Google’s been spending the last couple days blowing our minds with their plans to unify their Android operating system, install Android in your light bulbs, and revolutionize the two-ton labyrinth market. We also learned today, however, that apparently Google’s got some other, long-term plans that may make bigger waves than resizeable widgets on tablets. If you can imagine such a thing!
Google is currently in the process of lobbying the Nevada state government to permit autonomous and self-driving cars on the streets of their fine state. The legislation Google’s pushing even includes such caveats as an exemption to the no texting and driving rule.
It’s a curious move, to be honest. Google only recently announced their previously secret project to automate cars in the first place and have not yet announced any plans to actually sell the technology to consumers. Regardless of their potential plans, though, legality would be an obvious roadblock and this move seems to be an attempt to reconcile that.
It’s too early to get excited. If advancements in alternative-energy vehicles have taught us anything, it’s that the car industry doesn’t iterate at the pace that the tech world does. And even if it did, we’ve got a force even slower to get through: the government. Nevada’s just one state, and we haven’t heard of Google attempting to convince any other states to join in the cause. Whether Nevada will be a beta testing ground for Google’s car, or if they’re getting ready to ramp up an industry-shifting revolution in automated vehicles is yet to be seen.
Nevertheless, that future you’ve been waiting for since the first time you saw Will Smith take manual control (gasp!) of his car in i, Robot? Yeah. It just got one step closer.