Sunday August 28, 2022

31st edition of the 10th year of SmartDrivingCars eLetter

  Tesla Releases FSD Beta 10 69 With New Occupancy Network

Tesla Daily, Aug. 22, ” Looking at first impressions from Tesla’s release of FSD Beta 10.69…” Read more  Be sure to watch Ashok Elluswamy’s “Occupancy Networks” keynote presentation  at CVPR on June 20, 2022.  Very impressive, especially the use of training videos and it realization in FSD 10.69

Also pertinent are video demonstrations of:

My takeaway from the above is that FSD 10.69 is impressive but not near “Full” anything, especially if put in the hands of some individual who themselves may well be a menace on the road. 


While not being near “Full” anything, FSD may be nearing the point in which it is FSD within some useful Operational Design Domain. 


It is one thing to be able to safely negotiate a trips segment:  safely drive straight down a well marked lane in clear weather, safely make an unprotected left, safely stop behind a stop line at a stop sign, …  Each is an important achievement.


It is a whole other challenge to be able to safely go from some origin to some destination thus delivering useful mobility to some person or some thing safely without any disengagements.  The ensemble of these origin-destination pairs would define the ODD for FSD.  To date that ODD has been essentially null.  The challenge for subsequent releases of FSD may well be to begin to explicitly identify FSD’s ODD sand assess the extent to which these ODDs have emerged from the null state to begin to safely provide some useful mobility to the general public.  Alain


Asking FSD to be “Full” everything, everywhere to everyone is simply a naive unachievable objective.  To me a better question may well be in which Operational Design Domain is FSD indeed Full Self-Driving?


Once that ODD is determined, restrict FSD to operate ONLY in that ODD. 


Tesla must accept the responsibility allowing FSD to be engaged ONLY when the car is operating in Operational Design Domain where Tesla has certified that FSD drives safely.  Else, FSD safely pull over, stop disengage and turn the responsibility of continuing on to the human driver.  It should be Tesla’s responsibility to allow FSD to be turned on and the determination of when and where it ceases to move because Tesla must be held responsible and liable if it something bad happens when it is driving.  If I’m driving I’m responsible and liable.  Not my passenger who may or may not be paying attention to what is going on.  If FSD is driving it must accept that responsibility and not expect the passenger to help out.  The word “Self” implies “Full”; else the product should be called Partnership-driving or Team-driving or ???   Alain

SmartDrivingCars ZoomCast281 /PodCast 281 

F. Fishkin, Aug. 28, “A new step for Tesla FSD with Beta 10 69 release and the company’s “Occupancy Network”.  Princeton’s faculty chair of autonomous vehicle engineering, Alain Kornhauser, weighs in on that plus oversized EVs,  Toyota’s view of autonomous mobility,  Pittsburgh’s Guaranteed Basic Mobility Program and some excitement surround SpaceX and NASA and more.”

00:42 new Tesla FSD Beta 15:37 Tesla AI Day coming 19:07 Space X Launch 21:06 NY Times Essay on oversized EVs 24:18 California to ban gasoline cars by 2035 25:43 Toyota Research Institute says AVs not imminent 31:35 Tesla acts agains Dawn Project and O’Dowd 32:19 Pitssburght Guaranteed Basic Mobility 38:24 Waze shutting carpooling service 41:09 NASA readies Artemis


Technical support provided by:

   The SmartDrivingCars eLetter, Pod-Casts, Zoom-Casts and Zoom-inars are made possible in part by support from the Smart Transportation and Technology ETF, symbol MOTO.   For more information:  Most funding is supplied by Princeton University’s Department of Operations Research & Financial Engineering and Princeton Autonomous Vehicle Engineering (PAVE) research laboratory as part of its research dissemination initiative

  You Want an Electric Car With a 300-Mile Range? When Was the Last Time You Drove 300 Miles?

E. . Neidermeyer, , Aug. 27, “Throughout the history of America’s love affair with the car, nothing has succeeded quite like excess. Electric vehicles are heading down that same path. Give an E.V. a big enough battery and a fast-charging network, and suddenly you have the kind of vehicle we’ve always loved in this country: big, heavy, powerful and ready to head off into the sunset at a moment’s notice.

If you’re lucky enough to drive one of the premium E.V.s that fits this description, you already may feel like your consumer desires are in perfect alignment with planetary environmental goals. ‌ After a decade of manufacturers selling E.V.s at luxury car prices, the government has made concerted efforts to get more people driving them. The recently signed Inflation Reduction Act offers extensive tax credits to buy both new and used E.V.s. California just announced that it intends to ban the sale of gas-powered vehicles starting in 2035.

However, these carrots and sticks merely tweak a fundamental approach to E.V. policy that has failed to achieve its goals. Rather than unleashing a mass market of affordable E.V.s, more than a decade of subsidies favoring large batteries has created an overheated market for premium E.V.s. A serious electrification policy will have to be tailored to the way we actually drive, not the way we think we do……” Read more  Once again, subsidies for the rich.  Since all of these EVs are replacing cars that ran on carbon means that they are consuming marginal/additional electricity that is continuing to be generated from the most environmentally detrimental source (coal), else that source of electricity generation would have been turned off. 

The sad story here is that today, these EVs run on electricity generated from coal.  Maybe in some future we will have enough alternative sources of electricity that all/most coal generation has  been turned off.  Unfortunately, today, that is simply not the reality.   What is worse is that public subsidies are being to bring back the Hummer. GM should be ashamed of itself.  Unbelievable!  Alain

  California bans sales of new gas-powered cars by 2035. Now the real work begins

R. Mitchel, Aug. 25, “Buy a car in 2035 and you won’t have to decide between gasoline, diesel or electric. You won’t have a choice.

Citing an urgent need to address climate change while cutting back on air pollution, the California Air Resources Board voted Thursday to require all new cars and light trucks sold by 2035 to be what it calls zero-emission vehicles.

Lauren Sanchez, Gov. Gavin Newsom’s climate advisor, called it “a huge day not only for California but the entire world.”

The mission, she said: “Move the state away from oil.”…”  Read more Hmmmm…  OK  Alain

   Tesla Dojo Custom AI Supercomputer at HC34

P. Kennedy, Aug. 23 “We just looked at the Tesla Dojo microarchitecture at Hot Chips 34. The next talk is about packaging the components into a larger system. Tesla has its own hardware and even its own transport protocol. Tesla’s goal is to make an AI supercomputer that is optimized for its heavy video AI needs…”  Read more Hmmmm… Dojo presentation from last year’s AI Day   See also Fred Lambert’s post.  and  Musk Announces Tesla Bot Launch On AI Day 2022  Alain

  Pittsburgh tests program to provide free transportation for lower-income residents

K. Koscinski, Aug. 17, “… Participants in the “Guaranteed Basic Mobility” program will be able to ride the bus, light rail, POGOH bikes, Spin Scooters or order a Zipcar free of charge. Eligible participants will be residents who receive some form of government assistance and who lack regular access to a personal vehicle. They must also be actively seeking a job or pursuing more hours of work. … ”  Read more Hmmmm…   “…  order a Zipcar free of charge”… Am I reading that correctly??  Seems too good to be true  Fantastic, Pittsburgh!  Go Steelers!  Alain

  Tesla sends cease and desist to billionaire running smear campaign

F. Lambert, Aug. 25, “Tesla has sent a cease and desist to billionaire Dan O’Dowd’s Dawn Project, which is currently running a smear campaign against Tesla’s Full Self-Driving Beta.

Earlier this year, we reported on Dan O’Dowd, a self-described billionaire and founder of Green Hills Software, a privately-owned company that makes operating systems and programming tools.

O’Dowd had launched a Senate campaign in his home state of California, but the tech executive made it quite clear that he is making it a single-issue campaign, and that issue is Tesla’s Full Self-Driving program.

Under the protection of political ads, he invested several million dollars in an ad campaign to attack Tesla’s Full Self-Driving Beta program with the goal of having it banned from public roads in the US.

Even though O’Dowd has lost his senate effort, the campaign continues under the name “The Dawn Project” and continues to attack Tesla…..”  Read more Hmmmm… Alain

   Google’s Waze is shutting down its carpooling service

A. Hawkins, Aug. 25, “Google-owned navigation service Waze is shutting down its six-year-old carpooling service, citing shifting commuting patterns as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Starting in September, the company will begin the process of winding down its carpooling service, which had been available in the US, Brazil, and Israel. Waze said it will explore other ways it can help serve the 150 million customers worldwide that use its navigation app.

“While Waze was predominantly a commuting app pre-COVID, today the proportion of errands and travel drives have surpassed commutes,” the company said in a statement provided to The Verge. “This means we have an opportunity to find even more impactful ways to bring together a global community to share real-time insights and help each other outsmart traffic — this is what has always made Waze truly special.”…” Read more Hmmmm…  What an amazingly feeble effort by Waze/Google.  Not surprising that the turn-by-turn app founded on circumventing efforts by law enforcement to enforce traffic laws has been unable to do something good, let alone reduce congestion by assisting people to share rides.  Alain