In the April issue of PCD&F/CIRCUITS ASSEMBLY, I wrote about the need for a balance between autonomous machinery and human-operation equipment. I wrote the piece in the aftermath of the Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 disappearance, and referenced, among other things, the Toyota sudden unintended acceleration problems and the self-driving cars that are beginning to appear on US streets.
Seems I’m not the only one working their way through this. On May 5, a pair of researchers at the Brookings Institution began a series of papers (The Robots Are Coming: The Project On Civilian Robotics) that considers the legal ramifications of driverless cars.
That led me to Google, which uncovered a few more references to potential tort roadblocks.
While my work considered the technical and emotional issues that always factor into to any major technology shift, the legal aspects are equally in play here. For those interested in the subject, the Brookings Institution project is especially worth a read.