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The AP Lane Keeping Bias to the Right is Not Safe, please fix this Elon!

Discussion in 'Model S: User Interface' started by Todd Burch, Jan 14, 2016.

  1. Todd Burch

    Todd Burch Electron Pilot

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    #1 Todd Burch, Jan 14, 2016
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2016
    In the 7.1 release notes, Tesla indicates that the car doesn't bias to the side of the lane as much when adjacent to curbs/barriers.

    After hundreds of miles on 7.1 autopilot, not only do I find that there isn't an improvement, but it's even worse than 7.0.

    Part of my commute involves crossing a 5 mile bridge. This bridge is divided with two wide lanes in each direction and with decent lane markings--so I usually have autopilot on the entire way across. It's straight as an arrow. Adjacent to each lane is a curb leading to a concrete barrier on each side. The barrier is not really close to the side of the lane--there's about a 2 foot space between the edge of the lane and the curb, minimum. Here's a picture of the bridge:

    jrb.png

    So anyway, when I'm driving on this bridge in the left lane, auto steering biases my car so far to the right side of the lane that it's extremely uncomfortable when there's traffic in the other lane. Not only that, but I frequently find that my right side mirror is actually extending over the lane marking, protroding into the adjacent lane! This isn't just an illusion or my perception. If you look at the toy car graphic, it shows the mirror over the lane marking, and I can also lean my head over to the right and look out the side mirror to see the actual painted centerline--my right mirror clearly extends beyond it! All this, and there's plenty of room to the left of the car in the lane--it's not a narrow lane at all (even though the focal length of the lens used for the image above makes it appear to be narrow).

    The only change from 7.0 to 7.1 that I can see is that when passing a car, after it sees the car next to me for a second or so, the car gradually moves slightly to the left to allow a little more space. (It's too late by that time anyway). Then, after passing the car, it moves right back over to the uncomfortable position. And when I say I think 7.1 is worse, it's because when it does move back, it moves back further to the right than it did with 7.0.

    This morning, while in stop and go traffic on the bridge, I was stopped with autopilot on. The car in front of me was pretty much centered in the lane, and my S was following him with about half of the S's car width extending beyond the right side of the car in front! WAYYY too much bias to the right.

    I mentioned with 7.0 that this bothered me, because it's far more likely that the car to my right will creep over and sideswipe me than it is for that curb or barrier to jump out and hit my car. Moreover, being biased so close to the adjacent car gives very little time to react if autopilot decides to turn right slightly. I think this is among the highest dangers for collision with autopilot. With a curve, at least you know it's coming so you can anticipate that the steering may have issues. But with this bias, there have been cases where the tip of my mirror has passed without about 12-18 inches of the adjacent car. Too close.

    At first I thought Tesla was biasing to the right to reduce the potential of a head-on collision from traffic coming the other way on an undivided road, but without a curb or central barrier, the car actually centers evenly in the lane, so just the opposite is what happens--so that can't be the reason.

    For me, this is by far the #1 thing that gives me unease using autopilot. Not the TACC, or the lane keeping in general. IMHO those both work exceptionally well. But this lane bias is, I would say, beyond the point of being unsafe. The mirror should NOT be protroding into the adjacent lane.

    Anyone else experiencing this? I hope Tesla removes the excessive bias in the next update. It gives me the heebie jeebies!

    By the way: This doesn't just happen here. It happens everywhere there's a median with a curb or a concrete barrier adjacent to a lane.
     
  2. robert774

    robert774 Member

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    To my experience the car has remained well centered in most all cases in 7.0 and 7.1. The change I have noticed with 7.1 is far fewer minute steer corrections within a lane, especially a wider lane such as we have here in Houston. The minor adjustments left and right in a lane in 7.0 were annoying. I would suggest you need to have your camera or another sensor calibrated. This does not seem to be a normal experience.
     
  3. Todd Burch

    Todd Burch Electron Pilot

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    If there's no curb or barrier adjacent to the lane, the car is perfectly centered, which indicates that some sort of calibration is not the problem. Also, you can observe the car literally slide from the centered position to the right side of the lane when a curb/barrier starts next to the lane--plus it's mentioned in the release notes, so clearly it's an intentional behavior. Moreover, my car will park itself perfectly in the garage, even though I have to have "Allow Narrow Spaces" checked because there is about 4 inches max of clearance between the tip of my mirrors and my garage door opening when I park with the mirrors extended.
     
  4. rneugebauer

    rneugebauer Member

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    Can you take a video, especially of the moment the curb/barrier starts and the car moves to the right? Could be an eye-opener for the tesla engineers!

    Also, I believe Tesla can download data from the car and analyze what the car saw and did if you give them the exact time and place, I'm sure that would be helpful, too!
     
  5. wk057

    wk057 Senior Tinkerer

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    I agree that this is a little crazier than it used to be in 7.0, and I don't particularly like it.

    There is an option to disable "Ultrasonic Offset" completely in the autopilot dev settings... but I don't want it completely disabled since then I'm not sure if it would still move for a close vehicle or not. *shrugs*

    Hopefully they fix it.
     
  6. S4WRXTTCS

    S4WRXTTCS Active Member

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    Just out of curiosity what does it do in the right lane?
     
  7. jlewisthe3rd

    jlewisthe3rd Member

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    This is difficult coding problem to solve, since the reaction is completely sensor based and not camera based the car cannot discern an adjacent car from a barrier or guard rail. Of course it feels unsafe that it strays too close to the right but if you "fix" this then you take away the car's ability to react when an actual car is that close in the adjacent lane. If there was a way to feed the camera data to the corresponding sensors then it could "identify" what is to the left or right and reduce the distance accordingly...if a car/truck stray FAR away, if not a car/truck stray medium distance away.
     
  8. wk057

    wk057 Senior Tinkerer

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    It actually seems to make some pretty complex decisions on this already. Note the image I posted in my hacking thread:

    autopilot-debug.jpg

    Where it says "last line preference" there are a bunch of different values that pop up here. One of the more interesting ones suggests it interprets the yellow "curve ahead" type signs, which is neat. I've seen others like "Avoid Oncoming Lanes" and such too.

    So, seems like they're at least working on it.
     
  9. David_Cary

    David_Cary Member

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    Interesting. I do think we need to have a good venue to discuss different AP topics to help crowd source tweaks.

    Personally, 7.1 changed the lane bias for me in a good way. When it detects a yellow line (or oncoming traffic), it biases to the right. Makes perfect sense and was one of the major requests I had in my head. Perhaps 7.1 is thinking you have oncoming traffic based on the lines/wall?

    I honestly think the time has come for an Autopilot category on the forum. I think we could have stickies with lane centering, exit issues, nag etc. Pictures and videos encouraged. I know we think Tesla is using logs to help with things but people should still have some input.

    As an aside, I find it interesting that Tesla states this is for divided highways only but clearly allows it when the car knows the road isn't divided and not only that, just optimized lane position for undivided roads.
     
  10. Tinde

    Tinde Member

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    I totally agree with Todd. After upgrading to 7.1 my car tends to keep very much to the right. So much that it would touch the snowbanks, forcing me to take the steering wheel. Especially this happens when locked to the car in front.
     
  11. Todd Burch

    Todd Burch Electron Pilot

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    Notice in the picture above that the line on the far left is painted yellow. Might be on to something where it biases much more strongly to the right when you're in the left lane because the line is yellow, and not so much in the right lane. So it might be seeing the yellow line AND the barrier and thinking that it's a solid line of oncoming traffic.

    Either way though, the bias is still way too far. I'll try to get some video.

    I have a dashcam so I'll see if I can get some video uploaded. Not sure how clear it will be on the dashcam, but it should be fairly evident.
     
  12. mobe

    mobe Member

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    I agree! Mine seems to be drawn to tractor trailer rigs that are in the right lane, so much so that if I don't intervene the right front sensor will go red. This behavior does not require a curb. Very unnerving. It actually seems to be drawn towards them.
     
  13. DFibRL8R

    DFibRL8R Member

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    You guys are making me appreciate my classic. Seriously, thanks for working out the kinks!
     
  14. RDoc

    RDoc S85D

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    When changing lanes, it often overshoots and winds up at the edge of the lane being changed into, right or left. I had it go so far to the left that the lane departure warning came on!
     
  15. Electricfan

    Electricfan Member

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    Do you have any friends nearby that own a Model S, so you could both drive over the bridge and see if both cars do the same thing?

    I've driven over lots of bridges here in Houston and on the way east on I-10 to FL, and I've never had it bias so far that it put the mirror in the next lane. That sounds like something is not adjusted right with your AP system.
     
  16. liuping

    liuping Active Member

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    I have the opposite problem of AP driving too far to the left when in the left most lane, next to but not in, the carpool lane.

    AP is driving so far to the left, that it drives over the raised dots and makes for a bumpy ride.

    I think AP is not reading the line properly due to the white + double yellow pattern:
    IMG_2270.JPG

    It seems to track the white line and drive over the right most yellow line.
     
  17. Vuvision

    Vuvision Member

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    I'm experiencing the same thing. Nerve wracking to see my car biasing toward the 18-wheeler then the alarm went off, this is dangerous. I also noticed my car pinging left & right between the lane marking, whereas the previous version 7.0 kept the car perfectly centered.
     
  18. JMG

    JMG Member

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    Just another agreement here. I thought it biased too much to the right both with 7.0 and with 7.1. There are a few times where I don't feel like i'm going to hit the car in the right lane, but enough to make them mad and serve away probably uttering, "What in the world is this guy doing? Get back in your lane!"

    I've had it get so close to bridge barriers that the side collision graphics are almost red (darkest shade of orange).

    The other day while completely on AP and driving on a road with zero shoulder (literally there is grass about 5 inches outside of the white line), it started to leave the pavement and I had to correct it back onto the road.

    It's getting better, but still a ways from flawless.
     
  19. Kesler

    Kesler Member

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    Agreed. This goes with carpool lanes too because there needs to be a little room for motorcycles
     
  20. JenniferQ

    JenniferQ Member

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    Agree. Was in the two-lane HOV lane yesterday and both ways it was way too close to the right lane and my mirror was also over the line toward the car in the right lane. This seems strange because the release notes clearly stated as a goal to give more room to moving objects on the right than to stationary objects on the left. I have no fear of that wall jumping out to get me, but obviously AP does!
     

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