Google cars drive themselves better than people do

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Wednesday, October 30, 2013

MIT Technology Review: The head of Google’s autonomous-car project says that data from its  cars, all Prius and Lexus models, demonstrate more defensive and smoother driving practices when self-driven than when they are driven by humans.

Chris Urmson made those claims today at a robotics conference in Santa Clara, California. He presented results from two studies of data from the hundreds of thousands of miles Google’s vehicles have logged on public roads in California and Nevada.

One of those analyses showed that when a human was behind the wheel, Google’s cars accelerated and braked significantly more sharply than they did when piloting themselves. Another showed that the cars’ software was much better at maintaining a safe distance from the vehicle ahead than the human drivers were.

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