Uber joins race for driverless cars ...
Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by justpassingthru, May 20, 2016.
Maybe but they won't shoot you or rape you
I don't understand why people are so afraid of driverless cars . It's a lot better than people driving drunk or elderly drivers . Every day I hear about automobile fatalities the road ways are down right dangerous . I hear a lot of what ifs being thrown around so I'll throw one out there what if the work that tesla and google and now uber is doing someday saves lives ? That's technology that I think is worth looking into
One good snow storm and they would be nothing more than obstacles.
Yep, I wonder if they have thought about impassable roads? When it snows they'll have to close down the road ways. Imagine ice?
The moral algorithm for autonomous vehicles.
How has the vehicle been programmed to act in the event of an unavoidable accident? Should it minimize the loss of life, even if it means sacrificing the occupants, or should it protect the occupants at all costs? Should it choose between these extremes at random?
See ... this is why women should be running the world.
Smart, beautiful and they have ...
*way to go fucknuts, here come the Hilary bashers*
Personally I think they should spend more time developing a "Transporter" system ...
Could happen, lol.
that would be for star trek.. for space agencies lol.
I have one simple question ?
What the fuck is the hurry all of a sudden ???
Why is this a "race" to the finish line ?
Only the ultra rich will be able to afford it anyway ... yet it will be us "regular folk" footing the tax bill to outfit streets and highways with sensors and other equipment needed to keep this technology from turning the streets into a demolition derby ...
One drunk driver could cause a major shitstorm.
PS, sorry that was 2 questions lol.
I've yet to see anyone propose an unavoidable accident, which is unavoidable. Considering the driverless car does not have lapses in concentration, and has a fricking laser on its head which can track hundreds of targets independently. It's observing what's going on around it, unlike human drivers.
Most "unavoidable" accidents wouldn't be if people were paying attention.
I don't fear driverless cars, they're absolutely the right solution to the problems you mention. What I fear is not being able to drive myself. I like driving, I wouldn't want to lose the ability because the machines are better at it than me. I don't fear this future, I find it depressing.
The current driverless cars don't need an infrastructure. So no one's footing a bill.
You've obviously never seen a driverless car approach any unusual situation. They stop and think about it. The drunk can crash into as many as it wants, the cars aren't going anywhere.
I saw one a few days ago slow down to crawl, because a car from a side street was stopped a couple of feet over the stop line. The other car was stopped and showed no intention of going anywhere, at that intersection you have to stop like that to be able to see what's coming from the left (where the driverless car was coming). The driverless car held up a dozen cars while it thought about a stationary car.
Though to be fair, I did see a human driver who was even worse a few days ago.
I know what you mean I miss arcades and drive in movies . But the world must advance
Top misconceptions of autonomous cars and self-driving vehicles
Self-driving cars are a rapidly evolving technology which only a few years ago was still considered science fiction. In such a dynamic context, quick intuitions can be very misleading and misconceptions about the technology, its impact, and the nature of the innovation process abound. In the following we address some of the most widely held misconceptions about autonomous vehicles:
Driver assistance systems will evolve gradually into fully autonomous cars
The first models of fully autonomous cars will be targeted to the consumer and will be available for purchase
It will take decades until most of the vehicles on the road are capable of autonomous driving
Self-driving cars are controlled by classical computer algorithms (if-then rules)
Public demonstrations of self-driving cars provide an indication of their capabilities
Self-driving cars need to make the right ethical judgements
Clicking the above sub-topics will simple scroll you down the page of the link that is listed below and is a pretty good read.
A little outdated but a good read.
The "future" is upon us folks ...
Self-Driving Taxis Hit the Streets of Singapore
NuTonomy’s public trial is underway, with plans for a wider commercial launch in 2018.
NuTonomy might not have the name recognition of Google, Ford, General Motors, or Uber. But at only three years old, the autonomous vehicle software startup and MIT spinoff has managed to beat them all to market.
The software startup launched a self-driving taxi service in Singapore on Thursday that the public—not just test engineers—can use. The company says it’s the first-ever public trial of a self-driving taxi service.
Even if just a trial, the development represents a stunning milestone considering the capital and resources that other, much larger companies have dedicated to the development and eventual commercial deployment of a self-driving taxi service. Google GOOG -0.32% , which plans to commercialize self-driving vehicles by 2020, has been working on the project since 2009.
See also: Uber Is Reportedly About to Pull Out of Macau
A number of automakers have partnered with or acquired startups in pursuit of the same goal. Earlier this month, Volvo Car Group agreed to a $300 million alliance with Uber to develop self-driving cars. Ford F -0.97% also announced its intention to make self-driving cars for commercial ride-sharing or on-demand taxi services by 2021, a target the automaker says it will reach by expanding its Silicon Valley research lab, as well as investing in or buying autonomous vehicle technology startups. Meanwhile, GM snapped up Cruise Automation for more than $1 billion, and sank $500 million into ride-hailing service Lyft as part of its plan to deploy self-driving taxis.
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Under nuTonomy’s public trial, select Singapore residents will be invited to use a mobile app to hail a self-driving car. The public trial will be held within Singapore’s one-north business district, the same area where the startup has been conducting tests using modified Mitsubishi iMiev and Renault Zoe vehicles since April.
An engineer from nuTonomy will ride in the vehicle to observe system performance and assume control if needed, the company says. The startup will collect data during the public trial to refine the software and improve vehicle routing efficiency, the booking process, and passenger experience ahead of a wider commercial launch that is expected to begin in 2018.
NuTonomy has played it smart in its pursuit of self-driving cars, by diversifying its business and picking Singapore for its first public experiment. While the company’s primary mission is to deploy a self-driving taxi fleet service, it also works with major automakers and suppliers to help these companies develop and build autonomous features for their cars. NuTonomy is testing self-driving car technology with automotive partners in the U.K. and in Ann Arbor, Mich.
For more on self-driving cars and the auto industry, watch Fortune’s video:
NuTonomy co-founder and CEO Karl Iagnemma said in a previous interview with Fortune that Singapore is an ideal market for autonomous vehicles. The government there has been an enthusiastic supporter, helping develop regulations that encourage companies to test and deploy the technology. The country also has good weather and traffic flow, modern infrastructure, and a law-abiding citizenry, Iagnemma said at the time.
The startup’s progress has helped garner attention and capital from investors. Ford executive chairman Bill Ford’s venture capital firm was an early backer of the startup, and in January, nuTonomy announced that it had raised $3.6 million in a seed funding round. Just five months later, the company raised another $16 million in a Series A funding round, which included Highland Capital Partners, Fontinalis Partners—the VC firm co-founded by Bill Ford—Signal Ventures, EDBI, the dedicated corporate investment arm of the Singapore Economic Development Board, and Samsung Ventures.
The planned obsolescence of man.
Uber Technologies Inc bleeding money, said to have lost at least US$1.2 billion in first half of 2016
The ride-hailing giant Uber Technologies Inc. is not a public company, but every three months, dozens of shareholders get on a conference call to hear the latest details on its business performance from its head of finance, Gautam Gupta.
On Friday, Gupta told investors that Uber’s losses mounted in the second quarter. Even in the U.S., where Uber had turned a profit during its first quarter, the company was once again losing money.
In the first quarter of this year, Uber lost about US$520 million before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, according to people familiar with the matter. In the second quarter the losses significantly exceeded US$750 million, including a roughly US$100 million shortfall in the U.S., those people said. That means Uber’s losses in the first half of 2016 totalled at least US$1.27 billion.
Subsidies for Uber’s drivers are responsible for the majority of the company’s losses globally, Gupta told investors, according to people familiar with the matter. An Uber spokesman declined to comment.
Uber and the sharing economy will be stifled into regulatory lethargy, just like everything else
Downside of Uber, Airbnb is disrupted Canadian economy
Uber buys self-driving truck startup Otto, forms US$300 million alliance with Volvo
“You won’t find too many technology companies that could lose this much money, this quickly,” said Aswath Damodaran, a business professor at New York University who has written skeptically of Uber’s astronomical valuation on his blog. “For a private business to raise as much capital as Uber has been able to is unprecedented.”
Bookings grew tremendously from the first quarter of this year to the second, from above US$3.8 billion to more than US$5 billion. Net revenue, under generally accepted accounting principles, grew about 18 per cent, from about US$960 million in the first quarter to about US$1.1 billion in the second.
Uber also told investors during the call that it was changing how it calculates UberPool’s contribution to revenue in the second quarter, which had the effect of artificially increasing revenue.
Uber’s losses and revenue have generally grown in lockstep as the company’s global ambitions have expanded. Uber has lost money quarter after quarter. In 2015, Uber lost at least US$2 billion before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization. Uber, which is seven years old, has lost at least US$4 billion in the history of the company.
You won’t find too many technology companies that could lose this much money, this quickly
It’s hard to find much of a precedent for Uber’s losses. Webvan and Kozmo.com — two now-defunct phantoms of the original dot-com boom — lost just over US$1 billion combined in their short lifetimes. Amazon.com Inc. is famous for losing money while increasing its market value, but its biggest loss ever totalled US$1.4 billion in 2000. Uber exceeded that number in 2015 and is on pace to do it again this year.
“It’s hardly rare for companies to lose large sums of money as they try to build significant markets and battle for market share,” said Joe Grundfest, professor of law and business at Stanford. “The interesting challenge is for them to turn the corner to become profitable, cash-flow-positive entities.”
The second quarter of 2016, which ended in June, could represent a nadir for Uber. The company’s losses will likely fall. In July, it cut a deal with its largest global competitor, Chinese ride-hailing behemoth Didi Chuxing, washing its hands of its massive losses in that country. Didi gave Uber a 17.5 per cent stake in its business and a US$1-billion investment in exchange for Uber’s retreat. Uber lost at least US$2 billion in two years in China, people familiar with the matter told Bloomberg in July. Uber won’t see any losses from China on its balance sheet after August, the company said on Friday’s investor call.
Uber’s backers range from venture capital firms like Benchmark Capital to the investment bank Goldman Sachs. Altogether, Uber has raised more than US$16 billion in cash and debt. Its latest valuation is a whopping US$69 billion. The company has effectively redistributed at least US$1 billion to the Chinese working class in the form of heavy subsidies to drivers there. “Uber and Didi Chuxing are investing billions of dollars in China and both companies have yet to turn a profit there,” Uber Chief Executive Officer Travis Kalanick wrote in a letter announcing the company’s departure from China.
Uber has been engaged in a fierce price war with Lyft Inc. this year, and that has also contributed to the enormous losses. Uber told investors on Friday’s call that it’s willing to spend to maintain its market share in the U.S. The company told investors that it believes Uber has between 84 per cent and 87 per cent of the market in the U.S., according to a person familiar with the matter. One investor said that he was expecting Uber to continue losing money in the U.S. for the next quarter or two.
Lyft, a much smaller company by trip volume, looks to be losing more money than Uber in the U.S. Lyft has told investors that it will keep its losses under US$50 million a month, Bloomberg reported in April. That would be about US$150 million in a quarter. Uber’s U.S. losses totalled about US$100 million in the second quarter of this year. In July, Uber delivered 62 million rides to Lyft’s 13.9 million. Uber’s subsidies were spread over more rides.
Uber has about US$8 billion in the bank and will soon receive $1 billion in cash from Didi, according to a person familiar with the matter. Uber also has access to a US$2-billion credit line and a US$1.2-billion loan.
“I think what Uber is trying to do is, ‘Hey, look, we’re going to take the losses up front in order to get to disproportionate scale,'” said Robert Siegel, lecturer in management at Stanford’s business school. “The question is when they can get to profitability.”
Uber president quits firm saying its values are 'inconsistent' with his.
Jeff Jones’s exit is latest blow for firm after revelations of secret tool to evade law enforcement and claims of discrimination and sexual harassment
Just another revelation in a string of fuck ups that Uber is fast becoming famous for including sexual harrassment and gender discrimination charges. Executives are dropping like fly's including their top engineering exec Amit Singhal leaving last month after a short stint. Their CEO Travis Kalanick was caught on camera arguing with and berating a driver a while back. The list goes on and on ...
Yet the technology is already here and major car manufacturers have already installed it into some of their models.
Taken from rac.co.uk Feature on the five most advanced driverless cars for 2016.
Tesla Model S:
all models have, via an automatic over-the-air update, now been equipped with Autopilot. This brings self-driving functionality to all Model S, free of charge.
It works at motorway speeds and, if you take your hands off the wheel, will automatically steer the Tesla EV to keep its position in the middle of the lane. Autonomous cruise control will also slow you down if the car in front changes speed – and it will even change lanes hands-free. All you have to do is turn on the indicator.
It doesn’t yet work quite as seamlessly as a fully self-driving car, but at launch, it was the closest we’ve yet got – and as Tesla is pioneering this technology, you can be sure the firm has plenty more up its sleeve to roll out soon.
Mercedes-Benz E Class:
Mercedes-Benz offers a Drive Pilot feature as part of the Driver Assistance package on the all-new E-Class. Bringing autonomous technology to the sub-£40,000 executive car sector, the suite of tech here is as advanced as the Tesla Model S Autopilot tech.
The new E-Class can keep its position in a motorway lane at speeds of up to 130mph – and at speeds of up to 80mph if it’s following another car but no lane markings are present – and will, like the Tesla, automatically change lane if you indicate.
Mercedes-Benz won’t let you keep your hands off the wheel and let the car self-drive for long though: after 30 seconds, a warning will sound and, if you don’t put your hands back, the car will start to pull over and come to a halt. We’re sure it won’t be long before this cautious safety measure is pegged back though.
The technology is exciting, but do you trust it enough to close your eyes?
BMW 7 series:
The all-new BMW 7 Series is the firm’s most tech-packed car ever and the closest thing to a driverless car BMW has produced yet. It includes a headline-grabbing all-new feature: Automatic Parking. which allows the 7 Series to park itself, even when there’s nobody in it.
Set the car up within the vicinity of the bay or garage you want to park in, then get out and hold down a button on the keyfob: the car will magically drive itself forward (instantly stopping if you release the keyfob). Ideal, says BMW, for those with tight garages, but in the future, could this be a feature that allows you to park at the entrance to a car park and walk off as your BMW drives away and parks itself?
Nissan Qashqai Piloted Drive:
The Nissan Qashqai Piloted Drive isn’t on sale just yet, but it’s coming soon: in 2017, the Japanese firm will be selling a UK-built Qashqai fitted with the first Piloted Drive system in Europe. This will be one of the most advanced self-driving features we’ve yet seen on a best-selling car, making it the closest thing to a driverless car being available on the 'mass-market'.
The system will actively respond to its surroundings, promises Nissan, steering the vehicle in response to what it senses. In heavy traffic, the driver will be able to sit completely hands-off and let the car do the hard work, before taking over when speeds rise. This is just the start too, says Nissan: the speed range and abilities of the self-driving tech will grow with every coming year…
Ford Focus Active Park Assist:
You can, in a sense, already buy an autonomous self-driving car and you don’t have to pay a fortune for it. Mainstream models such as the Ford Focus offer advanced Active Park Assist systems, that make parallel parking child’s play: simply drive past a space, press a button, operate the pedals and the car will do the rest steering you neatly and accurately into the parking bay.
If you’ve never experienced it before, it’s amazing to watch the steering spin around with no hands on it, accurately parking the car in the bay with immense accuracy. Proving how quickly autonomous self-driving technology becomes commonplace though, this is almost mainstream technology now – such is the pace of change in the high-tech world of autonomous cars.
True enough and the advances are trickling down to consumer models as well (entry level vehicles cheaply priced). I have a friend whose Tesla drove itself into a lake. At least that is what he told the police lol.
The one thing I sort of have a problem with is self parking cars. If you can't parallel park you might not be qualified to be behind the wheel. Some people luck out when taking their driver test and then avoid this type of parking for the rest of their driving days. You guys have a much tougher test than they do in N America and as such are usually better drivers ...
Jolly good ole chap ... sorry couldn't help myself and no disrespect intended to you Brits.
If you are a fan of Uber you are out of luck as they had their license revoked as of September 30th 2017. The same is happening all over Europe.
Uber Losing Battle in London After Regulator Revokes License
Uber Technologies Inc. was struck with a stunning rebuke in London, where regulators revoked its license to operate and chastised its corporate culture, adding to the expansive list of controversies facing the beleaguered ride-hailing company.
London is one of Uber’s largest and most lucrative markets, with 40,000 drivers and 3.5 million people who use the app once every 90 days. The broadside is a striking move against the free-wheeling business practices that contributed to the ouster of former chief executive officer Travis Kalanick. The company is also grappling with allegations of sexual harassment, labor-rights abuses, skirting regulation, bribery of government officials and a lawsuit accusing it of stealing self-driving car technology.
Transportation authorities in London concluded Uber isn’t “fit and proper to hold a private hire operator license.” The agency cited a failure to do proper background checks on drivers, report crimes and a program called “Greyball” used to avoid regulators.
The company has 21 days to appeal and can continue to operate during the appeal process. “We intend to immediately challenge this in the courts,” said Tom Elvidge, general manager of Uber in London.
TfL has today informed Uber that it will not be issued with a private hire operator licence. pic.twitter.com/nlYD0ny2qo
Uber has faced resistance in markets from Paris to the Philippines, but London’s ruling is one of the most threatening to date. The decision pits the popularity of the company among millions of customers, against regulators and taxi drivers who want tighter controls.
The outcome also has financial implications for Uber at a time when its backers are in talks for a potential stake from SoftBank Group Corp. and others investors of as much $12 billion. Uber has been valued at about $70 billion.
As Uber has upended the global transportation industry, it has also invited controversy. Authorities faulted Uber earlier this year for allowing a London driver who had sexually assaulted a rider to get back on the road.
Uber’s “approach and conduct demonstrate a lack of corporate responsibility,” the regulator, Transport for London, said in a statement.
The decision was cheered by the city’s traditional black cab industry, which has been hurt by the proliferation of Uber drivers and has aggressively pushed for tighter regulation of the San Francisco-based ride-hailing service. Taxi drivers, many of whom now use the rival apps Gett and MyTaxi, must go through extensive testing before receiving a license, while Uber drivers have fewer requirements.
“All companies in London must play by the rules and adhere to the high standards we expect,” London Mayor Sadiq Khan said in a statement. “Providing an innovative service must not be at the expense of customer safety and security.”
Uber cars have filled London streets since its arrival in the British capital in 2012, identifiable by the smartphones drivers keep holstered to their windshield.
While its corporate image has taken a hit in recent months, city officials are now risking a backlash from customers who find it’s often cheaper and more convenient than hailing a black cab. In a previous showdown with New York City Mayor Bill De Blasio, Uber lobbied its customers to fight proposed restrictions.
Uber has already begun borrowing pages from that playbook. Pierre-Dimitri Gore-Coty, head of Uber’s Europe region, laid out a plan to mobilize supporters through email and social media, and cultivate new allies in politics and business while it drafts a legal challenge, according to an email to staff obtained by Bloomberg. He also said Uber is pushing a Twitter campaign, #SaveYourUber, and an online petition, which gathered more than 300,000 signatories in just a few hours.
“As the date for renewal approached, our team prepared for all scenarios,” Gore-Coty wrote. “While the appeal process could take several months, we are ready to engage in a vigorous legal defense as I know we play by the rules.”
London’s decision adds to the problems facing Dara Khosrowshahi, Uber’s new CEO, who is juggling a host of inherited controversies. Khosrowshahi wrote in a tweet that Uber is “far from perfect” but asked the city to work with the company “to make things right.”
“No company can behave like it’s above the law, and that includes Uber,” said Maria Ludkin, legal director of GMB, the U.K.’s drivers union. “No doubt other major cities will be looking at this decision and considering Uber’s future on their own streets.”
Uber disputed the allegations made by regulators. The company said it conducts thorough background checks of drivers and had made several changes to improve safety. The company also said the Greyball program had never been in the U.K. “for the purposes cited by TfL.”
“By wanting to ban our app from the capital Transport for London and the Mayor have caved in to a small number of people who want to restrict consumer choice,” said Elvidge, the Uber manager in London. “If this decision stands, it will put more than 40,000 licensed drivers out of work and deprive Londoners of a convenient and affordable form of transport.”
Some are already coming to the defense of Uber. “It’s not in the interests of our economy, people in London and in this case, drivers, to restrict new products and services,” said Tom Thackray, director at the Confederation of British Industry.
Although the conclusion of the ruling may take some time to play out in the U.K. courts, rivals are already circling Uber users. Daimler AG-owned Mytaxi, a black cab hailing app, was offering half-off fares on Friday.
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