Pittsburgh's AI Traffic Signals Will Make Driving Less Boring


Traffic congestion costs the U.S. economy 121 billion a year, mostly due to lost productivity, and produces about 25 billion kilograms of carbon dioxide emissions, Carnegie Mellon University professor of robotics Stephen Smith told the audience at a White House Frontiers Conference last week. In urban areas, drivers spend 40 percent of their time idling in traffic, he added. The next step is to have traffic signals talk to cars. Pittsburgh is the test bed for Uber's self-driving cars, and Smith's work on AI-enhanced traffic signals that talk with self-driving cars is paving the way for the ultimately fluid and efficient autonomous intersections.

Apple lost the autonomous car battle before it began


Autonomous cars learn to drive with driving data using machine learning. The machine learning component of autonomous vehicles require millions of miles of actual driving data. A robust and enabling EV supply chain that makes diverse components and manufacturing supply chains that serve the mobile and consumer business are still developing in the EV sector. Apple doesn't have the manufacturing expertise to build an EV without a mature supply chain like the mobile supply chain behind it.


New Scientist

The first ever death in an autonomous car happened in May this year, the US road safety administration revealed yesterday. In a press release, Tesla said the incident was a tragic loss, but noted that it was the first fatality in 130 million miles of Autopilot driving. "There will be questions as to why these semi-autonomous driving features are allowed in beta testing mode into consumers' hands, and whether they have been adequately developed and certified before being added as an option in vehicles – even with the disclaimers which drivers have to accept before activating the feature," he says. Instead, the software will run in the background, jumping in to prevent accidents that come from human error.

Marines test autonomous robot-drone teams for future on battlefield


Eventually, the Marine Corps wants swarms of collaborating drones and robots to act at the command of a single operator as a force multiplier at every level of operations. UTACC is developing systems that will allow robots and drones to act in concert--what Jenkins described as "multidimensional uncrewed system teaming," where robotic systems collaborate with each other in pairs or swarms alongside troops in the field and are autonomous enough to allow a single human operator to oversee them. The Marines have tested "a ground robot with attached air robot," Jenkins explained as he showed a brief video of the test. Still, Jenkins said he sees autonomous systems playing an increasingly larger role in Marine (and broader military) operations--everything from handling delivery of supplies on the battlefield to conducting "big data" analytics on intelligence and gathering and processing social media data.

Video Friday: iCub Does Yoga, Wooden Walking Robot, and Wind Tunnel for Drones

IEEE Spectrum Robotics Channel

We're told that Markus bet that this thing could only work in theory, and lost: This video introduces the monospinner, the mechanically simplest controllable flying machine in existence. With the company's ultra-low power, high performance Myriad 2 processor inside, the Fathom Neural Compute Stick can run fully-trained neural networks at under 1 Watt of power. As a tinkerer and builder of various robots and flying contraptions, I've been dreaming of getting my hands on something like the Fathom Neural Compute Stick for a long time. Last year in Seoul, KAIST's Unmanned Systems Research Group participated in an autonomous car demo in downtown Seoul. to test 'deep learning' autonomous cars on California roads


Another self-driving car startup is about to hit the roads. The Wall Street Journal reports that, a Silicon Valley startup that received 12 million in funding last year, has been granted a license to test autonomous vehicles on California roads. It's the 13th company to receive permission. But given that it's been granted a license to hit the road, it seems likely enough that it has stable self-driving tech ready to put on a vehicle.

How the Navy's orbiting robots will refurbish civilian satellites


In fact, these LNT debris are in many ways more dangerous than larger pieces, due to the sheer number of them. I spoke with Naval Research Laboratory Aerospace Engineer Bernard Kelm at the Space Symposium. These technological advancements will enable the RSV to perform four primary mission types: Ultra-close inspection, anomaly resolution, orbit modification and, eventually, external upgrades. "[Commercial industry] has ten times as many satellites, and ten times the need for these services," Kelm concluded.

Toyota Is Turning This City Into a Giant Connected Car Experiment


Toyota, the world's largest automaker, is sending 5,000 connected cars that can wirelessly communicate with other vehicles and infrastructure onto the streets of Ann Arbor, Mich., in a real-world experiment designed to move autonomous driving closer to reality. "In order to move autonomous driving toward reality, testing requires more cars, more drivers, and more day-to-day miles traveled than any combination of research facilities could support." The announcement comes on the heels of Toyota's plans to add a third artificial intelligence and robotics center in Ann Arbor. The technology is largely being developed for self-driving cars, but the institute is also researching and developing AI products for the home.

5D Robotics Can Locate You To Within An Inch

IEEE Spectrum Robotics Channel

"It's a peer-to-peer system," Mann told IEEE Spectrum at Robouniverse, a conference held this week in New York City. The vehicle may have a transmitter of its own, the better to serve as a moving beacon; or, it may simply carry a UWB tag. "They are good for following--that's when a soldier walks or drives in front, and an autonomous vehicle follows, carrying cargo," Mann says. If you positively, absolutely can't allow unauthorized access to your system, UWB beacons are the obvious alternative.

The Olympics like we've never seen them


"The Olympic Games is a sports festival, but also it's a chance to show the innovation of scientific technologies," Tokyo's organising committee CEO Toshiro Muto said. A test vehicle of the unmanned'Robot Taxi' was unveiled late last year.Source:Getty Images THE Tokyo Games could see the first widespread use of driverless cars. Japanese trains will be travelling at close to the speed of a Boeing 747.Source:Getty Images The last time Tokyo hosted the Olympics, in 1964, Japan introduced the bullet train. When 80,000 people are attempting to post photos of the 100m final to their social accounts, you need high-speed internet.Source:AP JAPAN'S mobile operators are working together to develop 5G wireless to cater for an estimated half million visitors to the Games.