinbeans wrote:
Shadow wrote:So....autonomous steering, but only when the driver has his hands on the steering wheel? That might be the most stupid & pointless automotive advancement of the year! LOL

What's next, a faucet that will turn itself on or off, but only if the user holds on to the faucet handle?

Adaptive cruise, as long as you keep your foot firmly on the accelerator?


LOL...yeah, that's a more relevant example. Silly, no?
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Re: Dawn of the Dead?

Postby tankinbeans » Thu Feb 07, 2013 6:05 pm

Shadow wrote:
tankinbeans wrote:
Shadow wrote:So....autonomous steering, but only when the driver has his hands on the steering wheel? That might be the most stupid & pointless automotive advancement of the year! LOL

What's next, a faucet that will turn itself on or off, but only if the user holds on to the faucet handle?

Adaptive cruise, as long as you keep your foot firmly on the accelerator?


LOL...yeah, that's a more relevant example. Silly, no?

Car manufacturers idle at silly when it comes to catering to techno-tards. My car even has way too much going.
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Re: Dawn of the Dead?

Postby Rope-Pusher » Thu Feb 07, 2013 9:54 pm

Slushbox trans shifts itself, but only if you camp your foot on a fake left pedal?
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Re: Dawn of the Dead?

Postby Shadow » Thu Feb 07, 2013 11:05 pm

Rope-Pusher wrote:Slushbox trans shifts itself, but only if you camp your foot on a fake left pedal?



Not if you're using cruise control. My slushbox 4Runner shifts all by itself when necessary if cruise control is engaged. No feet required :lol:
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Re: Dawn of the Dead?

Postby Shadow » Thu Feb 07, 2013 11:10 pm

tankinbeans wrote:Car manufacturers idle at silly when it comes to catering to techno-tards. My car even has way too much going.


I like technology when it's not silly. A car that steers itself only if the driver keeps his/her hands on the steering wheel is something I definitely consider silly. Have you ever heard of "active braking" systems? There are a few different systems out there, but most of them simply provide full braking force when the system determines that the driver is in a panic/emergency stop situation. Research has shown that lots of drivers don't apply enough force on the brake pedal to provide maximum deceleration during a panic stop, so car manufacturers developed these active braking systems to help drivers stop as fast as possible. That's a good use of technology, IMO.
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