Viewpoint: Truck drivers have more of a future than airline pilots

Cummings believes aviation will likely suffer the first real effects that unmanned transportation will have on human workforce.

““Environmental ease is the advantage. Today we rely on the pilot to make quarterback moves that require expertise but almost everything in the process can be automated. We will see fully automated airline freight long before we’ll see driverless commercial trucks.”

Hype in marketing and media have increased a lot of the general public timeline expectation. Misunderstanding and incorrectly using terms associated with autonomous technology increases the hype. Headlines like, “Trucking company uses autonomous technology to haul loads” can be extremely misleading.

Fact is, “autonomous technology” can mean anything from cruise control to lane assist. An autonomous vehicle has any number of events in which it can do something without a prompt from the driver.

Pretty much every trucking company out there has a form of autonomous truck. Autonomous features increase in increments to build upon multiple systems to maintain control without driver assist, or “self-driving” technology. But even self-driving is a misleading term.