10 Features We Want to See in Self-driving Cars

A Personality
Movie fans will remember that "Christine" had a killer personality. Charles Wagner aka ChumpChange, Used Under CC BY-ND 2.0 License

"The Jetsons'" robot Rosie had a personality. The smartphone in the movie "Her" had enough personality that a man fell in love. And for a more direct precedent, the cars in Isaac Asimov's short story "Sally" from 1953 had personalities in their positronic brains. (Pay no attention to the violent retribution streak those cars had.) If we're going to hand the electronic reins over, we humans tend to feel better if the car is at least a little human-like itself. According to a recent study, giving the car a name, a gender and a voice increases our ability to trust a self-driving vehicle to do the right thing [source: Adam, Heafner and Epley].