Driving Toward the Future: What Will Autonomous Transportation Be Like in a Circular City?
In order to become to truly low-impact to the environment, our independent attitude toward travel will have to change. What does that mean exactly? Well, on average, we all want to own our own car and go where we want to go when we want to go. Our current individualistic culture supports this desire, while a circular city’s collectivism would not.
Transportation would become less about individual ownership and more about accessibility for all. For the health of the environment, it’s not feasible for every individual of the populous to own a car. Fully accessible public transport, on the other hand, would lower environmental impact, unclog roads, and overall improve the efficiency of travel for all.
In our fictional circular city, Prefecture imagines autonomous public transport taking form as driverless, color-coded pods that are well-attuned to each individual of the populous’ travel needs. The color-coded pods would provide visually recognizable signals to the entire populous. Red pods could signal emergency travel to a medical center, green pods could signal the delivery or transport of goods, blue pods could signal the transport of people, etc.
The pods that travel on electric grids controlled by KAILE would know people’s basic schedules and when they need to travel to work, scheduled activities, and more. KAILE would collect this data on each individual and input it. Presumably, there would also be options to request travel for when transportation is required unexpectedly like for medical emergencies or for spontaneous activities.
These autonomous pods work well for inner-city travel, but what happens when you want to travel outside of your city. Prefecture suggests drones that magnetize to the pods and can simply carry the pods over large distances of rough terrain. While flying cars are often the first thing that comes to mind when we think of the future, are they really necessary or sustainable? The drones could also function as security, perform surveillance, deliver packages, drop off first aid kits, water crops, and more.
When self-driving, autonomous vehicles are mentioned, many people express trepidation at their own loss of control, but perhaps that is just what we need. Over 90% of collisions on the road are caused by human error alone. Once the technology is tested and perfected, autonomous vehicles would dramatically reduce accidents and allow people to get more things accomplished while traveling.
However, one thing some people can’t quite resolve with autonomous vehicles is the loss of the driving experience itself. Would you miss the feeling of driving? Some say this desire to drive could be satisfied with virtual reality games that simulate driving, racing, or mudding without the associated risk. What do you think about this?
What questions or ideas do you have about futuristic transport? Is the desire to drive something that can be mimicked and replaced in the form of a game?
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