Google Patents a Way For Robocars to Decide When Not to Drive

Photo: Getty Images

Google famously wants to build a self-driving car so reliable it won’t even have a steering wheel. But for now, even Google’s prototype cars on California roads still allow both autonomous and manual-drive modes. How, then, does Google plan to handle the robot-human handoff?

A U.S. patent just issued to the company suggests that switching from one mode to the other might involve rather more than just pressing a button. In “Engaging and Disengaging for Autonomous...

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