Nevada has just passed legislation removing many of the legal barriers to the use of Google's self-driving car technology. So if you see a Toyota Prius or Audi TT without anyone at the wheel the next time you're in the state, don't worry - Google's got their back.
Let's back up. All that Assembly Bill No 511 says is that Nevada lawmakers have to draft legislation which provides rules for Google's fleet of autonomous cars, according to the Daily Mail report. That means it could still be a little while before the general public will get to take a ride.
The bill carries two amendments: the first, which already passed, provides for the licensing and testing of driverless cars. The second, which is still in debate, would grant an exemption for texting behind the wheel of the car you're not actually driving.
Google has been pushing for this legislation for some time: after a series of successful road tests that resulted in almost 140,000 miles driven with only limited human intervention, the search giant started lobbying Nevada to take a serious look at their technology and start the path to legalization.
The benefits of driverless cars include less traffic accidents and greater fuel efficiency, to hear Google tell it. And they never let a car go off without a human operator who can take over in the case of a mistake. But would you ride in a car without a driver?