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"Engineers were working to fix programming flaw that could have deadly results for cyclists days after Uber announced it would openly defy California regulators"

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Some are going directly to autonomous, but most new cars come with a lot of computerised assistance. We got a new Forrester recently and while it's a more high range one, it's not far from being self-driving. 

Almost anything is possible, autonomous cars might for instance be aware of conversations on The net about left hooks at a particular intersection or other hazards on roads, or black spot statistics/ crash clusters along roads and adjust their algorithms accordingly. Roads could be assessed for hazards, and assigned a vigilance level.

Will pressure mount to have more separated bike ways, or for bikes to be excluded on some roads, or will the cars be smart enough to handle bikes on the road? Or could we not just move that way anyway, without needing to wait for AVs? (More bike paths, smarter drivers, assisted detection). I think that MAA report said a 50 % reduction in fatalities could be achieved before AVs are introduced.

Well they could have done all of those tests by actually analyzing the cities traffic layouts, replicating them on a closed course, and inviting various interested parties like pedestrian and cycling groups to help perform the testing.

and they could have used 100kg gokart with a wide wheelbase and a padded perimeter frame, rather than 1700kgs of car to do the first tests with actual humans present.

Basically the tests were based on the principle of run someone over and pay up if the person they run over fails to die.

its pretty simple to deal with, just impound the cars. 

The US tends to 'do' safety on the basis of 'cost of injury/death' meaning if risking the cost of paying up to kill someone is less than the cost of avoiding the killing, then you take the risk of killing.

Still, I hope they do realise letting these cars on the road is just not on.

Your first paras should maybe become policy for cycling groups.

If they could handle a cyclist on one of Sydney's 12.8 m roads with car parking and ped refuges, bus stops etc, they'd be off to a good start.

Some updates:

SF DMV cancels registration of Ubers autonomous fleet after they refuse to apply for the self-driving permits ($150 each).


So Uber has moved is fleet out to Arizona


Well, over a year later they still seem to have a problem

Autonomous Uber vehicle kills woman pushing bike across street (I see it was the car again that did the killing)

But maybe even the car was not to blame, "...was walking her bicycle outside the pedestrian crossing ...", no mention of a helmet.

The details will be interesting, I guess the programmer did it.

The issue is not to do with blame but to do with duty of care.  Having seen  the video and stills its pretty obvious that there was no attempt made to avoid the collision

As the details emerge it seems to be a pretty comprehensive failure of uber's self driving technology implementation and an equally comprehensive failure of the human driver monitor


I don't get why we are happy for the few thousand of people to be killed by another human behind the wheel every year, autonomous technology is still at it's infancy. I don't get the need for the person behind the wheel of the Uber if he wasn't watching the road, no point of a backup if he is not doing his job.

I drove a Corolla with cruise control the other day and it actually used the auto gearbox to slow the car down when it got too fast downhill (cruise control & automation of speed), I love the safety features in my car, yet all these things take away from driver responsibility right? we all laughed at Mercedes when they introduced AEB and the car smacked into the obstacle at the press launch, yet AEB is becoming normal in a lot of cars now.

Is this a case illustrating that a dark object (the pedestrian), coming from the side on a dimly lit road ( it appears quite dark tothe sides) won't be detected by lidar, much the same as a human eye would have trouble seeing anything until the last moment? Even if the pedestrian had reflective gear on the angle would have been wrong, not much light reflected back tothe car. Which is why cyclists need good lights rather than reflectors.

Having seen the video, it would have been hard for a human only driver to avoid the crash, given the pedestrian was crossing in between street lamps (or perhaps the street lamp was not working).  Obviously Uber need to improve their software, they should be able to see in the dark with radar.  But I do think that ultimately, self driving cars will be much safer than human driven ones and we should welcome their development.


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