(9) Course of Action – Ethical Frameworks

Course of Action

As previously mentioned, there are three groups that could take the fall for the salient ethical issues in question. Looking at the first group that consist of vehicle and equipment manufactures. Over the years, car manufacture has cut corners before, to make the extra buck. So, with a faulty infrastructure, it car manufacture take the blame. But then again, equipment manufacture may not be that far off. Although the equipment that the vehicle has been using to take information, has been around for a while. But much of the equipment only works best, when in suitable conditions. Which mainly consist sunny all the time conditions. [MENTION FALSE INFORMATION]

The second group, consist of software and security programmers. The software developers who work on autonomous vehicles are the one who decide, what the car does at any given time. Which is what makes the vehicle autonomous. Like many of our software, it need to be protected from individuals that cold do harm from entering the vehicles software. What makes these two so important, is what happen is one is tampered with. If the security software in the vehicle in not good enough to keep hackers away, then things can go dire from there. When a vehicle is hacked, that means that the person that made it in, has the capabilities of stirring trouble. Not only for person within the vehicle, but also for those who are put into harm’s way.

The third group in question is ourselves. For the most, people tend to by what they want and make their own. But the problem with that is, when it comes to autonomous vehicles, people should probably stay clear of tampering them. One of the most common modification that a person could do to a vehicle, is upgrading their sound system. Which would involve having to add wire to support the amount of energy that they would use. But this would mess with the original setting that would support the autonomous vehicle. If the vehicle were to have a short circuit because of it, it would most likely effect the processing unit. Which make the autonomous vehicle possible to drive, by itself.

Ethical Frameworks

I have chosen ethical frameworks, that I believe that align with the strengths and weaknesses to each action. I have chosen deontological ethics of both car/equipment manufacture and programmers. Deontological ethics is where the duty that these two groups are provided, to advance the technology in their respective fields. These two groups have taken it upon themselves to advance innovation, which many could benefit millions in the long run. Which as previously state the many benefit that autonomous vehicles could bring to our society. But also, the negative aspect that people feel daunting at times, that could really hurt the advancement of the technology. What dawn on the me the most is the people’s ethical framework.

Whichever way that the people choose to pursue the technology, there action would be carried on as egoism ethics. The reason being, that if the technology does continue to be implement into society, it is because the people allow it. Which people would take advantage of the benefits of having autonomous vehicles. But if the people would choose not to proceed with the integration, that it is something that could work to their benefit as well. Many of those who would be effected, could be still hold their job. In the end, people would only choose the action that would look out for their own self-interest.

(10) Social Constraints and Issues Part II

People in general have a mistrust to new technology, especially when it pertains to the individual safety.  Especially when people hear about how a Tesla on auto pilot, got his own in a fatal crash (New York Times). The take away from this, is that the feature in question was auto pilot and it not being autonomous. But they are not wrong to be skeptical of the technology. As the Scientific America describes it, “Autonomous Vehicles Are Still ‘Teen Drivers’” (Scientific America). There should be a high bar, when it comes to the safety of the American people. But not that it would cripple the advancement of autonomous vehicles must offer. There have been multiple companies that integrated an autonomous vehicle program. Looking at Googles Waymo, it shows that close to all the accident that the autonomous vehicle was involved in, were in part by human error. With the level of accuracy that the autonomous vehicle show while they drive, they also show promise in helping lower vehicle pollution.

Autonomous vehicles could contribute to lowering the nations greenhouse gasses. According to the US Environmental Protection Agency, transportation is the second largest greenhouse gas contributor (EPA).  The Eno: Center for Transportation wrote an article highlighting some of the way autonomous vehicle increase fuel efficiency and reduce pollution (Eno). The one example is optimizing driving efficiency, by having an adjustment to the amount of gas being throttled. Which has statistically proven to lower emissions as high as sixty percent. The second example, involved the vehicles being in the inner city. Autonomous vehicles could lower the amount of congestion that get build-up in the cities. Where most of the vehicles tend to stop-n-go, which contributes to the pollution. What ties closely to safe driving and gas efficiency, are the potential change to how our driving habits are architecture around.

Although it may seem that some of the aspect that autonomous vehicles, may be futuristic, it may not seem so far off. One of the biggest reason that we have traffic light that tell us what to do, is to help the person driving. But with autonomous vehicle in the rise, the idea of traffic light, might go obsolete. In a video called, “The Simple Solution to Traffic” by CGP Grey goes in depth describing the problem with traffic, humans. By removing the human aspect to driving, it could truly be efficient. Again, even though these ideas may seem far, this is something where autonomous vehicle could be headed.

All these social constraints and issue have a correlation to the salient ethical issue. These are issues contributes to part of the dilemma, because it asked the question if it’s worth having autonomous vehicles on the streets. That would lead to salient ethical issue in question. Therefore, companies are having to do extensive research, by having their vehicle being available in certain cities.


(11) Issues of autonomous vehicles

Salient Ethical Issue

A salient ethical issue, refers to the most noticeable or important ethical issue. The salient ethical issue that is being addressed in this paper, is who is to blame when an autonomous vehicle kills a person. All the parties previously mention could have contributed to the result of an autonomous vehicle killing someone. A hypothetical situation would be posed describing a situation in which autonomous vehicle would kill someone. Before disclosing the way each party, could have influence the outcome. There is a hypothetical situation posed in Scientific America, which addressed the unavoidable outcome of loss of live. The situation starts off with an autonomous vehicle driving down a two-lane highway, caring a family of four. In which the sensor detects an object crossing the path, which ended up being a ball from a child. Whom has followed the ball onto traffic. This is where the processing unit, considers the different possibilities it could make. A solution may include swerving out the way, but in doing so, may result in the loss of life of those passengers and/or others. Or the vehicle continues its path, insuring the passenger’s safety, but not that of the child (Scientific America). This only one hypothetical situation, of many that researcher has posed.

Social Constraints and Issues

With every great invention, there is always a negative impact that come along with it. With the autonomous vehicles being slowly implemented into society, people are starting to see how much these vehicles could affect their lives. Millions of people had made a living, by providing services that require a person behind the wheel. Most noticeably, taxi driver and public transportation (bus, train, trollies, etc.). According to an article in the Los Angeles Times, these types of jobs consist nearly three percent of the workforce (LA Times). Which has come out to a rough estimate of five million people losing their job. Even though people would make the effort, to let companies know about the concern about autonomation, this might not help. In general, many companies are movie their workforce into autonomation; Which is cost effective. Which would leave many of their current workforce, out of the job market. But not everything looks gloomy, when implementing autonomous vehicles.

Every year in the United State, millions of individuals are injured and thousand die in car crashes. According to the Association for Safe International Road Travel, the annual United States road statistics state that over thirty-seven thousand people die in road crashes each year (ASIRT). The report continues to show how hundreds and thousands of children and young adult, are killed each year. With the implementation of autonomous vehicles, these statistics could change drastically. Many lives could be saved, but also could save the US billions of dollars each year. A graph provided by the Eno Center for Transportation, give an estimate of the annual economic benefit from autonomous vehicle. I wanted to highlight the amount different between ten percent integration, versus ninety percent integration. The first statistics shows that there will be around four million less deaths in the US. The second statistic that is surprising, was the amount that describes the economic cost of savings. The graph shows that there would be an estimated one-hundred billion dollars that US could save.

(16) Intro

Intro – Scientific America 

Technology has been a crucial part to humanity and has grown from its humble beginning. From having rooms dedicated to small number of megabytes for memory, to process simple command. To having able to have a range of megabytes’, at the palms of our hands. Over the years, people have benefit from the advancement of technology. But there is considerable amount of people, that are having to deal with the negative impacts of technology. Car manufacture and giant technology companies are investing in autonomous vehicle. Which have been at the forefront, in which people would travel and so much more. But even with a list of benefits that could from implementing autonomous vehicle, there are people who have conservatively hold on to the negative aspect of driverless vehicles. Which has been the center of controversy, questioning the ethics behind the technology.

Although the idea of autonomous vehicle has been around for quite some time, people may still not know how the vehicle works. There is different variation on how a model places their equipment. But the standard autonomous vehicle consists of multiple cameras. Some of which would record in different setting, to capture the view in detail. There would also be multiple sensors, that can determine different object around them. Giving them an accuracy to how far the object from them. The autonomous vehicle has also been modified to have a considerable sized processing unit in the rear. Which would interpret the information, provided by the cameras and sensors.

People may be quick to assert their own opinion, but the issue is more complex then what people think. To draw our conclusion, we must look at the individual’s groups in question, that would have contributed to the outcome. Whom have a clear stake in this situation, which bring their own rights, responsibilities, and values. Which may affect the outcome of autonomous vehicle being in our streets. The ethical dilemma being, is who is to blame when an autonomous vehicle kills an individual(s). But although, this might be the salient ethical issues, there factual, conceptual, and social issues that are hanging heavily in the backs of people’s minds.

But to find the ones responsible for individual(s) killed via autonomous vehicles, we must look at the groups involved. As previously mention, these groups have their weight in, when it comes to autonomous vehicle. The first groups in question are the car manufactures and equipment manufacture.  The second groups consist of programmers. The third group is us, the people, who may be using this technology soon. The groups in question, are going to analyzed, for their potential course of action. Meaning the effort that these groups could have done to keep the individual(s) in the salient issue, safe. Alongside, would be the evaluation strengths and weakness of the actions taken by each group, with their respective ethical framework. By the end of this paper, my opinion to which of the groups, would be to blame for the outcome of the salient issue.

(15) Parties Involved – Rights, Responsibilities, Values

When it comes to individuals involved, there are a couple of groups that could benefit from the advancing technology of autonomous vehicles. The first group consist of creators, which consist of car and equipment manufacture. Which develops the cars that are suited to be autonomous vehicles. Also, creating the specialized sensor, cameras, and processing unit that would help identify/deal with their specific situation. Many other companies are investing in future of self-driving vehicles and car manufactures are part of the forefront. These companies have the right to innovate the next generation of transportation. But they also have the responsibilities of making sure that they vehicles that they manufacture, are properly made to hold all the equipment. Which is necessary for autonomous driving to drive at pick performance. It seems that many manufacture are holding up to their values. Which still stems from creating and innovating the most economical and/or luxuries car, you can drive. But behind every manufacture vehicles, there is the lines of code that makes vehicle partially autonomous.

The second group involved the programmers who write the lines of code, that interpret the information that is provided by the sensors. The misconception that people tend about the programmers, is that there are only those who write the decision-making lines of programming. But there are also programmers that take care of the security aspect of autonomous vehicles. These programmers have been right to program the next generation of transportation. But with this great power, comes with great responsibilities. The lines of code that both software and security programmers developed, could have dire consequences. Therefore, the programmer doesn’t just value innovation, they value the safety of every user. Which is why the programmer are striving to develop the robust lines of code, that would take the best decision available at the time. It is words like these, that the end user would want to hear, when getting a ride from an autonomous vehicle.

The third group consist of the people, that are in the forefront of using these technologies. It is thanks to our great democracy that we the people, can have access to the autonomous vehicles. Although, there was not much when it came to the development of the product. There are many responsibilities that the end user of product can provide, to further advance this technology. On the field testing, is the only thing that car manufactures and programmers can’t truly have access to, without the consent of the people. When being able to use these vehicles, each ride can provide meta data, that would advance the development of autonomous vehicles. Meta data refers to a set of data that describes and gives information about other information. For the most part, driving the same route might be the similar, but never the same. Which give meta data needed to simulate the different situation that each ride faces on its journey. Everyone’s values may vary, when it comes to autonomous vehicles. For a certain type a person, they would be able use that commute to catch up on some reading from work. There are also people with disabilities that could greatly benefit from the advancement technology. Each of these groups has their own rights, responsibilities and values when it comes to this technology. [INCLUEDE TRANSITION TO NEXT PARAGRAPH]

(14) Ted

In the first video, “Zeynep Tufekci: Online social change: easy to organize, hard to win”, I found it interesting that the way that people would react to an image. I was reading the description that the video had and it was interesting to know that people tended to react a certain way. Ways that people would even call face rage. Most of the time, it is easy to just have a hand-held device, log into your profile and express your opinions. But I must agree that the “fake rage” only goes so far. I wanted to point out about the type of action that people did finally decide to march for: Earth Day, Women’s March, etc. Some of the concerns that I had about this type of expression, is well explained by the Zeynep Tufekci. She explains how people tend to inspire a lot of outrage, but not the same of action that people would have wanted to see. Fun fact, referring to how most of the “trending” items in media platforms, are created by robots and not people. The reason that this is a concern, is that people would have the impression that “people” have concerns for the certain subjects. From this, they would make decision that could really address other people’s lives. In the journal form, the second question addresses what should school do in this new frontier of knowledge. I am not sure if the question, is specifically to college, or a high school, I would feel that people that are going to college don’t need to address it as much as young adults. If someone feels that people are going out of hand in college, that is something that they believe. As for high school student, I would feel that they are easily influenced. I feel that the class doesn’t really address this problem in a way that they could relate to the individual.


In the second video, by Zeynep Tufekci, I would say that these computational data could be beneficiary. But at the same time, people really have the negative effects. The people are being judged by machine learning, specially looking at the example that she is describing. Which could be a concern for turning down great people, but are turn away by their gender and the bias judgement. It is funny to think that schools would address these type of concerns, as I would see that the information would criticized. But the algorithms are aiming for something that we want in a society. Although the output that the machine is coming up with, isn’t the information that we would want. But for a certain standpoint, it does make sense. Some of the issues that could be tackled by anyone, would be the ethics that go into machine learning. But at this point, I don’t really know how to approach this subject. But it could only go so far of making their algorithms less bias.


Like always, we are trying to take on algorithms to make our decision easier. But we tend to overlook some of the most pending question about applying these algorithms into real life.

(13) Hypothetical Dilemma

The Ethics of Autonomous Vehicles

The article started off by stating, “”. When you think about it, if the point is that a person is making the life and death decision, the autonomous vehicle should be considered as a collection of people; Versus just thinking of it as a car. Programmer have probably made an iteration on the type of situation that they find themselves in.  Ergo, a person has made the decision.

As I kept on reading the article, the person who wrote it, makes autonomous vehicles seem antiquate. In the first situation that posed by the writer, the driver behind him could have diverted from the situation. Which would have avoided the crash that person described. One I think about the hypothetical situation, I feel that people typically live out the current state in which the software is currently at. If the car is currently running what is currently available, I would comment that the software that is out right now, should not be consider any anyway autonomous. Many of the manufacture have suggested, when using the autonomous feature, that there should always be a license individuals behind the wheel. If the situation were to be placed soon, every person talking about hypothetical question, fell to consider the advancement of technology.

Although I feel that the person who wrote the article may have not been properly informed, this still may be the concerns that many people feel pertinent. But then again, most of the people that argue about autonomous vehicles, don’t seem to found near them. Going down the next line in the article, it states the question if we should trust autonomous vehicles. The refers to our judicial system and how they mind be falling behind in the times. I would point out, it seems to be the case in other situations. In most cases, federal law makers, would just push it off to the states to decide whether the law would be place or not. But laws are being pushed, in the case of technology, because there are many variable. Which would way in, when considering give them a minimum sentence or the death penalty.

There was a funny situation where there was an emergency and the vehicle needed to break the laws to reach the hospital. This would set aside, the idea the individual would have the capability of manually driving the vehicle or someone else driving. The author of the article is emphasizing on the idea the vehicle is 100 percent obedient to the law. Which would sometimes be misrepresentation toward where this technology is going. To the currently vehicles that we have, we could call them autonomous vehicles because they have preprogrammed decision making. But hopefully soon, the technology would have advance to an artificial intelligence level. Considering the statement has placed, I would assume that the programmers, would have already made an iteration for this type of situation.

The article goes on with hypothetical question, that are concerns, even to the developers.