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THE Self-Driving Car / Ridesharing Thread

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Re: THE Self-Driving Car / Ridesharing Thread

Unread postby litesong » Mon 07 Nov 2016, 16:17:05

vox_mundi wrote:Let’s put it bluntly: humans are shitty drivers.


Yet, some drivers never have had a ticket, much less an accident, like my wife or one of the 1 million+ mile professional drivers on this website who has also never had a ticket. Most "accidents" AREN'T accidents, but ARE continuous driver actions or inactions that WILL lead to "accidents that AREN'T accidents".
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Re: THE Self-Driving Car / Ridesharing Thread

Unread postby Outcast_Searcher » Mon 07 Nov 2016, 16:41:34

litesong wrote:
vox_mundi wrote:Let’s put it bluntly: humans are shitty drivers.


Yet, some drivers never have had a ticket, much less an accident, like my wife or one of the 1 million+ mile professional drivers on this website who has also never had a ticket. Most "accidents" AREN'T accidents, but ARE continuous driver actions or inactions that WILL lead to "accidents that AREN'T accidents".

OK. MOST drivers are shitty drivers. Most drivers have had tickets or accidents. Most drivers (being human) have lapses in attention on the road. And then you get the significant proportion of angry/aggressive/stupid drivers, which endanger us all.

So I'm glad that some drivers are very good drivers. That doesn't change the fact in narrow domains, some driverless cars are already safer than most human drivers. Or that as the technology develops, it should be much safer than the situation today.
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Re: THE Self-Driving Car / Ridesharing Thread

Unread postby vox_mundi » Thu 01 Dec 2016, 13:11:42

UPS Experimenting With Self-Driving Trucks

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The new chief of UPS's technology efforts said that the parcel giant is evaluating how autonomous trucks could complement its current delivery operations.

Chief Information Officer Juan Perez told The Wall Street Journal in a recent interview that autonomous systems capable of navigating traffic hazards and inclement weather could improve safety on UPS's delivery routes.

Perez did not offer additional details, but he insisted that he doesn't want to replace the company's drivers — which he called "the face of UPS" — with self-driving trucks.

The company is also developing the next generation of ORION, its delivery route optimization system, as well as upgrading its busiest hubs with fully autonomous technology.

Perez also touted continued study of delivery drones after a successful test in September.

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Self-driving truck hits the road in Ohio, state investing $15 million in autonomous vehicle corridor

Video - A semi-autonomous truck operated by Otto has completed the first of multiple test runs planned in Ohio this week as the state announced a $15 million investment in highway sensors and cable to support testing of advanced transportation technologies.

The Otto truck traveled in daytime traffic on public highways from Columbus to Bellefontaine on Nov. 29 to transport an empty de-icer tanker for the Ohio Department of Transportation, marking the first load delivered by self-driving truck in the state, an ODOT spokesman said.

The truck traversed Interstates 70 and 270 and U.S. Route 33 with the help of Otto’s self-driving software and sensor technology, which tracks lane markings and detects other vehicles and objects on the road. The vehicle was manned by two drivers, but completed the main portion of the trip on Route 33 primarily with the self-driving system engaged.

Unlike the delivery in Colorado, the Otto truck was not accompanied by a police escort in Ohio.


“Platooning” Autonomous Vehicles are Coming to Michigan

'Platooning' Video - Michigan’s Governor Rick Snyder is expected to sign a bill passed by the Michigan State Legislature Thursday that would make the state the first in the country to make it legal to operate driverless cars on the road without a driver or a steering wheel. A provision in the new Michigan law would also allow for the “platooning” of autonomous commercial trucks.

According to the bill “platooning” is defined as “a group of individual motor vehicles that are traveling in a unified manner at electronically coordinated speeds.


Ford will begin testing self-driving cars in Europe in 2017

Ford tells TechCrunch it will be testing autonomous cars beginning at its UK-based Engineering Center in Essex, and that it will also begin testing at its Research & Advanced Engineering facilities located in Aachen and Cologne in Germany.


Mercedes-Benz completes autonomous Dubai-Abu Dhabi car journey

German car manufacturer Mercedes-Benz has reportedly completed an autonomous car journey between Dubai and Abu Dhabi.

A modified version of company’s E-class travelled from Jebel Ali in Southern Dubai to central Abu Dhabi on Friday without the driver touching the steering wheel, breaks or accelerator, according to UAE newspaper 7Days.

Mark de Haes, CEO and president of Mercedes-Benz Cars in the Middle East, said the journey was mostly on a straight road but complicated by local driving habits.

You have a lot of speeding and aggressive driving, but as long as the car sees the cars next to it, it has no problem to keep in the lane.

The Dubai government is planning to make 25 per cent of transport journeys autonomous by 2030.


Baidu’s autonomous vehicles set for public test in China

Self-driving car to take on Tauranga, NZ traffic this week

Testing of self-driving cars will begin soon in Boston

NuTonomy, an autonomous vehicle software startup that’s been testing its technology in Singapore, announced that it had signed an agreement with officials in Boston to bring its self-driving cars to that city’s streets.

NuTonomy said it will begin testing its self-driving Renault Zoe electric vehicles in an industrial park in South Boston later this year. ... the Boston road tests will provide nuTonomy’s software a chance to learn local signage and road markings while gaining a deeper understanding of pedestrian, cyclist, and driver behavior in a complex urban driving environment.


Kansas City prepares from self-driving cars

Kansas City Scout has already met with the U.S. Department of Transportation to discuss the future of driverless cars. Johnson said Scout is willing to test some of the new technology on Interstate 70 as part of its "Road to Tomorrow" program.


Japan panel to promote self-driving cars in special zones

TOKYO -- Autonomous cars will be a main feature of special deregulation zones proposed by a panel of Japan's ruling Liberal Democratic Party.

In the zones, regulations on automated cars will be eliminated altogether, according a draft of an interim report being compiled by the LDP panel, which is tasked with advancing structural reforms in the nation.

The panel hopes that deregulation allowed in the zones will encourage regional businesses to boost investment by 1 trillion yen ($8.75 billion) over a three-year period. It envisions self-driving vehicles employed to assist the elderly living in remote areas. The necessary funds will likely be earmarked in the fiscal 2017 budget.


Tesla Buying Germany's Grohmann Engineering To Automate, Accelerate Production

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The carmaker led by tech industrialist Elon Musk said in a blog post today that it plans to buy Grohmann Engineering, based in Prüm, Germany, and rename it Tesla Grohmann Automation. The firm, led by founder Klaus Grohmann, specializes in highly automated manufacturing techniques and will help Tesla fulfill Musk’s goal of designing the “machine that builds the machine,” his vision of advanced vehicle production that’s a step change from current standards.

Tesla needs manufacturing expertise as it races to expand vehicle production from less than 100,000 units built at its Fremont, California, plant this year to a 500,000 unit production pace by 2018. The rate of production is to then double to a 1 million-unit annual pace by 2020, a rate of expansion that would rank among the fastest in automotive history if it’s achieved.


First stage of Tesla's fully self-driving tech debuts in 3 weeks; Fully-autonomous driving promised by the end of 2017

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Easily identifies pedestrians

This is how Tesla's self-driving cars see the world - Video ... Responding to a question about the timeframe for the rollout of an updated version of its Autopilot driver-assist feature, Musk indicated it will happen "in about three weeks and it will get rolled out incrementally in monthly releases."

The version that Musk is referring to, known as Enhanced Autopilot, is expected to offer Level 5 autonomous driving (where all the occupant has to do is start the system and program a destination) later on, but as the CEO indicated the various features will be activated over the course of several months. In this manner the software will gradually take advantage of the "self-driving ready" hardware with which new Tesla models are being equipped.

"Eight surround cameras provide 360 degree visibility around the car at up to 250 meters of range," Tesla said earlier about Enhanced Autopilot. "Twelve updated ultrasonic sensors complement this vision, allowing for detection of both hard and soft objects at nearly twice the distance of the prior system. A forward-facing radar with enhanced processing provides additional data about the world on a redundant wavelength, capable of seeing through heavy rain, fog, dust and even the car ahead."

To be clear, Enhanced Autopilot in its fully activated form is envisioned to permit fully-autonomous driving with no input required from drivers aside from selecting a destination, according to Tesla.

"All you will need to do is get in and tell your car where to go," Tesla claims. "If you don’t say anything, the car will look at your calendar and take you there as the assumed destination or just home if nothing is on the calendar. Your Tesla will figure out the optimal route, navigate urban streets (even without lane markings), manage complex intersections with traffic lights, stop signs and roundabouts, and handle densely packed freeways with cars moving at high speed. When you arrive at your destination, simply step out at the entrance and your car will enter park seek mode, automatically search for a spot and park itself. A tap on your phone summons it back to you." ...

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The car is able to distinguish between an obstacle and a sign with relevant information, as you can see here by the car flagging road signs in purple.

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Here's how the car keeps track of all these different obstacles in motion when approaching a busy intersection.


Self-Driving Cars Are Too Good at 3-Point Turns, So Google Dumbed Them Down

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Teaching cars to drive themselves is only half the battle. The other half is teaching them to drive in a way that doesn't scare the hell out of their human occupants.

Consider the three-point turn, bane of student drivers everywhere. It's relatively simple to pull off on an open, straight road, as illustrated in the diagram above and video below. But roads are not always straight, and they're not always clear.

Google's self-driving cars must learn the maneuver for turning a car around in tight spaces if they're going to navigate our streets, and so they practice 1,000 multi-point turns every week on the streets of America. They're getting really good. So good, in fact, that Google had to change the way its cars execute the turn so as not to make passengers uncomfortable.

An autonomous car's sensors allow it to see in 360 degrees. It can determine its own position down to a few centimeters. Its computer can calculate the quickest way to pull off a three-point turn in any physical space, no matter how crowded it is with other cars and objects. If that means driving backward most of the time and passing damn close to another car, so be it. Machines don't care whether they're in reverse or drive, and don't get jittery when they're a few centimeters away from an insurance claim.

People do. We don't live driving backwards—it's unnatural and forces us to turn our necks to an awkward angle. We like to drive forward, where we can see everything. Google knows this. "So we've taught our cars to mimic these human patterns, favoring wider forward arcs, rather than a series of short movements back and forth," the company says in its October monthly report on its autonomous fleet.


AImotive develops "worldwide any weather" self-driving software

Pricing Insurance for Autonomous Vehicles

“This is a new world for insurers. The industry will need a whole new set of data tools to deal with this.” ...


Intel steps on the gas, launches new self-driving car group

SANTA CLARA — Intel is the latest Silicon Valley company to join the race to corner the self-driving car market, launching a new initiative this week focused on the technology behind autonomous vehicle systems.

Intel has been competing in the self-driving and connected-car industry for some time — it expects to rake in $1 billion by 2020 in deals providing chips and software to dozens of car brands — but by carving out a separate self-driving car group, Intel is signaling a greater commitment to the industry.

Intel has been building up to Tuesday’s launch for months. In July the company announced a partnership with BMW Group and crash-prevention tech company Mobileye, aiming to bring autonomous driving to the streets by 2021. And earlier this month at the Los Angeles AutoMobility conference, Intel CEO Brian Krzanich announced that Intel Capital, the company’s investment arm, will pour more than $250 million into the self-driving car industry over the next two years. Intel also has acquired companies in the market, including Yogitech, Arynga and Itseez.


Big boost for self-driving cars: Osram cuts lidar cost to less than $50

Could this be the order-of-magnitude cost drop that enables self-driving cars? Osram has announced a lidar chipset that will sell for less than $50 in volume. Lidar is what’s in the scanners that create a map of the surroundings as you drive: curbs, medians, signs, other cars, pedestrians, and animals. Osram declares it’s “a milestone for laser sensors in self-driving cars” because of the price and reliability from a device with no moving parts.

Test samples will be available in early 2017. Production quantities will arrive in 2018. The unit will be small enough to fit behind the front grille, rather than atop the roof.

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U.S. letter reveals details of GM self-driving vehicle system

General Motors Co's semi-autonomous "Super Cruise" system will allow drivers to take their hands off the steering wheel for extended periods, but will stop the vehicle automatically if drivers are not attentive, according to a government letter made public on Monday.

The largest U.S. automaker in September 2014 unveiled planned technology to allow drivers on highways to let the vehicle take over driving itself.

GM, which initially planned to unveil the technology on the CT6 in late 2016, said in January it would not unveil Super Cruise until 2017.

GM's monitoring system has facial recognition software that can detect if a driver is falling asleep or not paying attention, spokesman Kevin Kelly said Monday. If so, the system issues alerts: a red visual display telling a driver to take control followed by a seat vibration and then a recorded audio message. If drivers ignore all those, GM's OnStar system will communicate with the driver.

Similar systems due on the market in coming years include Traffic Jam Pilot from Volkswagen AG's Audi unit in 2018.


The Hidden Task Ahead of Trump’s Transport Chief

... The next four years may be the most important in driving history, as federal, state, and local governments decide how they’ll regulate autonomous vehicles, prepare streets for their arrival, and navigate the legal, safety, and cybersecurity questions blocking their way.

Here’s the problem: Nobody seems to know what Elaine Chao, Secretary of Transportation nominee, thinks of the technology, or how she’ll approach it. The same goes for Trump, who talks a lot about physical infrastructure but never mentions how new technology will change transportation.

“We don’t really have any idea where Ms. Chao would be,” says Chan Lieu, an advisor to the Self-Driving Coalition for Safer Streets, whose members include Ford, Google, Lyft, Uber, and Volvo. The industry’s bigger worry is that the feds will leave too much power to the states, who’ll create 50 different sets of rules for manufacturers to follow.

Google, Ford, Uber, Nissan, Mercedes-Benz, and Tesla all say they want to get fully autonomous cars on US roads by 2021. But they’ll need continued government support if they’re going to make good on their world-changing promises.

Chao does have some advantages, should she make autonomous evolution a priority. Her labor experience positions her to deal with how the tech will affect employment. Today, the trucking industry suffers from labor shortages. What happens when America’s three million truckers start losing their jobs to the robots, like the kind being tested by Uber-owned Otto, or even platooning technology, which could cut the number of drivers in half? What about taxi and Uber drivers once the robo-car spreads beyond Pittsburgh?


Advocates worry Trump will trample self-driving regs
“There are three classes of people: those who see. Those who see when they are shown. Those who do not see.” ― Leonardo da Vinci

Insensible before the wave so soon released by callous fate. Affected most, they understand the least, and understanding, when it comes, invariably arrives too late.
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Re: THE Self-Driving Car / Ridesharing Thread

Unread postby Outcast_Searcher » Thu 01 Dec 2016, 19:59:32

We don't live driving backwards—it's unnatural and forces us to turn our necks to an awkward angle. We like to drive forward, where we can see everything.

Actually, it's amazing how quickly technology changes things, and not only for self driving enabling tech.

For me, the simple backup camera has made me a better driver and made driving much more enjoyable (and I've been driving for 40+ years now). I (with my screwed up joints) no longer need to ackwardly turn around and crane my neck, etc. to back up safely. Between the backup camera with its wide and low field of vision, and manually looking out the rear window via the rear-view mirror with its higher view (call it a human double check, esp. if the camera vision is dicey, like at night), and I can now back up and park like a pro. Sometimes it even alarms the person behind me in traffic if I get close since I don't seem to be looking -- but I can easily see the two car bumpers and get close with no danger of bumping the other car.

It's fabulous. As long as I own cars I have to drive, I will flatly refuse to buy one without a backup camera that I like. Driving is getting safer IF people would pay attention and use the tools available to them.

...

Another example is navigation systems. (I recently entered the 21st century with this. Being a software person by trade makes me too prone to assume software will be REALLY TERRIBLE for ordinary end users -- a bias I need to learn to correct.) Now with a $100 to $150 Garmin system, I can plan my trip and set way points so I can spend 99% of my focus on the road instead of worrying about getting lost -- even if I'm out in the country driving on various roads I've never been on before. Having a way point about a quarter of a mile before an unfamiliar turn, for example, helps me know when to expect it (even if the Garmin is less than perfect about pointing it out, as it can be in rural areas on occasion). I don't have to find a safe place to stop and consult a map, worry if I missed a sign, worry about losing my sense of direction (mine is terrible, especially at night) if I get confused, etc. I can glance at the Garmin zoomed in to be sure which road I want to turn on if I'm going through a strange town, for example.

Again, when the goal is to drive more safely, modern technology for cars can be really great -- and it doesn't have to cost $9 skazillion in some cases.
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Re: THE Self-Driving Car / Ridesharing Thread

Unread postby vox_mundi » Fri 02 Dec 2016, 11:35:33

US auto industry installed 135,000 robots and added 230,000 jobs

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In the last six years, (2010–2015), according to the IFR (International Federation of Robotics), US industry has installed around 135,000 new industrial robots. The principal driver is automation in the car industry. During this same period, (2010–2015), the number of employees in the automotive sector increased by 230,000.

According to the International Federation of Robotics, car manufacturers and component suppliers will continue to be heavy users of robots. In addition, more and more new companies specialized in electric or autonomous vehicles that are starting up in the United States and are in need of modern and efficient production facilities. The electronics industry continues to be the fastest-growing emerging industry for industrial robots in the United States (2014-2015 = +41%).


And here's a reason why more people will be paying for 'cars as a service' instead of owning them ...

Some 6 million Americans are delinquent with auto loans and it’s going to get worse

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Subprime auto loans are back and already going sour.

The number of subprime auto loans slipping into delinquency climbed to the highest level since 2010 in the third quarter, and is following a pattern much like the months heading into the 2007-09 recession, according to fresh data from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.

Because auto loans are repackaged as bond-like asset-backed securities, the health of the loan market can have implications for credit-market health. However, credit officials have stressed that the contagion risk to the financial system from poor auto loans isn’t like the risk posed when subprime mortgage lending pushed the U.S. into the Great Recession. That’s in large part because repossessed cars are easier to resell than bank-owned homes. Cars can’t sink whole neighborhoods with foreclosure blight.

or ... as John Oliver would explain - Video


How self-parking car technology works: the first step to autonomous vehicles

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It’s Time to Replace Meter Maids With Riderless Motorcycles

Autonomous Vehicle Trials to Begin in Ontario, A Canadian First

Self-driving cars will hit the roads in Canada’s Ontario Province shortly after the beginning of the new year, marking a Canadian first.

Ontario is the geographic center of the Canadian auto industry, which helps make it ideal for testing autonomous vehicles.

Additionally, the province’s weather could be beneficial to autonomous vehicles that need to be exposed to as many conditions as possible, as it’s one of the only areas in Canada with four markedly different seasons.


Volvo Autonomous Pilot Study Begins in Sweden

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THE COMING RISE of autonomous vehicles has already sparked fears that cars immune to human error won’t incur the speeding and parking fines that keep city coffers stuffed. But there will be a healthy gap between the technology’s arrival and its ubiquity. That’s what makes the Brigade useful.

Brigade is a conceptual driverless motorcycle I have designed to keep the peace in small towns, and keep human officers doing more important work. Carrying a suite of cameras, sensors, projectors, and speakers, the electric two-wheeler would stay upright thanks to a built-in gyroscope.

Brigade would silently patrol the streets, looking for things like expired registrations and illegally parked cars. It would file timestamped video evidence with the municipal court and email the owner a citation.

For offenses like speeding, Brigade wouldn’t even bother to stop, instead alerting the offender with a flashing light and audio message. If the driver ignores the admonition, Brigade would follow him and alert nearby, human cops.

Dubai and Abu Dhabi police forces are looking at adopting what is being billed as the world’s fastest driverless motorbike.

Nerve’s Autonomous Street Racer holds the world-record in its class for acceleration times, reaching speeds of up to 300 km/h, but most importantly – its driverless.

Soeren Ekelund, Chief Technology Officer at Nerve, said: “Dubai Police and Abu Dhabi police have been interested in using them for scouting purposes. You can go to a place where it is too dangerous to proceed, he [the officer] can then jump off and let the motorcycle scout for him ahead.

Developer Klaus Petersen said the bike was developed with “its own eyes and ears” to make riding safer.
“There are three classes of people: those who see. Those who see when they are shown. Those who do not see.” ― Leonardo da Vinci

Insensible before the wave so soon released by callous fate. Affected most, they understand the least, and understanding, when it comes, invariably arrives too late.
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Re: THE Self-Driving Car / Ridesharing Thread

Unread postby energyskeptic » Sun 04 Dec 2016, 15:46:00

Why self-driving cars may not be in your future
http://energyskeptic.com/2016/nasa-expl ... ur-future/

Pavlus, John. July 18, 2016. What NASA Could Teach Tesla about Autopilot’s Limits. Scientific American.

Decades of research have warned about the human attention span in automated cockpits

After the Tesla’s Model S in auto-pilot mode crashed into a truck and killed its driver, the safety of self-driving cars has been questioned due to 3 factors: the autopilot system didn’t see the truck coming, the driver didn’t notice the truck either, so neither applied the brakes.

Who better knows the dangers than NASA, where automation in cockpits has been studied for decades (i.e. cars, space shuttle, airplane). They describe how connected a person is to a decision-making process as “in the loop”, which, say driving a car yourself, means Observe, Orient, Decide, Act (OODA). But if your car is in autopilot but you can still interact with the system to brake or whatever, you are “ON the loop”.

Airplanes fly automated, with pilots observing. But this is very different from a car. If something goes wrong the pilot has many minutes to react. The plane is 8 miles in the air.

But in a car, you have just ONE SECOND. That requires a faster reflex reaction time than a test pilot. There’s almost no margin for error. This means you might as well be driving manually since you still have to be paying full attention when the car is on autopilot, not sitting in the back seat reading a book.

Tesla tries to get around this by having the autopilot make sure the driver’s hands are on the wheel and visual and audible alerts are triggered if not.

But NASA has found this doesn’t work because the better the auto-pilot is, the less attention the driver pays to what’s going on. It is tiring, and boring, to monitor a process that does well for a long time, and was called a “vigilance decrement” as far back as 1948. Experiments back then showed that after just 15 minutes vigilance drops off.

So the better the system the more we’re likely to stop paying attention. But no one would want to buy a self-driving car that they may as well be driving. The whole point is that dangerous stuff we’re already doing now like changing the radio, eating, and talking on the phone would be less dangerous in autopilot mode.

These findings expose a contradiction in systems like Tesla’s Autopilot. The better they work, the more they may encourage us to zone out—but in order to ensure their safe operation they require continuous attention. Even if Joshua Brown was not watching Harry Potter behind the wheel, his own psychology may still have conspired against him.

Tesla’s plan assumes that automation advances will eventually get around this problem.

By the way, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) already has a 4 level definition of automation.

Level 1 “invisible” driver assistance (i.e. antilock brakes with electronic stability control).
Level 2 cars with 2+ level 1 systems (i.e. in cruise control, lane centering)
Level 3 “Limited Self-Driving Automation” in cars like the Model S, where “the driver is expected to be available for occasional control but with sufficiently comfortable transition time.”
Level 4 full self-driving automation

NASA warns that although partial automation is inherently unsafe, it’s also a danger to assume that level 4, full self-driving automation is a logical extension of level 3 (other car makers like google and Ford appear to be trying to reach level 4).

Level 3 is probably unsuitable for cars because the 1-second reaction time is simply too fast, and level 4, based on NASA’s experience is also unlikely.

Computers do not deal well with anything unexpected, with sudden and unforeseen events. Self-driving cars can obey the rules of the road, but they cannot anticipate how other car drivers will behave.
Without super-accurate GPS automation relies on seeing lines on the pavement to keep in their lane, but snow, rain, and fog can make them go away. Self-driving cars rely on special detailed maps of the location of intersections, on-ramps, stop signs and so on. very few roads are mapped to this degree, or updated with construction, detours, conversions to roundabouts, new stop lights, and so on. They don’t detect potholes, puddles, or oil spots well and can be confounded by the shadows of overpasses. If a collision is unavoidable, do you run over the child or swerve into a light pole and kill the driver potentially? (Boudette 2016).

Excerpts from John Markoff. January 17, 2016. For Now, Self-Driving Cars Still Need Humans. New York Times.

Self-driving cars will require human supervision. On many occasions, the cars will tell their human drivers, “Here, you take the wheel,” when they encounter complex driving situations or emergencies. In the automotive industry, this is referred to as the hand-off problem, and automotive engineers say there is no easy solution to make a driver who may be distracted by texting, reading email or watching a movie perk up and retake control of the car in the fraction of a second that is required in an emergency. The danger is that by inducing human drivers to pay even less attention to driving, the safety technology may be creating new hazards. The ability to know if the driver is ready, and if you’re giving them enough notice to hand off, is a really tricky question.

The Tesla performed well in freeway driving, but on city streets and country roads, Autopilot performance could be described as hair-raising. The car, which uses only a camera to track the roadway by identifying lane markers, did not follow the curves smoothly or slow down when approaching turns. On a 220-mile drive to Lake Tahoe from Palo Alto, Calif., Dr. Thrun said he had to intervene more than a dozen times.

Like the Tesla, the new autonomous Nissan models will require human oversight and even their most advanced models aren’t autonomous in snow, heavy rain and some nighttime driving.
You could propose various fixes, but none of them get around the 1 second time for the driver to react. That is not fixable.

References

Boudette, N. June 4, 2016. 5 Things That Give Self-Driving Cars Headaches. New York Times.
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Re: THE Self-Driving Car / Ridesharing Thread

Unread postby vox_mundi » Thu 29 Dec 2016, 12:33:21

Tesla's 'autopilot' begins braking for wreck before driver

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Tesla's new Autopilot system may have saved a Norwegian family from turning a high speed car accident into a multi-automobile pileup.

The dashboard video seems to show the Tesla issue a warning before the car ahead of Hoesel had hit its brakes. Then, while watching an SUV flipping ominously in front of him and another car careen off to the side of the road, Hoesel found his car slowing down without his help.

In this case, the Tesla Forward Collision Warning system (which sends an audible alert when a driver might be in danger of crashing into something ahead of the vehicle) sounds before you can even see the car immediately in front of the driver’s Tesla Model X braking. Why? It seems to have sensed the SUV in front of that vehicle coming to a sudden stop, which the smaller vehicle which ends up rear-ended it did not notice in time.

Unlike drivers, the Autopilot system is uninhibited by obstructive views. By bouncing a signal, the radar can "see" ahead of the car in front of the driver and analyze the position of the other automobiles on the road, according to the company.

This looks like it could’ve been a prime candidate for a pileup, including the Model X that captured the video, but instead as the dashcam footage shows, the vehicle not only alerted the driver about the potential collision but even started applying its emergency braking system before he himself could react and do so. The result is that the Model X stops well back of the collision (in which all parties luckily turned out to be okay, beyond the vehicle damage).

Previous footage captured by Tesla drivers have shown other safety features, including how its instant acceleration can help avoid the kind of rear-ending that happens to the other vehicle ahead of the Tesla in this video.


Norway to clear the way for self-driving cars

Norway’s minister of transport, Ketil Solvik-Olsen, said that the government “wants to make it easier for Norwegians to put innovative technologies to use in their daily lives.”

“The development and implementation of assisted driving is already making our roads safer. Further development and real-world use of such systems will probably prevent accidents and make our roads even safer,” Solvik-Olsen said in a statement.


Tesla Autopilot On Snow Covered Road With No Lane Markings

Below is a dashcam video showing how the latest version of Tesla Autopilot can navigate on a snow covered two lane road with no visible lane markings and no car ahead to follow.


Tesla forces hard speed limits on its Autopilot self-driving system

Tesla confirmed that it's rolling out an update to stop autopilot from exceeding the speed limit. Prior to this update, drivers could use Autopilot’s cruise control feature to go travel at 5 mph over the posted speed on roads and non-divided highways, according to Electrek. Autopilot has a hard upper speed limit of 90 mph.

Tesla’s new speed limit enforcement appears to be an additional safety measure for the company’s semi-autonomous Autopilot system.


Legislation to be introduced to make Florida ready for self-driving cars

PENSACOLA, Fla. (WEAR) — Uber has been testing its cars in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and soon Phoenix, Arizona. The company recently pulled cars out of San Francisco after California revoke the registration over lack of permits.

Florida Senator Jeff Brandes tweeted the company, letting them know Florida is ready for their cars.

Earlier this year, Florida became the first state to allow autonomous vehicles to be used with or without a driver, no permit required. However, the law states there must be an operator in complete control.


Michigan Just Passed the Most Permissive Self-Driving Car Laws in the Country

Government to require cars be able to talk to each other

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All new cars and light trucks would be able to talk wirelessly with each other, with traffic lights and with other roadway infrastructure under a rule the Transportation Department proposed Tuesday. Officials say the technology holds the potential to dramatically reduce traffic deaths and transform driving.

Vehicle-to-vehicle communications, or V2V, enables cars to transmit their locations, speed, direction and other information ten times per second. That lets cars detect, for example, when another vehicle is about to run a red light, is braking hard, changing lanes or coming around a blind turn in time for a driver or automated safety systems to prevent a crash.

The technology has the potential to prevent or mitigate the severity of up to 80 percent of collisions that don't involve alcohol or drugs, officials said.

"V2V will provide 360-degree situational awareness on the road," said Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. "We are carrying the ball as far as we can to realize the potential of transportation technology to save lives."

V2V's range is up to about 1,000 yards in all directions, even when sight is blocked by buildings or other obstacles. That gives the technology the advantage of being able to detect a potential collision before the driver can see the threat, unlike the sensors and cameras of self-driving cars that sense what's immediately around the vehicle.

The proposal calls for 50 percent of new vehicles to have the technology within two years after a final rule is issued, and 100 percent of vehicles with four years. It would still take years or even decades after that for the full potential of V2V to be realized. That's because V2V can prevent collisions only among vehicles equipped with the technology.

It takes decades for the entire fleet of vehicles on the road to turn over. But the process of spreading V2V throughout the fleet may go faster if, as expected, devices are developed that enable motorists to add the technology to older vehicles.


Google’s Latest Self-Driving Car? It’s a Minivan

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... Under a partnership established six months ago, engineers from Waymo and Fiat Chrysler collaborated in Michigan to build these hybrid-powered vans with the right tools for the job incorporated from the start, rather than retrofitting them after they came off the assembly line. Those include the computers that run its software algorithms and the suite of sensors—LIDAR, radars, and cameras—that adorn the roof and flank the sides of the car.


Honda in Talks With Google’s Waymo on Self-Drive Tech

Brain in the trunk: Ford to unveil next self-driving car

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DETROIT -- Ford will debut an upgraded version of its self-driving Ford Fusion Hybrid sedan next week, one equipped with more advanced sensors, more computing power and proprietary software that helps the car think for itself.

The automaker's second-generation self-driving prototype has a brain located in the trunk that processes data collected by a host of high-tech sensors that can see the road.

"It’s been three years since we hit the streets with our first Fusion Hybrid autonomous research vehicle, and this latest version takes everything we learned and builds on it," according to a blog post from Chris Brewer, Ford's chief engineer of autonomous-vehicle development, posted on Medium.

Brewer said the new version of the Fusion Hybrid test vehicle includes:
•Two hockey-puck-sized LiDAR sensors, each generating millions of beams, jutting from the car’s front pillars, providing a 360-degree view.
Three cameras mounted on two racks on the roof.

•A forward-facing camera mounted under the windshield that works to identify objects and read traffic lights on the road.
Short- and long-range radar sensors — adept at seeing through rain, fog and heavy snow and at helping to determine how an object is moving relative to the car.

•A second, independent power converter connected to the Fusion Hybrid's battery added to supplement the computing power.


Here and MobilEye team up on self-driving tech for automakers

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Nissan's Autonomous Self-Parking Car


Self-driving cars to headline Consumer Electronic Show 2017

Google envisions imperfect self-driving cars that need human help

The firm on Dec. 27 received a patent for a route-choosing system, and the patent document indicates that the firm, which recently spun the self-driving project into a separate company called Waymo, is seeking to solve the problem of autonomous systems that drive better than people in most situations, but fall short in others.

“Often an autonomous vehicle cannot or should not drive an entire route in fully autonomous mode due to road conditions or other environmental factors,” the document said. “Thus, some routes may require some amount driver control or interaction at some point during the trip.”

However, the driver typically won’t know about the need to take control until just before it arises, the document said.

So the patented system would estimate the likelihood that the autonomous system would fail to drive properly at points along a particular route, and come up with “control information” that would describe “which portions of a particular route may be maneuvered in a manual mode (where the driver generally has control of the vehicle) or an autonomous mode (where the computer maneuvers the vehicle without continuous input form the driver).”

The control information may also cover a “semiautonomous mode” in which “the computer controls some aspects of the vehicle while the driver controls others.”

And while navigation systems usually give drivers information about distance and trip time, Google’s system would also include how much of a potential route would require driver intervention and how much could be driven solely by the robot car.

A driver would then choose a route based on how much they wanted to be involved in the driving.

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TriLumina Showcasing 256-Pixel 3D Solid-State LiDAR System For Self-Driving Vehicles At CES 2017

The reason that this is news is that TriLumina’s illumination modules could potentially replace the bulky, expensive scanning LiDAR systems commonly used today in self-driving vehicle pilots.
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Re: THE Self-Driving Car / Ridesharing Thread

Unread postby vox_mundi » Thu 29 Dec 2016, 14:37:25

Uber Freight Just Launched and Trucking Will Never Be the Same

Uber has launched a website for a service called Uber Freight. Little has been revealed about the company’s expansion from ride-hailing, but if the announcements it’s made over the last year are any indicator, chances are good that Uber Freight is meant to prepare the world for autonomous delivery trucks.

Uber acquired a startup called Otto, which planned to bring the first self-driving trucks to market, in August. Since then the company has used its trucks to deliver 50,000 cans of beer and hundreds of Christmas trees in San Francisco.

This new service won’t use those trucks, at least not at the beginning. Instead it will function much like Uber’s existing platform: Some people will sign up to drive items across the country, and others will join so they can send packages without having to sign a contract with established shipping companies. The service will likely bring “surge pricing” to trucking, too.

Uber Freight could also help Otto’s trucks by using data gathered from drivers on the platform. This would allow the self-driving vehicles to learn from experienced people while regulators figure out how to govern autonomous trucks and the technology catches up to all of the promises made by its creators.

Uber Freight’s launch coincides with growing interest in trucking from many tech companies. Nikola Motor Company wants to use tech to make trucking more environmentally friendly and appealing to millennials; Tesla’s working on self-driving trucks; the list could go on.

But it will be interesting to see where Uber lands on the driver problem. Nikola has been clear in its commitment to making good drivers happy, while Tesla CEO Elon Musk has said that automating jobs like truck-driving could lead to universal basic income. Uber Freight lands in the middle — it needs human drivers now, but it’s likely to switch to autonomous trucks as soon as mechanically possible.


Driverless Platoons: Analysis Finds Autonomous Trucks That Drive In Packs Could Save Time And Fuel

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"Ride-sharing and truck platooning, and even flocking birds and formation flight, are similar problems from a systems point of view," says Sertac Karaman, the Class of 1948 Career Development Associate Professor of Aeronautics and Astronautics at MIT. "People who study these systems only look at efficiency metrics like delay and throughput. We look at those same metrics, versus sustainability such as cost, energy, and environmental impact. This line of research might really turn transportation on its head."

Karaman says that for truck-driving -- particularly over long distances -- most of a truck's fuel is spent on trying to overcome aerodynamic drag, that is, to push the truck through the surrounding air. Scientists have previously calculated that if several trucks were to drive just a few meters apart, one behind the other, those in the middle should experience less drag, saving fuel by as much as 20 percent, while the last truck should save 15 percent -- slightly less, due to air currents that drag behind.

If more vehicles are added to a platoon, more energy can collectively be saved. But there is a cost in terms of the time it takes to assemble a platoon.

Karaman and his colleagues developed a mathematical model to study the effects of different scheduling policies on fuel consumption and delays. They modeled a simple scenario in which multiple trucks travel between two stations, arriving at each station at random times. The model includes two main components: a formula to represent vehicle arrival times, and another to predict the energy consumption of a vehicle platoon.

... Ultimately, the team found the simplest policies incurred the least delays while saving the most fuel. That is, time tables set to deploy platoons at regular intervals were more sustainable and efficient than those that deployed at more staggered times. Similarly, feedback scenarios that waited for the same number of trucks before deploying every time were more optimal than those that varied the number of trucks in a platoon.

Eventually, he says, the model may suggest that trucks follow each other at very close range, within 3 to 4 meters, which is difficult for a driver to maintain. Ultimately, Karaman says, truck platoons may require autonomous driving systems to kick in during long stretches of driving, to keep the platoon close enough together to save the most fuel.


Automatic brakes stopped Berlin truck during Christmas market attack

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After the terror attack at a Christmas market in Berlin, many people were asking themselves if sensitive in-vehicle security systems could not prevent such catastrophes.

Now, it appears, the security features in the truck did indeed prevent the worst from happening. An investigation by newspaper "Süddeutsche Zeitung" and broadcasters "NDR" and "WDR" found the Scania R 450 semi-trailer stopped after traveling between 70 and 80 meters (250 feet). The system was reportedly engaged after sensing a collision.

Previous reports speculated that the truck had driven erratically and stopped due to the heroic actions of the truck's Polish driver, who lay fatally wounded in the cabin.

The incident showed that, in principle, it is possible to use a truck or a car as a weapon and to kill people. But it also revealed that active security systems pay off: They work, and they can save lives.


Self-Driving Chinese Truck Is The Future

The $300 billion Chinese trucking market is filled with long hauls and chaos. The government and technology firms are betting that self-driving 18-wheelers are the solution.

Last month at the Shanghai New International Expo Center, the Internet services company Baidu (BIDU) and Foton showed off Super Truck. Apart from its array of sensors and distinctive surround windshield, the level 4 autonomous freight truck would not stick out in a crowd of diesel burners. That’s because it’s not from the future. China needs an answer to its freight logistics problem now. That urgency gives Chinese firms a big leg up in the race to autonomy and patent windfalls.

... There are 7.2 million trucks and 16 million drivers serving 5.9 million square miles of thorny countryside. Many trips involve very long hauls. Some require two or three drivers. “The economics from labor and fuel-efficient savings are significant,” he says, “so market forces will make it happen.”

For Uber's Otto, grabbing a big share of the $700 billion U.S. trucking market seemed like a safe bet.

Unfortunately, that was before the Chinese took a shine to the same market. Technologies being developed in China under a more lenient regulatory regime may win patents and get to market in the United States first despite any attempt by the new administration to block them.


Australia Already Has Massive Autonomous Mining Trucks on the Road

Video - A mining company in Australia is using house-sized vehicles that drive themselves to automate the mining process from digging materials out of the earth to dropping them off at a warehouse. Everything could be automated in just a few years — much sooner than self-driving cars will go mainstream — because of the highly regulated nature of the country’s mines.

Rio Tinto isn’t just eyeing autonomous trucks. It’s also using robot drills to replace human miners and having control centers direct self-driving trains. MIT Technology Review reports that using all of these tools could help mining become cheaper, more efficient, and safer.

That’s at least partly because machines are more dependable than people. A robot drill won’t call in sick, autonomous trucks never get drowsy, and self-driving trains don’t miss anything on the tracks. The machines also have lower recurring costs — a robot has never asked for a raise so it could keep food on the table. Rio Tinto merely has to keep all its machinery running. “All those places where you could lose a few seconds or minutes by not being consistent add up,” says Atkinson. They also improve safety, he says.

The driverless locomotives, due to be tested extensively next year and fully deployed by 2018, are expected to bring similar benefits. Atkinson also anticipates savings on train maintenance, because software can be more predictable and gentle than any human in how it uses brakes and other controls. Diggers and bulldozers could be next to be automated.


Autonomous Concept Truck

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Autonomous vehicles will also allow a different structure in the design of the vehicle. Zoltan Major, the designer, wanted to create a different shape that reflects to the use of the new technology and might give some extra advantage to the vehicle. The edge shaped cabin is not only different from chauffeur driven trucks, but it also have better aerodynamic properties by directing the airflow more smoothly around the vehicle. For navigation the truck uses sensors that are positioned on the front and on the side, these sensors scan the road and provide data for the computer to process and analyze to maneuver the truck.


Distribution truck with autonomous containers for the last mile delivery

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This project which deals of last mile freight deliveries is due for 2030, when autonomous vehicles will be in the streets and people used to have them arround: a truck (driven by a truck driver) carries 3 autonomous electric containers only on major roads (highways, ring roads) from the logistics platform up to the suburb of the city, where the containers are loaded / unloaded by the truck in special parkings (logistics areas) disposed in strategic areas around the city.

The buyers of such a system (B2B) could be freight transport companies, express deliveries institutions, private companies, etc.., while the users of the system (B2C) could be merchants, supermarkets managers or anybody who has ordered something on the Internet and wishes to receive it at home.

The tour of a truck no longer consists in making deliveries downtown, but in loading / unloading the autonomous containers in the "logistics areas"; it is then the autonomous containers which drive by themselves up to the shop (or private home) inside the city where the deliveries need to be made.
“There are three classes of people: those who see. Those who see when they are shown. Those who do not see.” ― Leonardo da Vinci

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Re: THE Self-Driving Car / Ridesharing Thread

Unread postby vox_mundi » Fri 30 Dec 2016, 13:48:28

Self-Driving Cars Will Make Organ Shortages Even Worse

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Bring the 'meat wagon'

... It’s morbid, but the truth is that due to limitations on who can contribute transplants, among the most reliable sources for healthy organs and tissues are the more than 35,000 people killed each year on American roads (a number that, after years of falling mortality rates, has recently been trending upward). Currently, 1 in 5 organ donations comes from the victim of a vehicular accident. That’s why departments of motor vehicles ask drivers whether they want to be donors.

It’s not difficult to do the math on how driverless cars could change the equation. An estimated 94 percent of motor-vehicle accidents involve some kind of a driver error. As the number of vehicles with human operators falls, so too will the preventable fatalities.

In June, Christopher A. Hart, the chairman of the National Transportation Safety Board, said, “Driverless cars could save many if not most of the 32,000 lives that are lost every year on our streets and highways.

Even if self-driving cars only realize a fraction of their projected safety benefits, a decline in the number of available organs could begin as soon as the first wave of autonomous and semiautonomous vehicles hits the road—threatening to compound our nation’s already serious shortages. ...

... There’s also the question of whether we have inconsistent ideas about what parts of the human body we find acceptable to commoditize. We’ve already legalized paid medical trials and paid donations of blood plasma, sperm, and eggs. Egg donation is an invasive process that, like kidney donation, includes a small risk of health complications. But according to a national 2007 survey of clinics, egg donors are compensated an average of $4,217 for their contributions.


Think Tank Proposes eBay for Organ Shortage Created by Autonomous Cars

Maryland Offers I-95 as Testing Ground for Autonomous Cars

Interstate 95 and other major arteries around the Baltimore region could become a testing ground for driverless cars starting in 2018 under a proposal Gov. Larry Hogan's administration announced Wednesday.

In addition to I-95, the state proposal would allow testing on U.S. 1, U.S. 40 and the Intercounty Connector, and at facilities such as the port of Baltimore and Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport.
“There are three classes of people: those who see. Those who see when they are shown. Those who do not see.” ― Leonardo da Vinci

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Re: THE Self-Driving Car / Ridesharing Thread

Unread postby AdamB » Fri 30 Dec 2016, 18:04:10

Just as EVs arrived in time to see peak oil fears crumble into dust, I would bet that the self driving car thing will come along during the next oil price cycle and dispatch yet again the idea that changing transport choices won't cause exactly the kind of peak demand scenarios talked about by real energy experts like Amy Jaffe. And these structural changes in technology and use are exactly what the Saudis were worried about as far back as the mid 80's. They understand the basis of their undoing, and their market share defense strategy fits hand in glove with those fears from 3 decades ago.
Peak oil in 2020: And here is why: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2b3ttqYDwF0
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Re: THE Self-Driving Car / Ridesharing Thread

Unread postby vox_mundi » Fri 30 Dec 2016, 20:26:58

Two roads to the same place: 2016 and the future of self-driving cars

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The self-driving car reached something of a watershed in 2016. All of a sudden, it seems we're right on the threshold of autonomous vehicles transforming our transportation. I'd ask any engineer in 2015 when they thought we'd have full (i.e., SAE level 5) self-driving vehicles and the answer was always "ooh, that's another 20-30 years away." Fast forward a year, and all of a sudden that target has moved: BMW, Intel, Mobileye, Uber, Volvo, Ford, Delphi, and others have all set 2021 (or earlier in the case of Delphi) as the year by which steering wheels become optional.

... But along the way, the automakers and tech firms working on the problem have diverged into two groups: the ones who plan to get there in an incremental, stepwise fashion, and the others who plan to skip the intermediate step.

... A second philosophical difference is also beginning to emerge in the industry, regarding whether or not you'll own or just rent these self-driving vehicles. Assuming Ford or Uber or whoever else gets its self-driving vehicles ready by 2021, they won't be vehicles you or I could go out and purchase. Instead, we're talking about fleets owned by the manufacturers, which we'll summon when needed, paying just for the ride.

... If we cast our crystal ball further out—20 or 30 years into the future—those different paths are all headed to the same place, and it's one where humans driving themselves will be in a distinct minority. It's not hard to imagine that restrictions on human drivers will start to appear, first on highways (like HOV lanes), and I can easily imagine ideas similar to London's congestion charge being used to discourage humans from driving themselves in cities.

"I don't think new vehicle ownership will even exist by then," Jeremey McCool, CEO of HEVO Power (a company that makes wireless charging systems for vehicles) told me recently. "Manufacturers will own the assets, and they'll be able to overcome the problems they're having with cost by having people pay premiums for a monthly service. That'll probably eliminate Lyft and Uber, because they're just a middle facilitator at that point."

The insurance industry is also in for a big change by then, explained Andrew Rose, CEO of compare.com. "If you don't wreck cars, why do you need insurance? It's a $200 billion industry that's going away in the next few decades."

Or we could all be walking.

The Convergence Of Zero-Emissions Zones, EVs, Self-Driving Tech, & On-Demand Taxi Services

Boston is the latest city to allow self-driving car tests

Massachusetts has become somewhat of a hotbed for autonomous-vehicle research. Currently, Toyota, Audi and local startup Optimus Ride are in various stages of testing their wares. Why's that? According to Tufts University robotics professor Bill Messner, it's because of how difficult the area can be to navigate.

"Boston is in fact one of the most challenging places to test. [The] No. 1 [reason] is weather and No. 2 is the crazy street layout we have," he said.


Amazon’s Real Future Isn’t Drones. It’s Self-Driving Trucks

Here in the US, trucks carry 10 billion tons of freight each year. That’s 70 percent of all goods shipped across the country, according to the American Trucking Association. The trouble is: we don’t have enough drivers, and their numbers are dwindling. The American Trucking Association says the driver deficit currently stands at 48,000, and if trends continue, that could reach 175,000 by the year 2024. The average age for an American truck driver is 63, and that’s only going up. “Where is the next generation of truckers going to come from?” says Ryan Petersen, the CEO of Flexport, a company that helps businesses organize their shipping efforts through trucks as well as ships and trains.

This is why Amazon is apparently trying to Uber-ize the way it coordinates truck shipments across the country’s largest online retail service, as The Wall Street Journal reported this week. Amazon declined to comment for this story. But citing sources familiar with Amazon’s business, The Journal says the company may be developing a mobile app for finding available trucks and matching them with available shipments. With this Uber-like app, the company can bring some added efficiency to the shipping market and help deal with that growing driver deficit.

If ever there was a fit for self-driving trucks, it’s Amazon.

Shipping is one of Amazon’s greatest expenses, and it’s always looking for new ways to improve the efficiency of its supply chain, eliminating middlemen like UPS and FedEx while adding new infrastructure and technology.

This is what the company is apparently trying to do with its Uber-like app. According to Flexport’s Petersen, much of the trucking industry depends on brokers that take about a 15 percent cut to match drivers and shipments. With an app, Amazon can cut out these middlemen. Plus, as Petersen explains, Amazon is in a prime position to reduce other inefficiencies in the system. Most importantly, it has no shortage of loads that need to be transported, and that can immediately attract drivers to the app. For others, it can be hard to bootstrap this kind of operation. They must find both supply and demand. Meanwhile, Amazon’s CEO, Jeff Bezos, has already invested in a company called Convoy, which offers an on-demand trucking service to shippers.

The irony is that in the long-term, the best way to reach peak efficiency is to remove the driver entirely. And that is now a very real possibility.

Jeff Bezos likes to tout Amazon’s efforts to build delivery drones, particularly at this time of year. But that’s a ridiculous project compared to the efficiencies the company could gain through autonomous trucks. That’s where Amazon’s real future lies.
“There are three classes of people: those who see. Those who see when they are shown. Those who do not see.” ― Leonardo da Vinci

Insensible before the wave so soon released by callous fate. Affected most, they understand the least, and understanding, when it comes, invariably arrives too late.
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Re: THE Self-Driving Car / Ridesharing Thread

Unread postby C8 » Sun 01 Jan 2017, 13:54:27

Self-driving cars are prone to hacks — and automakers are barely talking about it

Today's self-driving cars rely on spinning sensors called lidar that can cost more than $10,000 each. But it took Jonathan Petit just $43 and a laser pointer to confuse and defeat them.

"Anybody can go online and get access to this, buy it really quickly, and just assemble it, and there you go, you have a device that can spoof lidar," Petit, a cybersecurity expert, told Business Insider.

"When they did the hack remotely, that was like, 'Wow, that's interesting.' Now it's not just looking at having physical access" to the car, he said. "It's scary when you start to have remote attacks."

When Petit attacked the lidar, he became one of the first researchers to show how easy it is to hack self-driving cars' sensors. He was able to trick a sensor into thinking objects were there when they weren't, and vice versa.

"So here, you can think that the potential consequence of an attack like this could be 'I tried to crash you into a vehicle ahead of you because I'm telling you there is no object here,'" he said. "So I'm making [the sensors] blind, and now your system thinks it's free."

But that kind of hack can have other consequences, too. The car could see an obstacle that isn't there and change lanes to get away from it. That maneuver, designed to keep passengers safe, could disrupt traffic. It could also cause the car to go off course.

"So now you've changed the path of the vehicle by doing this, that's also an impact, which means that then the risk could be 'I'm sending you to small street to stop you and rob you or steal the car,'" he said.


http://uk.businessinsider.com/driverles ... ?r=US&IR=T

There is more interesting stuff in this story
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Re: THE Self-Driving Car / Ridesharing Thread

Unread postby pstarr » Sun 01 Jan 2017, 14:04:31

Don't need all that. Just one of these
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A cat toy.
Haven't you heard? I'm a doomer!
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Re: THE Self-Driving Car / Ridesharing Thread

Unread postby vox_mundi » Wed 04 Jan 2017, 14:22:49

Tesla Flips the Switch on the Gigafactory

Musk meets a deadline: Battery-cell production begins at what will soon be the world’s biggest factory—with thousands of additional jobs.

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... Making America a central player in the battery production marketplace isn’t just about cars. Tesla is also building battery packs to power homes and back up the electric grid. In September, the company announced a deal to supply a record 20 megawatts/80 megawatt-hours of energy storage to Southern California Edison as part of a wider effort to prevent blackouts, replacing fossil-fuel electricity generation with lithium-ion batteries.

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The real reason Ford abandoned its plant in Mexico has little to do with Trump

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On Tuesday, Ford CEO Mark Fields unveiled an ambitious plan for the carmaker to spend $4.5 billion over five years to introduce 13 new electric vehicles, some with self-driving capabilities.

The next wave of workers in Flat Rock will build mostly self-driving and electric cars, including a hybrid Mustang. Unlike manufacturing roles of decades past, though, the jobs will probably require computer literacy and more than a high school degree.

Other new cars will include a "high-volume autonomous vehicle designed for commercial ride hailing or ride sharing, starting in North America," arriving in 2021; a pair of "pursuit-rated hybrid police vehicles"; and Transit Custom plug-in hybrid van that will hit the streets of Europe in 2019.
Ford CEO Fields said the company’s autonomous cars won’t be fully-electric vehicles, running instead on a combination of gas and electric power. But they will go all-in on autonomy — Fields said the mass-produced models won’t even have a steering wheel or gas and brake pedals. The idea is that the vehicles will find a niche in the future’s new sharing and ride-hailing economy, a market that other automakers are quickly trying to tap into as well.

He said that it also is testing wireless, parking-space based electric charging, and Ford is cooperating with European carmakers to develop a fast-charging network in Europe, with 400 location planned initially.

GM is also planning to integrate the Bolt with its $500-million investment in ride-sharing startup Lyft, likely using technology gained from its acquisition of Cruise Automation, a self-driving tech company that has been working on developing autonomous systems for use in urban environments.

The Wall Street Journal reports that Google has rolled out a beta program for a ride-sharing service, and executives may look into using ride-sharing as a way to profit off the driverless car Google is developing. What makes Google’s service different from Uber and similar services is that it’s restricted to ride shares.
... “Each iteration of a facility becomes less like old school manufacturing and more high-tech,” ... “That will ultimately mean fewer jobs. The people will have to keep learning throughout their careers. It won’t be like the old days, when you do the same thing for 40 years.”

The new employment opportunities — the tickets to the middle class — will not look like the old ones. Economists say auto manufacturing at Ford and beyond will become increasingly automated, resulting in fewer jobs for more highly skilled workers.

“The Mexico platform is essentially a lower cost, just-good-enough workforce,” ... “It is not a place where there's a lot of innovation or new product development.” (Ford will continue to make gasoline-powered Focus vehicles at its Hermosillo, Mexico, plant.)


Most autonomous cars shown at CES are electrified: preview

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People Are Going to Have a Lot of Sex in Driverless Cars

We asked Google about it. They said that they have "no official position" on the looming highway bang boom.

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PennDOT says Pa. should be 'proving ground' for autonomous vehicles

PennDOT's application "outlines the benefits and possibilities for testing within the state that already exist," the agency said, and includes proposed testing facilities:
• in Pittsburgh, where Uber launched autonomous ride-sharing vehicles last year;

• at Penn State University, which has a closed track where commercial, transit and other vehicles can be tested at low speeds and with controlled incidents; and

• at Pocono Raceway in Northeastern Pennsylvania, which offers a closed track and is ideal for testing higher speeds, multiple connected vehicles (platooning) and other options.

The proposal also "underscores Pennsylvania’s innovative cooperation among government, industry and academia," PennDOT says, including technical and research partners — the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission, the University of Pennsylvania and Carnegie Mellon University — in addition to the testing partners.


Autonomous heavy-duty trucks threaten jobs of nearly 1.7 million drivers, White House says

The proliferation of self-driving, or autonomous, tractor-trailers threaten the jobs of nearly 1.7 million commercial truck drivers, according to a study published late last month by the White House Council of Economic Advisers (CEA).

The study, released Dec. 20, said the jobs of between 1.34 million and 1.67 million truck drivers would be at risk due to the growing utilization of heavy-duty vehicles operated via artificial intelligence. That would equal 80 to 100 percent of all driver jobs listed in the CEA report, which is based on May 2015 data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, a unit of the Department of Labor. There are about 3.4 million commercial truck drivers currently operating in the U.S., according to various estimates.

The report also predicted that between 165,300 and 495,900 jobs held by light truck or delivery service drivers would be at risk because of autonomous vehicles. That represents between 20 and 60 percent of the CEA's universe of 825,000 driver jobs. Fewer of those drivers are likely to be displaced, because they operate in more densely populated urban areas where the risk of pedestrian deaths or injuries would be greater if autonomous vehicles were used. In addition, many delivery drivers operate over short distances, so labor costs would be less of a factor.

CEA estimated that, on a net basis, the use of autonomous vehicles enabled by artificial intelligence would threaten between 2.2 million and 3.1 million full- and part-time driver jobs of all types; the figure includes approximately 364,000 self-employed individuals driving with ride-sharing services like Uber and Lyft.


Proposed Safety Regulations To Impact Autonomous Vehicle Market

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Ehang's Autonomous Passenger Drone Takes Flight

Video - The Ehang 184 uses eight electric motors to power eight propellors on the end of the aircraft's four arms (arranged as upper/lower pairs, two to an arm). The passenger vertical-takeoff-and-landing (VTOL) aircraft resembles a bigger version of a conventional quadcopter drone, only this one carries humans instead of camera gear. Ehang says the aircraft should be able to fly for 23 minutes, which will take you roughly 20 miles with a payload capacity of 264 pounds. The Ehang 184 is currently priced at a very steep $200,000.

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“There are three classes of people: those who see. Those who see when they are shown. Those who do not see.” ― Leonardo da Vinci

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Re: THE Self-Driving Car / Ridesharing Thread

Unread postby vox_mundi » Wed 04 Jan 2017, 14:54:00

C8 wrote:
Self-driving cars are prone to hacks — and automakers are barely talking about it

Today's self-driving cars rely on spinning sensors called lidar that can cost more than $10,000 each. But it took Jonathan Petit just $43 and a laser pointer to confuse and defeat them. ...


You should have read the rest of the article ...
It's important to take these scenarios with a grain of salt. As Petit said, self-driving cars are built with redundant sensor systems, meaning they have multiple cameras and sensors in case one were to fail.

For example, the self-driving cars Uber is using for its Pittsburgh pilot have 20 cameras and several radar sensors to provide 360-degree coverage.

That means even if a hacker compromises one or even a few sensors on a self-driving car, the car may still be able to pull enough information from the ones that are operating effectively to continue driving safely.

Also, lidars have dropped in price and size to $10-50 and smaller than a dime

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Try hitting one of those with a hand held pencil thin beam of light as the car passes you at 60 m/h

And you forgot these ...

25 Deadly Hacks to Human-Driven Cars that Luddites are Barely Talking About

1. Distracted Driving
2. Speeding
3. Drunk Driving
4. Reckless Driving
5. Rain
6. Running Red Lights
7. Running Stop Signs
8. Teenage Drivers
9. Night Driving
10. Design Defects
11. Unsafe Lane Changes
12. Wrong-Way Driving
13. Improper Turns
14. Tailgating
15. Driving Under the Influence of Drugs
16. Ice
17. Snow
18. Road Rage
19. Potholes
20. Drowsy Driving
21. Tire Blowouts
22. Fog
25. Street Racing


And here's what happens when a human meets a bright light
“There are three classes of people: those who see. Those who see when they are shown. Those who do not see.” ― Leonardo da Vinci

Insensible before the wave so soon released by callous fate. Affected most, they understand the least, and understanding, when it comes, invariably arrives too late.
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Re: THE Self-Driving Car / Ridesharing Thread

Unread postby vox_mundi » Wed 04 Jan 2017, 15:36:41

Sweden Tests Electric Roads to Give EVs Unlimited Range

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Video - In Sweden, the government is partnering with the private sector to deploy new technology that could allow electric vehicles to travel on roads indefinitely, without having to worry about lengthy recharging or massive battery packs. Is it fusion power? Dark matter? Black magic? Nope: overhead wiring.

Sweden's latest foray into roads that can provide electric power to vehicles is perhaps one of the least futuristic options possible, but that doesn't necessarily make it any less effective. A two-kilometer pilot stretch of the E16 motorway has been equipped with overhead caternary wires, and trucks modified with pantographs are running tests to see how well the it works.


Mathematical model shows ride sharing could dramatically reduce taxi numbers in Manhattan

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Video - A team of researchers at MIT has used mathematically modeling to create a computer system that is able to simulate car ride sharing in Manhattan under different scenarios. In their paper published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the team describes their math, model and simulations and what they found when looking at the results.

... To gain a better perspective on ways traffic could be better managed in large cities in the future taking into consideration the rise of services such as Uber, the researchers obtained data covering three million real taxi rides in Manhattan and then applied it to algorithms designed to improve efficiency—such as rerouting idle cabs to areas more in need—to see what sorts of improvements could be made. In looking at the model, the researchers found that in theory at least, it should be possible to reduce Manhattan's 14,000 taxis to just 3,000 four-passenger vehicles or 2,000 ten-passenger vehicles to provide nearly the same level of service as exists today—they suggest doing so would also reduce wait times and trip delays. Such a reduction, the researchers suggest, would mean less greenhouse gas emission, less work for the same amount of money for drivers and a better commute experience for riders due to fewer cars competing for the same road space.


Autonomous Chevy Bolts To Be Manufactured At Orion Facility, GM CEO Mary Barra Says

Fully autonomous versions of the Chevy Bolt EV will be manufactured at the same Orion Township assembly plant where the current non-autonomous versions of the model are being manufactured, going by recent comments made by GM CEO Mary Barra.
“Workers at the Orion plant will add the technology needed to make the cars capable of autonomous driving. That includes installing radar, laser sensors, and cameras in addition to the computer to manage the input and the mechanical systems needed to accelerate, steer, and stop the cars. These new cars undergo testing in Michigan and will be included in the self-driving test fleets already in operation in San Francisco and Scottsdale.”
“There are three classes of people: those who see. Those who see when they are shown. Those who do not see.” ― Leonardo da Vinci

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Re: THE Self-Driving Car / Ridesharing Thread

Unread postby C8 » Thu 05 Jan 2017, 20:40:30

Vox- this is from the same article that you claim I didn't read all of- but I did- and you conveniently left out some of these parts from the SAME article:

That means even if a hacker compromises one or even a few sensors on a self-driving car, the car may still be able to pull enough information from the ones that are operating effectively to continue driving safely.

But it also depends on when an attack occurs. For example, a self-driving car at night might be programmed to rely more on its lidar system since the cameras can't see as well in the dark, Petit said. If a hacker were to then spoof the lidar, the sensors don't have as much data to fall back on, and it could put the car and its passengers in a dangerous situation.

"Even if you're thinking, 'With just my sensors, I'm secure,' this is not true," he said.

Justin Cappos, a systems and security professor at New York University who specializes in automotive cybersecurity, told Business Insider he worries about the risks associated with relying on V2V and V2I communication channels.

"Anytime you open a new communication channel, you raise the risk that bad guys could use that to get in. Both of those scare me a lot," Cappos told Business Insider.

Cappos is part of an NYU project that was awarded $1.4 million from the Department of Homeland Security "for the development of technology that can help defend government and privately owned vehicles from cyberattacks."

He said cars today already have "10 to a dozen different channels" the hackers can exploit. But the worrisome bit is that the number of channels is growing and that they're being connected to "fairly complicated parts of machinery in the car" over time.

"When you have a lot of complexity, then it does certainly have the potential to affect the likelihood of being hacked," he said. "As long as people design them well, which is often not the case, it's easier to secure something."


I actually hope self driving cars succeed- its just that I doubt they will. But I am not a propagandist for a point of view. Its sad, Vox, that you have lowered yourself to this level of boosterism. Reading you postings seem like the daily output of a propaganda minister- you should consider both sides of a story and realize that you are a human- not a propagandist. PO.com is a tiny website- why waste your life away like this for no return?
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Re: THE Self-Driving Car / Ridesharing Thread

Unread postby kublikhan » Thu 19 Jan 2017, 14:49:10

Tesla’s driver-assistance features, known collectively as Autopilot, have been vindicated. The U.S. Department of Transportation closed its investigation into a May 7 collision with a tractor trailer that killed a driver using Autopilot. The agency found no indication of a safety problem with the feature. In fact, among the evidence disclosed by Tesla in the investigation is a crucial piece of data that’s so far been missing from the safety debate surrounding automated cars: crash rates.

Tesla is in a unique position to determine the precise impact of Autopilot on crash rates, more so than any other car manufacturer. That’s because all Tesla vehicles come equipped with the hardware necessary for Autopilot, but for the software to operate, you need a software upgrade that costs thousands of dollars. Since buyers can add Autopilot features after purchase, this provides a perfect before-and-after comparison. It turns out, according to the data Tesla provided to investigators, installing Autopilot prevents crashes—by an astonishing 40 percent.

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Tesla’s Autopilot Vindicated With 40% Drop in Crashes
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Car sales will peak in 2022 as robotaxis take off

Unread postby AdamB » Thu 30 Nov 2017, 22:56:23



Canalys forecasts 93.7 million cars will be sold worldwide in 2017, up just 1.7% on 2016. Low single-digit percentage sales volume growth will continue for the next five years, peaking at 99 million cars sold in 2022. Annual global sales will then decline as the urban mobility revolution, already affecting the market, gathers pace. “The convenience of owning a car comes at a cost. Cars are under-used – they sit idle for more than 90% of the time. The wider availability of urban mobility services, such as ride-hailing, car-sharing and robotaxis, will further reduce car ownership. With the expectation of everything on demand, these services will revolutionize how people travel,” said Chris Jones, Chief Analyst, Automotive at Canalys. “There are already too many cars on our heavily-congested roads, and most pollute the air and only carry one person – the driver,” said Canalys


Car sales will peak in 2022 as robotaxis take off
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General Motors Could Smoke Tesla in Autonomous Ride-Sharing

Unread postby AdamB » Fri 01 Dec 2017, 23:47:03

General Motors Could Smoke Tesla in Autonomous Ride-Sharing


Don't say that Tony Seba hadn't told us all about it first.
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