The Situation: A self-driving car is traveling at it's maximum speed, 25 mph (40 km/h), in the middle of an empty street with the ability to change lanes on both sides. There are two passengers, one in the front and another in the back.
Someone jumps from the side of the road directly into the path of the car. A collision would occur in 50 meters. Breaking distance at this speed is about 24m.
The Question: Is it known how the current implementation of the Google Car AI would react, or is it currently a matter of speculation? A step-by-step explanation of the AI's decisioning process would be preferred.
Possible Answers: The car could activate its brakes immediately, coming to a halt as quickly as possible. This would be sooner than a human could stop, as people require time to recognize the possibility of a collision, and then physically slam on the brake. (thinking distance).
Alternatively, the car could continue traveling forward, processing the situation. (Similar to a humans thinking distance). The person may continue to move, either out of the way, or still into danger of being hit. In this case, the car may decide to change lanes in an attempt to pass around the person.
Lastly and most unlikely, the car will not alter its course and proceed to drive forward.
Do not attempt to do it to check;)