Tesla Autopilot Crash Under NHTSA Investigation - InformationWeek

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Tesla Autopilot Crash Under NHTSA Investigation
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vnewman2
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vnewman2,
User Rank: Ninja
7/8/2016 | 1:13:26 PM
Re: Telsa: Not AutoPilot ? Then Don't Call It That
I agree @Technocrati - make up a new name or just be boring and call it Driving Assist.  Everyone has a preconceived notion for the term "autopilot" and even if Tesla tries to reframe it for their own purposes, not everyone is going to "get" it.
BobbyB269
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BobbyB269,
User Rank: Apprentice
7/7/2016 | 3:41:07 PM
Tesla is not a self-driving car
Tesla's "self-driving" car uses a vigilant-human approach: 

"Tesla notes that Autopilot is meant only to assist drivers, not to replace them. And its onscreen warnings and owner's manual emphasize that drivers should remain vigilant and keep their hands on or near the wheel at all times."  --nytimes.com

Google OTOH, has monitored drivers (employees) while they were driving "vigilant-human approach automobiles" and found the drivers were often profoundly distracted and even napping. They realized that the vigilant-human approach was scary because most humans were lulled into totally trusting the car after hundreds of miles without incident. As a result, Google is approaching it from the perspective that the car must be reliably self-driving, with no steering, no brake pedals and no accelerator pedals. In-other-words, until their cars can drive WITHOUT ANY driver assistance, they are not good enough. 

I figure that in the long run, the only approach that will survive the market and the regulators will be Google's approach to self-driving cars. Tesla will either figure this out or lose the market. 

 
Charlie Babcock
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Charlie Babcock,
User Rank: Author
7/7/2016 | 2:27:50 PM
Auto-pilot: before and after accident
In a June 30 blog, Tesla presented auto-pilot with "lane keeping and automatic braking capabilities – among others – is a driving-assist feature and is not intended to be used as a fully autonomous vehicle technology." That's after the June 7 accident. How did Tesla present auto-pilot to customers before the accident?
Technocrati
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Technocrati,
User Rank: Ninja
7/7/2016 | 2:20:49 PM
Telsa: Not AutoPilot ? Then Don't Call It That

"...Autopilot, despite its name, is intended as an assistive feature rather than an alternative to manual control."

 

 

Tesla should change the naming.  People associate the term in the traditional sense and since anyone who can afford a Tesla thinks these are wonder machines.  It is easy to see how this function could be misconstrued.

Technocrati
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Technocrati,
User Rank: Ninja
7/7/2016 | 2:01:44 PM
Re: Ah, auto-pilot is not equivalent to 'self-driving car'

@Charlie  Thanks for the clarification and to everyone along this thread that understands the issue better than I.  

If nothing else, this might serve to have people think before they entrust their life to a vehicle with Tesla stamped on it.

jastroff
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jastroff,
User Rank: Ninja
7/7/2016 | 10:56:10 AM
Re: Just some thoughts
Agree. I've always thought cars, etc. were weapons -- they can kill easily. Keep control, always.
jastroff
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jastroff,
User Rank: Ninja
7/7/2016 | 10:56:10 AM
Re: Just some thoughts
Agree. I've always thought cars, etc. were weapons -- they can kill easily. Keep control, always.
Charlie Babcock
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Charlie Babcock,
User Rank: Author
7/6/2016 | 7:37:08 PM
Ah, auto-pilot is not equivalent to 'self-driving car'
In the July 2 New York Times, the headline referred to "A Fatality In A Self-Driving Car Forces Tesla To Confront Its Limits." The car was not a self-driving car. It was a software and sensor-enhanced form of cruise control, with Tesla urging drivers using it to not take their hands off the wheel or attention from the road. I would not prejudge the outcome of the investigation by pillorying the driver. But I certainly urge auto-pilot users to put some limits on total trust in auto-pilot. 
TerryB
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TerryB,
User Rank: Ninja
7/6/2016 | 1:16:13 PM
Re: Just some thoughts
We'll know this technology has made it when it is capable of eliminating an impaired driver from getting a DWI. And even if technology is sound, is society ever going to let the primary "operator" off the hook for staying below the tested level anyway?

To me (not because I'm a big drinker!), this is the killer app of a driverless car. Just replacing the driving work you do only goes towards the convienience/laziness factor human drivers have. But a car in the midwest that can get you home from a bar birthday party without a $40 cab trip (or $200 hotel) or risk of blowing a .085 at a checkpoint has a huge financial and safety benefit. I'd argue the technology is already better than these people that are repeat DWI offenders blowing .24 when pulled over. I'm sure the tech doesn't get on wrong side of divided highway and not know it already. 
vnewman2
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vnewman2,
User Rank: Ninja
7/5/2016 | 4:37:08 PM
Re: Just some thoughts
Agree - what Telsa has implemented is like an "advanced cruise control" - an assisted driver technology much like assisted parking.  But people will treat it like autopilot, as people will do under a false sense of security - and unfortunate accidents like this will be more common.
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