Like it or not, self-driving  technology has arrived – Find out more on Wednesday night


Good afternoon everyone,

On Wednesday evening,  Ken Grant of AAA Mid-Atlantic will offer a glimpse into the future of  transportation.

The Technology Forum of Delaware event will be held at the new Wilmington University campus on  Route 202, near Concord Mall.

For the last few years, AAA, which has regional operations in Wilmington, has been focusing on developments that include self-driving vehicles as well as electric cars and trucks.

The presentation comes with the provocative title How Self-Driving Cars Will Disrupt Every Business In Existence.

Trucks should also have been added to the name of the event since seismic changes are likely to take place in  business as Fortune 500 companies work to meet internal clean energy goals while dealing with a growing shortage of drivers.

Even regional trucker and warehouse company, A. Duie Pyle, is testing electric delivery trucks at its site  in New York City. Pyle has a terminal in New Castle and headquarters in West Chester, PA.

It turns out that in urban areas may work well for electric vehicles since the number of miles driven each day is less than in suburban areas and batteries can last long enough to travel those routes.

Drivers will still be around in crowded cities but many tasks can be handled with autonomous technology features.

Getting a fix on what is taking place isn’t easy, given the unrealistic hype that is spewed out by the green new deal crowd and the rants of cranky critics of anything new that comes down the pike.

Currently,   electric vehicles account for only 1,100 of the nearly 450,000 vehicles registered in the state. Hybrid gas and electrics account for another 12,000 registrations. Electrics are leading the charge in self-driving technology.

Still, Teslas and other assorted electric vehicles are gradually becoming a more common sight on the state’s roadways. The price of batteries continues to drop as the charging range of EVs improves.

Detractors and the media play up accidents that occurred in places where driverless vehicles are being tested and in instances where motorists take their hands off the wheel in irresponsible tests of  Tesla’s self-driving features.

Meanwhile features such as automatic braking systems, vehicle tailgating, and even automatic parallel parking assist are already here.

Such systems have their limitations. AAA recently issued a warning on relying on systems that are supposed to detect pedestrians on streets. Like the human eye, the systems have trouble spotting people in dark clothing at night.

Then we have the infortainment panels that are approaching the size of iPad screens. The potential for distracted driving is clear.

It all  adds up to an interesting evening for tech and auto enthusiasts.

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