Commentary

Uber's Self-Driving Truck Makes 35-Mile Run On Ohio Highway

Forget about a future of connected and driverless cars where messaging and other services are made available on in-case screens to people who sit in cars they used to drive.

It’s actually the driverless truck that is moving along at full speed, with a just successfully completed 35-mile highway test of a truck that drove itself in Ohio.

The truck traveled along with regular traffic with a driver in the truck positioned to take charge if something went wrong, which it didn’t. The truck made a 35-mile trek on Route 33, a four-lane divided road.

The maker of the self-driving truck is Otto, a company acquired by ridesharing service Uber a few months back for about $680 million.

Later in the week, the self-driving truck is scheduled to drive on the Ohio Turnpike.

The self-driving trucking test was announced by Ohio Governor John Kasich, who referred to it as “what the future of transportation will look like.”

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A similar test was run in Colorado last month, with Budweiser shipping a truckload of beer on a truck that drove itself for an entire stretch of highway, as I wrote about here at the time (52,000 Cans Of Budweiser Shipped 120 Miles In Self-Driving Truck). In that trial, the driver monitored the self-driving system from the sleeper berth in the back of the truck.

So far, these are closely monitored tests, with backup drivers in the trucks. And so far, all have gone as planned.

 

 

5 comments about "Uber's Self-Driving Truck Makes 35-Mile Run On Ohio Highway".
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  1. Douglas Ferguson from College of Charleston, November 30, 2016 at 10:43 a.m.

    One might feel bad for long-haul truckers whose career options are limited for making as much money after the robots take over. But we said goodbye to most travel agents, video rental clerks, and taxi drivers, too, so maybe career-planning must take these changes into account. Whose job is next? Maybe I can retire before all university classes are offered online.

  2. Chuck Martin from Chuck Martin replied, November 30, 2016 at 10:51 a.m.

    Valid poiints, Douglas, but new jobs also likely will be created as well.

  3. Rick Thomas from MediaRich Marketing replied, November 30, 2016 at 5:08 p.m.

    The "career planning" chatter is what got Donald Trump elected. Long haul truckers don't want to change their careers. That's pretty much all most of them know. Trump is promising to change the tide of a changing digital world and this story is another classic example of the challenges those with limited skills face. They don't want a challenge they want Archie and Edith to return us to the days of yesteryear. Fortunately it will be very difficult going back.

  4. Chuck Martin from Chuck Martin, November 30, 2016 at 7:32 p.m.

    This is hardly going to happen overnight, Rick. These are still in the early test and validatation stages, with closely tied local govenrment support, including a lot of resource.

  5. R MARK REASBECK from www.USAonly.US , December 1, 2016 at 8:22 p.m.

    Rick Thomas>
    So Rick, you want to travel down the freeway surrounded by 80,000 lb trucks with no driver?
    Tire blow outs, deer, mechanical failure etc, sorry I don't want a pile of plastic chips sorting that out next to me on a highway.  These techno-lemmings, create things that replace humans, and have no foresight to what it does in the big picture of a prosperous ecconomy.  You talk down to truckers, but all the junk that you wear, sit on, sleep in, cook with, etc, probably got delivered by a truck. 
    this story is another classic example of the challenges those with limited skills face.

    HMMMM Rick, so I guess if you rack up "Government sponsored" Student loans to get a degree, those "unlimited skills" usually open up an opportunity for those graduates to a 5 hour dinner shift at the Olive Garden.  Too bad their "unlimited skills" have no jobs to go to.

    America thrived when America Made things.  Of course today, working with your hands means typing on a keyboard.  Look back at the first Fortune 500 list (1955).  90% of the companies were manufacturers.  Today, #1` is Walmart  (They make nothing), the next 19  has GM and Ford, but the rest  are banks, Insurance, and Service companies (Verizon).  I don't have enough time to do a teaching here on how the ecconomy works, but obviously , tech-lemmings have no clue.

    Didn't Google just get hacked/compromised yesterday?   Yep affected millions.  So what happens when those hackers want to take one of those semi's for a "joy ride" hacking in with their joy stick?   NO THANX,  Archie never had to worry about hackers.



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