jm + robots   6

Toyota's Gill Pratt: "No one is close to achieving true level 5 [self-driving cars]"
The most important thing to understand is that not all miles are the same. Most miles that we drive are very easy, and we can drive them while daydreaming or thinking about something else or having a conversation. But some miles are really, really hard, and so it’s those difficult miles that we should be looking at: How often do those show up, and can you ensure on a given route that the car will actually be able to handle the whole route without any problem at all? Level 5 autonomy says all miles will be handled by the car in an autonomous mode without any need for human intervention at all, ever.

So if we’re talking to a company that says, “We can do full autonomy in this pre-mapped area and we’ve mapped almost every area,” that’s not Level 5. That’s Level 4. And I wouldn’t even stop there: I would ask, “Is that at all times of the day, is it in all weather, is it in all traffic?” And then what you’ll usually find is a little bit of hedging on that too. The trouble with this Level 4 thing, or the “full autonomy” phrase, is that it covers a very wide spectrum of possible competencies. It covers “my car can run fully autonomously in a dedicated lane that has no other traffic,” which isn’t very different from a train on a set of rails, to “I can drive in Rome in the middle of the worst traffic they ever have there, while it’s raining," which is quite hard.

Because the “full autonomy” phrase can mean such a wide range of things, you really have to ask the question, “What do you really mean, what are the actual circumstances?” And usually you’ll find that it’s geofenced for area, it may be restricted by how much traffic it can handle, for the weather, the time of day, things like that. So that’s the elaboration of why we’re not even close.
autonomy  driving  self-driving  cars  ai  robots  toyota  weather 
8 weeks ago by jm
Japan's Robot Dogs Get Funerals as Sony Looks Away
in July 2014, [Sony's] repairs [of Aibo robot dogs] stopped and owners were left to look elsewhere for help. The Sony stiff has led not only to the formation of support groups--where Aibo enthusiasts can share tips and help each other with repairs--but has fed the bionic pet vet industry.

“The people who have them feel their presence and personality,” Nobuyuki Narimatsu, director of A-Fun, a repair company for robot dogs, told AFP. “So we think that somehow, they really have souls.” While concerted repair efforts have kept many an Aibo alive, a shortage of spare parts means that some of their lives have come to an end.
sony  aibo  robots  japan  dogs  pets  weird  future  badiotday  iot  gadgets 
march 2015 by jm
Google: Our Robot Cars Are Better Drivers Than Puny Humans | MIT Technology Review
One of those analyses showed that when a human was behind the wheel, Google’s cars accelerated and braked significantly more sharply than they did when piloting themselves. Another showed that the cars’ software was much better at maintaining a safe distance from the vehicle ahead than the human drivers were. “We’re spending less time in near-collision states,” said Urmson. “Our car is driving more smoothly and more safely than our trained professional drivers.”
google  cars  driving  safety  roads  humans  robots  automation 
october 2013 by jm
The New York Review of Bots
'Welcome to the New York Review of Bots, a professional journal of automated-agent studies. We aspire to the highest standards of rigorous analysis, but will often just post things we liked that a computer made.'
robots  bots  tumblr  ai  word-frequency  markov-chain  random  twitter 
october 2013 by jm
The Ethics of Autonomous Cars
Sometimes good judgment can compel us to act illegally. Should a self-driving vehicle get to make that same decision?
ethics  stories  via:chris-horn  the-atlantic  driving  cars  law  robots  self-driving-vehicles 
october 2013 by jm

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