[SystemSafety] Nature article on driverless cars

Peter Bernard Ladkin ladkin at causalis.com
Mon Apr 16 13:35:19 CEST 2018


I guess I am not making my points very well. But I would like to continue trying to do so.

On 2018-04-16 11:38 , Michael Jackson wrote:
> Peter: 
> The title of the article is 'People must retain control of autonomous vehicles’. The point is made explicitly:
Yes. But I still don't find the argument as they give it persuasive. They also compare AVs with
aerospace automation, as I suggested might be done, but they are comparing here apples with oranges.

I missed their argumentation about inherent unpredictability because I often read such articles not
linearly, but by looking at the conclusions, then seeing how the reasoning is put together to
establish them (based on what I think arguments are - e.g.,
http://philosophy.ucla.edu/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/WhatIsArg.pdf ). Since (what I thought were)
the conclusions were weak, I missed the stronger points. Mea culpa.

Their aerospace comparison is apples and oranges because AVs are using DLNNs essentially, and
commercial-aerospace systems avoid them. It is open to a AV-DLNN-advocate to argue that...

[begin putting-words-into-mouth]

...commercial aeronautics needs pilot supervision because (a) they are bound up in heavy,
conservative regulations, and (b) they don't and won't use DLNNs. Further, they tried to use DLNNs
in a research context and they worked pretty well. So maybe aeronautics should have figured out how
to certify them as we are doing. And of course we have far more resources in play. And accidents due
to mistaken technology only cost us a person or two, and not a few hundred each time as they do in

[end putting-words-into-mouth]

The authors of the Nature opinion are advocating human supervisory control (in their title, as you
point out) but not addressing any of the known and unsolved issues with it. It is open to an
AV-advocate to argue that "people ... retain[ing] control" brings you such problems and it leads to
a worse solution than full AV without supervisory control. (Again, I am not advocating this point of
view. I am merely expressing it so it can be debated.)


Prof. Peter Bernard Ladkin, Bielefeld, Germany
Je suis Charlie
Tel+msg +49 (0)521 880 7319  www.rvs-bi.de

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