The Self-Driving Chair Is Real, Thanks To Nissan

 Courtesy Nissan

Car manufacturer Nissan has developed a self-driving chair because, well, of course it did! The chair works much the way you might expect, with robotic wheels directing the craft’s motion, informed by its sensory input.

Rather than deploy the chair as some kind of autonomous vehicle, Nissan is instead billing its creation as a must-have for… people who stand in line a lot? With a fleet of self-driving chairs coordinating easily with each other, people could sit in chairs that navigate a queue for them, without those people once having to stand up or move themselves. Isn’t that the dream?

Dubbed the ProPILOT Chair (a tip of the hat to Nissan’s self-driving car technology, ProPilot), the chair navigates itself by detecting and following the chair in front of it. It’s reminiscent of the Snake game on your old Nokia cell phone — when one chair moves, the next chair moves to take its place.

Snaking lines of roboticized chairs can today make the process of waiting in line a lot more comfortable. It’s a novel solution to the pains of passing time while standing up in line at theme parks or concert venues. Still, it surely calls to mind the techno-human dystopia of Wall-E. And, oh my God, we are so lazy.