Dov Bechhofer Explains Tesla’s Self-Driving Capability, Including Faults and New Potential
Today, a few years after famous tech giant and automotive manufacturer Tesla unveiled their beta self-driving vehicle, they promise consumers comprehensive autopilot features that put any competitor designs to shame. To help unfamiliar readers catch up to speed, computer engineer Dov Bechhofer explains Tesla’s latest self-driving capabilities.
Two years ago, Elon Musk, the founder and CEO of Tesla Motors, ensured consumers that self-driving vehicles would be ready for the roads by 2019. To meet those goals, Tesla accumulated all their road data from current models and combined them with advanced algorithms into a Version 9 of their self-driving software. The software upgrades are expected to restore trust in Tesla’s self-driving abilities after major setbacks in the past, including injuries and death in some cases.
Many people don’t understand how the technology piloting these vehicles works, which can cause mass panic when injury from Tesla-related collisions appears in the news. However, Tesla ensures the breakthroughs in their self-driving technology make Version 9 the safest and most comprehensive they ever manufactured, thanks to a few key features.
Dov Bechhofer Outlines the Key Features of Tesla’s Self-Driving Tech
Tesla has developed a system that can conduct short and long distance trips and doesn’t require any intervention from the driver, from start to finish. Dov Bechhofer understands how this idea is both the appeal and the hazard scaring potential consumers away.
Vehicle owners get in the car and simply tell it where to go. If “drivers” or passengers don’t supply a destination, the Tesla will pick an assumed location from its recent driving history. Just like a map app determines the best route to a destination, so will the Tesla, handling all sorts of road signs, intersections types, and densely packed freeways along the way. In order to pull off these complex decisions and actions on its own, Tesla vehicles are equipped with top-notch safety features and autopilot capabilities.
Quality Safety Features
Teslas come with all the standard safety features available today, including emergency braking and automatic collision avoidance with more over-the-air-updates arriving in the near future. A complex system of sensors detect objects the car could come in contact with, both in front of and alongside the vehicle.
State-of-the-Art Sensor Coverage
Tesla vehicles are manufactured with at least 8 cameras surrounding the car and giving the system 360 degrees of visibility. The cameras can extend their range up to 250 meters to detect all sorts of movement, street markings, and roadblocks. In addition, the system comes with a radar with enhanced processing to detect its surroundings even through rain, fog, and dust. Dov Bechhofer notes that the technology can even see through cars currently in the Tesla’s path.
With updated autopilot features, Teslas can more accurately match speed to traffic, change lanes without input, exit freeways automatically, and keep a straighter path within lanes.
New features will allow the car to park itself in an available space, and allow users to summon it from a tap on their phone. New upgrades also make for tighter maneuvering and smooth navigation through more complex roads.
The Hard Truth
Dov Bechhofer recognizes Tesla’s enhanced autopilot software as a forerunner in self-driving consumer vehicles, and he’s confident more enhancements will roll out soon to keep passengers even safer. However, he likes to point out the disclaimers directly from Tesla which asks drivers to be responsible, alert, and to keep both hands on the wheel.
Autopilot is a bold title for the new technology, and interested buyers should understand that even with fully-automated driving features, Teslas shouldn’t be fully left to their own devices. Not yet.