As a cadet at the academy, a wide range of interactive exhibits allow you to diagnose injured Klingons in sick bay, set phasers to stun in security, investigate the unknown at the science station, and more. After completing and signing in to each interactive portion with your RFID wristband, all Starfleet cadets must take the Kobayashi Maru test from the bridge of the Enterprise. At the conclusion of your training, the system says which part of Starfleet you’d be best at: are you captain material, or would you be better off as the next Mr. Spock? I learned that I’m not really cut out for security, because phasers are actually hard to aim. Gun-shaped guns turn out to be much easier!
On Friday, head of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) Mark Rosekind told an audience in Detroit, Michigan that car makers “cannot wait for perfect” when it comes to developing and deploying self-driving car technology. The Wall Street Journal reported that Rosekind said automation would “save people’s lives” in a time when auto fatalities have been up 8 percent since 2014.
Rosekind’s comments come after a man using Tesla’s autopilot system fatally crashed into a left-turning truck in Florida. The incident is believed to be one of the first involving a car in autonomous mode. Tesla has said that the car’s sensors didn’t register the image of the left-turning truck in the glare of the bright Florida sun. Although Rosekind didn’t address the Tesla crash explicitly, he noted that the NHTSA’s mandate is to reduce fatalities. Taking human error out of the process of driving could theoretically reduce fatal crashes.
Despite Tesla’s most recent crash, regulators seem enthusiastic about getting more autonomous vehicles on the road in the near future. Earlier this week, Department of Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx told an audience in San Francisco that “autonomous doesn’t mean perfect,” but that “we need industry to take the safety aspects of this very seriously.”
One might ask why we would ever want to create robots that can do human work when we have so many people who need jobs. The goal of robotics should not be to replace humans with robots, but rather to improve productivity and safety, removing humans from harm’s way and enabling them to focus on things that humans should be doing. Read More