Ultimately, people are likely to continue owning cars -- at least in many parts of the world. "Pride of ownership" is a hard habit to break. As a result, the driver's license will remain a fact of life for some, though acquiring one has already become less important to many young people.
4. IEEE predicts that public attitudes toward autonomous vehicles will have undergone a dramatic shift by 2040. Jeffrey Miller, an Associate Professor in Computer Systems Engineering at the University of Alaska Anchorage says, "Car manufacturers have already started to incorporate automated features, including parallel parking assistance, automatic braking systems and drowsy driver protection, to help people slowly ease into utilizing driverless technologies. Over the next 28 years, use of more automated technologies will spark a snowball effect of acceptance and driverless vehicles will dominate the road."
Probability: 100%. Miller and his colleagues are absolutely right. As we said last month, fully autonomous vehicles may be years, if not decades away, but semi-autonomous features like parking assist and adaptive cruise-control are already here. We've become accustomed to smartphones in just five years. Surely 28 years is enough time for us to adapt to this new car technology.
What do you think? Are we too aggressive in our assessments of IEEE's predictions? Too conservative? Feel free to weigh in with your comments below.