Do you still drive yourself??

This is the question I’m waiting for. I’ve never liked driving particularly and I don’t like large roads either, America’s favorite kind. The American landscape is an experience of largely large roads. Things of no charm whatsoever. They get you there fast, except when they are clotted full, but where do they get you? To a large parking lot. Or to a town or city that had its commerce emptied out by the large road. But what could I DO about any of this?

Nothing. The American culture was a Car Culture. Everybody said so. But lately not so much. Car driving is DOWN in the US, and the trend started before the big recession. Kids are waiting longer to get their licenses, and are moving back into cities and walkable communities and sometimes not even owning a car at all. All good. But there is more to come!

Technology has already transformed reading, including newspaper reading, and nobody wants to hear the laments of the clingers-to-the-old-way. And so be it. But what goes around the roundabout comes around. Driving is next up.

http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2013-03-28/googles-self-driving-robot-cars-are-ruining-my-commute

Some carmakers are already planning to roll out for-sale robot cars by 2020, which is soon, as these things go. Driving your own car, (or even owning one at all instead of hailing a self-driving rental) will soon be the equivalent of whipping out a flip-phone. It will no longer signify anything other than quaintness. I’ll be calling up mine on a smartphone.

Tom Toles is the editorial cartoonist for The Post and writes the Tom Toles blog.

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