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THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 9

Discussions of conventional and alternative energy production technologies.

Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 9

Unread postby Outcast_Searcher » Fri 26 Apr 2019, 12:44:25

asg70 wrote:Musk has proven to be an overpromise and underdeliver guy. I don't think most are buying his boasts anymore. Luckily there are several players working on autonomy so it all doesn't sink or swim with him.

Yup. But the progress toward TRUE, certified level 4 or 5 FSD is likely to be incremental, just as it has been for the past several decades. Oh, and like the credible leaders in the effort, are saying, overall.

If he'd just talked rational timeframes, hadn't tried the fast totally unrealistic huge robotaxi claim (there are only 240Kish taxis in the US, for example), hadn't claimed Lidar is nonsense when, frankly, the industry doesn't even know whethere Lidar plus perhaps other backup modes will be needed, then the pitch might have been relatively credible.

Of course, that wouldn't have shifted the Tesla narrative from, we are an ongoing money losing proposition with huge debt and Three Stooges level execution to: we'll sell a bazillion robo-taxis soon and earn GIGANTIC stacks of cash and dominate the auto world -- and your car will be as obsolete as a horse if you don't buy a Tesla nonsense.

Meanwhile, with Tesla down 5 percent today on top of a similar loss yesterday, at least the markets are in more of a rational "show me" mode on Tesla now.
Given the track record of the perma-doomer blogs, I wouldn't bet a fast crash doomer's money on their predictions.
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 9

Unread postby eclipse » Sun 28 Apr 2019, 01:56:17

Except he's not selling you the robot-taxis. He's hiring them. It's not about buying cars for the next 15 years, but the next 15 minutes. Think about that long enough, and the sheer price difference between driver-taxis and robot-taxis, and you begin to see the era of car-as-product dying and the age of 'transport-as-service' beginning.

At a conference earlier this week, Tesla founder Elon Musk announced that the company is planning to roll out a massive fleet of one million self-driving 'robotaxis' as early as next year. These autonomous vehicles are planned to hit roads in the US by mid-2020 — regulatory approvals pending, of course.

If all goes to Musk's plan, here's how it'll work: the app will function much the way all ride-sharing apps do — except the car will drive itself. The existing Tesla app will be fitted with a 'summon' option, where you'll be able to order the closest robotaxi from its stored location, and it'll drive itself over to pick you up.

https://concreteplayground.com/sydney/d ... rvice-2020
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 9

Unread postby Outcast_Searcher » Sun 28 Apr 2019, 13:04:14

eclipse wrote:Except he's not selling you the robot-taxis. He's hiring them. It's not about buying cars for the next 15 years, but the next 15 minutes. Think about that long enough, and the sheer price difference between driver-taxis and robot-taxis, and you begin to see the era of car-as-product dying and the age of 'transport-as-service' beginning.

Well, that's catchy. (Red text mine, for emphasis).

But when the reality is, re the entire industry trying to build the true Level 5 autonomous car, get it certified, insured, hammer out all the rules, regulations, infrastructure, etc. is very likely more like 15 YEARS or more, saying things like "15 minutes" doesn't have much meaning, unless you just blindly accept the usual Musk empty claims re time frame and what true FSD level 5 means, hook, line, and sinker.

Musk fans who have been doing that have seen the stock decline about $150 since the (totally non-credible, and in fact illegal) 420 "funding secured" Musk tweet 8 months ago. Tesla is still struggling to consistently produce 60% of the Model 3 volumes Musk insisted was absolutely assured by the end of 2018. Musk's new goal is 70% of that by the end of 2019, in the Fremont plant. The service and parts infrastructure Musk kept promising to fix is SADLY lacking, to the point it's really hurting Tesla's reputation. Tesla has lost money every year for 17 years. 2019 looks to be right on schedule. This has been despite repeated claims/assurances to investors for about a decade now that Tesla would be solidly and consistently profitable within the next year or so.

If someone is going to make major outlier claims vs. an entire industry of very smart people -- they better have VERY good credibility, if they are going to be taken seriously. Given Musk's credibility re claims and time frames, is there ANY point where Tesla fanbois will start to at least have some healthy skepticism re his claims?

Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me SCORES of times, shame on me.

The mainstream press, FINALLY, isn't buying it any more. They want proof. So do I. There is a huge difference between having "the vision thing" and being able to run a car company profitably on a relative shoestring budget in a capital intensive and VERY competitive industry. Oh, and that competition will be arriving with increasing serious force for EV's in the next few years, which will be another barrier to consistent Tesla profits.

So hey, I don't blame Musk for trying another "hail Mary" re the robo-taxi claim. If it works, maybe he can borrow more billions to keep the dream alive for X more years. Tesla trades roughly 10 times its book value, where merely solid, profitable, respected car companies like Toyota trade for roughly their book value. How much are wildly speculative Musk claims worth?
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 9

Unread postby Plantagenet » Sun 28 Apr 2019, 21:12:39

Chinese luxury car rental agency claims many Teslas are defective in NY Times square ad campaign

luxury-ride-sharing-platform-says-teslas-faulty-takes-out-times-square

The company bought 278 Teslas and says over 50 of them were defective....and Tesla wouldn't step up and fix them either.

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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 9

Unread postby eclipse » Mon 29 Apr 2019, 00:50:33

But when the reality is, re the entire industry trying to build the true Level 5 autonomous car, get it certified, insured, hammer out all the rules, regulations, infrastructure, etc. is very likely more like 15 YEARS or more, saying things like "15 minutes" doesn't have much meaning, unless you just blindly accept the usual Musk empty claims re time frame and what true FSD level 5 means, hook, line, and sinker.

All I did was point out that the car companies want it sooner than later. I'm not blindly accepting anything, and adding plenty of paragraphs of MUSK FUD ignores the 2 main points.

This could happen sooner than a lot of people think.

It's not about robots driving you in YOUR car, but that you may never own a car again.

That's not just Musk talking, but most of the car majors and technology futurists analysing the economic impacts of automated vehicles.
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 9

Unread postby Plantagenet » Mon 29 Apr 2019, 17:41:53

eclipse wrote:This could happen sooner than a lot of people think.

It's not about robots driving you in YOUR car, but that you may never own a car again.

That's not just Musk talking, but most of the car majors and technology futurists analysing the economic impacts of automated vehicles.

Some analysts suggest a true AI that can drive a car and wirelessly communicate with all the other cars around it is several years out at least. And then it will take more years for the tech to go commercial and go on the market and still more years for it to trickle down to those of us who live in rural areas or remote spots or third world countries.

I feel quite confident that I will probably own several more cars.

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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 9

Unread postby eclipse » Mon 29 Apr 2019, 21:28:45

This is a graphic of all the corporations putting serious money into robot vehicles.

Image

Human driving will 'soon' (in the next decade/s) be illegal.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XEebyt6G5kM
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 9

Unread postby asg70 » Wed 01 May 2019, 13:04:00

I don't buy the illegal part. In the US we've had a hard time just banning incandescent bulbs. We're not going to ban happy motoring anytime soon.
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 9

Unread postby eclipse » Wed 01 May 2019, 21:57:42

asg70 wrote:I don't buy the illegal part. In the US we've had a hard time just banning incandescent bulbs. We're not going to ban happy motoring anytime soon.

We shall see. Many futurists predict that the take up of Robot-EV taxis will be so fast it will catch society by surprise, and that there are transport algorithms that can be programmed into a robot-EV fleet that enable faster navigation of intersections etc, so that society at large just will not be able to stand dumb human drivers unable to integrate.

Also, safety. After millions of km's in test vehicles, they're already safer than humans. The accident toll in Australia alone costs our economy $26 BILLION a year. (Imagine what it is in the states?) Some futurists predict that robot-taxis will cut that by 90%. Can you imagine something else all that money could be spent on?
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 9

Unread postby asg70 » Thu 02 May 2019, 09:36:04

eclipse wrote:Also, safety. After millions of km's in test vehicles, they're already safer than humans.


Tell that to the family members of the Tesla Mt. View accident.

I'm not saying autonomy can't get there, but don't just blindly parrot Tesla's hype.

The failure modes of autonomy are stupid situations that human drivers handle by routine, like knowing how not to drive directly into a gore-point or have the roof sheared off while T-boning an 18-wheeler, and that's what's alarming.

It's like in my car, it has barely any autonomy, but what it does have are safety features. The blindspot monitoring alone is a Godsend. That sort of thing has more potential to save lives than completely handing the wheel off and having it drive into a brick wall because the camera is covered by snow or blinded by a sunset.
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 9

Unread postby eclipse » Thu 02 May 2019, 19:37:46

asg70 wrote:Tell that to the family members of the Tesla Mt. View accident.

Yes, one death is a tragedy, but 37,461 per year is a statistic. Imagine that cutting down to 3,746!

I'm not saying autonomy can't get there, but don't just blindly parrot Tesla's hype.

I quoted it once and then referred to other companies and futurists repeatedly.

The failure modes of autonomy are stupid situations that human drivers handle by routine, like knowing how not to drive directly into a gore-point or have the roof sheared off while T-boning an 18-wheeler, and that's what's alarming.

I'm not familiar with the specific situations you're quoting, but dead is dead, whether by this or by a drunk human or distracted human or tired human or texting human. The data is in. Autonomous is already safer than humans, and only getting better. And every time there's an autonomous accident there's an investigation, and a new patch downloaded for the entire fleet. Try that with humans!
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 9

Unread postby asg70 » Thu 02 May 2019, 21:29:31

eclipse wrote:I'm not familiar with the specific situations you're quoting,


Maybe get informed before you weigh in, then.

Autonomy creates a false sense of security. Under normal circumstances someone who isn't drunk, isn't sleepy, etc... would not drive into a gore-point. Autonomy not being able to discern lane markers properly will. It's the difference between how well the human brain does visual recognition vs. how poorly computers do it. At present, computers are riding up against the extreme edge of their capabilities doing things humans do while barely thinking. A normal everyday driver gives control to autonomy improperly thinking that the computer handles routine situations with ease. The failure mode catches these divers unaware which is a greater liability compared to if these drivers just drove the cars themselves. Their hands may be on the wheel but at highway speeds it leaves little time to reach to these failure modes and the driver will be in a far more relaxed state than if he or she was actively driving.

Here's another example, the case in china where a Tesla driver smacked into a street sweeper on the left hand lane. Fatal accident that would be highly unlikely to happen with a human driver. It was caused by some sort of combination of limited radar/camera range and reaction-time. There have also been exposes about how poorly the emergency breaking reacts. It can't handle stationary objects that you approach at high speeds, only moving objects like other cars that jam on their brakes.

Check out this video from less than two months ago. The emergency brake response still SUCKS.

Note the blame-game in the comments:

"Was he not paying attention? He could have taken over!!"

Here's one from a month ago that could have led to a head-on collision.

What is the F-n point of autonomy if human drivers have to take over? And Musk is saying robo-taxis will be on the road in massive quanties in a year or so? WITHOUT steering wheels? Live without a net???
Would you trust them?

Yes, I think these things are theoretically possible but there's still a long way to go. Don't overestimate the current rate of progress.
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 9

Unread postby Outcast_Searcher » Fri 03 May 2019, 12:10:32

asg70 wrote:What is the F-n point of autonomy if human drivers have to take over? And Musk is saying robo-taxis will be on the road in massive quanties in a year or so? WITHOUT steering wheels? Live without a net???
Would you trust them?

Yes, I think these things are theoretically possible but there's still a long way to go. Don't overestimate the current rate of progress.

+1

This is all about Musk getting more financing, since Tesla making actual profits (another thing Musk keeps falsely predicting real soon, every year) isn't happening.

No doubt the self driving fleet is potentially possible, and is certainly a laudable goal. At 60, I''m just hoping that MAYBE it's realistic at low speeds in my town by the time I shouldn't be driving any more, but I think 15 years or even 20 years is very much an open question.

One year, which matches other false Musk claims re FSD cross country drives for 2016, 2017, and 2018, and 2019 is just laughable.

Several years ago a number of companies were targeting the early 2020's, but everyone sane in the industry (i.e. everyone but Musk) has backed well off that, as they realized how difficult the problems are to solve with automation.
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 9

Unread postby asg70 » Fri 03 May 2019, 19:03:19

The other thing is that software quality matters. I have very little confidence in the quality of Tesla's code at present. They can't even get the bluetooth phone key system working on the Model 3. They had to issue traditional key fobs instead. And people keep talking about phantom-touch and the center screen going black all the time. If they can't handle the routine stuff why do we expect them to crack autonomy? I've heard lots of emperor-has-no-clothes style rumors about what's really going on in Tesla's IT departments and it's not pretty. The hardware specs of the next-gen AI boards is promising but you still need quality software running on it.

So it could very well be that another company like WayMo will master autonomy and Tesla will be far behind. Oh, Tesla may claim it works, but the accidents caused by bugs and slop will say otherwise.

But don't expect autonomy to just arrive on the scene exactly at the same time.
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 9

Unread postby eclipse » Fri 03 May 2019, 20:26:52

I know I quoted Elon a bit enthusiastically, and I know it is amazing how high the Tesla market share is given the company's weird financial state. People believe in a brand, and fund it, even though it's producing a fraction of the cars other car giants are actually making. But let's not forget that the other car majors are in this as well. ALL these companies are investing heavily in robot-cars which will probably switch to a robot-uber financial model, reducing the number of cars society as a whole has to build by about 90%!
Image

That's my peak oil stake in the game! Instead of 800 Gigafactories, the world might only have to build 80 — if the idea of car-as-product dies and is replaced by transport-as-a-service. For those of us who live in cities anyway.

Having said all that, this Scientific American article has dampened my enthusiasm a bit. I hear what ASG70 is saying about the sheer awful terrifying DUMBNESS of AI problems with driving — and that even a drunk human wouldn't do certain things. But then again, humans do terrifying dumb things when drunk, tired, texting, distracted, and angry. So maybe the AI revolution has another 10 years before it really kicks in. Maybe we should take every statement by Elon with a good dose of understanding 'Elon timeframes' are optimistic timeframes. But then again, it's amazing enough that with their finances that the company has actually stayed in business, it's amazing that they've finally forced an electric-vehicle ARMS RACE with the other car majors (except Toyota, who are still investing in hydrogen), and so maybe their AI will be amazing as well.

But here's the bit Elon got right, even if the timing is wrong. Most of the futurists I read have studied this, and as much as 10 or 15 years ago predicted that car-as-product would die. The fact that Elon's cottoned onto that and is KEEPING OWNERSHIP of these autonomous vehicles must scare the other car producers. It's probably corporate sabre-rattling, but the threat has been made. Elon has slapped them with his glove and challenged them to a dual! It's muskets at dawn. Car-as-product is dying, and the market for actually selling cars could halve, quarter, or even drop down to a tenth of today's car market! So the next time you're driving down your local car-yard alley, imagine 10% of the car-yards. 10% of the cars means 10% of the people selling cars, the suppliers, the factories, everything. It's HUGE! And the flow on effects of autonomous taxi-cabs on city design are also huge, but I've already said too much this post.
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 9

Unread postby asg70 » Sat 04 May 2019, 08:39:22

You're right that it has huge potential. However, with Tesla it's a tortoise and the hare situation. They look like they're ahead when in fact they are rushing ahead prematurely. Their dreams could go up in smoke with a string of fatalities that ultimately trace itself back to carelessness and hubris on their part, whereas the other players, being more cautious, won't roll out until they're certain human beings won't die as live beta-testers.

It's just that right now autonomy is more of the process of human drivers being asked to actively babysit the autonomous vehicle which completely defeats the purpose of such technology. Incomplete autonomy is better utilized as a babysitter for human drivers in areas where the hardware is superior than human senses (like backup cameras, proximity sensors, blindspot detection).
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 9

Unread postby kublikhan » Sat 04 May 2019, 18:32:34

And once you take those human babysitters away legal liability shifts from the babysitter to the automaker. Car crashes cost countries around 3% of their GDP every year. Global GDP is around $88 trillion. 3% of that is around 3 trillion dollars per year. Automakers cannot afford that kind of liability. So automakers will not boot the babysitters unless they are certain they have a bullet proof product. That is a very high hurdle to overcome. There are so many edge cases in driving that could result in failure and a resulting crash.

2) Driving requires many complex social interactions — which are still tough for robots
A far more difficult hurdle, meanwhile, is the fact that driving is an intensely social process that frequently involves intricate interactions with other drivers, cyclists, and pedestrians. In many of those situations, humans rely on generalized intelligence and common sense that robots still very much lack. there are thousands and thousands of other challenges that pop up, many of them quite subtle and unpredictable.

Olson explains that fully self-driving cars will ultimately need to be adept at four key tasks: 1) understanding the environment around them; 2) understanding why the people they encounter on the road are behaving the way they are; 3) deciding how to respond (it's tough to come up with a rule of thumb for four-way stop signs that works every single time); and 4) communicating with other people. "There's a long ways to go in all of these areas," he says. "And reliability is the biggest challenge of all.

3) Bad weather makes everything trickier
Compounding these challenges is the fact that weather still poses a major challenge for self-driving vehicles. Much like our eyes, car sensors don't work as well in fog or rain or snow. What's more, companies are currently testing cars in locations with benign climates, like Mountain View, California — and not, say, up in the Colorado Rockies.
5 big challenges that self-driving cars still have to overcome

So far testing is being done in fish bowel conditions: human baby sitter, good weather areas, well painted lines, light pedestrian traffic, well maintained streets, etc. These conditions are not indicative of the big bad world.
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 9

Unread postby KaiserJeep » Sat 04 May 2019, 20:07:10

Yet already, robots have fewer fatal accidents than do human drivers. For all of their intelligence and the subtle clues they distinguish, humans make far more mistakes than do machines. "Better than human" turns out to be a low bar indeed.
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 9

Unread postby eclipse » Sat 04 May 2019, 22:41:41

Before talking about EV's again, I'd like to add my usual disclaimer!
The very *first* question I ask about traffic and transport is why do we need so much transport in the first place? It looks like we've made an awful mistake. We tried to do the right thing and build a 'manor in the countryside' for every soldier returning from WW2. But we discovered it wasn't a manor, and it wasn't the countryside. Instead we created suburban sprawl, a car dependent lifestyle with all sorts of horrible side-effects. Please watch "Built to last": 4 minutes, and turn it up!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VGJt_YXIoJI
Then if you're keen for more, try my summary page. My main question is why is suburbia often so ugly and lacking a sense of place? Where has the village gone? It's not hard. We know how to build a successful town square: create an attractive green or square about 30m by 30m and surround it by shops and services and schools. Surround the square in walkable New Urban neighbourhoods for about 10 to 12 thousand people. It's not rocket science. But we have let developers steal the public imagination about how we are to live, and settle for expensive car dependency, traffic jams, lost productivity, isolation, alienation and psychological distress. https://eclipsenow.wordpress.com/rezone/
Indeed, suburbia is so bad for our economy, culture, and public health that it constitutes a national emergency, but most people don't even know how bad it is. https://eclipsenow.wordpress.com/benefi ... -urbanism/


Thank you. end / disclaimer!
kublikhan wrote:And once you take those human babysitters away legal liability shifts from the babysitter to the automaker. Car crashes cost countries around 3% of their GDP every year. Global GDP is around $88 trillion. 3% of that is around 3 trillion dollars per year. Automakers cannot afford that kind of liability. So automakers will not boot the babysitters unless they are certain they have a bullet proof product. That is a very high hurdle to overcome. There are so many edge cases in driving that could result in failure and a resulting crash.

I see what you did there. You just extrapolated human driving statistics onto automated car statistics when the automakers are already predicting a 90% drop in accidents? 8)

Try this:

In an interview with Finland’s public broadcasting corporation Svenska Yle, Angers Eugensson, Volvo’s director of governmental affairs and key safety strategist, announced that the human operators of the Swedish carmaker’s future self-driving cars should not be held responsible in the event of an accident. Volvo has said that it will start production of autonomous cars by 2021 and will begin testing on Finnish roads, as reported by Les Échos.
Read more at https://allianzpartners-bi.com/news/sel ... mrPQQJP.99



2) Driving requires many complex social interactions — which are still tough for robots
A far more difficult hurdle, meanwhile, is the fact that driving is an intensely social process that frequently involves intricate interactions with other drivers, cyclists, and pedestrians. In many of those situations, humans rely on generalized intelligence and common sense that robots still very much lack. there are thousands and thousands of other challenges that pop up, many of them quite subtle and unpredictable.

And yet, although hotly debated, the claims are that they're already better than human. The hundreds of challenges that crop up will probably just mean the car slows down and stops. Again, I understand the terror of being in a car that I'm not controlling and it suddenly does something I was not expecting. That is a horrific scenario! But I also understand the terror of driving safely in my car and another human being suddenly doing something I was not expecting because they're tired, texting, or intoxicated. I also understand that risk assessment is not an emotional process but a statistical one. That I must subject the sheer monkey panic in me to more advanced human thought processes: the cerebellum rules the amygdala.

Olson explains that fully self-driving cars will ultimately need to be adept at four key tasks: 1) understanding the environment around them;

"Understand" is a bit of an ambiguous term implying the task is harder than it is. Not crash into things? Yes. Anticipate people and objects and movement? Yes. Understand that the little old lady is carrying her granny trolley home after shopping? No.

2) understanding why the people they encounter on the road are behaving the way they are;

Don't crash into people — got it.

3) deciding how to respond (it's tough to come up with a rule of thumb for four-way stop signs that works every single time);

It's actually not — especially when the cars are all talking to each other — and it's where the pressure will come from for humans to be pulled out of the driving equation.

4) communicating with other people.

Cars are looking out for them, and some companies are figuring out how to have cars make 'faces' at humans on the sidewalk to show they've 'noticed' them.

"There's a long ways to go in all of these areas," he says. "And reliability is the biggest challenge of all.

There's some way to go in all of these, and every time there's a problem and update, the WHOLE FLEET gets better and will not make the same mistake next time. The same cannot be said for humans!

3) Bad weather makes everything trickier
Compounding these challenges is the fact that weather still poses a major challenge for self-driving vehicles. Much like our eyes, car sensors don't work as well in fog or rain or snow. What's more, companies are currently testing cars in locations with benign climates, like Mountain View, California — and not, say, up in the Colorado Rockies.5 big challenges that self-driving cars still have to overcome

What you say is true, but that is changing. That article is from 2016 and it's now 2019, and they're aware of the safe little sunny weather bubble they've tested the cars in.

From August 2018 a Market Watch article details how the car majors are now moving in on bad weather cities across the world:-
* Self-driving cars use a wide variety of different sensors.
* Most testing has taken place until now in areas with good weather to work out the fundamentals of self-driving more easily.
* More manufacturers are now testing their self-driving cars in adverse weather conditions.
* This is revealing the strengths and weaknesses of different sensor systems.


In September 2018 Bloomberg announce there's $3 million into snow penetrating radar: 2 customers have signed on as interested.
Thanks for pushing me to re-read on this subject, as this next paragraph is a concern for EV's generally. I did not know this.
Weather is a problem for the next generation of cars in multiple ways. Electric vehicles can be hamstrung by cold weather because battery power is needed to heat the car to the point at which electrons operate efficiently. A deep chill can sap about 30 percent of the potential mileage from a battery.

A little something else for our EV culture to absorb and deal with... overnight pugging in might need to burn some extra electrons to keep the thing warm?

Waymo still haven't conquered the rain in January 2019.
But give it time. The dream of less traffic and more efficient, more convenient, cheaper transport is out there. I just hope we learn to car-share and hire robot-mini-vans together, and we could really solve traffic!
Dr James Hansen recommends breeder reactors that convert nuclear 'waste' into 1000 years of clean energy for America, and can charge all our light vehicles and generate "Blue Crude" for heavy vehicles.
https://eclipsenow.wordpress.com/recharge/
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 9

Unread postby kublikhan » Sun 05 May 2019, 01:17:44

eclipse wrote:I see what you did there. You just extrapolated human driving statistics onto automated car statistics when the automakers are already predicting a 90% drop in accidents?
Even at a 90% drop, that is still alot of liability(and costs) to shift from the driver to the automaker.

eclipse wrote:Try this:
In an interview with Finland’s public broadcasting corporation Svenska Yle, Angers Eugensson, Volvo’s director of governmental affairs and key safety strategist, announced that the human operators of the Swedish carmaker’s future self-driving cars should not be held responsible in the event of an accident. Volvo has said that it will start production of autonomous cars by 2021 and will begin testing on Finnish roads, as reported by Les Échos.
Already read this. More fish bowl testing by 2021 does not sound very impressive to me. Google and Tesla have millions of miles of lead on them at this point. And Volo volunteering to take responsibility for defects in their products is not particularly impressive either. Not when decades of product liabity law already holds them responsible for the safety of their product. Doesn't change my feelings that there is a big gap between a company saying my car is ready for fish bowl testing and my car is ready to be unleashed on the world without the training wheels.

eclipse wrote:And yet, although hotly debated, the claims are that they're already better than human. The hundreds of challenges that crop up will probably just mean the car slows down and stops.
I know some things an AI can do better than a human. Faster reaction time, doesn't get drunk or distracted, etc. However there are also alot of challenges that pop up that result in more problems than "the car slows down and stops."

In March 2018 an experimental Uber vehicle, operating in autonomous mode, struck and killed a pedestrian in Tempe, Arizona. According to the NTSB report, the Uber vehicle struggled to identify Elaine Herzberg as she wheeled her bicycle across a four-lane road. Although it was dark, the car’s radar and LIDAR detected her six seconds before the crash. But the perception system got confused: it classified her as an unknown object, then as a vehicle and finally as a bicycle, whose path it could not predict. Ms Herzberg was hit by the vehicle and subsequently died of her injuries.

The cause of the accident therefore has many elements, but is ultimately a system-design failure. When its perception module gets confused, an AV should slow down. But unexpected braking can cause problems of its own: confused AVs have in the past been rear-ended (by human drivers) after slowing suddenly.
Why Uber’s self-driving car killed a pedestrian

After Joshua Brown, 40, of Canton, Ohio, was killed driving a Tesla Model S in the first fatality involving a self-driving car, questions have arisen about the safety of the car’s crash-avoidance Autopilot system.

The accident may have happened in part because the crash-avoidance system is designed to engage only when radar and computer vision systems agree that there is an obstacle, according to an industry executive with direct knowledge of the system.
Inside the Self-Driving Tesla Fatal Accident

“What we know is that the vehicle was on a divided highway with Autopilot engaged when a tractor trailer drove across the highway perpendicular to the Model S. Neither Autopilot nor the driver noticed the white side of the tractor trailer against a brightly lit sky, so the brake was not applied. The high ride height of the trailer combined with its positioning across the road and the extremely rare circumstances of the impact caused the Model S to pass under the trailer, with the bottom of the trailer impacting the windshield of the Model S.”

The fact that the Autopilot system didn’t detect the trailer as an obstacle prompting emergency braking or steering is what is worrying a lot of people. The forward facing sensors of the Autopilot consist of a camera, a radar and a few ultrasonic sensors.
Understanding the fatal Tesla accident on Autopilot and the NHTSA probe

eclipse wrote:Don't crash into people — got it.
Good. Now if we could only get AI's to "get it".

eclipse wrote:But give it time. The dream of less traffic and more efficient, more convenient, cheaper transport is out there. I just hope we learn to car-share and hire robot-mini-vans together, and we could really solve traffic!
We already had a system with less traffic that was more efficient, more convenient, and cheaper. And it was a lot simpler than robo minivans:

...Few Americans understand why those quiet, non-polluting electric rail system (trolleys) which once served all our major cities suddenly disappeared like the dinosaurs, and most accept the automobile as the evolutionary replacement. However, no asteroid from outer space wiped out America's trolleys. It was General Motors.

In 1922 only one American family in 10 owned an auto. Alfred P. Sloan, Jr., GM's president, decided to change this. With friends at Firestone Rubber, Standard Oil, Phillips Petroleum and Mack Truck, Sloan began secretly, first to buy up and then destroy the rail systems in America's cities. To hide his campaign from the public eye, he hired an unknown, E. Roy Fitzgerald, as a figurehead, advertising him as an entrepreneur from the sticks. They formed a company, National City Lines, and quickly purchased Yellow Bus, America's largest diesel bus builder, and Omnibus, a bus-operating company.

National City Lines, headed by Fitzgerald, but privately funded by a consortium organized by Sloan and friends began buying up the rail systems in America's cities, one by one. Their approach was simple: using political know-how and money to influence city councils, while they paid Madison Avenue to tell the country "the trend was away from rail," they systematically destroyed America's clean, electric rail systems, replacing them with their polluting diesel buses. By 1941, National City Lines owned the transportation system in over 83 American cities across the country.

The day National City Lines signed a purchase agreement, their staff took over. Rail management was fired, and the process of piecemeal destruction set in motion: Fares were increased, routes cancelled and trolleys were taken out of service, schedules were reduced, salaries of workers cut, maintenance neglected. As rail systems thus self-destructed, a nationwide media campaign offered "modern, non-polluting diesels." Eventually, the last trolley disappeared, along with the tracks. An independent observer, Commander Edwin Quinby, caught onto GM's plot and took it upon himself to warn the city fathers across the country. At his own expense, he mailed out a 31-page brochure, outlining the takeover plan. GM hoisted an expensive public-relations campaign to discredit Quinby. Some readers, however, got the news, and a grassroots protest finally brought an investigation by the Justice Department.

In 1936, National City Lines, along with General Motors, was found guilty. The two were fined $5,000 apiece, while their management staff were fined $1 each. Later Justice Department investigations got nowhere, because by 1932 GM had created the National Highway Users Conference, a powerful Washington lobby to push for more freeways and silence discussion of diesel or gasoline pollution. Alfred P. Sloan headed the conference for 30 years until another GM man took over.

With the post-WWII boom in home construction, President Eisenhower, in 1953, appointed the then-president of General Motors, Charles Wilson, as Secretary of Defense and DuPont's chief, Secretary of Transportation (DuPont was GM's biggest investor). These two set out to pave over America for the auto. DuPont got Eisenhower to set up the Highway Trust Fund which funnelled gasoline tax money into highway construction. Two thirds of these funds went to build inner-city freeways. Meanwhile, GM, recognizing the limits of bus sales as contrasted with automobiles, changed its tactics, and in 1972, convinced the House of Representatives to deny all funding for public transportation, hoping to reduce bus service. The money was diverted to freeways. By the 1950's buses were disappearing and everyone wanted a car. Thus while post-war Europe and Japan were rebuilding their rail transit, America was destroying hers.
The Conspiracy to Destroy America's Trolley Systems
The oil barrel is half-full.
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