E The Waymo Tesla Self Driving Con

The Waymo Self Driving Con is gearing up. This is my strong opinion, but it appears to be backed up by fact. For example, Waymo CEO John Krafcik is not telling the truth when he said at a web summit in Lisbon:

Fully self-driving cars are here.

Even Tesla has on its website as of the time of this writing:

All Tesla vehicles produced in our factory, including Model 3, have the hardware needed for full self-driving capability at a safety level substantially greater than that of a human driver.

But the truth is, these Teslas do not have fully self-driving capability. Recently one crashed into a fully stopped large vehicle after failing to brake. It was going 60 miles per hour. This is not indicative of full capability as a self driving vehicle! In my view, Krafcik and Elon Musk are behaving like confidence men, ie. con men, in making claims that their technology is fully self driving when it clearly isn't fully self driving. 

In this article, we can look into the technology that is required to really make a car self driving. I believe the reader will be shocked at the high bar that is necessary to achieve self driving lift off. Even multiple technologies and computer genius may not be enough.

Wired, which often gushes about self driving cars, says Waymo is murky on its details about capability.

Waymo hasn’t disclosed how much territory its cars will cover or what kind of hours they will run, whether it will charge passengers for rides, or the timeline for announcing or figuring out any of that. (Company reps recently declined to give any such details for the existing early rider program in Phoenix.)

It’s also unclear if there’s a system for preventing a freaked-out passenger from clambering into the driver’s seat and grabbing control of the car—or how that would affect questions like insurance, if they then caused a crash. Waymo hasn’t shared clear plans for helping autonomous cars find the people they’re supposed to be picking up—which you know is a problem if you’ve ever been on the phone with an Uber driver, insisting I’m right here on the dot!

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Disclaimer: I have no financial interest in any companies or industries mentioned. I am not an investment counselor nor am I an attorney so my views are not to be considered investment advice. The ...

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Gary Anderson 1 year ago Author's comment

Update 2: According to Wired, all the major self driving companies but Tesla have dropped the self driving hype. Ford is pulling back, and acknowledges that self driving cars will have to be geo fenced, due to the complexity required for driving.

Gary Anderson 1 year ago Author's comment

Update: If you order food from a self driving robot and it kills someone, will you be liable?

Gary Anderson 1 year ago Author's comment

Did Waymo's Krafcik just come clean, saying self driving cars will not have widespread use for decades, and will always be subject to limitations?

Angry Old Lady 2 years ago Member's comment

Self-driving cars ARE here. Safe self-driving cars? Not quite yet.

Gary Anderson 2 years ago Author's comment

Update: It appears that #Tesla may have taken the blurb I quoted, regarding hardware off its website. At best it was misleading. If it referred to hardware meaning software was not covered by the statement, that could be misleading to many. Tesla obviously does not have the software to create a self driving car.

Having the hardware to do something without having the software really is meaningless in terms of actual capability. $TSLA

Angry Old Lady 2 years ago Member's comment

Wow, maybe #Tesla saw your article and that's how they reacted!

Gary Anderson 2 years ago Author's comment

I am flattered, but it was probably coincidence that they removed the blurb.