The remote control was developed for the "Spirit of Berlin" autonomous vehicle previously built by the group of computer scientists directed by Professor Raúl Rojas. The vehicle is a converted car with complex electronics that in 2007 took part in a race of autonomous vehicles in California, U.S.A. Under the framework of the ForMaT program of the German Federal Ministry of Research, the group at Freie Universität Berlin is investigating how autonomous vehicles could change our lives in the future. According to Rojas, "It is much easier to call the driverless taxi by cell phone. The car then picks me and other people up." If this type of autonomous vehicles became a reality, there would no longer be a need for individuals to keep their own car. That would help to effectively reduce energy consumption. Rojas continues, "Traffic on the roads would probably be greatly reduced."
A video shown on the Internet about this state-of-the-art technology was viewed 130,000 times in seven days and is currently the most popular video in the field of science and technology in Germany (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oHDwKT564Kk).
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