Zoox, the autonomous vehicle company owned by Amazon, said it will test its vehicles on the hilly, rain-drenched streets of Seattle. The company also plans on opening an office there in 2022. Seattle will be the third city to host Zoox's autonomous vehicles, after San Francisco and Las Vegas. The company said it will deploy a small number of vehicles to "get the lay of the land" before deciding how to expand its operations there. "We're excited to be testing in Seattle. The data we're gathering will be invaluable for the continued development of our AI stack," said Jesse Levinson, CTO and co-founder of Zoox, in a statement.
Zoox has been testing its Level-3 (L3) autonomous vehicles in Las Vegas and the Bay Area for four years, way before Amazon acquired the self-driving company in 2020. But to be able to train its technology further, it has to hold trials in other locations with different environmental conditions -- like Seattle. Zoox has announced that it will soon start testing its L3 vehicles in the city to collect data and trial new hardware in the face of frequent rains. "It rains more frequently in Seattle than it does in San Francisco," the company said in its announcement. Zoox built special hardware into its sensors to give its vehicles the capability to automatically remove water and debris when needed.
A Waymo self-driving car pulls into a parking lot in Mountain View, Calif., on May 8, 2019. A Waymo self-driving car pulls into a parking lot in Mountain View, Calif., on May 8, 2019. It was a modern mystery. In a tiny neighborhood in San Francisco's Richmond District, self-driving Waymo cars have been converging at all hours of the day and night, mystifying neighbors, KPIX reported earlier this week. Most would drive to the dead-end on 15th Avenue, where they then had no choice but to turn around and leave, according to the outlet -- and neighbors have no idea why.
Airbus is deriving value from its use of synthetic data to process satellite imagery, and premier game engine player Unity is using synthetic data to break into new markets, including robotics and autonomous vehicles. Those were takeaways from two talks at the recent Ai4 virtual conference with enterprise AI users in a range of industries. "Simulation and synthetic data generation is a game changer for AI," stated Danny Lange, senior VP of AI and Machine Learning at Unity of San Francisco. The company has grown up in game development and now offers an engine for producing 3D projects, which they plan to use to extend into new industries including robotics, autonomous cars, engineering and manufacturing. Over 60% of all games are made with Unity, which is installed on over six billion unique devices and has three billion monthly active players, Lange stated.
Residents of what is typically a quiet neighborhood in San Francisco are being plagued with humming from several Waymo vehicles crowding a dead-end street. The mysterious sightings are coming from the end of 15th Avenue, where up to 50 of the self-driving cars appear to be confused as they enter the area, residents told local news station KPIX. Resident Jennifer King told KPIX that the vehicles, which are being tested in the California city, all make a multi-point turn and then just leaving from where they came in – and sometimes multiple cars arrive at once. 'I noticed it while I was sleeping,' Jennifer King, a resident in Richmond District told KPIX. 'I awoke to a strange hum and I thought there was a spacecraft outside my bedroom window.'
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The residents of a relatively quiet neighborhood in San Francisco are seeing an influx of self-driving visitors. A steady stream of automated Waymo cars has reportedly been flowing into a dead end in the city's Richmond District, disrupting routes for passengers and forcing them to turn the car around themselves, local news outlet KPIX reported. And based on what neighbors are saying, it's not just one or two vehicles coming by. "There are some days where it can be up to 50," nearby resident Jennifer King told KPIX. And we're all working from home, so this is what we hear."
AI safety issues are becoming increasingly important. Google DeepMind and Faculty, both based in London, are devoting considerable resources to this area. But Anthropic, a San Francisco-based startup research company spun out of OpenAI, and some academic labs, including the Future of Humanity Institute in Oxford, are building expert teams in this field. "There is so little scrutiny over building very, very powerful software systems," says Hogarth. "We can plausibly have systems that exceed human capabilities in 30 years but there are fewer than 200 people in the world working on oversight and regulation."
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