Would You Feel Safe in a Driverless Car?

I’m in Boston this week for MIT Technology Review’s EmTech conference at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Media Lab. The yearly event draws technology experts from around the globe, and I’m having a blast picking their brains. Here are some thoughts on riding in driverless cars and Facebook’s plan to make internet connectivity available everywhere.

If you fret about riding in a driverless car — or are quick to say you never will — note that people who have had the opportunity have been relatively quick to overcome their anxiety. So says Karl Iagnemma, CEO and cofounder of nuTonomy, an autonomous car startup in Singapore. His stance is based on surveys NuTonomy has run as it tests cars with a popular drive-hailing app. The company plans to have 100 vehicles on the road by next year. (Uber has started similar tests in Pittsburgh.) One of the key findings: Riders seem comfortable enough to turn their attention to surfing the web on their phones.

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