Google spinoff Waymo may have just made minivans cool.

Well, as much as anyone can actually do that. It is still a minivan, after all. But now, it is a minivan with self-driving capabilities, and for a significantly lower price than previous self-driving cars. So how did Waymo do that?

In IT Blogwatch, we hit the road.

So what is going on? Keith Naughton and Mark Bergen have the background:

Alphabet Inc.’s…Waymo has slashed the cost of a key technology required to bring self-driving cars to the masses and rolled it out…in an autonomous Chrysler Pacifica minivan…Waymo has cut costs by 90 percent on LiDAR sensors, which bounce light off objects to create a three-dimensional map of a car’s surroundings.

Any why is this so important? Raphael Orlove has some insight:

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