GRA
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Re: Tesla's autopilot, on the road

Thu Jul 14, 2016 4:08 pm

finman100 wrote:yeah, that makes sense. 85 MPH in a 55 MPH zone and you are the safe one, breaking the laws the rest of the population operate under. Jesus, we are a stupid species. "Not my fault, I was speeding AND being safe. See, nothing happened." this time...
Seeing as how the rest of the very few cars on the freeway were doing 70-80 in the slow lane, yeah, it was 'acceptably' safe. I mean, no one except the occasional hippie in a VW beetle/bus drove 55 (and they couldn't go faster if they wanted, given any headwind or climb), not even the CHP. Just as virtually no one towing a trailer obeys the 55 mph speed limit for them in California now; certainly the semis don't. A couple of years ago I had some time to kill on a trip on I-5 down the San Joaquin Valley, so I decided to pace some semis over a couple of hours and find out just how fast they were all going. The slowest was doing 59, and he was hauling U.S. Mail under contract so undoubtedly had a GPS tell-tale and had no need to hurry, as he would have been paid by the hour and not by the load. Depending on whether or not they had GPS telltales (and the then higher fuel prices), the rest typically drove 62-64, with plenty over that and only a few under. Now that fuel prices have dropped most are back in the 64-69 mph range, again with plenty over 70 and only a few below 64.

Speed limits are often set irrationally, and while it's undoubtedly true that driving slower is inherently safer, you can carry that to the point of absurdity, where it denies the whole value of using a car. The roads would undoubtedly be far safer if we reintroduced red flag laws such as existed in the early days of cars in the U.K., but that would be ridiculous. Once autonomy becomes widespread and reliable, speed limits can be raised and rigidly enforced, and we'll all be a lot safer.
Last edited by GRA on Fri Jul 15, 2016 3:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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GRA
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Re: Tesla's autopilot, on the road

Thu Jul 14, 2016 4:48 pm

edatoakrun wrote:Not a great fan of CR myself, but in this case, I generally agree with their conclusions.
Tesla's Autopilot: Too Much Autonomy Too Soon

Consumer Reports calls for Tesla to disable hands-free operation until its system can be made safer


...Consumer Reports experts believe that these two messages—your vehicle can drive itself, but you may need to take over the controls at a moment’s notice—create potential for driver confusion. It also increases the possibility that drivers using Autopilot may not be engaged enough to to react quickly to emergency situations. Many automakers are introducing this type of semi-autonomous technology into their vehicles at a rapid pace, but Tesla has been uniquely aggressive in its deployment. It is the only manufacturer that allows drivers to take their hands off the wheel for significant periods of time, and the fatal crash has brought the potential risks into sharp relief.

"By marketing their feature as ‘Autopilot,’ Tesla gives consumers a false sense of security," says Laura MacCleery, vice president of consumer policy and mobilization for Consumer Reports. "In the long run, advanced active safety technologies in vehicles could make our roads safer. But today, we're deeply concerned that consumers are being sold a pile of promises about unproven technology...
http://www.consumerreports.org/tesla/te ... -too-soon/
I value CR for the things they do well, which is evaluating cars for practicality, reliability, costs and safety, just as I value the auto mags for the things they do well, evaluating cars for performance, handling etc., and make use of both when buying a car. In this case, given all that I've already said on the subject I obviously think CR is calling for entirely reasonable steps, which Tesla can either take voluntarily now, or under government order later, when they will have laid themselves open to far higher levels of legal hazard.

While they've made a few bad decisions along the way (Model X design foremost), if they don't take these steps this will be the first time they've ignored a change called for to improve both customer and public safety - I'm thinking of the protective cover added to the bottom of the pack, as well as previous limitations imposed on AP after early videos of stupid behavior surfaced.
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DanCar
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Re: Tesla's autopilot, on the road

Thu Jul 14, 2016 6:30 pm

Would it be more impactful if Consumer reports requested that Pokemon Go be turned off?
http://www.foxnews.com/tech/2016/07/14/ ... inues.html
Does Autopilot save lives?
Last edited by DanCar on Thu Jul 14, 2016 6:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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RegGuheert
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Re: Tesla's autopilot, on the road

Thu Jul 14, 2016 6:50 pm

DanCar wrote:Does Autopilot save lives?
It's extremely unlikely that Autopilot saves lives. In any case, there is no solid evidence that it does.
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Re: Tesla's autopilot, on the road

Thu Jul 14, 2016 11:36 pm

RegGuheert wrote: 1) Autopiliot is not engaged during all phases of driving. In fact, it is likely engaged ONLY during the easiest driving tasks. I doubt that accident data exists for ONLY this phase of driving in normal cars. Instead, data from normal cars includes accidents during ALL phases of driving, including the most challenging phases.
Exactly! I've pointed this out elsewhere, as well.

If autopilot were engaged at all times including situations where it can't handle the conditions reliably or at all, the accident rate would be much worse. AFAIK, it may not see pedestrians or bicyclists, can't read traffic signals and almost certainly cannot read hand signals from say police and construction workers esp. if they contradict traffic signals nor behave properly in the presence of emergency vehicles approaching w/their lights and sirens, esp. if they have to cross intersections against red lights. I don't believe it can execute left or right turns (not talking about lane changes) either.

It's already established (have seen a video of it) where if the Model S loses ability to track lane markings (like in the snow) and is forced to follow the vehicle in front, it may make an unsafe change by itself (into another vehicle) if the one in front changes lanes.

And, since the driver has to takeover in some cases, sometimes w/little or no warning, TMC pointed to http://ideas.4brad.com/man-dies-while-d ... -autopilot who supposedly consults for Google
Tesla’s claim of 130M miles is a bit misleading, because most of those miles actually were supervised by humans. So that’s like reporting the record of student drivers with a driving instructor always there to take over. And indeed there are reports of many, many people taking over for the Tesla Autopilot, as Tesla says they should. So at best Tesla can claim that the supervised autopilot has a similar record to human drivers, ie. is no better than the humans on their own. Though one incident does not a driving record make.
RegGuheert wrote: 4) The Tesla Model S is larger AND safer than most vehicles on the highway. As a result, the number of fatalities that result from accidents while in autopilot mode should be lower than those that result from the overall fleet of all cars on the road.

Simply put, for Tesla to claim that autopilot is safer than human driving is simply an example of how one can lie with statistics.
Good point on the first item. It is larger and it's heavier than the average US light-vehicle fleet. Per https://www3.epa.gov/otaq/fetrends.htm "The MY 2014 fleet averaged 4,060 pounds, an increase of 57 pounds (1.4%) compared to MY 2013...." The over 4600 lb. Model S is EPA classified as a large car.

Yep on the last point.

I really wonder if the majority of folks at Tesla and Elon himself are deluding themselves w/the statistics they've cited. After all, the reality-distortion field could be pervasive there.

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Re: Tesla's autopilot, on the road

Fri Jul 15, 2016 2:24 am

GRA wrote:
TimLee wrote:We expect automation to be 99.99% error free.
For safety of life critical function systems we generally require a lot higher than that - anywhere from 6 to 9 nines , i.e. 99.9999 to 99.9999999%.
Agree GRA.
I was guessing four or more.
Six to Nine is probably correct.
A HUGE # of nines.
Five nines on power reliability even for a world class power distribution system like the Chattanooga Electric Power Board that has a huge # of Intelliruptors and complete system fiber optic connectivity is difficult to achieve.
Getting to six to nine would require all power distribution to be buried.
And even then once in a while a below ground power distribution transformer blows up like it did a couple decades back killing a couple people in Nashville.

Truly autonomous driving worthy of being named AutoPilot is going to have to be nearly perfect.
ONE failure in two or three decades.

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Re: Tesla's autopilot, on the road

Fri Jul 15, 2016 3:06 am

RegGuheert wrote:
DanCar wrote:Does Autopilot save lives?
It's extremely unlikely that Autopilot saves lives. In any case, there is no solid evidence that it does.
I agree the data is inadequate at this point to prove it saves lives.

But under some driving conditions such as extreme drowsiness it would have to reduce risk.

But even with safety improvement under some conditions, if drivers are taking on more risk using AutoPilot under some condtions, then overall safety could be worse.

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RegGuheert
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Re: Tesla's autopilot, on the road

Fri Jul 15, 2016 6:20 am

TimLee wrote:But under some driving conditions such as extreme drowsiness it would have to reduce risk.
Agreed.
TimLee wrote:But even with safety improvement under some conditions, if drivers are taking on more risk using AutoPilot under some condtions, then overall safety could be worse.
That's the main point. We simply don't know. All we do know is that there ARE instances where autopilot appears to be less safe than having only a human driver.
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Re: Tesla's autopilot, on the road

Fri Jul 15, 2016 6:30 am

cwerdna wrote:After all, the reality-distortion field could be pervasive there.
:D

BTW, please remind me of the units for a reality-distortion field. Is it "warp factor" (WF)? ;)
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Re: Tesla's autopilot, on the road

Fri Jul 15, 2016 6:34 am

RegGuheert wrote:
TimLee wrote:But under some driving conditions such as extreme drowsiness it would have to reduce risk.
Agreed.
Whoa, hold your horses. AP and "extreme drowsiness" sounds like even more of a disaster waiting to happen as people nod off with the car doing the driving. They are very specific that with AP the driver needs to remain vigilant.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PhlR3vidvp0
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