I don't want an automated car. I'm a control freak and I want control over my car not some computer. Computers make mistakes too and malfunction at times. Nothing is perfect.
While I understand the desire to maintain personal control over the situation, there are plenty of instances where personal control is given up for the sake of expedience and reliability. Stepping on a plane is a good example of that. As a passenger, you have zero control over whether that bird stays in the air. And what's more, the pilots rarely exercise direct control, either. Much of the flight is on autopilot - control is transferred to a machine that automatically and reliability plots the course. And while psychologically, being on a plane can be a difficult experience, statistically, it's very safe.
Driverless cars feature not just that same kind of psychological unease but a major change to a part of our daily life, which never goes over well. Resistance to that is understandable. But statistically, it's much, much safer. We're talking about a 90% decrease in traffic fatalities
- 30,000 fatalities a year to roughly 3,000. And there are other benefits - insurance savings, less traffic congestion (faster travel times), more leisure time. Less trouble with the law too, since driving infractions are pretty much impossible. The benefits are so massive that they outweigh any psychological unease. I'd even argue that looking at this as a loss of control is a bad way of looking at it. It's relief from a burdensome chore. Instead, you get to watch movies or read books (or browse AF) during those long and previously tedious car trips. At least, in the not too distant future when the implementation improves to the point where that's possible.
Decades from now, we'll look at old movies featuring manual cars and be astounded that we ever lived that way. Just think about it from a martian's perspective - hopping in vehicle, navigating traffic, sitting behind a slowpoke, being tailgated, getting cut off, narrowly avoiding a blindspot lane-changer, pulling to the side to let an ambulance go by, seeing a high-speed police chase, seeing someone's car get t-boned at an intersection - imagine what that must look like from the outside. Even something as mundane as waiting for a light will seem strange in the future. And personally, I can't wait for that future.