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This tech expert wants to replace airline pilots with computers

It's fairly certain at this point that self-driving cars are going to take off within the next 10 years. With Google, Tesla and several major car manufacturers investing in the technology, it's inevitable.

While self-driving cars are going to be generally safer than human drivers, I know a lot of people who already say they'll never use them. If you're one of the people who doesn't trust self-driving cars, then you're really not going to like this idea.

Get ready for the self-flying airplane. The venture capitalist behind electric car company Tesla Motors and private space company SpaceX, Steve Jurvetson, is looking to replace airplane pilots with computers.

It's actually not as crazy as it sounds. The autopilots in airliners can already fly the plane practically from start to finish. In fact, more than half of plane crashes are caused by human error.

Aside from claiming fewer crashes, Jurvetson makes the case that removing the pilots will keep planes from being hijacked and used in terror situations. He does admit hacking would be a problem, but maintains that there are far fewer people who can hack a heavily fortified computer vs. taking over an airplane another way.

Of course, no matter what anyone says, it all comes down to the customer. I bet the number of people willing to get on an airplane that doesn't have a pilot is probably not many - even I'm on the fence.

Even if airlines took a gamble and started running a few pilot-less planes, they'd have to keep piloted plans in service for a long time to come. People will probably need to get comfortable with self-driving cars first, and, as I said at the beginning, that's also going to be a while.

So, what about you? Would you ride in a plane with no pilot? Let me know in the comments.

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