How to worry about technology

Sometimes you can lose faith in technology. You can, can’t you? And now, just after a Google driverless car hit a bus, some more news on that front.

Google is investigating a special coating for the bodywork of those dumb-looking cars that are being tested. The coating is intended, in the sad event of a collision, to turn sticky. The idea is that if the car hits a pedestrian, the coating will help prevent said pedestrian from being hurled onto the road. This secondary impact is the one that often does the most damage.

I don’t know about you, but it seems to me that even Google aren’t that confident about their navigational technology. What they should be concentrating on, it seems to me, is making sure the cars don’t hit pedestrians. That may be a bit more than they can do right now, given that they can’t make the cars notice something the size of a bus. I’m going to be heading for the nearest stairs when I see one of these little buggers. I guess that like early Daleks they can’t climb steps.

There’s another potential hiccup here too. Any self-respecting teenage hoodlum is going to get hold of this magic coating, and spray up his car with it. Then he chucks a couple of his mates on the bonnet and roars around doing handbrake turns at the dead of night with his mates flypapered to the car. I might pay to watch that, if I could choose the divots to stick down. I’d be spoiled for choice round here.

Or a new game. Catch the old age pensioner. You hang around outside the local sheltered housing, ram a pensioner’s walker, and take the helpless OAP on a ride to the local petrol station or takeaway.

No this isn’t a good idea at all. I foresee all manner of trouble.

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