Articles about self-driving cars

Super Cali's futuristic robo-cars in focus – even though watchdogs say they're something quite atrocious

Totally autonomous cars with no drivers, no passengers nor steering wheels are set to roll out onto California's streets under rules proposed by the US state's Department of Motor Vehicles. The regulator's suggested changes to the Golden State's red tape, published Wednesday, would grease the wheels for testing next-gen self- …
Shaun Nichols, 11 Oct 2017
Tesla photo via Shutterstock

Ghost in Musk's machines: Software bugs' autonomous joy ride

Last year, a dark historical landmark was reached. Joshua Brown became the first confirmed person to die in a crash where the car was, at least in part, driving itself. On a Florida highway, his Tesla Model S ploughed underneath a white truck trailer that was straddling the road, devastating the top half of the car. Brown’s …

US Senate stamps the gas pedal on law to flood America's streets with self-driving cars

America-wide rules for self-driving cars inched a bit closer on Wednesday when a US Senate transportation committee agreed to bring the AV START Act before the full Senate for consideration. The American Vision for Safer Transportation through Advancement of Revolutionary Technologies (AV START) Act, due before the Senate, is …

Driverless cars will make more traffic, say transport boffins

Australian researchers predict that the rise of the autonomous vehicle will make congestion worse. That's the somewhat counter-intuitive conclusion offered by researchers from the University of Sydney's Institute of Transport and Logistical Studies, whose Transport Opinion Survey (TOP) has run since 2010. The most recent …
Money explosion photo via Shutterstock

Baidu-backed fund has a BEEELLION quid for 100 self-driving projects

A joint investment venture backed by China's Baidu is offering 10 billion yuan (£1.1bn) for 100 autonomous driving projects anywhere in the world. Other companies have announced similar money bags. Samsung, for example, launched a $300m (£222m) Automotive Innovation Fund on September 14. Baidu, which unveiled its own open- …
Andrew Silver, 21 Sep 2017

BlackBerry's QNX to run autonomous car software

As BlackBerry's handset business died an increasingly rapid death, execs told The Register that the company had a fabulous operating system and secure messaging to fall back on. Perhaps they were right, because parts-maker Delphi Automotive has selected BlackBerry's QNX as the OS for its autonomous driving platform. Delphi …
Simon Sharwood, 21 Sep 2017
The steering wheel of Bosch's Tesla testbed

Bosch wants crowdsourced data for future connected cars

“It’s all about how to make the car safer and safer,” German engineering firm Bosch told The Register last week as it exhibited its driverless technologies in London. Bosch, best known in the UK for domestic power tools and white goods, has been working on self-driving car technology for a few years now. While nothing that it …
Gareth Corfield, 12 Sep 2017

House Reps grease the wheels for hundreds of thousands of robo-cars on America's streets

A draft US law that will let self-driving cars potentially swerve mandatory vehicle safety requirements has raced through the House of Reps. Under the proposed legislation, American automakers will be able to ask the US Department of Transport for exemptions to safety standards, allowing them to get autonomous vehicles onto …
Robot drives a car. Conceptual illustration from Shutterstock

UK.gov launches 'co-ordination hub' for driverless car industry

The government has today unveiled a "co-ordination hub" to test driverless cars under its £100m Connected and Autonomous Vehicle (CAV) investment programme. Branded as MERIDIAN, the bases in Coventry and Stratford are intended to bring together the UK's existing CAV testing centres to create "a concentrated cluster" of testing …
Kat Hall, 7 Sep 2017

For once, Uber takes it up the tailpipe: Robo-ride gets rear-ended

The Uber self-driving program has had its first accident in California since regaining permission to experiment on the roads – and for a change, it wasn't Uber's fault. According to an accident report [PDF] filed with the San Francisco Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), the Uber car – a Volvo XC90 – was waiting to turn right …
Kieren McCarthy, 29 Aug 2017
Argos lorry, photo: Argos

'Driverless' lorry platoons will soon be on a motorway near you

The Transport Research Laboratory will be starting trials of semi-autonomous "platooning" technology, using lorries on UK roads. Live trials are expected to take place on Britain's "major roads" by the end of 2018, according to a government statement. These will make up the final stage of the project, with the first two being …
Gareth Corfield, 25 Aug 2017

Seriously, friends. You suck at driving. Get a computer behind the wheel to save your life

Much of the hype surrounding self-driving cars arises from the fact that people are terrible drivers. Automated systems, we're told, can help save lives. Ignoring for a moment all the technical problems that still need to be solved before people can expect to be chauffeured by machine – dealing with adverse weather or …
Thomas Claburn, 24 Aug 2017
Screengrab from the Thick of IT - Brit govt satirical comedy show. Cast text furiously while in crisis mode.

Revealed: The secret CEO texts that tell the tale of Uber-Waymo's self-driving tech spat

Analysis Hundreds of unsealed text messages between former Uber CEO Travis Kalanick and self-driving engineer Anthony Levandowski have revealed an intriguing insight into the relationship between the two – and raised more questions about whether they conspired against Levandowski's former employer. Released into the public domain as …
Kieren McCarthy, 15 Aug 2017
Waymo self-driving minivan

Waymo fleshes out self-driving car tech with hardware that goes soft at first sign of trouble

Waymo has been granted a patent to deck out its self-driving cars in a material that becomes less rigid when its sensors detect a high chance of collision. Autonomous cars have unresolved safety issues. Although these machines might not suffer from the dangers of fatigue or road rage, they still aren’t completely safe. …
Katyanna Quach, 15 Aug 2017
An RDM Group-made driverless pod, outside the FISITA Plus conference at London County Hall

Britons ambivalent about driverless car tech, survey finds

A third of Brits would use a fully driverless car, a third would not, and the majority want to summon them via an Uber-style app, according to polling carried out for the UK Autodrive consortium. Conducted by researchers at Cambridge University's Engineering Department and the Department of Psychology, the survey consisted of …
Study Confirms High Effectiveness of Low Speed Autonomous Emergency Braking

UK publishes Laws of Robotics for self-driving cars

The United Kingdom has published a set of “Key principles of vehicle cyber security for connected and automated vehicles” outlining how auto-makers need to behave if they want computerised cars to hit Blighty's byways and highways. Penned by the UK's Department for Transport, with help from the Centre for the Protection of …
LiDAR viewer image by Oxbotica

Autonomous driving in a city? We're '95% of the way there'

Universities, carmakers, local authorities and tech and insurance firms are involved in an array of part-government-sponsored self-driving vehicle pilots across the UK. More than £20m is being funnelled into projects to build and refine autonomous technology, understand human-vehicle interaction, and assess risk. It’s an era …
Gavin Clarke, 31 Jul 2017
Audi TT

Sensor-rich traffic info shows how far Silly Valley has to drive

The German auto cartel has flexed its muscles as Silicon Valley tries to encroach on its turf. HERE – the map consortium owned by Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz – is adding live sensor data to its Real-Time Traffic service, a first. Sensor-data such as brake information is fed into the HERE service. Ralf Herrtwich, senior VP …
Andrew Orlowski, 26 Jul 2017

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