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Commentaries


2016

  • Automated Car Woes---Whoa There!

    With all the growing interest in automated cars and driverless cars and recent accidents involving them, we thought we would turn to Risks founder Peter G. Neumann for perspective. Neumann has been moderating the ACM Risks Forum (risks.org) since 1985, and has accumulated a vast trove of experience in the ways that automated systems can not only provoke but enable mishaps. Here he offers an inventory of how automotive automation systems can fail and concludes that the greatest threats to safety come from human tendencies such as being distracted at the moment the system needs an intervention, or having their skills as operators grow rusty over time because the automation is pretty good most of the time.



  • Science, Reason, and Robots
    Science depends on logical reasoning. However, the conclusions one comes to intimately depend on the explicit, or more often implicit, assumptions on which the reasoning is based. ...