The fifth project for COM 216, taken at SUNY Polytechnic Institute in Fall 2015.
The Future of Autotransportation and You
As the sun was just peeking through the curtains of George’s bedroom, the alarm on his phone went off and he rolled over in his bed moaning. Another Tuesday of work for him and he would definitely hit traffic every part of the drive as he always did. He grabbed his phone from the nightstand and checked for any notifications, particularly from work. Remembering that he had to send a two page memo out to 7 of his coworkers, he got up and quickly opened his laptop to start writing. Groggily, he typed out 2 pages in about 29 minutes. He had to skip eating breakfast today, only having time now to make some coffee while he quickly showered. After his shower, he got dressed, gathered his bag and coffee, and got in his car. He looked at the clock which read 8:27. He needed to be at work at 9:15, and it was an hour drive. He had to drive fast and pray for no large traffic jams. However, luck didn’t seem to be on his side this morning, after about 20 minutes on the thruway there was an accident which backed up traffic for two exits. In the city it was even worse, with taxis lining the streets almost sidewalk to sidewalk, it might as well have been a parking lot. George pulled out his phone and emailed his boss telling him the situation, almost word for word copying the previous three emails sent to his boss. This was a common thing for George, procrastination and rushing to get out of the house to beat traffic. His boss didn’t want to hear it, and when George got to work, he was told he had a week left before he was terminated due to tardiness.
Now, here is a version of that story 40 years into the future, when we as a nation might have fully embraced autopilot transportation.
As the sun was peeking through the curtains of George’s bedroom, the alarm on his phone went off and he rolled over in his bed. Another Tuesday of work for him. He grabbed his phone from the nightstand and checked for any notifications, particularly from work. He remembered that he had to send a two page memo out to 7 of his coworkers by the time he got to work, but it didn’t bother him. He went to the kitchen and started to make some coffee, then went to go take a shower. He took longer than normal, listening to music while he bathed. He decided to shave this morning and then went to go make a nicer than normal outfit for himself. When he was finished, he grabbed everything he needed for work and made his way to the kitchen to make himself an omelette. He sat and browsed the internet on his tablet while he ate. It was about 8:20 when he left, but it was alright, he thought. He got in his car and laid his bag on the small table. When he closed the door, the vehicle sensed that he was inside, and turned itself on. George said “Head to work.” and the car pulled out of the driveway and began to drive. George pulled out his laptop and began to write that memo he needed to write, he had about an hour, which was plenty of time to write a solid one. On the highway, he looked at the HUD on his windshield to see of any cars that wanted to pair, or train together. There were four cars ready to pair, so he said “Enable pairing”. The cars got into the same lane, and slowly linked themselves bumper to bumper going the same speed. This was a very simple method to alleviate traffic further than normal. Eventually the car disabled the pair so it could exit into the city. The car parallel parked itself near George’s office building and he went inside and began his day.
Two very similar stories which change due to the fact of an autopilot car environment, it is a very interesting concept, although I think many people today are wary of giving it a chance.
I decided to write a fictional story of two sides one in current times, and one with autopilot cars, in which there is no traffic. You could see how much the story and the characters’ life changes due to the fact of all cars being automatic and self controlled.