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Google Paying Arizona Residents $20/Hr To Test Self-Driving Cars (mashable.com) 76

An anonymous reader writes from a report on Mashable: Google is paying Arizona residents $20 per hour to test its self-driving vehicles. The 'Self-Driving Vehicle Operator/Operations Associate' needs to have a clean driving record, no criminal history, a BS or a BA degree and the ability to type at least 40 words per minute, according to the job listing. The job involves driving 6-8 hours a day in a two person team, five days a week while monitoring the car's systems with "constant focus" and filling up daily reports. "[Test drivers] give our engineers feedback about how our cars are driving and interacting with others on the road, and can take control of the vehicle if needed," Brian Torcellini, head of operations for Google's Self-Driving Car testing program, told The Arizona Republic. The job listing comes about a month after Google announced it would expand its self-driving car testing program to Phoenix, Arizona. At that announcement, Google said it wants to test how autonomous vehicles behave in Phoenix's desert conditions and high temperatures.
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Google Paying Arizona Residents $20/Hr To Test Self-Driving Cars

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  • So, in other words, self driving cars will actually CREATE JOBS, at least in Arizona....

  • Am I the only one (Score:5, Interesting)

    by rsilvergun ( 571051 ) on Friday May 13, 2016 @08:59PM (#52109653)
    slightly horrified that they're asking for somebody with a degree, and for a $20/hr job no less...
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      degree is the new high school diploma. It means you can read, write, play well with others and follow something to completion even if bits are boring.

      • by galabar ( 518411 )
        ...unless they need to run to their safe space. :/
    • Not to mention the fact that they are crash test dummies. Also, when one of those cars gets 'lost' in the desert because of lost signal and they get stranded in BFE, then they find the bodies 3 weeks later, that will make nice headlines.
    • You gotta better way to keep these cars from becoming getaway drivers?

    • slightly horrified that they're asking for somebody with a degree, and for a $20/hr job no less...

      That's the going rate for three adjunct professors.

    • Well, $20/hour ($41k/year) is about the median income for a person with a Bachelor's Degree, and Arizona doesn't have the highest cost of living, so they are probably ahead of the game. Especially if their degree is in a lower paying major.

      Plus, "ride in car and pay attention" doesn't sound like the highest skilled job. Given the safety record of the cars, it isn't that dangerous of a job, either.

      • It actually seems like pretty fair pay to me as well. I doubt it will be driving the median wage for entry level positions any, but it seems like a smart strategy for booking miles.

      • Well, $20/hour ($41k/year) is about the median income for a person with a Bachelor's Degree, and Arizona doesn't have the highest cost of living, so they are probably ahead of the game. Especially if their degree is in a lower paying major.

        Plus, "ride in car and pay attention" doesn't sound like the highest skilled job. Given the safety record of the cars, it isn't that dangerous of a job, either.

        They're not just babysitting the cars, it sounds like they want a bunch of daily reports and such.

        I'm sure they're pretty basic reports, but if you want to make sure people are competent to carry out daily written assignments then requesting college degrees is a good filter.

    • by Shados ( 741919 )

      For a job many people would pay to be able to do, minus the report filling...

  • The job qualifications requirements for the two-person team to drive the self-driving car is because Google want to maintain their cars' excellent driving records.

  • by PopeRatzo ( 965947 ) on Friday May 13, 2016 @09:15PM (#52109723) Journal

    "First, you'll have to sign this waiver of our liability, because motherfucker, if it was a "self-driving car" we wouldn't need you to be our crash-test dummy.

    If they really want to test their self-driving cars, they should hire unemployed "software engineers" to lay down in the road in front of a fleet of self-driving cars. That's the test that matters.

    • If they really want to test their self-driving cars, they should hire unemployed "software engineers" to lay down in the road in front of a fleet of self-driving cars. That's the test that matters.

      That test has already been passed.

      Hundreds of little 2-seater Google self-driving cars can already be seen driving everywhere in Santa Clara and Mountain View.

      Those cars look like little Disney rides [amazonaws.com] with hats.

      And so far, they haven't run over any of the pedestrian software engineers crossing the streets, nor any of the numerous children who run in front of them for hugs because they think they're Disney characters [cartoonswallpapers.net].

      • That test has already been passed.

        Hundreds of little 2-seater Google self-driving cars can already be seen driving everywhere in Santa Clara and Mountain View.

        There are no pedestrians in Santa Clara or Mountain View. I'm serious.

        And if there were and they were run over by a Google Car, they probably wouldn't be missed until they didn't show up for their hot yoga class on Thursday.

        • by stephanruby ( 542433 ) on Friday May 13, 2016 @10:36PM (#52110057)

          There are no pedestrians in Santa Clara or Mountain View. I'm serious.

          Clearly, you were not stuck in traffic yesterday during the two conventions and the game.

        • by Anonymous Coward

          I was behind a Google car going through this intersection [google.com] some months back around 6pm. The street view shows 13 people either crossing or waiting to cross; it's that busy most of the day, and even more around dinnertime. I can confirm that it did not hit anyone on the way through, though it was kinda slow and timid.

        • by dgatwood ( 11270 )

          There are no pedestrians in Santa Clara or Mountain View. I'm serious.

          ... spoken like someone who has never driven down Charleston Rd. through the Google campus. Imagine streams of pedestrians flooding across the roads (mostly at traffic lights, but not always), brightly colored bicycles every twenty feet (both in the bike lane and not), etc. It's a self-driving-car safety testing dream.

          • ... spoken like someone who has never driven down Charleston Rd. through the Google campus.

            You just don't hear about the ones who get run over by Google Cars, because they're immediately replaced by clones with HB1 visas.

  • To make this realistic, Google has to include a few vans in the test mix. Into each one approximately 135 'test drivers' will be crammed. These vans will be programmed to drive up and down the I-10/I-19 corridor between Phoenix, Tucson and well south until the extra weight bogging down their suspensions attracts the attention of a Department of Public Safety unit. A cheery high-speed police chase will ensue along the Interstates and through city streets until the van loses control and heads-on with some fam

  • B.A./B.S. Degree (Score:4, Interesting)

    by __aaclcg7560 ( 824291 ) on Friday May 13, 2016 @10:43PM (#52110083)

    Are these driver-less cars are so sophisticated that they require a college-educated person to sit behind the wheel? Or is this like a law firm requiring a college degree for a filing clerk position?

    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/02/20/business/college-degree-required-by-increasing-number-of-companies.html [nytimes.com]

    • by fred911 ( 83970 )

      "Are these driver-less cars are so sophisticated that they require a college-educated person to sit behind the wheel?"

      Probably not. But, I guarantee that providing super accurate feedback according specific detailed guidelines, with high accuracy will require a person that has the ability to comprehend and apply the provided guidelines (without training). Not that that requires a college education, but it eliminates many that don't have that ability. Guaranteed, driving is going to be the least of the hires

    • What I donâ(TM)t get is why did they pick bachelors and not an associates, masters or doctorates? Associates, pfft. You spent too little on education. Youâ(TM)re not elitist enough. Have your Masters and you didnâ(TM)t get your doctorates? PHD, Iâ(TM)m not going to risk you taking my job. Professional truck driver, I donâ(TM)t need you to tell me how the car should drive. I just want to get my cronies who happen to have a BA an easy job watching which lights light up.
    • I'm pretty sure that they want college-educated individuals because they know how to focus for 6-8 hours a day, and write daily reports. The pay is awfully low, IMO, but it may be ideal for a recent liberal arts graduate.
  • So basically Google is hiring potential crash-test dummies, or if you are optimistic, driver decoys to fool the police, for $20/hour? Because I can see them paying attention to what the car is doing the first half hour, and once you have confidence that it's not crashing, I'd be on reddit... hrm, I mean, slashdot for the rest of the day.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Google better watch out our they will have lawsuits....their job listing lists no criminal history as a requirement which is illegal under the civil rights act of 1964 (enforced by the equal employment opportunity commission). Simple existence of a past criminal record is not sufficient to deny employment; it must be directly relevant to the job. EEOC has several guidelines to determine relevancy (basically 3 guidelines - severity, relation to job position, likelihood of recidivism [majority of crimes commi

  • This is insanely crazy. Many of Google's own software engineers would not qualify either, being degree-less Autodidacts like myself. Maybe I'm missing the point here. Oh well. I'll just stick to my AI projects. Because I am simply too undereducated to test a self-driving car.
  • For those of you who are familiar with the area, what happens if you try to take it up the 711 road from Lake Pleasant to Crown King?

try again

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