Transportation


Musk Says Tesla Is Building Its Own Chip for Autopilot

#artificialintelligence

Rockets, electric cars, solar panels, batteries--whirlwind industrialist Elon Musk has set about reinventing one after another. Thursday, he added another ambitious project to the list: Future Tesla vehicles will run their self-driving AI software on a chip designed by the automaker itself. "We are developing customized AI hardware chips," Musk told a room of AI experts from companies such as Alphabet and Uber on the sidelines of the world's leading AI conference. Musk claimed that the chips' processing power would help Tesla's Autopilot automated-driving function save more lives, more quickly, by hastening the day it can drive at least 10 times more safely than a human. "We get there faster if we have dedicated AI hardware," he said.


Artificial Intelligence and Supercomputers to Help Alleviate Urban Traffic Problems

#artificialintelligence

Look above the traffic light at a busy intersection in your city and you will probably see a camera. These devices may have been installed to monitor traffic conditions and provide visuals in the case of a collision. But can they do more? Can they help planners optimize traffic flow or identify sites that are most likely to have accidents? And can they do so without requiring individuals to slog through hours of footage?


Artificial intelligence and supercomputers to help alleviate urban traffic problems

#artificialintelligence

Look above the traffic light at a busy intersection in your city and you will probably see a camera. These devices may have been installed to monitor traffic conditions and provide visuals in the case of a collision. But can they do more? Can they help planners optimize traffic flow or identify sites that are most likely to have accidents? And can they do so without requiring individuals to slog through hours of footage?


Apple Executive Reveals More of Its Self-Driving Technology

WIRED

A theme emerged when Apple's director of artificial intelligence research outlined results from several of the company's recent AI projects on the sidelines of a major conference Friday. Each involved giving software capabilities needed for self-driving cars. Ruslan Salakhutdinov addressed roughly 200 AI experts who had signed up for a free lunch and peek at how Apple uses machine learning, a technique for analyzing large stockpiles of data. He discussed projects using data from cameras and other sensors to spot cars and pedestrians on urban streets, navigate in unfamiliar spaces, and build detailed 3-D maps of cities. The talk offered new insight into Apple's secretive efforts around autonomous-vehicle technology.


Elon Musk Says Tesla Is Building Its Own Chip for Autopilot

WIRED

Rockets, electric cars, solar panels, batteries--whirlwind industrialist Elon Musk has set about reinventing one after another. Thursday, he added another ambitious project to the list: Future Tesla vehicles will run their self-driving AI software on a chip designed by the automaker itself. "We are developing customized AI hardware chips," Musk told a room of AI experts from companies such as Alphabet and Uber on the sidelines of the world's leading AI conference. Musk claimed that the chips' processing power would help Tesla's Autopilot automated-driving function save more lives, more quickly, by hastening the day it can drive at least 10 times more safely than a human. "We get there faster if we have dedicated AI hardware," he said.


Volvo to supply Uber with up to 24,000 self-driving cars

Daily Mail

Uber plans to buy up to 24,000 self-driving cars from Volvo, marking the transition of the U.S. firm from an app used to summon a taxi to the owner and operator of a fleet of cars. The non-binding framework deal could offer San Francisco-based Uber a way to overcome setbacks at its autonomous driving division in Silicon Valley's race to perfect self-driving systems. Combining Volvo's cars with Uber's self-driving system builds on their nearly three-year relationship and comes as Uber's autonomous driving unit has been hit by a lawsuit over trade secrets and the departure of top talent. Uber plans to buy up to 24,000 self-driving cars from Volvo, marking the transition of the U.S. firm from an app used to summon a taxi to the owner and operator of a fleet of cars. Automakers, ride-hailing firms and tech startups have been forging loose alliances in an effort to advance self-driving technology and claim a piece of what is expected to be a multi-billion-dollar business.


Scientists Look at How Humans Drive in Self-Driving Cars

WIRED

But if you were being very precise--if you were a team of Massachusetts of Technology researchers who study human-machine interactions--you wouldn't say that all those Americans are "driving," exactly. The new driver assistance systems on the market--like Tesla's's Autopilot, Volvo's's Pilot Assist, and Jaguar Land Rover's InControl Driver Assistance--mean that some of those travelers are doing an entirely new thing, participating in a novel, fluid dance. The human handles the wheel in some situations, and the machine handles it in others: changing lanes, parking, monitoring blind spots, warning when the car is about to crash. We might need a new word. Fully autonomous cars won't swarm the roads en masse for decades, and in the meantime, we'll have these semiautonomous systems.


This sensor-packed pedestrian crossing is fit for a modern city

#artificialintelligence

Paint-on-the-floor pedestrian crossings don't cut it anymore. They are outdated, and the cause of 20 incidents a day in the UK. Architectural firm Umbrellium reckons it's got a solution: a sensor-packed digital crossing that responds to your movements. "We've been designing a pedestrian crossing for the 21st century," says Usman Haque, Umbrellium's founding partner. "Crossings that you know were designed in the 1950s, when there was a different type of city and interaction."


Meet the Woman Making Uber's Self-Driving Cars Smarter, Cheaper

WIRED

Next month in San Francisco, Uber will stand trial in federal court for allegedly cheating in the race to commercialize self-driving cars. Google parent Alphabet accuses Uber of stealing designs for sensors called lidars that give a vehicle a 3-D view of its surroundings, an "unjust enrichment" it says will take $1.8 billion to heal. Meanwhile in Toronto, Uber has a growing artificial-intelligence lab led by a woman who's spent years trying to make lidar technology less important. Raquel Urtasun joined Uber to set up a new autonomous-vehicle research lab in May--almost three months after Alphabet filed suit. She still works one day a week in her old job as an associate professor at the University of Toronto.


Why Daimler Researchers Used VR to Become Self-Driving Cars

WIRED

You're lying on your stomach, with your arms draped forwards, almost like you're going to get a shoulder massage. Except this is not a moment for relaxation. Through a VR headset, you see flashes of color, an unfamiliar view of the world, a group of red lines that looks something like a person. And now you have to make a decision, because you're rolling forward, head first, and your right hand is wrapped around the joystick that determines which way you're going. Do you continue forward, and risk hitting that blob that might be a human being?