WE HAVE A four year old boy who enjoys being in the driver's seat. He knows he can switch on all sorts of things that start to blink, beep and wipe when the motor turns over so if he is relegated to the passenger's seat in 13 years time, he won't like the experience.
Yet I believe Dylan will face a Driverless World by the time he reaches his sixteenth birthday. I think it will cost more to insure a driver than to insure a driverless car in 2030. I also think the number of cars on the road will start to level off when the Driverless Era arrives.
I share these thoughts with creative multimedia students who discount my opinion as too far-fetched for Ireland. Yet I know several rail services in Ireland could operate driverless from today. But it would require a continual investment in signaling and some flexibility from unions.
In Los Angeles, where I once battled standstills on both sides of my commute, I listen to friends who spend more time in gridlock every year than they spend making love or brushing their teeth. If they had a driverless option, they would finish every week more relaxed and more productive. Traffic isn't as congested in Ireland and when driverless options arrive, I think the roads will remain in free flow.
So I hope our three year old sees that prospect dawn before he gets his license to drive.
[Bernie Goldbach has flown more miles than he has driven.]