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Video: Here's why you have to keep your eyes on the road when using Autopilot

Discussion in 'Model S: Driving Dynamics' started by valkeriefire, Jul 17, 2016.

  1. valkeriefire

    valkeriefire Member

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    #1 valkeriefire, Jul 17, 2016
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2016
    Yesterday my family and I were driving on a divided freeway when a seam in the freeway started on the left side of my lane and then crossed across my lane. The Autopilot computer incorrectly interpreted the seam as a lane marker (which is odd because there were lane markers which were much more obvious). The autopilot took me into the lane next to me which was occupied by another car. I immediately corrected manually and went back into my own lane, but I'm sure I looked like a jerk to anyone behind me. I didn't hear the sensors detect the car next to me, and while I'd like to think they would have detected the other car and avoided a collision, I didn't wait long enough to find out. My wife was very upset because she assumed it was my driving (she's very protective of the Tesla for obvious reasons) and my son immediately chimed in with comments echoing mommy. You may enjoy a laugh if it resembles your family. The video is 1 minute long, the lane seam appears 26 seconds in.

    I was hoping you'd be able to hear autopilot "disengage" tone when I corrected, but I can't hear it on the video. I should probably email this to Tesla so they can help improve the software. I'm a huge autopilot fan, and I realize Tesla is being attacked due to idiots failure to use it correctly, so I'm tempted not to share this. But I want the product to improve and I don't want any of my fellow Tesla fans to get in an accident, so that is my motivation for sharing this. The video is unlisted, so only people on the forums should be able to find it. 1st time I used my BlackVue for something useful. Glad I have it.

     
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  2. ABCCBA

    ABCCBA Member

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    Happens quite frequently when I'm driving. We have areas that were under construction and they shifted lanes. After the construction, the lines were ground away. However, AP sees those grooves as the lane markers and the car follows the grooves. I of course am aware of a number of things that AP gets confused by, so I am neither surprised nor in danger.
     
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  3. Adrien

    Adrien Member

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    Wow interesting and exactly why it's still "Beta." No need to email tesla. Any correction you did will improve the neural network automatically. That's how it get's better
     
  4. ABCCBA

    ABCCBA Member

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    @Adrien My Model S must be missing some neurons, because my car has been doing the same thing for almost four months. lol

    Less than one mile from me is a bridge over a local river. When the bridge was being widened, the diverted traffic from one side to the other. Once done, they ground off the lane marking lines and repainted the road appropriately. To the human driver, the current lane markings are very clear and the old groves are just barely visible to the naked eye. However, being an engineer who has worked with robotics and vision equipment, if I think about what the Tesla camera is seeing, which is Gray Scale IMage, I can see how it can be easily confused. No amount of programming will overcome instances like this because the software will have to guess which is the proper lane and there is no definitive answer.

    So, this situation has had me thinking for a while about certain situations that occur on roadways everyday, and how the Lane Keeping technology of Tesla and others will handle these difficult issues. For example, the situation I described above was a grove in the roadway from construction, so that can be resolved by having the roadway departments resurface the road of fill in the grooves. But, let's look at what happens when a vehicle blows a tire and drives on the wheel. How many times have you seen the wheel grooves in the highway pavement that go on for quite a distance and eventually merge over into the emergency lane, once that driver realized they had a tire issue. I have already experienced this on the interstate, and the Telsa AP acts the same way as it does on the local bridge. These blown tires happen quite routinely with boat trailers and semi trailers. So, I just don't see how full autonomy can handle these unique situations.
     
  5. Cnasty

    Cnasty Member

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    "I didn't do it, the autopilot did it!!!"

    Spoken like a true husband defending his toy. Well done my friend. :)
     
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  6. Krypto Kat

    Krypto Kat Member

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    Finally someone who understands how to use technology. The more critical the task performed by tech is to your survival, the more vigilance you need to exert.
     
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  7. jdw

    jdw Member

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    There seems to be a gap in the dots and then some white dot like marks in the next lane over. If you go frame by frame, just before the car swerves, the dots in your lane are missing for a bit, then dots appear about three feet into the other lane. Looks like it was enough to fake out AP. AP doesn't seem to like dots at the best of times ...

    Screen Shot 2016-07-17 at 11.13.36 PM.png

    then ...

    Screen Shot 2016-07-17 at 11.08.56 PM.png
     
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  8. Wshowell

    Wshowell Member

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    There is an area outside Rincon on US 101 South of Santa Barbara where there are seams all over that stretch that cross the lines. I asked the SB Tesla guy how AP would handle these and not send the car across three lanes of freeway. He said the car only "sees" yellow and white and therefore would ignore the black/grey seams your car recognized as lines. Guess that theory has been proven wrong. Scary video and glad you weren't "asleep at the wheel".
     
  9. Alketi

    Alketi Member

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    #9 Alketi, Jul 17, 2016
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2016
    Yep, a second set of lines appears that, along with the groove in the road, roughly aligns into a new "lane".

    So many poorly marked roads. I'd send it to Tesla, and your state DPW. ;)
     
  10. SomeJoe7777

    SomeJoe7777 Marginally-Known Member

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    Several things in this video that aren't ideal for autopilot. I'm speaking from my experience with it:
    • Botts dots are being used as the lane markers on the right side. The autopilot is far less accurate tracking Botts dots than painted lane markers.
    • The left lane marker is a painted line, not Botts dots. In my experience, AP doesn't like the two lane markers to be different. It's either trying to find Botts dots, or it's trying to find painted markers, never both at the same time. In this instance, I almost guarantee that AP had only acquired one of the lane lines, and I'll bet it was in "painted" mode, thus acquiring only the left line.
    • Ever since firmware 2.16.17, yellow painted lines aren't detected as easily as white lines. Further, solid lines aren't detected as easily as dashed lines.
    • The AP camera sees lane lines more by contrast than color. The black concrete seam is just as good a contrast against the concrete background as the painted yellow line is, and AP began following it.
    In this instance on this particular road, the things that can be done to improve AP:
    • Drive in the middle lane vice the left lane so that white Botts dots are on both sides vice a Botts dots/painted line mismatch.
    • Follow another car on distance setting 3 or higher, this can improve the lane keeping in marginal conditions.
    I wouldn't bother sending this to Tesla. To me, this is very typical AP behavior.
     
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  11. valkeriefire

    valkeriefire Member

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    @ jdw and SomeJoe. Thank you for your comments, they were very helpful. I'm glad I posted this. Understanding when I can use autopilot will keep my wife happier lol.
     
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  12. JohnSnowNW

    JohnSnowNW Active Member

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    Pretty perfect example of how to use autopilot correctly, thanks for sharing.
     
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  13. DougH

    DougH Active Member

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    Perfect example of how annoying "passenger drivers" are, also known as "backseat drivers"
     
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  14. bmaytsla

    bmaytsla New Member

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    The
    The frame grabs really help with understanding, thank you for taking the time.
     
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  15. ShadowR55

    ShadowR55 Member

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    Great post to show how to correctly use autopilot. I hope you notified Tesla so they can use the logs to improve the system.
     
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  16. sorka

    sorka Active Member

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    Hate to say this but your statement that you corrected manually gives away the fact that AP was not engaged as the disengagement chime did not sound. I went back and listened a dozen times with studio monitor headphones on loud. The chime is loud enough you'd easily hear it over everything else. I think it's likely you thought you were using AP but in fact were not.
     
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  17. supratachophobia

    supratachophobia Active Member

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    Why don't your defrost vents reflect in the windshield and show up on your dashcam?
     
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  18. EV-lutioin

    EV-lutioin Member

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    All I have to say is that is the best dash cam ever, great images! I was also wondering why I didn't hear the AP chime.... it's really loud in my car.
     
  19. Garlan Garner

    Garlan Garner Active Member

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    I caught that also. Deflect, Deflect. Why didn't the driver correct that?

    I wonder how long he would have waited in order to correct that himself. Would he have let his car hit that Porsche next to him?
     
  20. Garlan Garner

    Garlan Garner Active Member

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    Very good point. I didn't hear anything either.+

    I hope this isn't a non-truthful movie.
     

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