Waymo’s various cars. Photo: Waymo

John Krafcik, CEO of Google’s self-driving car arm Waymo, said this week that it will take decades for autonomous cars to be ready to drive in snow and winter. Hm. I wonder what else is going to happen by a few decades’ time. Oh, right.

The news comes to us from CNET, which summarized Krafcik’s recent address at a Wall Street Journal conference on Tuesday:

John Krafcik, head of the self-driving car unit of Google parent company Alphabet, said that though driverless cars are “truly here,” they’re not yet ubiquitous. And he doesn’t think the industry will ever achieve the highest driving rating of being able to drive at any time of year in any weather and any condition.

Instead, “autonomy always will have some constraints,” he said.

“It’s really, really hard,” Krafcik said. “You don’t know what you don’t know until you’re actually in there and trying to do things.”

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The story’s headline is “Waymo CEO: Autonomous cars won’t ever be able to drive in all conditions”, but that doesn’t account for the (inevitable) day when permanent summer is a thing.

Huh. This all sounds sort of familiar. I wonder where I heard this before. Oh it was me. I nearly forgot about that!

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In any case, I’m glad we’re all working really hard on getting cars to drive themselves. Now, if anyone else is free and has a few billion dollars lying around, our infrastructure is crumbling, public transit is a mess and we need this sorted out yesterday.