Tagged: autos

LIDAR Lament

waymoWhether we like it or not, self-driving, or autonomous, vehicles are in the cards. While they may be useful for any number of reasons, I don’t see them sparking any great tunes.

Let’s think about it for a moment. Some of the greatest songs refer directly to someone whose hands are on the wheel or flooring the accelerator or refusing to drive 55 .

A great example is Golden Earrings’s classic “Radar Love” with the awesome opening lines:

“I’ve been drivin’ all night, my hand’s wet on the wheel

There’s a voice in my head that drives my heel

It’s my baby callin’, says I need you here

And it’s a half past four and I’m shiftin’ gear.”

The Doors wouldn’t be caught dead in a self-driving car as they headed for a night of debauchery at the roadhouse:

“Yeah, keep your eyes on the road, your hands upon the wheel

Keep your eyes on the road, your hands upon the wheel

Yeah, we’re goin’ to the Roadhouse

We’re gonna have a real

Good time”

And before  Bruce Springsteen would allow a bucket of semi-conductors to take the wheel, he would rather be hopped up on caffeine and who knows what in order to maintain control of his ride in really crappy weather to see his lady once again in “Drive All Night.” Just another reason he’s “The Boss.”

“Baby I’ll drive all night

I swear I drive all night

Through the wind, through the rain, through the snow”

While I can understand that autonomous vehicles will be extremely useful..especially for those who can’t drive themselves, I intend to hold out just as long as I can before I cede control of my mobility to a machine that’s smarter than I.

And so I offer this ode to autonomy..that you can sing to whatever melody strikes you…as long as you sing it… yourself.

lidar

 

“LIDAR LAMENT”

I been riding all night, my butt’s stuck on the seat

Car’s doing all the work, don’t need my feet

I got a place in mind that I wanna go..

Don’t have to steer… this machine just knows

handsoff

So I sit and watch the world through the windshield

Eyes on everything but what’s in front of me..

No concern about my speed, or any urgency…

No mental traffic when you’re riding in autonomy.

screwingoff

 

Got a left foot out of work with no clutch to depress

and my right one just stepped in my Taco Bell mess

My idle hands they have no wheel to steer or lever to shift

And I wonder what damn killjoys came up with this

autoreading

 

When I’m in real hurry or just wanna go real fast

Don’t wanna watch it happen, I wanna mash the gas

Want my hands real busy, don’t want it done for me

Won’t cede the thrill of driving to a car’s technology

 

I suppose I could be open to a car that drives itself

operated by a host of smart electronic elves..

I could just sit back, relax and think about my day

Let autonomy just do its stuff

and whisk me in my way

 

 

But to whom do I direct my anger and my bile

When a driverless self-driving buggy tailgates us for a mile.

No GPS or LIDAR gives a flying hoot

When you flip them off or swear or give your horn an angry toot.

 

I’d just as soon stay in control,

On what’s in front of me..

Make all my decisions and mistakes..

Now that’s autonomy!

 

Advertisements

Flying Ovals

Ovals have a long history in flight.

ovalofficeThe President’s airplane, Air Force One, is often called the Flying Oval Office..even though it’s mainly cylindrical..it’s definitely flying…

flyingaThe logo for the old Flying A gas stations was a circle that flew in an oval…until the chain crash landed years ago…

While the Flying Squirrel Bakery in Talkeetna, Alaska adopted an in-flight rodent cruising around an oval as its identity.flyingsquirreloval

iflystickerSome folks are obtuse enough to use an oval to state that they fly…

 

And others are ostentatious enough to plunk down more than six-grand for aflyingovalearrings pair of diamond and gold “Flying oval” earrings.

 

 

flyingbulldogAs if bulldogs can fly…well they can if they’re in an oval..

blueovalglasshouseAnd then there’s Ford’s famous Blue Oval….symbol of the manufacturer of earthbound transportation. For years, it’s flown atop the company’s Dearborn, Michigan headquarters, known as the Glass House…until Wednesday night…blewoval….when a lusty gust of wind caused the automaker’s oval to take flight.  We don’t know how it was originally attached to the building, but we do know when it’s re-attached, Ford will have to come up with a better idea.