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A Look Into the FutureSelf-Driving Cars
Written by Jaehong Min | Published. 2018.03.28 16:09 | Count : 1153

On November 18th, the city of Pangyo hosted the Pangyo Autonomous Motor Show 2017. The motor show showcased the emerging technology of the autonomously driving vehicle. 

We live in the age of the Internet, computers, and smartphones.  Taken together, we call them information technology (IT)--storing, manipulating and transmitting information through computers. As many devices came on line to take advantage of IT, the community of such devices gave birth to a concept called Internet of Things (IoT). According to Texas Instruments, “The IoT creates an intelligent, invisible network fabric that can be sensed, controlled and programmed. IoT-enabled products employ embedded technology that allows them to communicate, directly or indirectly, with each other or the Internet.” As such, in a world with IoT, all technology will be interconnected through a universal platform that is the Internet. Electronics around the world will be able to both send and receive data with one another through the Internet. As IoT has grown, it is making hitherto unimaginable new technologies possible. A major example of this is the autonomously driving vehicles. 

The concept of autonomously driving vehicles was first brought up in the late 1900s. As computer-related fields converged, researchers started to delve into the field of self-driving cars. A self-driving car, also known as the autonomously driving vehicle is a vehicle capable of recognizing its surrounding environment and driving without human input. IoT makes this technology possible by allowing self-driving cars to access the most recent map data and other navigational information and share them with other self-driving cars.

At the Pangyo Autonomous Motor Show 2017, there was an outdoor portion to the venue, in which people could test-ride on a demonstrator self-driving car. The car was retrieving topographical GPS information from satellites in real time and driving by itself. The steering wheel was moving on its own. The car only drove up and down a designated route for test driving, but riding in a self-driving car was a novel experience nonetheless. There was also a self-driving bus called the Zero Shuttle displayed at the venue, and this bus will start running in the Pangyo area starting on March 12th of this year. Pangyo is a suitable environment for testing self-driving cars, because the traffic is not as crowded as that of Seoul. The bus will be used for transporting commuters to their office complexes. 

[The Zero Shuttle]
[In Front of the Test-Driving Car]
[Inside the Test-Driving Car]

Inside the buildings of the venue, many people from businesses related to the autonomous vehicle industry showcased their technology, such as car cameras and video analysis technology. Also, there was a competition where middle and high school students built and ran Lego robot vehicles. 

The autonomous vehicle field is one that has many advantages. It is hoped that the commercialization of autonomous vehicles will eliminate traffic accidents resulting from human error. Drunk driving will become a thing of the past. These vehicles can increase mobility for the young, elderly, and the disabled. However,  the technology is not yet mature, making safety a lingering concern. For example, the question of who will be held responsible for accidents involving autonomous vehicles remains controversial. Regardless of the technological limitations, there was a palpable excitement among the public visiting the Pangyo Autonomous Motor Show 2017. Most, especially the industry representatives present at the venue, felt that there is a bright future in autonomous vehicles. 








Jaehong Min
Korea International School

Jaehong Min  student_reporter@dherald.com

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