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自动行驶的谷歌汽车——超乎你的想象

时间:2013-02-09 01:31:12  来源:  作者:

最近发出狂言“汽车在电脑发明之前被发明就是个错误”的谷歌大佬拿出了 7 辆试验车,在城市道路上自动行驶。随着这次试验的成功,自动汽车的未来越来越清晰了。
MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. — Anyone driving the twists of Highway 1 between San Francisco and Los Angeles recently may have glimpsed a Toyota Prius with a curious funnel-like cylinder on the roof. Harder to notice was that the person at the wheel was not actually driving.


加州山景城——最近在旧金山和洛杉矶之间蜿蜒的 1 号高速公路上路过的人们可能会看到一辆车顶带有一个奇怪的烟囱似的圆筒的丰田普锐斯车。就算你看到这辆车,你也不一定能注意到方向盘前的那个人其实并没有在驾驶。

The car is a project of Google, which has been working in secret but in plain view on vehicles that can drive themselves, using artificial-intelligence software that can sense anything near the car and mimic the decisions made by a human driver.
这辆车是谷歌的一个秘密进行的项目,不过随着实体车的出现而进入人们的视野,它通过人工智能的软件感应任何在车辆附近的物体,模拟人类驾驶员对此作出的决定来自动驾驶汽车。

With someone behind the wheel to take control if something goes awry and a technician in the passenger seat to monitor the navigation system, seven test cars have driven 1,000 miles without human intervention and more than 140,000 miles with only occasional human control. One even drove itself down Lombard Street in San Francisco, one of the steepest and curviest streets in the nation. The only accident, engineers said, was when one Google car was rear-ended while stopped at a traffic light.
7 辆测试车上各配有两名测试人员,驾驶位置上的人在车子走歪的时候稍作调整,而乘客位置上的技术人员对导航系统进行监控,这些车已经在无人干涉的情况下行驶了 1 千英里、在偶尔人工干预的情况下行驶了 14 万英里。有一辆甚至自动行驶在旧金山这条全国最陡最曲折的伦巴帝街上。工程师称,唯一一次事故是一辆谷歌车在等绿灯时被追尾。

Autonomous cars are years from mass production, but technologists who have long dreamed of them believe that they can transform society as profoundly as the Internet has.
自动汽车离大规模生产还有许多年的路要走,不过对此憧憬了多年的技术人员相信自动汽车可以像因特网一样改变这个社会。

Robot drivers react faster than humans, have 360-degree perception and do not get distracted, sleepy or intoxicated, the engineers argue. They speak in terms of lives saved and injuries avoided — more than 37,000 people died in car accidents in the United States in 2008. The engineers say the technology could double the capacity of roads by allowing cars to drive more safely while closer together. Because the robot cars would eventually be less likely to crash, they could be built lighter, reducing fuel consumption. But of course, to be truly safer, the cars must be far more reliable than, say, today’s personal computers, which crash on occasion and are frequently infected.
工程师们提出,机器人司机比人类的反应更快、有着 360 度的感知能力、不会分心、瞌睡或者喝醉。他们以可以避免的伤亡人数来说明问题——在 2008 年的美国,有 3 万 7 千人死于车祸。工程师们称这一技术可以让汽车之间即使保持更近的距离也能更安全地行驶,从而加倍公路运载量。因为机器人汽车最终将不容易发生撞车事故,所以它们可以造得更轻、油耗更少。不过当然,要想真正地安全,汽车必须比如今时常崩溃、经常中毒的个人电脑更加可靠。

The Google research program using artificial intelligence to revolutionize the automobile is proof that the company’s ambitions reach beyond the search engine business. The program is also a departure from the mainstream of innovation in Silicon Valley, which has veered toward social networks and Hollywood-style digital media.
谷歌的这一利用人工智能改革汽车的研究项目证明了该公司在搜索引擎业务之外的雄心。该项目同样在硅谷现在转向社交网络和好莱坞式的数字媒体的主流革新中也是异军突起。

During a half-hour drive beginning on Google’s campus 35 miles south of San Francisco last Wednesday, a Prius equipped with a variety of sensors and following a route programmed into the GPS navigation system nimbly accelerated in the entrance lane and merged into fast-moving traffic on Highway 101, the freeway through Silicon Valley.
在上周四于旧金山以南 35 英里的谷歌园地发车的历时半小时的行驶过程中,一辆装备有各种传感器的普锐斯跟随者 GPS 导航系统绘制的路线敏捷地加速驶入上匝道口,进入 101 号这条穿过硅谷的高速公路川流不息的车流中。

It drove at the speed limit, which it knew because the limit for every road is included in its database, and left the freeway several exits later. The device atop the car produced a detailed map of the environment.
它以限速行驶,因为它的数据库中存有每一条路的限速,在几个下匝道口之后离开了高速公路。在车顶上的设备可以生成周围环境的详细地图。

The car then drove in city traffic through Mountain View, stopping for lights and stop signs, as well as making announcements like “approaching a crosswalk” (to warn the human at the wheel) or “turn ahead” in a pleasant female voice. This same pleasant voice would, engineers said, alert the driver if a master control system detected anything amiss with the various sensors.

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