Print 11 comment(s) - last by Flunk.. on Jan 24 at 8:55 AM

Ford working with partners to remove technical hurdles for automated driving

Ford has announced that it has teamed up with MIT and Stanford University to develop solutions that will address the challenges that surround automated driving.
“To deliver on our vision for the future of mobility, we need to work with many new partners across the public and private sectors, and we need to start today,” said Paul Mascarenas, chief technical officer and Vice President, Ford research and innovation.
Ford has been working hard on automated driving technology already and its automated Fusion Hybrid vehicle uses some of the technologies that it already has in cars on showroom floors. That technology includes LiDAR sensors that are able to generate a 3D map of the vehicle surroundings.

Automated Fusion Hybrid Research Vehicle
Ford and MIT are working on advanced algorithms to help the vehicle learn to predict where moving vehicles and pedestrians could be in the future. 
Ford and Stanford are exploring how sensors might be able to see around obstacles. Ford says that the typical driver will maneuver around a line to allow them to see around obstacles like a big truck. The research with Stanford hopes to make automated vehicles be able to do the same thing to allow sensors to see what is ahead of the vehicle.

Split Screen: What the Car "Sees" and What the Driver Sees

“Drivers are good at using the cues around them to predict what will happen next, and they know that what you can’t see is often as important as what you can see,” said Greg Stevens, global manager for driver assistance and active safety, Ford research and innovation. “Our goal in working with MIT and Stanford is to bring a similar type of intuition to the vehicle.”

Source: Ford

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Not really -
By Dr of crap on 1/22/2014 12:27:29 PM , Rating: 2
"Drivers are good at using the cues around them to predict what will happen next..."

And if drivers are so good at this, why are they so many accidents done by stupid drivers?????

Put 15 cars and one semi on the road in the same group and watch as these "good drivers" have a hell of a time try and pass the semi, why - I'm not sure, but it will slow you down everytime!

I'd rather the car drove itself and you could watch the traffic flow so smoothly with NO accidents and no speed reduction happening.

RE: Not really -
By Shig on 1/22/2014 2:09:01 PM , Rating: 3
Drivers are good when they're actually paying attention. Unfortunately about 1/3 of the cars I pass I can see them texting while driving or looking at their phone.

RE: Not really -
By Mint on 1/23/14, Rating: 0
RE: Not really -
By Reclaimer77 on 1/23/2014 10:10:22 AM , Rating: 2
Once automated driving starts proving itself

You mean IF it does.

We're a long way off from viable mass adoption of this. And even then, it's going to take a LONG time for people to trust it enough to give up total control.

I get nervous enough just riding in a car with another experienced driver at the wheel. I almost feel naked if I'm not driving myself. Trusting a computer and some servos to drive me around? I just don't know. That's going to take a while, and I know I'm not alone on this.

Once automated driving starts proving itself, it will lead to huge reductions in insurance.

A nice fantasy, but rarely do businesses look for ways to charge you LESS than you're currently paying.

RE: Not really -
By The Von Matrices on 1/23/2014 10:32:10 AM , Rating: 2
A nice fantasy, but rarely do businesses look for ways to charge you LESS than you're currently paying.

Businesses do lower prices when there's competition, and the car insurance industry is a perfect example. Car insurance is a commodity; the main distinguishing factor between all the companies is price. Look all advertising mediums and they are flooded with car insurance ads proclaiming "switch to us and you'll save $$$." The entire industry's marketing is based upon lower prices and "discounts" (a sneaky way of masking the actual price, but marketing based on price nevertheless).

Automated cars will lower the crash rate, and car insurance companies will love this. Fewer incidents means lower costs, which allows them to undercut their competitors while still making a higher profit margin.

RE: Not really -
By Mint on 1/23/2014 1:15:20 PM , Rating: 2
Well said.

RE: Not really -
By Mint on 1/23/2014 1:14:16 PM , Rating: 2
I never said it's going to happen tomorrow.

But even 0.1% initial market share of 200M drivers is plenty to get initial data, and if the accident rate is an order of magnitude lower per mile, as is the minimum target, then insurance companies will go after those drivers with attractive deals, just like they do for clean drivers with low risk profiles.

RE: Not really -
By Flunk on 1/24/2014 8:55:21 AM , Rating: 2
It's inevitable, they will eventually perfect the self-driving car. All of the necessary technology already exists, it's just putting it together that will be the problem. It's one of those things that will happen given enough time and money.

Now, if people actually decide to buy them, that's a more interesting question. I know I don't want one.

RE: Not really -
By The Von Matrices on 1/23/2014 10:48:59 AM , Rating: 2
The real problem is the attitude of indifference toward driving; the use of distractions are just a result of that. There are plenty of drivers without distractions who just don't care enough about driving to worry about standard regulations such as checking mirrors and using turn signals when changing lanes. It's obvious that automated vehicles will help these drivers immensely by taking the chore out of driving.

Um maybe
By gookpwr on 1/22/2014 1:09:31 PM , Rating: 2
I love driving far too much to give up the control of the man machine connection. I love driving my Ducati or BMW to work, and though I see plenty of stupid drivers during my commute I still couldn't imagine not having the controls unless....

This would allow the car to drive you home after a long night of drinking, then by all means my car can drive me home. No worrying about how I'm going to get my car the next day, no expensive cab rides, and no drunks driving! Great all the way around!

So for me as long as there is a way to turn the system on and off like in iRobot then I'm cool with it. If not I'll never own it.

RE: Um maybe
By Mint on 1/23/2014 1:30:00 PM , Rating: 2
So for me as long as there is a way to turn the system on and off like in iRobot then I'm cool with it.

I can't imagine it being any other way, unless it proves virtually perfect and people start demanding it to be mandatory, but even that is highly unlikely.

At worst, IMO, you're just looking at accident culpability going up if you choose to disable it, similar to a person or company being culpable for ignoring new safety regulations that came about with technological advancement.

"There is a single light of science, and to brighten it anywhere is to brighten it everywhere." -- Isaac Asimov

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