What? My car thinks I’m stupid?

Our cars have become intelligent. I didn’t think it would be like this!

By Mike Meyer

“Pink vintage Cadillac car on pavement on clear day in Arts District with tower on skyline” by NeONBRAND on Unsplash

Folks, we have a problem. Our cars are talking to us in ways that we don’t understand. They’ve been talking to us for years about fastening our seat belts and closing the damn door but this is different. Our cars are smarter than we are and they know it. They know everything that matters and they know that we don’t.

If you have an older car you should appreciate it. It is probably polite and after you get the key in, the door closed, the engine started it leaves you alone. That is no longer the case. I’ve come to realize that this is actually an indicator of a much bigger problem. Our world is changing into things that we think of as inanimate but now they aren’t. We didn’t really have an idea of how that would work in everyday life. Now we’re learning.

When everyone thinks of self driving (autonomous) cars we think of them as what they replaced. We will all have automated chauffeurs except you won’t have to pay for or deal with another person. That may be what it will be like in the end but now we have to raise them. That’s the first problem.

Like most new cars my wife’s new car has pieces of self driving technology. This really started off several years ago with back up cameras giving video when you reverse. We were looking forward to that on her new car. We didn’t count on the rapid advances that are being made. Sensors checking all around the car.

The first backup cameras that I experienced were really nice. You could see behind you really without having to squint at both side rear view mirrors and try to turn far enough around to see behind and down the road on each side. But now we have much expanded intelligence. Different colored arrows that blink at things you should avoid tied to beeps and tones when you are so obtuse as to get within two feet of a noticed object.

We have both taken to answering the car and trying to calm it down when it begins chirping and blinking before we are even out of the garage. Now I realize how simple it is to back down the driveway into the street with my old car. No complaining, no flashing arrows on the dashboard video.

Of course as soon as I begin to think I’ll just turn all of this stuff off the car let’s me know that our neighbor put his trash can out early and I’m about to back into it. Hmm. Thank you, car.

Written by

Educator, CIO, retired entrepreneur, grandfather with occasional fits of humor in the midst of disaster. . .

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