Working With Regulators and Avoiding a Crisis

Working With Regulators and Avoiding a Crisis

According to the latest statements by Tesla’s CEO, Elon Musk, the company’s latest experimental driver assistance software release wasn’t “great”. The company has been selling a Full Self-Driving Capability package for its Tesla vehicles, however, despite the premium driver assistance software, none of the electric vehicles are safe to use without a driver behind the wheel yet.

In his comment, Musk said that the AI and Autopilot teams at Tesla were working hard to improve the software as soon as possible. Additionally, the goal of all the work was to have a “single stack for both highway and city streets”, however, that goal requires a lot of retraining for the company’s artificial intelligence.

Several hours after the CEO’s comment, Musk added another one, stating that he tested the latest software update for the experimental driver assistance system while going from Pasadena to the LA Airport.

According to the comment, the latest update had plenty of improvements, however, it’s still not available for the Tesla drivers that are enrolled in the company’s Beta program.

Currently, the Beta program for the Full Self-Driving Capability from Tesla is only available to employees, as well as drivers that have previously purchased the software package. This program allows drivers to use brand new, or revised car functionalities. Additionally, although drivers in the program have generally agreed to keep all of their testing experiences private, some of them have been allowed to share video footage of the features, either criticizing or showing them off.

There’s no US regulation as of yet that disallows vehicle testing from drivers that aren’t trained professionals in the US, however, that’s subject to change in the future. Furthermore, Musk’s latest comments on the software have come just a few days after he talked about the company’s components and autonomous systems during an event.

During the event, the company was presenting its latest custom chip, aimed at training AI networks in the company’s data centers. With the chips, the vehicle models can automatically identify different road obstacles that can appear in video feeds, which are recorded by the camera inside the vehicles themselves.

Meanwhile, the vehicle company is selling the Full Self-Driving Capability with the promise to allow drivers to automatically change lanes with their Tesla vehicles, move into parking spaces, navigate on highways, as well as move short distances without a driver behind the wheel.

However, the event, as well as Musk’s own comments, closely follow a brand new investigation that was launched by the federal vehicle safety authorities, that will be looking into Tesla’s Autopilot systems.

Although these days the company’s basic version of the driver assistance program is a standard part of the vehicles, there have been a number of car crashes and issues, which is the main reason for the formal investigation.

The company’s vehicles with traffic aware cruise control, or the Autopilot feature, while engaged, have resulted in over two dozen accidents, which is something Tesla, along with Musk, have been trying to solve.