The Sonoma Raceway traditionally hosts Indy and Nascar events where cars sprint around the track at breathtaking speeds, burning thousands gallons of gas pulled from the remains of long-dead dinosaurs. The Toyota Prius Challenge is, in nearly every possible way, the exact opposite of that experience. Instead of speed, competitors are graded on efficiency. Toyota picked 20 teams to drive around the track in identical Prius' and tasked them with pulling as many miles per gallon as possible during a 40-minute, nine lap "race." But the streamlining squads needed more than just a light foot.
"This new advanced safety research vehicle is the first autonomous testing platform developed entirely by TRI, and reflects the rapid progress of our autonomous driving program," said TRI CEO Gill Pratt. The platform is the second generation of the advanced safety research vehicle revealed to the public by Toyota at the 2013 Consumer Electronics Show. "It will learn individual driver habits and abilities and will benefit from shared intelligence from other cars as data gathering, sharing and connectivity technologies advance.-- We believe Guardian can probably be deployed sooner and more widely than Chauffeur, providing high-level driver-assist features capable of helping mitigate collisions and save lives, sooner rather than later." Taking place on March 3, the Prius Challenge brings together a select group of entrepreneurs, technologists and Silicon Valley automotive enthusiasts to engage with the Toyota Research Institute while having some fun at the Sonoma Raceway.-- The goal: to increase dialogue and build a community around the topics of mobility, data science, artificial intelligence and robotics.
Toyota Research Institute (TRI), with an office in Palo Alto, is bringing the Prius Challenge to Sonoma Raceway for a competitive event designed to engage the startup and tech community. The event will be held March 3, 2017, and will include a team competition where participants strive to optimize their driving using strategies via an app created specifically for the event. The Prius Challenge originated at Toyota's headquarters in Japan, where participants battle it out to see who can achieve the best fuel economy and efficiency rating on a Prius within a target time range. While Toyota employees and dealers have been able to participate in the challenge, this is the first time that members of the public will have the chance to compete. "TRI is excited to host the Prius Challenge and introduce a competition that will allow participants to use machine learning and sophisticated data analysis tools to test out their theories in the real world," said Gill Pratt, CEO at Toyota Research Institute, Inc. "Silicon Valley and the Bay Area are a hotbed for automotive talent and innovation, and this event is the perfect opportunity for TRI to engage with the tech community and have some fun in the process."
Because of the nature of Talladega, it's very hard to give accurate picks and projections (the best statistical models can only give a prediction accuracy in the 0.15 R-squared range for finishing position), so I'm introducing a new feature that uses logistic regression to model the probability that a driver ends up with a top six and a top 10 score for this weekend's DraftKings NASCAR Talladega slate. Be sure to read all the way to the end of this article, as On the Daily DFS is running a FREE DraftKings contest to win some swag from NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Landon Cassill (@landoncassill). Now let's get to my cash and GPP picks, along with my fades and machine learning model projections and my new logistic regression projections for this weekend's DraftKings NASCAR Talladega contests. On the Daily DFS co-hosts Nick and Matt will be hosting a FREE DraftKings contest during the All-Star Race DraftKings slate on Saturday, May 21st, where they will be giving away some swag from NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver, and podcast guest, Landon Cassill (@landoncassill) to the top finishers in the contest.