For the third consecutive year, Apple tops the list of most innovative companies.
California Bill Accelerates Driverless Car Race
Traditionally, driving has been a skill that requires education, hours of real road experience and training in the driver's seat. But the future of driving may look very different, considering the "hands-off" approach Google has been taking in the development of its much-anticipated self-driving car concept.
Having successfully lobbied the California state legislature to pass a bill that effectively makes driverless cars legal for testing on state roadways, Google has reached a milestone for their already extensive autonomous car technology program, one that the company boasts has logged over 300,000 incident-free miles of self-driving. In doing so, they hope to partner with automobile manufacturers and provide the technology necessary for producing new autonomous vehicles, instead of producing their own self-driving cars.
However, there have been whispers about auto companies tinkering with their own self-driving concept cars. After the announcement of the new bill, the murmur has become louder. Nissan unveiled its driverless car concept earlier this month at a major technology exhibition in Japan, mere days after the driverless car bill had passed in California.
Not to be left out of the race, major automakers Ford Motor Co., Volvo and Audi AG have been working on self-driving cars as well as BMW AG, which has been testing a semi-driverless 3-series concept vehicle for over five years now.
Though the race seems tight and public reception lukewarm for now, California Governor Jerry Brown believes self-driving automobiles may be the future of road transportation, despite uneasiness with the idea. "Anyone who gets inside a car and finds out the car is driving will be a little skittish," he says, "but they'll get over it."