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Blog Waymo Partners With Businesses to Give Customers Rides

Discussion in 'Autonomous Vehicles' started by TMC Staff, Jul 26, 2018.

  1. TMC Staff

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    Alphabet’s self-driving car division Waymo has struck a deal with five companies to offer transportation for their customers in the Phoenix area. “We know from our early riders that most of their rides are to run errands, shop for groceries, commute to work, head to dinner or fix their personal vehicles,” Waymo said in a...
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  2. SOULPEDL

    SOULPEDL Member

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    You'll never actually hear from these participants unless it aligns with Waymo's agenda because every driver will be under an NDA (Non-Disclosure Agreement). What you will see are videos of steering wheels turning without anyone in the driver's seat (but likely "Operators" behind the scenes as was the case in the March 2018 trials, I'm guessing three cars per driver in an office somewhere). You'll also see videos and media that show happy customers and filtered stories that make it seems so easy and safe. It seems they're even throwing in sweeteners with discount as if to bribe users for their commercials.

    My guess is that it will be fairly safe here in Chandler, Az because they've been here 3D scanning with LIDAR for a very long time, plus they drive like Grandma. I see a dozen per day wasting gas trying to memorize the land and traffic. As to how they "expand to other cities" without taking decades remains to be seen and will likely be accelerated by timelines and cost cutting.

    I doubt if we'll hear about a Waymo vehicle stuck in traffic waiting for an "Operator" because something changed in the roadway, or how someone missed their pick up time for the kids at school because the vehicle couldn't decide what to do when it encountered an accident scene. That's the difference between LIDAR and Tesla's camera based AI strategy where inference and adaptation will be the key to safety and a smooth ride - just as humans learn and adapt to new circumstances, taught by the public, all over the planet, with all circumstances possible.

    Question remains, will this model be safer when they roll out to new cities, in rapid succession, where the streets are not as uniform or as consistent as here in Chandler?
     
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  3. strangecosmos

    strangecosmos Non-Member

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    Super exciting! :D Yay, self-driving cars!

    Here’s the announcement from Waymo’s blog.

    Something that threw me for a loop: I thought of the partnerships with Walmart, malls, hotels, etc. was to create a bunch of shuttles that go along pre-defined routes. A sort of a soft launch for the autonomous taxi service. Drive.ai is launching an autonomous shuttle in Frisco, Texas. But then I read this:

    ...while customers are having their personal vehicles serviced, AutoNation will now offer them a Waymo, rather than a loaner car, to get around.”

    Wuh?? :eek: If someone can use the Waymo to get around anywhere, as a replacement for their regular car, what is the whole rigamarole with shuttles from A to B? What’s the point of the partnerships? Why not just go full-blown autonomous taxi?
     
  4. SOULPEDL

    SOULPEDL Member

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    It is exciting, I agree. I'm a Technologist and none of this was possible 10 yrs ago unless you were on a team at MIT or had really deep pockets. But there are two ways to get to where this is eventually both safe and cost effective (because both are still quite a ways off). One way uses oil and loss of freedom, the other is clean and respects everything about being a human with adventure.

    Myself, I still like to drive AND experience autonomy as it happens. I like acceleration and being in control of my destiny. And just as people dress up with bling or have the latest smartphone, cars also play a role in filling our egos and ensuring our status - especially for the next generation who crave social attention so much. I'm sure there will be people who ditch their cars completely, and eventually it will be a luxury to drive at all for insurance reasons, but you'll still see those at the top with a Tesla and everyone will idolize that lifestyle. I just see a better path forward over the next 20 years. Yes, at least 20. Uber has been around for a while and I don't personally know anyone who ditched their car yet, or built a house without a garage.

    Waymo vehicles use LIDAR as their vision system which is hyper-expensive to make with just the added equipment costing as much as a new Model S Tesla. So it's all free or low-cost for now because the people that "sign on the dotted line" are a part of their marketing plan and guinea pigs. Smile, you're on camera. But get angry or scared because it went off the road for a second, sorry you can't tell anyone that part unless you want to get sued by Alphabet. Look at their media from the last test, all seriously perfect people with safety messages throughout, right down to the lady who is gently touching her seatbelt in the photo and smiling at her cute child.

    So the public won't know the truth for a long, long time. Meanwhile, one hiccup for Tesla and it's all over the news because this path is scaring the most powerful people on the planet, in multiple industries. If there's just one Tesla fatality, you never hear how many oil cars crashed and burned by percentage that same day... even thought a Tesla is one of the safest cars on earth!

    The really sad part is that Waymo vehicles run on oil. And then once you're hooked on the "convenience", they'll hit you in the wallet and you won't even realize that you already sold your soul to large Corporations. Are you sure that you want to participate in Automation this way? Do you think Google is watching you now? I know their watching me closely. I just hope I don't lose my freedom of speech too, but you will when you sign on.
     
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  5. BOBTHEJOCKEY

    BOBTHEJOCKEY Member

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    All the experts say Waymo and General Motors are the leaders in driverless cars and NEVER mention Tesla.
     
  6. BOBTHEJOCKEY

    BOBTHEJOCKEY Member

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  7. BOBTHEJOCKEY

    BOBTHEJOCKEY Member

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    At least they have not deleted your thread. Every Tesla car (at least 100,000 plus another 300,000 by the end of 2018) that has been built now for about 2 years is gathering data all over the world whether or not the driver has purchased autopilot.
     

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