How autonomous carmakers can make their cars more accessible


Autonomous Cars could be a lifeline for people with disabilities once the industry gets around to it from American public media. This is marketplace tech I'm Ali would. On our show we've been talking about accessibility and how technology is or isn't making the world more accessible for people with disabilities. Last month we spoke with Harbin Girma who's deaf blind she said, self-driving cars could be an especially powerful tool imagine the freedom the independence I was talking to someone who works at one of these companies and he said Oh you know we're a few years from releasing the cars. So maybe ten years from now will. Disability access. So how our car company is approaching autonomy and accessibility, and couldn't they include access for all from the ground up mark? Takahashi works for Edmonds an auto research site. It is very likely that they will not have any sort of controls. It'll simply be you tell the car where you WanNa go and it takes you there. If you look at the concept for the Google self driving car from several years ago it had no pedals and no steering wheel. So there is a scenario where they could say we salad pod and he can get in and out of this Pod, you could purchase an aftermarket unit to hold wheelchair in place but beyond that everyone gets the same pod. That is entirely possible and it's actually been proposed several times Toyota at CAS a few years ago. It was this box on wheels that you configure to do whatever you whether it's public transportation or Anamika deliveries or transforming it into a food truck or a station or whatever. You can think of to put inside of a rolling box, and that is a blank canvas for anyone to work with whether they need accessibility or not. So if we're not doing that, is it an assumption that people won't want to buy that or is it just like a lack of will? It's hard to say these blank canvas boxes are certainly being considered and actually the Toyota version was supposed to be in action. By now because it was slated to make debut at the Summer Olympics. How. Far Away are we though from being able to put perfect faith in that pod? I. Would Hope best-case scenario between eight and ten years that everything will finally come together. We'll have the high speed networks we'll have processing power and cars and will have all those sensors built into the vehicles that need them. It sounds like you're saying companies really could they could reset cars, they certainly could create. A blank canvas that would be accessible for all instead of trying to bolt on features after the fact, why wouldn't they? Well, cars have a lot of personality and for some

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