Wired released an article covering what happened with with Uber killing a pedestrian and it is a sobering read. This case study should be required reading for software engineers and CS majors.
Working in the technology field there are exciting technologies and things that can be built but as engineers we are responsible for what we create. Reading through the article it’s hard to understand everything that went into the systems faulting but it’s clear it was a systemic engineering failure.
As engineers building large and safety critical systems there are numerous complexities and real guarantees are hard, that does not let you skip out. Safety is a requirement that does not get put second. Never forget that there are people on the other end of our algorithms.
Is zero pedestrian deaths by driverless cars possible, no? But there are preventable deaths and other algorithmic decisions going awry across our industry, yes. What are you doing to make sure the systems you build do not let this happen on your projects?