Self-Driving Golf Carts Launched in Singapore

April 14, 2016
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Self-driving golf carts might become a reality sooner than we thought.

On April 9, technology company Velodyne LiDAR Inc. and SMART, the Singapore-MIT Alliance for Research and Technology, announced a project to launch ‘fully autonomous golf carts,’ guided by real-time light detection and ranging sensors. The announcement came months after the carts were tested successfully in a public garden in Singapore last September.

The carts shuttled 500 tourists around the garden, all the while navigating paths, people and local vegetation and wildlife. According to reports, 98% of surveyed passengers said they would ride in the self-driving carts again.

So how about it? Would you leave the wheel in, er, no one’s hands?

More from the initiative:

“Carts cruised at a top speed of about 15 miles per hour, relying on a “dynamic virtual bumper” – in effect, a cylinder surrounding the vehicle’s planned trajectory – rather than GPS. The cylinder’s width and length changed in response to the vehicle’s velocity. When an obstacle entered the cylinder, the vehicle’s onboard computer modified the cylinder to exclude it — altering the trajectory, reducing the velocity, or both.”

Thought golfboards were the wackiest means of transportation for the course? Think again.