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In California, self-driving cars might not need a licensed driver inside

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In the not-too-distant future, you'll probably be in a self-driving car. And in California, not a single passenger in that car will need a license before the car can take off.

That future was described by California's Department of Motor Vehicles on Friday, when the department outlined new regulations for the booming self-driving car industry.

If officials deem the cars safe enough, nobody in the car would need a license to operate it.

The regulations will be subject to a public hearing on October 19, The Guardian reports.

Back in December, the agency's initial rules required a licensed driver. But industry experts have envisioned cars that don't need humans, even as a backup, to drive.

The federal Department of Transportation released its own guidelines for driverless cars last week.

So is this coming any time soon?

Not quite yet. Most self-driving cars are still being tested and refined. Even the fleet of self-driving Ubers currently on Pittsburgh's streets have a human acting as a backup.

California's new rules also included language that would prevent cars with features like Tesla's Autopilot from calling themselves "self-driving," since that definition of self-driving isn't exactly literal - it assumes there's still a conscious driver behind the wheel.

It also followed suit with the federal guidelines and dropped a requirement to have a third-party company separately certify that self-driving cars were safe enough for the streets.

Who should be in charge of regulating self-driving cars?

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