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The Tesla / Mobileye story

Discussion in 'Autopilot & Autonomous/FSD' started by lunitiks, Jan 5, 2018.

  1. lunitiks

    lunitiks Cool James & Black Teacher

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    So this is not exactly hot news... More like funeral memorial words :confused:

    I never really understood what happened between with Mobileye and Tesla. I mean truthfully: When and why did they actually decide to break up? Who took the initiative? Why would Mobileye want to leave Tesla, with Model 3 coming up (or even worse; after the hundreds of thousands of reservations)? Which company told the truth in their press statements in September 2016? What did Tesla and Mobileye plan to do before the breakup? And what's the deal with that weird "one-eyed" dual camera in AP1 Model X...?

    Anyways I was bored so I researched a little and made this timeline :) Of course I've probably included a lot of stuff that's irrelevant, and omitted data that's important. Hence this thread :) Hoping you guys can help me see this more clearly.

    Thanks!

    2014
    February​
    Rumor: Tesla and Mobileye teams up for Driverless CarsHaaretz, Streetinsider
    May​
    Model S wiring diagrams updated: "Blind Zone and Forward Camera, Front Radar" (future option)Tesla Motors Service
    August​
    Mobileye raises ⁓ $1 billion IPOTimesofisrael, Crunchbase
    September​
    Autopilot HW spotted on new production vehiclesTMC, Wikipedia
    2015
    March​
    Mobileye introduces EyeQ4, production to begin in 2018Prnewswire
    March, 17​
    Elon Musk and Jen-Hsun Huang declare self-driving cars “solved” (GTC 2015)Fortune
    March, 20​
    Model S wiring diagram updated: Three cameras, rear radars, DAS ECUTesla Motors Service
    May​
    Model S test vehicle spotted with Mobileye patented triple-camera rigElectrek, Google Patents
    July​
    Wiring diagram updated: Three cameras, front and rear radars, DAS "HW2" ECU, more harness detailsTesla Motors Service
    September​
    Mobileye is preparing for "first vehicle based on 8 cameras, one radar and ultrasonic around the vehicle."Electrek, Mobileye, TMC
    October​
    Software version 7.0 with 'Autosteer' begins rolloutTesla
    November​
    Sterling Anderson appointed Director of Autopilot ProgramsAutonews
    "​
    Tesla: Looking for "hardcore software engineers" to bring Autopilot to "full autonomy". Project is "super high priority"Twitter, Electrek
    December​
    Musk offers “multimillion-dollar bonus” for Geohot to build a “Mobileye crushing” Autopilot system for Tesla. MBLE down 7 %Electrek
    "​
    Tesla: "We're Sticking With Mobileye Car Tech". Their part "is the best in the world at what it does and that is why we use it"Fortune, Tesla
    2016
    January​
    Nvidia annouces Drive PX2Theverge, Anandtech
    "​
    Elon Musk: "We are working on a new hardware suite, but it will be some time before it enters production"Electrek
    January - February​
    Jim Keller joins Tesla to lead Autopilot Hardware Engineering team. Tesla poaches several "high-profile chip architects and executives from AMD to develop the next generation Autopilot"Electrek
    March​
    Elon Musk reportedly visits Mobileye in IsraelGlobes, Electrek
    March, 31​
    Model 3 unveilingTheverge, Electrek
    April, 1​
    Elon Musk: Unveil "Part 2" will be "super next level"Twitter, Marketwatch
    May​
    Joshua Brown accidentNHTSA
    July, 15​
    Elon Musk: "Working on using existing Tesla radar by itself (decoupled from camera)", with "temporal smoothing to create a coarse point cloud"Twitter
    July, 26​
    Official break-up between Mobileye and Tesla. Collaboration will not extend beyond EyeQ3Fortune, Techcrunch
    July, 26​
    Sterling Anderson: Tesla needs “tight integration” of hardware and softwareElectrek
    August​
    Elon Musk says "what we’ve got will blow people’s minds, it blows my mind… it’ll come sooner than people think"Electrek
    September, 11​
    Official blog post: "Seeing the world in radar"Tesla
    September, 12​
    Elon Musk: "Tesla is reaching the limit of Autopilot hardware, but fleet learning will improve for years"Electrek
    September, 14​
    Mobileye claims Tesla was "pushing the envelope in terms of safety"Reuters
    September, 15​
    Tesla confirms developing in-house 'Tesla Vision' program 'for some time'. Claims Mobileye disparaged AP safety after learning about AP Vision in late July. Also claims Mobileye attempted to force Tesla to discontinue and pay more.Electrek, Fortune
    September, 16​
    "Mobileye responds to false allegations"Mobileye
    October, 10​
    Rumor: 'Tesla Vision' based on CUDA, requiring Nvidia GPU hardwareElectrek
    October, 19​
    AP 2.0 unveilTesla
     
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  2. Kuro68k

    Kuro68k Active Member

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    They split because MobileEye didn't want its name attached to people dying.

    This set Tesla back years, but might have done everyone a favour by keeping the roads a bit safer.
     
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  3. DaveT

    DaveT Searcher of green pastures

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    @lunitiks I can't divulge how I know what I know. But here's a clue for you since you seem very interested.

    The MobileEye chip has a raw data stream that is closed off to Tesla. Mobileye takes the raw data stream from their chip and then applies algorithms and such to output a much more simplified data stream from which actions can be taken from. However, Mobileye's system is far from perfect... or rather I should say the Mobileye's algorithms tend to ignore some important data (i.e, consider Joshua's Brown accident). Tesla only has access to the simplified data stream... or basically a data stream that's been stripped of important raw data. But with access to the raw data stream, Tesla could do so much more and improve the safety of the system (which to Tesla's mission is essential). Mobileye saw it a different way... very different.
     
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  4. AnxietyRanger

    AnxietyRanger Well-Known Member

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    #4 AnxietyRanger, Jan 7, 2018
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2018

    Attached Files:

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  5. lunitiks

    lunitiks Cool James & Black Teacher

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    Thanks guys :). @DaveT I always had a feeling that was the case. In contrast to the ap2 setup, eyeq3 is integrated with the camera in the mirror housing, with no ethernet ports or nothing, just CANBUS talking with bosch and gw/cid... So my question is; is it virtually impossible to access the raw data stream, or is the problem IP?
     
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  6. AnxietyRanger

    AnxietyRanger Well-Known Member

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    #6 AnxietyRanger, Jan 7, 2018
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2018
    @lunitiks If something, your great summary is a bit light on the Tesla/Nvidia story, which of course started way back when for the displays/computers in the Model S, but was cozy even in the autonomous space long before the MobilEye split. The Nvidia story could be related/relevant to the MobilEye story?

    This thread collected a lot of the early Drive PX speculation, links and quotes at the time starting in April, 2015:

    Model X mule(s) show signs of nVidia Tegra X1 Drive PX platform - no rear mirror!

    For example, what is relevant here is that the B pillar cameras (though much higher up) were thought to have been seen on these cars. It is possible they weren't, but nevertheless the thread contains links and quotes of the time to Tesla's (and Nvidia's) autonomous prototypes and conference commentary.
     
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  7. lunitiks

    lunitiks Cool James & Black Teacher

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    Yes @AnxietyRanger I agree, Tesla's relationship with nvidia began long before mobileye.

    What I found particularly interesting while researching this, was the stuff about Mobileye about to launch "first vehicle based on 8 cameras, one radar and ultrasonic around the vehicle" ... I wonder if today's setup is a continuation of concrete plans between tesla and mobileye
     
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  8. AnxietyRanger

    AnxietyRanger Well-Known Member

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    Well, we know even the first AP2 board had the space for a MobilEye EyeQ3, the empty area. We also know that Audi zFAS has both MobilEye and Nvidia chips on it...

    But something went south with Tesla and MobilEye...

    [​IMG]
     
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  9. AnxietyRanger

    AnxietyRanger Well-Known Member

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    What happened to the two forward-facing cameras and one rearward-facing roof-camera that were in Model X in the Q3/2015 PR image set, but were not in the car that launched?

    A feature that close to being launched that it was included in the PR shots, but not in the first cars shipped?
     
  10. ItsNotAboutTheMoney

    ItsNotAboutTheMoney Well-Known Member

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    You missed:
    July 1, 2016: BMW Group, Intel and Mobileye announce a partnership to develop full autonomy by 2021.
    Mar 13, 2017: Intel announces acquisition of Mobileye.

    Tesla became a competitor.
     
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  11. AnxietyRanger

    AnxietyRanger Well-Known Member

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    But how is this different from. e.g. Volkswagen group using MobilEye and Nvidia chips on their Level 3+ autonomous vehicle computers side by side? They announced full autonomy much earlier than that.

    zFAS is Audi's "AP2" and features both Drive PX and EyeQ3, they are the two grey chips on the left/center. Curiously a setup Tesla was originally supposed to use, but did not.

    Audi runs their custom software on this setup, which also includes further chips from other suppliers. Just like Tesla was supposed to, before going all-Nvidia.

    [​IMG]

    Nvidia is powering the world’s first Level 3 self-driving production car
     
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  12. cantanko

    cantanko Member

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    Brain is telling me there was an incongruency between Mobileye's roadmap and the, shall we say, ambitious timeline Tesla wished to pursue. Can't find the citation immediately, but I think Mobileye were citing safety concerns as their product to date was very deterministic whereas Autopilot's approach appeared to be a lot more heuristic than they wanted. Could be wrong - need to find the citation...
     
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  13. AnxietyRanger

    AnxietyRanger Well-Known Member

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    There is something more to this than the mere idea of competing races to Level 5.

    @DaveT's information about Tesla's wish to gain access to the raw data stream rings true, because it jives with some other comments at the time: MobilEye wanting access to Tesla's telemetry in exchange for deeper access to their system, and MobilEye's claim that it was better to let go of Tesla than to let them be reckless with their chip (to paraphrase).

    It seems plausible MobilEye has been able to negotiate better access to Aud's use of EyeQ3, for example, or was more at ease with how Audi was using their product in the first place.
     
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  14. ItsNotAboutTheMoney

    ItsNotAboutTheMoney Well-Known Member

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    As I see it:

    MobilEye's reputation was helped by its use in Tesla's aggressive AutoPilot deployment.
    Tesla benefits significantly from its AutoPilot.
    But Tesla was working to eliminate its use of MobilEye.
    With the big money from Intel coming, MobilEye could use the death as a reason to cut Tesla off before Tesla had advanced its in-house system.
    It could have killed Tesla, but Tesla BSed enough to buy time and now has reasonable capability in AP2.

    In 2017 MobilEye hasn't been discussed much. It's all been about Cruise Automation.
     
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  15. AnxietyRanger

    AnxietyRanger Well-Known Member

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    Well, that's a theory at least. No comment really...

    I agree they did. :) I don't agree the BS was necessary, though.
     
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  16. AnxietyRanger

    AnxietyRanger Well-Known Member

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    Yes, they did cite safety reasons:
    Mobileye says Tesla was 'pushing the envelope in terms of safety'

    On thing not mentioned (not sure if in @lunitiks' links, maybe it was) was Elon mentioning that MobilEye was too slow for them:
    Of course we now know it had a material effect to their plans of at least one year's delay.

    There are several sides to this story, to me it reeks of inability to come to a negotiated end-result. Both sides wanted something the other was not willing to give.
     
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  17. Kuro68k

    Kuro68k Active Member

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    Tesla simply wanted FSD and MobileEye didn't think it was safe with current tech.

    What seems odd is that Tesla then downgraded the hardware to AP2 level. Not only did they then have to reproduce all the work MobileEye had done on sensor processing, but with inferior hardware as well.
     
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  18. ShockOnT

    ShockOnT ⚡️⚡️⚡️⚡️⚡️

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    This is a wonderful and interesting history but I’m too busy reading this :)

    [​IMG]
     
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  19. Pale_Rider

    Pale_Rider Member

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    AP2 hardware is vastly superior to the hardware found in AP1. The programming is what they are having to play catch up on.
     
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  20. AnxietyRanger

    AnxietyRanger Well-Known Member

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    Just came across this January 2016 quote (perhaps from some time earlier?) from Elon saying that Tesla's autonomous cross-country trip would need "more radars" than AP1 has.
    Elon Musk predicts a Tesla will be able to drive itself across the country in 2018

    Obviously AP2 shipped with the same number of radars as AP1, but this at least speaks a bit more of the (known) plan to have more radars at some stage. I doubt it was just the slip of a tongue, we of course saw those schematics and even mule shots showing rear radars...
     

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