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'Autonomous' Waymo Improves Driving With Remote Human Operators

Waymo and Tesla are locked in a titanic struggle - to be the first to offer driverless car services (see CyberCab - Tesla Renames The Robotaxi).

But do both companies mean the same thing?

During a 45-minute test drive in a Tesla Model X, I had to intervene twice to correct mistakes by the FSD software. In contrast, I rode in driverless Waymo vehicles for more than two hours and didn’t notice a single mistake.

So while Tesla’s FSD version 12.3 seems like a significant improvement over previous versions of FSD, it still lags behind Waymo’s technology.

However, Waymo’s impressive performance comes with an asterisk. While no one was behind the wheel during my rides, Waymo has remote operators that sometimes provide guidance to its vehicles (Waymo declined to tell me whether—or how often—remote operators intervened during my rides). And while Tesla’s FSD works on all road types, Waymo’s taxis avoid freeways.

(Via ArsTechnica.)

In his 2007 novel Halting State, science fiction author Charles Stross describes driverless drones shepherded remotely:

The steering wheel twitches hesitantly, then as the doors click shut it spins hard over and the yuppiemobile accelerates fast. You try not to shudder. You hate the whole idea that some bored drone pusher in a remote driving centre has got your life - and half a dozen other lives - in his hands.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 5/16/2024)

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Related News Stories - (" Vehicle ")

GoSun EV Solar Charger Drapes Onto Your Car
'...six square yards of sunpower screens.' - Robert Heinlein, 1940

'Autonomous' Waymo Improves Driving With Remote Human Operators
'...some bored drone pusher in a remote driving centre has got your life... in his hands.' - Charles Stross, 2007

Heinlein’s Controlway - Connected and Automated Vehicle (CAV) Corridor In Michigan
'Well, that's us,' said Lazarus.

CyberCab - Tesla Renames The Robotaxi
'A cybercab dogged their heels...' - Michael Swanwick, 1987.

 

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