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MIT Technology Review

Putting the Future of Cars in Context

As cars of tomorrow get attention at the Frankfurt motor show, here’s a reminder of what vehicle-connectivity technology will mean.

September 19, 2015

It can be hard to imagine the future of driving, not only because of the prospect of automated cars but also because of the changes that will come as cars talk to each other and to the Internet. And that’s even before we get cars that change shape, cars with holographic displays, and cars with built-in refrigerators—all of which are on display this week at the Frankfurt Motor Show in Germany.

Automating and networking cars has the potential to make the roads safer. It also figures to remap the automotive industry, putting more power in Silicon Valley’s hands as software and applications become a key differentiator in the driving experience. But as these stories from the MIT Technology Review archives remind us, the technology will create new potential problems. How, for example, can automated cars keep drivers from completely checking out, given that they might be needed to take over on a moment’s notice? In fact, are fully automated cars even possible? Ideas abound in the links below.

Proceed With Caution toward the Self-Driving Car, April 2013, by Will Knight

Driverless Cars Are Further Away Than You Think, October 2013, by Will Knight

Lazy Humans Shaped Google’s New Autonomous Car, May 2014, by Tom Simonite

Car-Based Technology That Could Invigorate Cities, November 2014, by Will Knight

10 Breakthrough Technologies: Car-to-Car Communication, February 2015, by Will Knight

Rebooting the Automobile, June 2015, by Will Knight

Taking Control of Cars From Afar, March 2011, by Erica Naone