Ok, so, it’s not like I’m the only one on the planet who had this idea, and likely not the first, either, but I must admit I was taken aback when I heard the announcement that Google was working on a car that drives itself.
About five years ago, give or take (back then I hand-wrote many of my essays and wasn’t writer-savvy enough to date them), I read a blurb in a newspaper about MIT working on cars that fly. Instead of thinking, “wouldn’t that be cool!” my thoughts were more on the line of, “that’s all we need, cars falling from the sky.” That’s when I wrote an essay called Baby, You Can Drive My Car (though admittedly, like most written works, it’s gone through several title changes including Auto Pilot, Drive My Car, and the least creative Driving in the Future). It is/was going to be one of a series of essays I hope to publish one day about why we do some of the things we do and other foibles of life. The topic was how flying cars aren’t really the answer to traffic congestion; cars that drive themselves should be the wave of the future.
I went on to describe the pros and cons, none of which were backed up with a shred of evidence; rather the product of common sense and a spark of imagination. This little gem stayed tucked away in a notebook, gathering dust with some of the other essays, topics, and idea prompts that I haven’t had time to work on, until this news story popped up and jarred my memory.
Since the proverbial cat is out of the bag, I decided to dust off my little ditty, clean it up (my hand written works are generally very rough drafts) and post it. It’s a tad long, so this space is probably not the proper place, but if you’re interested, I started a new section on my web site called Essays where I can post longer works that aren’t suited to blogsville. (http://www.mdmusings.mysite.com/rich_text.html)
So will, I sue? Not likely. I only had an idea, tucked away in a nearly forgotten notebook. Google, on the other hand, has the resources to put their ideas into practice. I suppose you could carbon-date my written pages to find out how long the ink has been drying, but I still doubt I would have much of a case. Not that I wouldn’t mind a little deposit into my Writer Survival Fund, but as the saying goes, ‘she who patents first, wins’ or something like that. Anyway, thanks, Google, for shattering one of my dreams. I guess I’d better go through that notebook and see what else I might have conjured up that could be of value, if nothing else than as a published (fee based, preferably) piece of literature.