Why self-driving cars aren’t safe yet: 7 obstacles in the way

Last week’s fatal crash involving a Tesla Model S offers a startling reminder that driverless technology is still a work in progress. As Tesla’s own blogpost on the “tragic loss” points out, the autopilot technology that was controlling Joshua Brown’s car when it ploughed into a truck is in a “public beta phase”. That means the software has been released into the wild to be stress-tested by members of the public so that bugs can be flushed out. It’s the kind of approach we are used to seeing when we gain early access to new email applications or virtual reality headsets. As Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak told the New York Times: “Beta products shouldn’t have such life-and-death consequences”.