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Auto future, today
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[Image: avtomoto-1.jpg]

Having recently been in Maranello to see the unveiling of the new Ferrari F1 racing car, I want to return to the automotive theme for this post, because a new chapter in the ~250-year history of the automobile is coming up. It’s a biggie in itself, but there’s also a security aspect of this new chapter that’s even bigger. But I’m getting ahead of myself. Time to engage reverse and go over this biggie first …

Of late, the headlines have been pretty interesting regarding the modern automobile — plus what one will look like in a few years to come. Examples: California will legalize the testing of self-driving cars on public roads, Swedish gravel trucks will load up, drive for miles and unload with no driver at the wheel, and KAMAZ has come up with a driverless electric mini-bus. Google, Yandex, Baidu, and who knows how many other companies from different spheres and countries are developing driverless projects. Of course, some of the headlines go against the grain, but they are mere exceptions, it seems.

And just recently I was at the food-processing plant of Barilla (our client, btw) in Italy and saw more automation than you can shake a spatula at: The automated conveyor delivers up tons of spaghetti; robots take it, package it, and place it into boxes; and driverless electric cars take it to and load it into trucks — which aren’t yet automated but soon will be …

So, self-controlled/self-driving vehicles are here already — in some places. Tomorrow, they’ll be everywhere. And without a trace of sarcasm, let me tell you that this is just awesome. Why? Because a transportation system based on self-driving vehicles that operate strictly according to a set of rules, has a little chance of degradation of productivity. Therefore, cars won’t just travel within the prescribed speed limits, they’ll do so faster, safely, comfortably, and, of course, automatically. At first there’ll be special roads for driverless vehicles only, but later entire cities, then countries, will be driverless. Can you imagine the prospects for the upgrade market for old driver-driven cars?

With that out the way, now comes the interesting bit — the reason for so many words in this here post. Let’s go!

Actually, I think we all understand how bright the driverless future is. Here, though, I’d like to look further than the horizon — and also under the hood. Automatic automobiles — that is, true automobiles — are just one aspect of the approaching industrial revolution. Everything becoming automated will affect the whole paradigm of personal transportation, including approaches to ownership and usage, associated standards, traffic rules, and, of course, cybersecurity.
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