GOOGLE engineers have developed and tested technology that allows cars to drive themselves, a posting on the company's official blog revealed.
The automated cars use video cameras, radar sensors and a laser range finder to “see” other traffic, as well as detailed maps to navigate the road ahead, software engineer Sebastian Thrun said.
So far, he said, the self-driving cars have logged over 140,000 miles (225,000 km) around California. “We think this is a first in robotics research,” the engineer added.
For safety reasons, Thrun said, the cars are never unmanned. They have a trained driver behind the wheel who can always take over while a trained software operator in the passenger seat monitors the software.
The project was still “very much in the experimental stage,” he added.