I’m a member of ZipCar, which I love for the convenience. But one thing that always reminds you that you’re in a shared car is the state of the interiors. I’ve experienced the following in a ZipCar: Sticky steering wheels, candy wrappers and potato chip bags shoved into various orifices, stained seats, liquid stains on the dashboard, and–three times!–cigarette ashes on the dashboard/console/seating.
A lot of Americans are fearful of autonomous cars, but 33% are at least somewhat likely to buy one once they are available, according to a new Axios/SurveyMonkey poll.
Why it matters: To the degree the survey is accurate and reflects a broad global trend, everything from the world’s sprawling car industry, to roads and cities themselves, could be on the cusp of a fundamental transformation.
In October, General Motors made a big splash by announcing it was applying for a permit to test autonomous cars in New York State, with plans to deploy vehicles on the busy streets of Manhattan in “early 2018.” But more than six months later, the automaker has yet to receive final approval for the necessary permit to begin testing, a spokesperson confirmed Thursday.
Many automakers believe that lidar, light-based mapping, is the key to vehicle autonomy. However, lidar is still pretty darn expensive, which makes mass-market adoption difficult. A new kind of lidar could change that, and BMW is ready to adopt it.
Magna and Innoviz Technologies announced today that the two companies will provide BMW with solid-state lidar technology for its future autonomous vehicles. Magna is a global automotive supplier, while Innoviz specializes in building lidar systems. Its new product, the InnovizOne, will be what ends up in BMW’s vehicles.
Tesla has an Autopilot problem, and it goes far beyond the fallout from last month’s deadly crash in Mountain View, California.
Tesla charges $5,000 for Autopilot’s lane-keeping and advanced cruise control features. On top of that, customers can pay $3,000 for what Tesla describes as “Full Self-Driving Capability.”
Self-driving cars are nearly ready for primetime, and so are the laser sensors that help them see the world. Lidar, which builds a 3-D map of a car’s surroundings by firing millions of laser points a second and measuring how long they take to bounce back, has been in development since 2005, when a guy named Dave Hall made one for the Darpa Grand Challenge, an autonomous vehicle contest. In the decade-plus since then, if you wanted a lidar for your self-driving car, Velodyne was your only choice.
Watching celebrities make questionable romantic decisions has been a national pastime for over a century—that meme of Charlie Chaplin as the “original” distracted boyfriend is truer than you know—but it never gets old. When Ariana Grande and Pete Davidson were canoodling in front of the camera (or the 2018 version, leaving love notes in the comments of each other’s Instagram accounts), they were charming, if a little over the top. But when the ponytail aficionado and that guy from Saturday Night Live who looks like Rami Malek’s sophomore photo confirmed their engagement after seemingly less than a month of dating, the internet struggled to make sense of the two 24-year-olds’ fast-forwarded courtship. People were indignant, amused, hopeful, confused, worried, envious, and that old Twitter standby, “truly devastated.” What accounts for the varied, but consistently extreme, passion?