Germans have rules and regulations for everything. You can give two strangers a ride when you meet them at a party without problems but as soon as the state's koffers are affected you need the Personenbeförderungsgesetz. You can use illegally obtained evidence to convict tax evaders but the same court prohibits the use of dashcam recordings as evidence (because they violate some privacy law) if you want to take a traffic offender to court. Some logic there.... As Nietzsche said some 150 years ago: The state is the worst of all monsters - it claims to speak for the people - but it only speaks for itself.
thecarchik writes "Scientists in Europe are working closely with industry and government as part of a new initiative called SARTRE (SAfe Road TRains for the Environment), which hopes to develop self-driving technology that will allow vehicles to drive autonomously in long road trains on the highway. The team behind SARTRE has now conducted its first real world test, using a sole Volvo S60 sedan that followed a lead truck around the automaker's test facility near Gothenburg, Sweden. In the video, the driver is free to take his eyes off the road and his hands off the wheel. In fact, he uses neither his hands nor feet during the test. Subsequent phases of the work will be carried out in 2011, and early 2012 will see the concept demonstrated on a five-vehicle road train with strategies handling interaction with other road users."
What's the big deal? It is only an issue in the US. Our patent law clearly states this: Nach dem Wortlaut des Patentgesetzes ferner ausgenommen von der Patentierbarkeit sind u.a. die folgenden "Gegenstände": Entdeckungen sowie wissenschaftliche Theorien und mathematische Methoden, ästhetische Formschöpfungen, Pläne, Regeln und Verfahren für gedankliche Tätigkeiten, für Spiele oder für geschäftliche Tätigkeiten sowie Programme für Datenverarbeitungsanlagen, die Wiedergabe von Informationen, And that excludes programs and mathematical algorithms. And methods of doing business for that matter. Even if you can't offer this stuff in the US - the market of the future is
.... Asia, right?
I don't think so. I have never heard of port blocking here (west of the ex-iron curtain) and prices are much lower here too - and falling, thanks to stiff competition.