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All Tesla Vehicles Being Produced Now Have Full Self-Driving Hardware ( 186

An anonymous reader quotes a report from Jalopnik: All current Tesla models that will be produced in its Fremont, California factory will come with self-driving hardware built-in capable of Level 5 autonomy, including the upcoming Tesla Model 3, the company announced tonight. According to the announcement, Tesla will manufacture all of its cars with the hardware necessary for Level 5 self-driving systems going forward, including the Model S, Model X and new Model 3. At the introduction of the Model 3, it wasn't clear whether or not every Model 3 package would come standard with the hardware and software to handle Autopilot and any other self-driving features. That's been cleared up now, but there's a kicker. Just like on current Model S and Model X models, you can purchase the cars with the self-driving hardware included. But, in order to activate the software and actually use the Autopilot or upcoming advanced self-driving safety features, you will have to option it when you order the car, or pay more for it later. Elon Musk stated that the new hardware in all of Tesla's cars going forward are Tesla's own vision software, with a Tesla-developed neural net. The new hardware and software capabilities still need to undergo all of the testing required by Tesla's own standards, as well as government approval before unleashing Level 5 autonomous cars onto the streets.
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All Tesla Vehicles Being Produced Now Have Full Self-Driving Hardware

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  • Been a long time since I've seen a story get onto Slashdot this quickly

  • by Robotbeat ( 461248 ) on Wednesday October 19, 2016 @09:11PM (#53111969) Journal

    "To make sense of all of this data, a new onboard computer with more than 40 times the computing power of the previous generation runs the new Tesla-developed neural net for vision, sonar and radar processing software." []

    So what you're saying is... the cpu is a neural net processor, a learning computer. []

  • One seriously genuine question to Tesla corp, will they be producing models sans auto-crap, having no desire to be BSODed off a cliff, or into a bus going in the opposite direction or into a train, keep in mind purposeful hacks. That manual switch better guarantee 100% manual operation, pretty much kill the computer and allow complete manual control. Not being opposed to automated transport but I prefer star trek turbolift style auto transport, an enclosed, monitored and controlled transport route, no clif

    • I think it's called "don't buy the car if you don't want it"

    • The Tesla is not fully manually controllable in the sense that most cars (but by no means all, drive by wire is becoming much more common) are now. There is no 100% manual operation possible. The accelerator pedal is just an input sensor, for example.

      • by rtb61 ( 674572 )

        The idea at the very minimum is those controls should not rely on the proper functioning of the auto drive computer, you should be able to switch that computer right off and the car will react to the simple inputs from accelerator, brake, signals, steering wheel. The auto drive system should be separate and hook into the parrallel control system, otherwise it will get hacked and they will drive people off cliffs on purpose, there are bad people about and you should ensure safety protocols to protect everyon

        • What I'm saying is that you're asking for something that already does not exist on the vast majority of production cars. There are very few, if any, production cars where the accelerator is actually mechanically linked to the fuel system, if you switch the computer off, you've switched the car off.

          And it's even more true on any electric car, the motor control computer is absolutely critical to having a functional car.

        • What needs to work in a computer crash is brakes and steering. It's not necessary to make the thing fully drivable in such a state.

      • The accelerator pedal is just an input sensor, for example.

        You don't say? Find me a current model car that still has a manual linkage between the accelerator pedal and the carburettor butterfly.

  • ultrasonic radar

    Don't they mean ultrasonic sonar?

  • Looks like my next car will be a Leaf.

    • Looks like my next car will be a Leaf.

      I love what Tesla is doing with technology, but I'm really disappointed with their marketing. If they could explain their story and their limitations clearly, without calling it "self driving" or "autopilot", they would gain so much credibility and advance the state of the art without endangering the public's acceptance of self-driving cars by needlessly pushing social limits.

    • Do you seriously want to drive a car that looks like Jar Jar binks?

      • by Trogre ( 513942 )

        In this economy, who seriously buys a car for its looks?

        Appearance is waaaay down the list of considerations when buying a car, well below "will it BSOD and kill me?".

        That's aesthetic appearance, by the way, not road visibility which is much higher.

  • Can't be level 5 (Score:5, Informative)

    by Chmarr ( 18662 ) on Wednesday October 19, 2016 @09:38PM (#53112121)

    Level 5 means not having any controls that a human can use. So, unless their "future upgrade" includes ripping out the steering wheel and pedals, etc, then the car is only "level 4 ready".

    • by Jeremi ( 14640 )

      Does it count if the driving controls are present, but disabled, while the car is driving autonomously?

      • Yes. Chmarr doesn't know what they're talking about. The standard requires that an L5 autonomous vehicle be *capable* of fully autonomous operation anywhere and under any conditions where it's legal to drive. It says nothing whatsoever about also being capable of being driven normally, and there's no reason both systems couldn't coexist.

    • Level 5 means not having any controls that a human can use. So, unless their "future upgrade" includes ripping out the steering wheel and pedals, etc, then the car is only "level 4 ready".

      No, level 5 simply means fully autonomous, the system controls everything with no human interaction.

      SAE definitions: []

      DOT's definitions (hint: they adopted SAE's rather than NHTSA's): [] (page 11)

    • by jeaton ( 44965 ) [] states that level 5 is "the full-time performance by an automated driving system of all aspects of the dynamic driving task under all roadway and environmental conditions that can be managed by a human driver"

      There's no requirement that the car must lack human controls, only that the car be capable of fully autonomous driving under any condition a human could drive a car.

    • Level 5 means not having any controls that a human can use

      Actually Level 5 is not defined in the same way across different organisations. Some say that a vehicle simply must be able to make its way from a to b without any driver assistance or consideration as to obstacles. The SAE are the only group who say that the vehicle should have no manual controls (funny comment coming from an automation group). The NHSTA doesn't even have 5 levels.

      So I will give you 33% credit. You will need to resit the course.

  • I find it very funny how easy some people think the software will be for these vehicles. Really, thinking you have all the hardware you need on the vehicle is not a very big deal. I could strap 22 cameras to my car and I wouldn't have much. So far it looks like Tesla has a start with Autopilot but the functionality is currently very lacking; people I have talked to says that it disengages frequently and still needs clear lane markings. So even if Tesla has the right hardware, the real question is how lo
  • From [] :

    "Before activating the features enabled by the new hardware, we will further calibrate the system using millions of miles of real-world driving to ensure significant improvements to safety and convenience. While this is occurring, Teslas with new hardware will temporarily lack certain features currently available on Teslas with first-generation Autopilot hardware, including some standard safety features such as automatic emergency braking, collision warning, lane hold

  • I wonder how many of those actuators will be fault tolerant. I can't seem to find any information on the web, but if the auto industry is up to their usual tricks, they won't be. Not until a failed steering motor causes a massive fatal head-on on the Interstate.

    They are probably still counting on the driver grabbing noticing there is a problem in 1/10th of a second, grabbing the steering wheel and fighting against a motor that is running at full torque because of the failure :-)

    And we haven't even started

Competence, like truth, beauty, and contact lenses, is in the eye of the beholder. -- Dr. Laurence J. Peter