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New laissez-faire robocar rules may arise

While very few details have come out, Reuters reports that new proposed congressional bills on self-driving cars will reverse many of the provisions I critiqued in the NHTSA regulations last year....

LIDAR (lasers) and cameras together: Which is more important?

Recently we’ve seen a series of startups arise hoping to make robocars with just computer vision, along with radar. That includes recently unstealthed AutoX, the off-again, on again efforts of comma...
29 March 2017, by

California publishes robocar intervention reports: Google/Waymo vastly outpaces competition

California published its summary of all the reports submitted by vendors testing robocars in the state. You can read the individual reports. They are interesting, but several other outlines have creat...
08 February 2017, by

Combining automation and mobility to create a smarter world

By: Catherine Marguerite | Singapore-MIT Alliance for Research and Technology Daniela Rus loves Singapore. As the MIT professor sits down in her Frank Gehry-designed office in Cambridge, Massachus...
20 January 2017, by

NHTSA ODI report exonerates Tesla in fatal crash

NHTSA released the report from their Office of Defects Investigation on the fatal Tesla crash in Florida last spring. It’s a report that is surprisingly favorable to Tesla. So much so that even I am...
20 January 2017, by

Google car is now Waymo

Google’s car project (known as “Chauffeur”) kickstarted the entire robocar revolution, and Google has put in more work, for longer, than anybody. The car was also the first project of what becam...
14 December 2016, by


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Oxbotica’s autonomous vehicle software learns its environment and how it changes over time

Oxbotica, a UK technology company with a focus on mobile robotics and driverless vehicles, has created Selenium, an autonomous software system acting similar to a 'brain' for a vehicle. Selenium can...
10 October 2016, by

Robocar parking is incredibly cheap

Some people have wondered about my forecast in the spreadsheet on robotaxi economics about the very low parking costs I have predicted. I wrote about most of the reasons for this in my 2007 essay on R...
27 September 2016, by

Michigan’s automated driving bills

Michigan's Senate are reviewing several bills related to automated driving. SB995, 996, 997, and 998 are now out of committee, and SB 927 and 928 are not far behind. These bills seem to be a mixed bag...
26 September 2016, by

Critique of NHTSA’s newly released regulations

The long awaited list of recommendations and potential regulations for robocars has just been released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the federal agency that regulates ...
22 September 2016, by

US Department of Transportation issues guidance for automated driving

With the recent announcement, the US Department of Transportation is enthusiastically embracing automated driving. It's saying that self-driving vehicles are coming in some form (or many forms) and th...
21 September 2016, by

Robocar recap: Tesla radar, MobilEye fight, and the Comma One $1,000 add-on-box

Tesla’s spat with MobilEye reached a new pitch this week with Tesla announcing a new release of their autopilot and plans. As reported earlier, MobilEye announced during the summer that they would n...
20 September 2016, by

Pittsburgh and Singapore are now pilot sites for self-driving car services

Two self-driving car events of note: Uber just began operating a fleet of Volvo self-driving cars in Pittsburgh, and nuTonomy launched the first autonomous pilot taxi program last month in Singapore. ...
19 September 2016, by

50 different state regulations for robocars is not a bad idea

At the recent AUVSI/TRB conference in San Francisco, there was talk of upcoming regulation, particularly from NHTSA. Secretary of Transportation Foxx and his NHTSA staff spoke with just vague hints ab...
18 August 2016, by

Robocar platooning, or just carpool?

At the recent AUVSI/TRB symposium, a popular research topic was platooning for robocars and trucks. Platooning is perhaps the oldest practical proposal when it comes to car automation because you can ...
12 August 2016, by

Google develops a Chrysler minivan

If you had asked me recently what big car company was the furthest behind when it came to robocars, one likely answer would be Fiat-Chrysler. In fact, famously, Chrysler ran ads several years ago duri...

How would a robocar handle an oncoming tsunami?

Recently, a reddit user posted a short video of a lucky driver in Japan who was able to turn his car around just in time to escape the torrent of the tsunami....
19 April 2016, by

Autonomous truck platoons travel across Europe

A dozen trucks arrived in Rotterdam after traveling across Europe in the European Truck Platooning Challenge. Six different truck makers participated: Scania, Daimler, Volvo, IVECO, MAN and DAF....
14 April 2016, by

Robust and transparent governance is key to building trust in driverless cars

Sooner or later there will be fatal accident caused by a driverless car. It's not a question of if, but when. What happens immediately following that accident could have a profound effect on the nasce...
12 April 2016, by

Calculating why we should make a lot more robocars

I frequently read that people claim one effect of robocars will be car share (when they work as taxis) and fewer cars being made (because most cars stay idle 95% of the time) — which is good news ...
24 March 2016, by

Why Google’s crash is a good thing

Reports released reveal that one of Google’s Gen-2 vehicles (the Lexus) has a fender-bender (with a bus) with some responsibility assigned to the system. This is the first crash of this type — all...
04 March 2016, by

Could robotaxis be the answer to electric car depreciation?

I’ve been electric car shopping, but one thing has stood out as a big concern. Many electric cars are depreciating fast, and it may get even faster. I think part of this is due to the fact that elec...
21 January 2016, by

Google’s detailed intervention rates reveal the real unsolved problem of robocars

Hot on the heels of my CES Report is the release of the latest article from Chris Urmson on The View from the Front Seat of the Google Car. Chris heads engineering on the project (and until recently l...
15 January 2016, by

California’s new DMV regulations may kill the state’s robocar lead

Be careful what you wish for. Google had previously requested that state regulations on robocars be clarified, to help ensure that their cars were legal. When California's DMV finally released its pr...
18 December 2015, by

Why Tesla’s Autopilot and Google’s car are entirely different animals

In the buzz over the Tesla autopilot update, a lot of commentary has appeared comparing this Autopilot with Google’s car effort and other efforts and what I would call a “real” robocar — one t...
28 October 2015, by

Volvo says it will accept “full liability” when its cars are operating autonomously

In a statement released yesterday, Volvo said it would accept full liability whenever one of its cars is in autonomous mode....
08 October 2015, by

Robocars don’t need fancy dashboards and streets

Yesterday I attended the “Silicon Valley reinvents the wheel” conference by the Western Automotive Journalists, which had a variety of talks and demonstrations of new car technology. Now that rob...
07 October 2015, by

IEEE driverless car roundtable

[focus07] Hear about the current state of the driverless vehicle industry from experts including IEEE Member Jeffrey Miller, IEEE Fellow Wei-Bin Zhang, Bernard Soriano, and Bryant Walker Smith. In ...
30 September 2015, by

Former DARPA Program Manager Gill Pratt to direct Toyota’s new $50M robotics investment

In a surprise move today, Toyota held a press conference (see video below) announcing a substantial investment in robotics and AI research to develop "advanced driving support" technology, with forme...
04 September 2015, by

When do robocars become cheaper than standard cars? Automated Vehicle Symposium recap (Part 1)

I’m in the Detroit area for the annual TRB/AUVSI Automated Vehicle Symposium. Those in Ann Arbor attended the opening of the new test track at the University of Michigan, but I was at a small event ...







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