Saturday, April 23, 2022

16th edition of the 10th year of SmartDrivingCars eLetter

  Knight Foundation 

April 21, “CARTS Executive Director Jerry He explains to the audience at #CoMotionMiami that:

Hmmmm…   Yup!  See ZoomCast265 Alain


  SmartDrivingCars ZoomCast Episode 265/ PodCast 265 w/Jim Nicholas, CEO, Uniphy

F. Fishkin, April 23, “Designing the robotaxi rider experience. Uniphy CEO Jim Nicholas is forging partnerships to help transform consumer experiences with vehicles and more.   He joins Alain Kornhauser and Fred Fishkin for that…plus the latest on Tesla, Trenton and more.  “

Technical support provided by:


  Uniphy Limited and Hyundai Motor Group to Collaborate on Next Generation Smart Human-­Machine Interfaces (HMls) for Automotive

Press release, March 2, “LEEDS, United Kingdom, March 2, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Hyundai Motor Group and Uniphy Limited have announced today that they have signed an agreement to work together to develop freeform-conforming, smart Human Machine Interfaces (HMls) to revolutionize the driver and passenger experience. The companies will be harnessing Uniphy’s patented Canvya™ 3D smart-surface technology to produce an innovative in-car user interface. The collaboration will see Hyundai’s automotive expertise combined with Uniphy’s advanced technological approach; a cooperation which is set to deliver Uniphy’s solution promise of beautiful, intuitive, robust, safe, and economic results….”  Read more  Hmmmm…  Very interesting to me.  Since we are still at the very beginning of “Massive Scale” let’s get the inside of the vehicle right(er)… let’s make the interior readily reconfigurable so that it makes a wider distribution of customers “happy campers” while being served by aTaxi (“RoboTaxi” if you prefer) mobility.  If it is “just as easy” to vary the experience, then, of course, take advantage of that in the very beginning to hit as many sweet spots as possible. 

Cars are sold to individuals, therefor their interior design is focused on each make’s target customers.  (You can, in fact, reverse engineer as to what each thought was important to tits target customer by what they put into the interior.  If one is now designing an interior for many different individuals, one wants to take advantage of a much variational configurations as practical to make as many people as possible the happiest campers that they can be when using your mobility system.  Again… common sense, not rocket science!  See ZoomCast265  Alain

News Analysis: ‘Free speech absolutist’ Elon Musk has a long history of opposing speech and transparency

R. Mitchell, April 22, “… He also said he would make Twitter transparent about its inner workings, open-sourcing the algorithm it uses to sort and amplify tweets so it’s no longer a “black box.”

How seriously should such talk be taken? Rather than try to parse his words — always a fool’s errand — perhaps it’s best to answer that by looking back at his record as a chief executive.


Start with transparency. According to Musk, Twitter posts are “mysteriously promoted or demoted with no insight into what’s going on” and who or what is making the decisions. “Having a black box algorithm promote some things and not other things, I think this can be quite dangerous,” he said at the TED conference last week. He suggested posting Twitter code on the open source developer site GitHub.


There’s some irony around Musk’s critical use of the term “black box.” Tesla has its own algorithmic black box in its cars — the one responsible for automated driving….


Also closely guarded are Tesla’s data on Autopilot injuries and fatalities. Musk says cars driven on Autopilot are safer than those driven by human drivers, but he has never served up the proof. University researchers have offered to evaluate the data while keeping it shielded from public view. Musk has never responded to their offers.

“We would like him to be a little more transparent with respect to the safety of his Teslas,” said Alain Kornhauser, who heads the autonomous vehicle program at Princeton University. “A lot of us think they’re safe. We’d like to do an independent evaluation and offer a second opinion. I think it would help him and help the world.”… ” Read more  Hmmmm…  Yup! Watch ZoomCast 265 . Alain

  Elon Musk says Tesla hopes to produce a robotaxi with no steering wheel or pedals in 2024

S. Jackson, April 22 ”Tesla is working on a vehicle that won’t have a steering wheel or any pedals, and it’s targeting 2024 for “volume production.”

During the company’s Q1 earnings call on Wednesday, CEO Elon Musk shared details about the “dedicated robotaxi.”

“It’s fundamentally optimized for trying to achieve the lowest fully considered cost per mile, cost per kilometer, accounting everything,” he said. “I think that that really will be a massive driver of Tesla’s growth.”… ” Read more  Hmmmm…  Yup!  And if he brings roboTaxis to Trenton MOVES and New Jersey, … I think it would help him and help the world… “.  Alain

Trenton MOVES

Wednesday, April 27, Atlantic City, 1:30 – 2:40 (Live only), ” In February 2022, the city of Trenton received a grant from NJDoT to launch as ambitious and exciting program: Trenton MOVES (Mobility + Opportunity Vehicle Equity System).  The vision is to saturate the city of Trenton with approximately 100 autonomous shuttle vehicles which will provide safe and affordable high-quality mobility to the residents of the Capital City.  A panel of SMEs will discuss plans to date, challenges ahead and the ultimate vision of this project….” Read more  Hmmmm…  Yup!  Alain

Full Symposium Program: ICT 2022  Driving Accessibility Together

WORKSHOP A: Driving Autonomous Vehicles Through the Accessibility Testing Field

Now virtual!!!!!  Why users from the disability community must be included in your accessibility testing program for mobile website and app accessibility


May 16 -> May 19, 2022.

Venue:  ICT 2022 will take place at the National Federation of the Blind, Jernigan Institute, Baltimore, MD with the option of simultaneous online participation of the two day symposium

Read more  Hmmmm… Accessibility, a (the?) most important element associated with addressing the Sociology of SmartDrivingCar Technology, especially Driverless technology.  See ZoomCast 265 Alain

  CoMotion Miami – Meeting in the Middle: How Community and Autonomy Work Together

April 21, 2:40 pm Autonomous vehicle technology is commonly understood as the playground for pushing the edge of efficient, connected and automated ways to get around. But transportation moves people through the places they live, work, and play, so what are the implications for those using this autonomous technology? How is the community incorporated into the vision for a hyper-connected future?  What can autonomous, vehicle-based urban transit systems do for travellers? How do we build trust among citizens to make automated transport more accessible and attractive? Read more  Hmmmm…More on addressing the Sociology of SmartDrivingCar Technology. See ZoomCast 265 Alain


Making it Happen:  Trenton MOVES… a Framework for the Deployment of Safe, Equitable, Affordable, Sustainable, High-quality Mobility

A. Kornhauser, Jan 11, 2022 TRB, ” A slide deck describing the framework fora phased deployment of high-quality mobility in Trenton New Jersey that is envisioned to have wherewithal to naturally scale beyond Trenton in a fashion that can be replicated the more than 100 communities across the US that have similar demographic and travel demand characteristics.”  Read more  Hmmmm… Go through the slides in presentation mode to take advantage of the animations. See ZoomCast 251 Alain

Highlights from the 4th Annual Princeton SmartDrivingCar Summit (2020-2021)

  Making Driverless Happen: The Road Forward (Updated)

K. Pyle, April 18, 2021, “It’s time to hit the start button,” is Fred Fishkin’s succinct way of summarizing the next steps in the Smart Driving Car journey. Fiskin, along with the LA Times’ Russ Mitchell co-produced the final session of the 2021 Smart Driving Car Summit, Making It Happen: Part 2. This 16th and final session in this multi-month online conference not only provided a summary of the thought-provoking speakers, but also provided food for thought on a way forward to bring mobility to “the Trentons of the World.”

Setting the stage for this final session, Michael Sena provided highlights of the Smart Driving Car journey that started in late December 2020.  Safety, high-quality, and affordable mobility, particularly for those who do not have many options, was a common theme to the 2021 Smart Driving Car Summit. As Princeton Professor Kornhauser, the conference organizer put it,…..” Read more  Hmmmm…. We had another excellent Session.  Thank you for the summary, Ken!  Alain


Ken Pyle‘s Session Summaries of 4th Princeton SmartDrivingCar Summit:

Kornhauser & He, April 2021 “Making it Happen:  A Proposal for Providing Affordable, High-quality, On-demand Mobility for All in the “Trentons” of this World”


Orf467F20_FinalReport “Analyzing Ride-Share Potential and Empty Repositioning Requirements of a Nationwide aTaxi System


Kornhauser & He, March 2021 AV 101 + Trenton Affordable HQ Mobility Initiative


Staff, Dec 6, “The New Jersey Department of Transportation (“NJDOT”), an instrumentality of the State of New Jersey, has issued a Request for Expressions of Interest (“RFEI”) to identify experienced firms capable of introducing a safe, equitable, affordable, sustainable, and efficient on-demand automated vehicle mobility systems in and beyond Trenton, NJ.
NJDOT is soliciting written expressions of interest from qualified and experienced vendors to gain valuable insight from the private industry regarding the goals set forth in the Trenton MOVES (Mobility & Opportunity: Vehicles Equity System) potential project and assess its viability.  If and when NJDOT elects to proceed with a potential project, NJDOT may issue formal
Request(s) for Qualifications or Proposals.

The RFEI is available to be downloaded at…”

Staff, March 2, “…” Read more  Hmmmm…   Lots of very encouraging and enthusiastic respondents.  Thanks to NJ DoT for making the replies available to the public at large on a very timely basis allowing everyone to learn a lot and showing that there is broad and competent interest in deploying Safe, Equitable, Affordable, Sustainable, High-quality Mobility throughout Trenton and beyond.  Alain

Calendar of Upcoming Events

April 26, 27 & 28
Atlantic City, NJ




May 16 -> 19

5th Annual Princeton  SmartDrivingCar Summit

& Mobility Festival


Thursday (evening), June 2, Welcome Reception @ Alain’s home (Registration required)

Friday, June 3, Equitable Mobility Innovation Forum @ Princeton University (Registration required)

June 4, Equitable Mobility Festival @ Mayor Donnely Homes, Trenton, NJ (Open to All)

Live in Person

See ZoomCast 265

On the More Technical Side

K. Lockean’s AV Research Group at U of Texas