This will definitely be one of the spookier things you’ll see today: Gloomy, ghost-like footage of a driverless car travelling through one of Britain’s most famous cities, Oxford. It’s all captured through the viewpoint of an autonomous vehicle and shows what they see as they navigate around city streets.
The YouTube video has been released by a team of researchers at Oxford University, an institution integral in the development of driverless cars in the UK.
Here’s a mesmerising clip from the footage:
The vehicle winds past landmarks such as Balliol College, which boasts alumni such as Edward Heath, Christopher Hitchens, and Robert Southey; rolls past the Sheldonian Theatre; and, incidentally, passes by the alleyway that leads to one of Oxford’s most enjoyed pubs, The Turf. (Side note: The establishment is where Australia’s former prime minister Bob Hawke once downed a yard of ale in just 12 seconds.)
The video is the work of Oxford University’s Mobile Robotics Group (MRG), which worked on creating the new LUTZ Pathfinder Pods. These, among others, were unveiled to the public in London last week and are set for testing in the town of Milton Keynes in the coming months.
Here’s another eerie clip.
“What does the world look like to a driverless car?” ask researchers on the university’s science blog. “The videos show how some of Oxford’s most iconic locations are mapped and interpreted by the technology. The footage also shows how the system detects people and other traffic.”
Although fiercely modern in terms of technology, driverless cars don’t see things in a particularly refined way, it appears. It looks medieval if anything — amplified by Oxford’s old buildings, of course.
Here’s one more clip…
If that’s not enough, here’s the video in full…