Just a bit ago, Matt Drudge Twittled that a robot car was a jerk to him, and he'd managed to trap it in a parking lot:
Perhaps without even realizing it, Matt Drudge has given us a taste of what the future of driving will be like, and has stumbled upon one of the biggest unanswered questions: how do human drivers settle an autonomous car's hash when we know that stupid smug robot is asking for it?
The tweet brings up all kinds of other questions, too.What were the circumstances of the alleged cutting off? Did Drudge actually chase and corner the car in a parking lot? Does that actually work? Because I've just been thinking about that! How did he do that?
I'm not sure if an autonomous car will respond to being "chased" at all, so if Drudge found a way to bully a robot car into a parking lot, that's news. And so is whatever he does next.
He's asking us "now what" but he has some options:
• Yell at the car, with obscenities designed to make a robot angry. Maybe "fuse-fucking capacitence sucker" or "DE-9 socket fucking limp-cabled zero-divider" or something like that. I bet the "zero-dividing" thing will really piss it off.
• Fight the car. This could go either way. The car could just sit there as Drudge kicks and pounds on the hood, maybe breaks off an antenna or a wiper arm, or some sensor could get triggered and the car could very rapidly kill him. Possibly just injure him. Sure, it's just a Lexus, but it's still well over 2,000 pounds of steel and plastic.
• Fight the car by proxy. Maybe Drudge has a Roomba or some other commercially available robot handy he can use to have fight the robot.
• Fight the car with his car. He could go Ripley-in-the-mechanized-load-lifter-suit on the robot car and ram it with his car a few times. Should be effective, though the car may be adept at dodging, and it could damage Drudge's vintage and beautifully restored Mustang II (not verified).
• Shame the car on the internet. That's pretty much the path he's chosen so far.
• Pee on the car. This one I think is the ace in the hole. A sufficiently angry Drudge could void his bladder all over the car, or, better yet, right into the fresh-air intakes to the HVAC system, which could cause some electrical damage, and will definitely make the car smell awful when it goes home to its technicians.
I'm sure there's more options, but I do want to thank Matt Drudge for having the guts to become personally offended by a robot and starting the conversation that we'll no doubt be having again and again in the future.
Years later, when a robot car is dating his daughter, I'll be curious to see how he feels looking back at this incident.