Self-driving cars aren't fundamentally about helping the vision impaired, but they sure would be useful.
We've seen a great number of technological ideas on these pages that help blind people move around the world, but navigation is not enough to travel even moderate distances. Essentially, all powered forms of transportation require a driver, and public transportation is not ubiquitous. All this means is that blind people outside cities lack the ability to achieve a level of independence that we all cherish.
Google is showing off its self driving car as a solution for blind folks when there is no one to take them to an important errand. As far as medical uses for autonomous cars, we also imagine thousands of lives saved by having drunk drivers sleep through their driving while the machine steers with a clear mind.
This post also appears on medGadget, an Atlantic partner site.