Tesla's self driving algorithm's overlay [video]

Last updated: 02-11-2020

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Tesla's self driving algorithm's overlay [video]

virtualritz 3 days ago
The camera is bird's eye on the google presentation. And it is a recording.
So jitter/flicker can be cleaned up/smoothed out and the data can be massaged in ways that a real time system may not be able to do.
This is a presentation. I'd be /very/ surprised if this animation was from RAW data as-is.
Also there seems to be Lidar data (point clouds) which Tesla doesn't have.
So while this means bounding boxes may have less detail in Tesla's system this is not an issue as long as they are not smaller than the physical object.
Having worked in the automotive space in the last five years and seen lots of those I'd not say one is less impressive than the other.
gogoincar 3 days ago
Those scenarios from Google were obviously selected for the presentation, but very much represent state of the art in _real time_ processing for autonomous driving systems from the time of the presentation.
I’m not sure what is implied with saying it’s a recording - both the Google and Tesla presentations are “recordings” and equal opportunity to pick best case examples, but I would bet strongly there is nothing not RAW = “real time“ for their respective compute platforms.
The top down viewpoint helps show off the quality (still by no means perfect) of the world representation. If you projected Tesla’s model into 3D you would see far more jitter than in the video overlay for a variety of reasons.
That said, I think comparing them directly on specific technical components is a bit of a sidebar. They are taking two very different paths along the way to a still ambiguous problem. Both are leading their respective approaches, but have fundamentally different and unproven assumptions.
Also worth looking not just at how accurately objects are detected but what the visualizations show about the intent of other road users. The Google video shows predicted trajectories for important objects in a number of scenes. We don’t get to see any of that clearly from Tesla, and that is by no means a small part of the problem. Not sure if it is there and not shown, just highlighting there is a lot more downstream even once you are finding objects reliably in the sensors.
I was just answering to the claim "when just the lidar for a waymo car costs more than the entire tesla vehicle". Which is clearly wrong.
The tesla you can afford still does not have self driving capabilities either btw.
nxpnsv 2 days ago
I made this joke as I found disparity between the message its reply humorous. If you disagree, feel free to ignore my comment. That aside, it is quite cool how Waymo cut costs by 90%: https://arstechnica.com/cars/2017/01/googles-waymo-invests-i... (perhaps there are newer developments of which I am not aware). The old numbers indeed exceed the price of most teslas...
Lewton 2 days ago
> The camera is bird's eye on the google presentation
The car is aware where it is in the world, so a birds eye view is more representative of what the waymo car actually sees, it’s just one of the many ways the waymo car has better data to work with
jiofih 2 days ago
Your comment makes no sense. Besides the fact that this is showing Lidar scans with depth and 3D textures (does look cooler), the relevant part which is feature detection is a lot poorer. It doesn’t seem to detect lane markers or boundaries, sidewalks, traffic signs, or show path estimates like you can clearly see in the Tesla video. Plus the texturing implies the route is pre-mapped while Autopilot is doing all the work in real time.
imtringued 2 days ago
Your comment just doesn't make any sense in context of the linked video. I can only assume you did not watch the video. I have uploaded the most important scenes to imgur so you don't have to waste your time finding the key scenes. The results will surprise you because they show exactly all the features that you claimed that google didn't have. https://imgur.com/a/6zHt8vP
hokkos 2 days ago
In the Waymo video there are vector narrow lines added on top of the broken white line of the image view, there are also a vector boundary of the centered line and boundaries, and 3D box for cones. You are clearly not looking closely enough, or might not want to.
But still - there are Tesla's driving everywhere, including ones with autopilot enabled, and I have yet to see the first Waymo car on the road...
The technology might be/seem superior, commercially Tesla has cleary won the race..
aguyfromnb 2 days ago
>Tesla has cleary won the race..
But Waymo is pilot-testing autonomous taxis and Teslas have a "greater than zero chance" of making it to your destination without intervention.
Infinitesimus 2 days ago
First Mover Advantage is still pretty important though.
Tesla is selling cards today, Waymo is not. Tesla's cars are good-enough for most of the buyers so Waymo's technical superiority has to bs much much better warrant the attention and change in public perspective.
On very important thing is tesla has established that your will get better with software updates over time. Other cars have nice adaptive cruise control and self-driving tech but the thought that the car you bought today can in a few months drive better is a massive psychological advantage imo. I don't think Waymo can compete on self-driving features anymore. They have to make the better car and driving experience as a holistic package to stick
jjallen 3 days ago
Ancedote: this evening in Mountain View, the driver of one of Waymo's test vans had to take over (I watched her grab the wheel).
The van had come to a complete stop with room to pass a USPS truck (it appeared safe to me from 25 feet away), and didn't begin moving again for a few seconds. She then took control.
toast0 2 days ago
The waymo cars have always been timid. That's why most of the collisions involve the waymo car getting rear ended. They don't move when other drivers expect them to.
Of course, this is annoying, and being so timid that you get rear ended is unsafe, but the Tesla approach would be the delivery truck is detected as a stationary object and ignored, so the vehicle would accelerate to the set speed in 3 seconds and slam into it. (See the many reports of Teslas running into stopped emergency vehicles). Of course, Tesla will tell you that their car isn't really self-driving with one side of their mouth, while telling you your car is equipped for self-driving out of the other side.
notyourwork 2 days ago
> Of course, Tesla will tell you that their car isn't really self-driving with one side of their mouth, while telling you your car is equipped for self-driving out of the other side.
This is my biggest worry with the way this is promoted. It’s false advertising and misleading to consumers. I wish more companies (in all industries) would be held accountable to accurately portray what they are selling.
torpfactory 3 days ago
Either Tesla: (1) Call it a 'driver assist system' and carry that definition beyond all reasonable bounds. I've read the regulation, I don't think that defense would stand up in court. (2) Does physical testing somewhere other than California. The testing regulation is fairly onerous, and I could see them saying 'nah' we'll do this in Arizona, Nevada, etc.
You're right they don't report disengagements, but they still maintain a autonomous test vehicle permit in the state, according to the DMV website. Very strange indeed. I think (2) is probably right.
omgwtfbyobbq 3 days ago
It'a (1).
For Reporting Year 2018, Tesla did not test any vehicles on public roads in California in autonomous mode or operate any autonomous vehicles, as defined by California law. As such, the Company did not experience any autonomous mode disengagements as part of the Autonomous Vehicle Tester Program in California.
unexaminedlife 2 days ago
I have mixed feelings about this. I realize the number and types of sensors that exist in Waymo's cars provide far more data to the driverless car. But then when I really think about it, humans have been driving with only 2 sensors (eyes) for a long time with relatively good success. With the improvement of computer algorithms to help the cars make better decisions than humans, I'm not 100% sure if the long-term solution will require all the extra sensors.
My guess is the added sensors may get Waymo to market sooner, but if Tesla can commoditize this technology for far cheaper they will win in the end.
After seeing reviews of the Tesla Autopilot vs Openpilot it became clear to me it is way to early to trust Tesla's Autopilot (and Openpilot).
They both use visuals only and are easily confused when situations are a little different than 'normal'.
I even think Openpilot performed a little better than Autopilot but because Openpilot only has a forward looking camera it fails often on tight corners.
Google on the other hand is aware of the complete 3D surrounding. So even if road marks are gone or are unclear it still can estimate where the vehicle should be on the road.
bepvte 3 days ago
This is a problem even in production autopilot in Teslas. When stopped at a stop light, you can see cars "dancing" and rotating randomly in a jittery fashion. Today during an auto lane change, the system blinked a truck from two lanes across in and out of my target lane, causing the car to cancel going into an empty lane after quarter ways entering it, twice.
ChrisClark 3 days ago
The dancing cars were fixed several months ago in an update. The computer used to just recognize cars, and then align them according to the lanes it sees. At a stoplight it when it had trouble seeing the lanes clearly the cars would rapidly change orientation.
Since they updated the neural net to also recognize the vehicle orientations the dancing has stopped.
I have seen a lane change cancel recently, a couple weeks ago though.
You can tell the car is a 'nervous' driver. It plays it way too safe, but I guess that's a good thing at this point.
YZF 3 days ago
Model 3 owner here: the dance where cars spun around and landed on top of you is gone but detected cars are still quite jittery. I notice that when I'm stopped and also when I'm driving. This is quite noticeable in the transition between different regions in the car (presumably when the vehicle is handed over between different cameras or sensors). Even something relatively simple as the traffic aware cruise control will sometimes slow down for no apparently reason or simply turn itself off in the rain. Given the combination of the visualizations and the performance of cruise control and autopilot I think Tesla is very far away from fully autonomous driving under all conditions. But they'll probably keep getting better at the semi-autonomous/good conditions/freeway "self-driving"/"augmented driving"...
modeless 3 days ago
I'm pretty sure that they "fixed" the dancing cars problem by applying a low pass filter to the data before sending it to the visualization, just so people would stop complaining about it. I think there's still a lot of jitter in the underlying data.
microcolonel 3 days ago
Seems like it would make more sense to model the inertia. Cars don't randomly accelerate at 100,000m/s/s in some direction they aren't pointed. Though they should have a model for detecting obstacles in the view regardless of inertia, because sometimes something really does appear in front of you in a thirteenth of a second.
You could probably model inertia with n prior frames of probability fields.
modeless 3 days ago
> Cars don't randomly accelerate at 100,000m/s/s in some direction they aren't pointed
What if they are hit by a truck? Maybe not 100,000 m/s^2 but if you assume that cars can't accelerate in directions they aren't pointed, you will be wrong at the worst possible time.
modeless 2 days ago
A threshold that high will be useless as it will miss most errors. A threshold low enough to catch most errors will reject some valid data. A naive approach like that will not work.
A better approach would be to include temporal data in the inputs to the neural net so it can learn how to do the prediction and filtering itself using all the context available in the input imagery, instead of processing each frame completely independently and feeding low-dimensional symbolic results into some other system. But you'd need a very large dataset and a very large neural net.
mannykannot 3 days ago
Would you not be implicitly assuming that the prior position was more accurate than the current one? If you have a sequence of consistent prior positions, then perhaps something like a Kalman filter would be appropriate, but I would guess that with something suddenly being revealed by a change in either party's position or that of a third party, you don't always have that.
solinent 3 days ago
To elaborate, the filter also may not improve the accuracy, just the perceived accuracy.
To be correct but one second late is to be completely inaccurate. The system is trying to estimate the current position of the car, but also predict future positions.
So a little bit of imprecision is fine since it improves accuracy related to predicting the future positions of the cars. A slight move in one direction may indicate a lane change, so it is always useful to be aware of that so as not to accelerate past a car whose measurement appears to be more inaccurate, since they actually might be moving. If you did the same thing with a human's "sixth sense" perception of the positions of the cars, you'd definitely find that they move a lot compared to their actual positions when the head is turned since our ability to merge our vision and our inertial sense is not very good for the most part.
The same issues arises with AR/VR, it's useless to know a more accurate position of the user if it's not the present position, because then that will definitely lead to motion sickness.
Shivetya 2 days ago
(TM3 owner) While in motion what is presented to the driver there is little to no jitter. Where you get it mostly is when stopped and the car seems to adjusting between cameras to determine where an object adjacent truly is. sometimes there is no jitter and other times its a bit odd.
in motion the car drives just fine with the caveat they have not enabled signal recognition. I use TACC and at times full AP on my daily commute which includes road speeds from 35 to 55. I particularly like it on rainy days. I treat it like having a high school kid being chauffeur... I am a back seat driver who just happens to be in the driver's seat.
as for visual representation like in the video or waymo's demo videos, like many other things in life when you see how the sausage is made it is a wonder how we all survive it. The key difference between Tesla and Waymo is Tesla is not geo fenced, same with Cadillac's supercruise which is not available except on interstate.
who has the best solution, I am not willing to place a bet on that yet
TaylorAlexander 3 days ago
I find it odd that they would publish a video showing performance numbers from out of date hardware. I mean I believe you - I watched the presentation in their custom processor and it’s quite impressive. Just weird that they’re showing old performance numbers. Perhaps this video is old.
grecy 3 days ago
There is speculation going around the "big rewrite" Elon mentioned last week is actually porting the code to run natively on the new hardware. Speculation says it's just been running in an emulation layer, but now they're about to unleash the full potential of the hardware.
If true, it makes sense the video would also have been captured using this emulation layer, explaining why it's not latest-and-greatest-fast.
eru 3 days ago
Realtime has nothing to do with absolute performance. It's about meeting your deadlines.
And, of course, often real-time systems have much worse throughput performance than a non-real-time system on the same hardware. After all, latency guarantees are not free.
mike_d 2 days ago
Yup. I think we agree on that.
It doesn't matter if you have a highly performant pipeline for detecting other cars if you have a random 200 ms VM pause as another car blows a stop sign in front of you.
eru 2 days ago
I get your point. But to nitpick: I think you could make 200ms pauses work, even if they are random. Just adjust your deadlines, and drive like a defensive human driver. Humans have worse reaction times.
The bigger problem is that what you might actually be getting is (almost) arbitrarily long pauses with a long tailed distribution. So sometimes 200ms, rarely a second, and every once in a while perhaps two seconds, etc; and no guarantees on the longest pause.
RugnirViking 2 days ago
As humans we know our reaction times - you naturally slow down as you get to a junction or navigate crowded or tricky traffic conditions to give yourself as much of a chance as possible to react.
This is the thinking behind many types of speed control street layouts. You should also know where to look to anticipate where danger is most likely to come from, and be ready with some kind of action. This is why we do hazard identification tests as part of the driving test - looking in the right directions at the right times is crucial for operating a vehicle safely.
250ms is a fairly average reaction time for something visual that you are ready for - but you should really be giving yourself as much time as possible - if somebody bombs past a traffic light at 70mph, even if it is green, most people would agree that it was an unsafe move. This goes doubly for an autonomous car, that is unable to play the positioning negotiation game that humans are masters of as a result of being social creatures.
Dylan16807 2 days ago
It's very easy to configure a program to slow down before intersections. Also if we want to be realistic here, you're going to be able to see that the other car isn't slowing properly for much longer than 200ms. You'd either already be braking when you hit that pause, or you'd be so early on that the delay doesn't make a real difference.
And if you're not hovering your foot over the brake pedal, you're not getting 250ms.
gzer0 3 days ago
Some care is needed when choosing priors in a hierarchical model [such as Bayesian], particularly on scale variables at higher levels of the hierarchy.
The usual priors such as the Jeffreys prior [1] often do not work, because the posterior distribution will not be normalizable and estimates made by minimizing the expected loss will be inadmissible.
[1] In Bayesian probability, the Jeffreys prior is a non-informative (objective) prior distribution for a parameter space; it is proportional to the square root of the determinant of the Fisher information matrix.
Why is this of relevance?
It has the key feature that it is invariant under a change of coordinates for the parameter vector. That is, the relative probability assigned to a volume of a probability space using a Jeffreys prior will be the same regardless of the parameterization used to define the Jeffreys prior. This makes it of special interest for use with scale parameters.
Why is this an issue?
Accordingly, the Jeffreys prior, and hence the inferences made using it, may be different for two experiments involving the same theta parameter even when the likelihood functions for the two experiments are the same—a violation of the strong likelihood principle.
Gravityloss 2 days ago
But we have a lot of statistical information and can use reasonable priors about the world.
Ie objects don't spring into existence or disappear or fly around at 400 mph or change direction at 2000 gees.
gzer0 2 days ago
> Accordingly, the Jeffreys prior, and hence the inferences made using it, may be different for two experiments involving the same theta parameter even when the likelihood functions for the two experiments are the same—a violation of the strong likelihood principle.
eru 3 days ago
I do appreciate your intent, but I learned that to get the intended response you need to add way more humility into your provocative question. Especially in written communication amongst strangers, where there's a lot of contexts from body language etc missing.
ajross 3 days ago
Presumably that sort of thing does exist at some other layer. But the design goal here is, obviously, very much NOT to reduce the false positive rate via clever filtering, it's to reduce the rate of collisions with REAL OBJECTS IN THE ENVIRONMENT. Tolerating some false positives, and the phantom braking incidents that go with them, is going to be needed.
Basically, no, you don't just throw it at some Bayesian math or a Kalman filter to make it look prettier. Yikes.
Gene_Parmesan 3 days ago
Our brains are purpose-built to really see only the very core center of our vision; the brain then creates an approximate model of the surrounding space, but a lot of what is in that model is influenced by what the brain "expects" to see. So I think yes, we can also suffer from some similar inaccuracies when the objects in question are in our periphery.
However the main difference is that, when we are consciously looking directly at something, we can almost always tell with 100% certainty what we're looking at, up to a considerable distance. I can see a car pulled over to the side of the highway a solid half mile ahead sometimes, and have plenty of time to respond. Computer vision doesn't have this additional strength.
As always though, the strength that computer vision has over us is it never gets tired or distracted, and it never operates in "default mode" where sensory inputs don't get full (or even much at all) conscious attention.
erikpukinskis 3 days ago
Nope. You can “see” all kinds of things that aren’t there, because your brain has yet to notice anything forcefully telling you otherwise. This happens all the time and you’d have no way to notice it.
Even when some new information forcefully comes into play, your brain is often able to adjust your memory so you believe you knew it along, so long as the initial percept is fresh enough and had enough uncertainty.
All of this feels to you like a perfect unbroken stream of direct seeing but it is an illusion. You don’t see anything directly, you get fuzzy spurts of probability and turn it into your world in your mind. A world that’s likely to be unrecognizable to the next person.
tantalor 3 days ago
> we can almost always tell with 100% certainty
That's just your brain again. You might mistake a bike for a lamp post, and switch between beliefs several times, before you figure it out, then convince yourself you knew it the whole time.
gimmeThaBeet 3 days ago
I kind of giggle because the jittery-ness of some of the graphics makes it like I'm watching some robot version of Home Movies or Dr Katz.
I bring that up because my hypothetical personal questions working on a system like this is 'smooth' decision making. Objects, lines, are jittery and falling in and out of recognition, but the actual control inputs to the car are smooth.
I know, good conditions and all that, but I always find it quite remarkable watching any sort of automaton make relatively fuzzy decisions. I'm very curious to know more about how this system 'thinks' about the things it 'sees'.
FatalLogic 3 days ago
The raw sensory inputs to a human brain must also be jittery. Eyes apparently see highest definition detail only in a tiny area of the visual field, for example. The brain stitches it together, interpolates, tags features, and guesses. The preprocessing miraculously creates the impression of a big clear image out of a dirty data feed from two jello cameras that are swiveling around all the time. There's a lot a smoothing going on.
Imagine if you could see the raw input from an eye - it would be a big field of view, but mostly blurry, mostly not in full color, with a blind spot hole near the center, and the whole image jittering around violently.
One trait of practical real-world intelligence is ignoring 99.9% of everything. It usually works.
01100011 3 days ago
There's smoothing, but maybe more importantly there is an expectation of continuity and a bias towards likely interpretations. The brain is trying to detect what it already thinks should be there, and not starting from scratch every millisecond. I'm not sure if anyone is doing that with neural nets, but I think we'll keep failing until we do that.
Shivetya 3 days ago
while an interesting video I really want to see the entire front arc stitched together. How is it judging it is safe to go through the stop sign? Situations like that fascinate me the most.
One issue not discussed enough is all this push for automation really needs road marking guidelines pushed down from the Federal level. While the feds can hold domain over the interstate system or roads it can be maddening the differences on right of way rules to simple markings at state level
phkahler 3 days ago
>> One issue not discussed enough is all this push for automation really needs road marking guidelines pushed down from the Federal level.
That would be a mistake. You don't take a safety critical system and rely on a nationwide beauracracy getting all the details right to make it safe, or even effective. We've had the discussion here before, and the only way for full level 5 autonomy is a general AI capable of most everything a human is. Until people realize that it will be an endless stream of "we just need to fix these corner cases" or put more constraints on the physical world because the cars aren't smart enough.
grecy 3 days ago
I drove across the US 5 times in the summer of 2019, almost excursively on interstates (the 40, 70, 80 end to end).
I can assure you, there are hundreds of times that "strange" things happened to the road. Odd or incorrect lane markings, no lane markings, lanes beginning from the right and left, lanes ending suddenly on the right and the left, lanes marked as merge that were not, lanes not marked as merge that were, etc. etc. etc.
Every time I thought I could just stay in my lane with cruise set I found I was severely mistaken.
hermitdev 3 days ago
The vast majority of the US interstate system involves two lanes each way with a wide median separating opposite traffic flow. There is always ample signage around exits, interchanges and whatnot. There is also a stretch that is straight and level enough to be used as a runway in wartime. I think most inclines are restricted to a max 6%-6.5% gradient (for reference, I grew up on the side of a mountain and the first climb was around 14%. You could stand on that in icy conditions and would slide down if you attempted to stand on it. Most mountains passes on the interstate also have "runaway truck" pulloutss in case a semi's brakes fail.
Most of the weirdness on the interstate system is usually caused by cities; having to adapt to preexisting conditions. As an example, I offer up Chicago. i290 is a mess. The Austion and Harlem exits are both left-handed exits. Worse yet, oncoming traffic are both given protected turns from the ramps. A lot of people dont follow the law and turn into the nearest lane. A lot of people drift, and a situation like this just breeds accidents. This is in oak park, a near west suburb. The Edens expressway (I90) also had expresslanes, which causes confusion, too. Not always open at the same time or direction.
jodrellblank 3 days ago
Isn't that what we do with building codes, fire safety codes, airline industry regulation, electrical safety regulation, gas regulation, food hygiene, product labelling, site safety symbols, and many more?
Collectively decide what needs to be done for something to be considered safe enough, then regulate that it must be done that way for it to be allowed. Maybe this could be "self-driving car approved roads" and self-driving cars must check their navigation systems and only travel down approved roads. Drivers then get to lobby their local or state councils to make more roads follow the self-driving car markings and signage, and when they have, cars become permitted to drive down them next time they update.
Until people realize that it will be an endless stream of "we just need to fix these corner cases" or put more constraints on the physical world because the cars aren't smart enough.
That is one way of considering trains and trams, and they're good enough to be useful with extreme constraints on what they can do.
spookthesunset 3 days ago
> One issue not discussed enough is all this push for automation really needs road marking guidelines pushed down from the Federal level
Who will fund that in a way that ensures a timely rollout (as in "sometime this century")? Who will pay to maintain it?
Unfortunately, self driving cars are just gonna have to deal with infrastructure as-built.
> One issue not discussed enough is all this push for automation really needs road marking guidelines pushed down from the Federal level
Yup especially because every country is USA.
Traster 3 days ago
Two issues, first: I thought fully autonomous driving was meant to be done by now? Second, don't Tesla & SpaceX have a reputation for being a terrible place to work, with Musk expecting everyone to be working as hard (or harder) than him, and firing people in weird and capricious ways.
axguscbklp 3 days ago
>I thought fully autonomous driving was meant to be done by now?
Musk was bullshitting when he made that prediction. Maybe he did it because he had bought his own bullshit. Personally I think what's more likely is that he was cynically conning people.
In reality, I think no-one is anywhere close to fully self driving cars. I would be surprised if we saw fully self driving cars any time in the next 50 years.
The whole field of fully self driving cars has been astonishingly full of empty hype, for some reason often believed by otherwise quite smart people.
> for some reason often believed by otherwise quite smart people
I don't understand why so many smart "tech people" fall for the hype.
Maybe it is because "machine learning" is just abstract enough that even the most jaded developer thinks they can treat it like a black box where if you pour enough videos, photos and LIDAR readings for training into the top it will somehow spit out a fully autonomous self driving car at the bottom.
I do find it funny though. On the one hand Alexa only manages to turn on the lights successfully 50% of the time yet somehow we will magically have self driving cars capable of safely navigating the roads any day now. I mean for fsck sake, we don't even have a thing that can wash and fold clothes automatically but somehow self driving cars will be on the market any day.
Like, if we cannot even get voice recognition to work right, how on earth will you tell this magical car which street parking spot to take in a busy city? How will you tell it to pull over to pick up a friend? Hell, how will you tell it to go through a drive-through at McDonalds? A touchscreen?
As to "tech people" falling for the hype, it all depends which particular hype but:
"surprised if we saw fully self driving cars any time in the next 50 years."
a couple of years after there have been self driving cars driving around Arizona https://youtu.be/aaOB-ErYq6Y?t=93 reminds me of quotes like
"The aeroplane will never fly." — Lord Haldane, 1907
a while after the Wright brothers had done many flights. You could argue both the Wright brothers planes and the Arizona Waymos were a bit rubbish but these things tend to improve rapidly.
toast0 2 days ago
Rather expensive self-driving cars, with safety drivers have been driving around a very small part of Arizona, right?
That's not really that close to an affordable self-driving car that I can take overnight door to door from the bay area to the Los Angeles area while I sleep.
That may not be 50 years away, but it sure doesn't seem any nearer than 20 years. Progress towards something usable has been pretty slow, and the edge cases are going to be tricky.
tigershark 2 days ago
A percentage of the trips have been without security driver for several months. As for affordable they are comparable to Uber and lyft and you can actually get a Waymo trip using the lyft app, so that seems pretty affordable to me.
> How will you tell it to pull over to pick up a friend?
You can’t imagine a way to do this, therefore it’s impossible?
jodrellblank 3 days ago
The way you suggest the future of automotive transport rests on a fast food chain drive through suggests a kind of astroturfing social media advert. If burgers were that important, the burger company would partner with the self driving car company and find a way.
None of those things are physically complex - the car will be able to see or lidar if a space is big enough for it to park in, pulling over to pick up a friend is no different to pulling over to let you out at your destination, and a drive-through is moving forwards slowly and steering a bit like all low speed driving is. None of them require the dexterity of folding soft wet fabric, and the market for $30,000+ vehicles is much larger than the market for $30,000+ washing machines.
One simple answer is: you don't. Self-driving car owned by
's food delivery service.
spookthesunset 3 days ago
> None of those things are physically complex
I don't care about how physically complex something is. You didn't tell me how I'd tell the self driving car which spot to park in or which person on the corner is my friend. If you think this detail is minor, trivial or doesn't matter.... you are sadly mistaken.
> If burgers were that important, the burger company would partner with the self driving car company and find a way.
So you are telling me your $70,000 self driving car can't take me through one of the hundreds of thousands of drive thru's out there? That sounds pretty shitty.
> You don't choose the parking spot anymore than you chose the lane or the highway exit
You are telling me that this self-driving taxi will just stop at whatever place it feels like? How will I tell it precisely where to let me out? Remember it is pouring down rain / I am physically disabled and cannot walk very far / I am not entirely sure where I need to be dropped off until I get there.
So seriously, how will I command this self-driving car? Nobody seems to be able to answer this or even thought about it in any amount of detail at all. Probably because we are so far away from an actual self driving car that a realistic answer doesn't really matter at all.
And that is the problem with self-driving hype. Every time you ask about a specific detail it gets hand waved away as not important or some kind of edge case that doesn't matter. Guess what... edge cases matter. Your edge case is my important case. You add up all these edge cases that "don't matter" and you've excluded almost your entire market.
> I don't understand why so many smart "tech people" fall for the hype.
Maybe it's just that some of these "tech people" are not that smart at all?
> And that is the problem with self-driving hype. Every time you ask about a specific detail it gets hand waved away as not important or some kind of edge case that doesn't matter.
I think you are you spot-on with that analysis. Way too much hand-waving going on.
But that is a constant problem in tech, the entire area is susceptible to hypes and fads, with hands waving and waving at record speed. Like I said, maybe it's just not all geniuses and such...
RaceWon 3 days ago
> > I don't understand why so many smart "tech people" fall for the hype. Maybe it's just that some of these "tech people" are not that smart at all?
The crux of the problem is you have people who although may well be cabable of driving to work--they are by no means cabable of understanding driving at its essence. They will never, not ever; be able to create a car that can also interact with human drivers because they don't understand driving. Period... end of story.
jodrellblank 2 days ago
A comment which is nothing but posturing. Why would you expect everybody discussing self-driving cars, in every situation to, be a genius, and to be using their maximum effort even on trivia questions about what UI you would use to tell a car that doesn't exist yet how to drive to McDonalds, under the questionable assumptions that a) it must work exactly the same way as a traditional car and you won't accept otherwise, and b) there will be only one self-driving car full stop, so there will be one answer and it must be perfect for every possible use case first time?
brokenmachine 3 days ago
That's the easiest problem to solve... if the car is capable of driving itself then you have both hands free to operate your phone or a touchscreen.
You can enter the location to stop at, and in this imaginary world where the car is capable of driving safely, then it should also be able to find the nearest safe location to stop at.
The actual part where the car is able to drive itself is clearly nothing but unfounded hype though.
HeWhoLurksLate 3 days ago
Honestly, I think I'm fine piloting a Tesla through a drive-through if it means I can eat on the road. I'll take 80% of possible performance / [aptitude?] now (heck, even 50-60%, as long as it's safe enough) versus 100% of possible scenarios being covered at some far-off point, especia)y if my enjoying 50-60% of capability actively gets the remaining % closer.
jodrellblank 2 days ago
I did answer. Quite possibly you won't have control. Your entire complaint is a "you can't precisely manage memory in a garbage collected language? Then nobody will use them." style complaint. And that's demonstrated wrong by history over and over - take people's choice away and do it for them, people like it.
Self-driving car, is the hard bit. "Who will design the smartphone app which lets me tap "go to the nearest mcdonalds drive thru"?" is the easy bit. Almost anyone on any $5/hour microconsulting web developer site could do that bit.
"Oh but who would buy an iPhone if it can't let me control the filesystem? You can't answer, nobody can tell me, it's impossible, the tech can't exist, everybody is stupid" - nope, it sold by the hundreds of millions.
Where will it stop? It will stop wherever there is a space. Maybe you can mash your finger on your app for "closest space right now" or maybe you'll get bored of doing that because it already does "closest available space to the chosen destination" because that makes sense.
"One disabled person will get wet in the rain so the tech can't exist" - most tech ignores disabled people completely, and sells in large numbers.
"I can't voice control tell it to go through a drive through so nobody will use it" - if it matters that much to people in general, mctakeout will partner with car company, let you drive up in your fancy car, and they will walk the food out to you. I'm more worried that the cars will come with a "take me to the nearest McDonalds" physical dashboard button, than that no cars have any way to instruct them to go anywhere off-route ever.
"your $70,000 self driving car" - I don't think most self-driving cars will be owned by individuals, but what does price have to do with it? People buy supercars which can't drive through narrow, bumpy, steep, city areas, there is a market for them. Why do you think there will be only a single self-driving car design which has a binary appeal to everybody or nobody, and therefore must be a single answer to how you will control it, and that there's no room for iteration so it must be conclusively decided and locked in several years before any such car even exists or its capabilities are understood and settled?
"So seriously, how will I command this self-driving car?" - so, seriously, driving two tons of machine around a busy unpredictable space is something you're fine with, but having some buttons is what you think the impossibly dealbreaker is? Touchscreens are an appalling human interface, and having almost every control in a touchscreen hasn't stopped Tesla customers.
"Nobody seems to be able to answer this or even thought about it in any amount of detail at all. Probably because we are so far away from an actual self driving car that a realistic answer doesn't really matter at all." - Yes, good point. Nobody has settled on the trivia, because the trivia is not a dealbreaker compared to whether the car can exist at all. It's like you're obsessing over what font the Dragon space capsule will use on its readout displays, and saying that human spaceflight is all hype because "nobody has thought about it in detail".
But no, surely everyone involved is just stupid for not prioritising shovelling burgers into your face over getting you from A to B without killing you or anyone around you.
"Every time you ask about a specific detail it gets hand waved away as not important" - you asked about details, I gave plausible answers (you won't have the level of control you demand) - you completely ignored my answers because you don't want that (you can't answer! ya boo sucks you can't answer!) and then whine that nobody will give you answers.
"You add up all these edge cases that "don't matter" and you've excluded almost your entire market." - I am still boggled that you are putting "can drive through a drive thru" as if that was a thing people actually do enough to influence their choice of car purchase. Can commute to work? Is affordable? Is safe? Is reliable? Has reasonable maintenance and insurance costs? Is big enough for all the people? Can carry enough luggage? Looks OK? All way more important after the dominating "can actually self drive".
tenpies 3 days ago
This has been my take too. The whole hackathon and hiring effort screams to me of "we have finally concluded that a LIDAR-less implementation is impossible within our lifetimes. We hope one of you has at least a Hail Mary that we can burn money on so we can at least pretend that it may still be done. Anything to keep us from having to refund millions, dealing with a huge class action, seeing the stock halve, and Elon having to admit that he's something of a charlatan."
And that's just on the decision to not use LIDAR because "it's dumb", not the whole concept of self-driving as it has been marketed being decades away.
xkemp 3 days ago
I don't understand why "otherwise smart people" feel the need to diminish the potential and successes of ML. When chess was basically solved, it was dismissed brute force, with a sarcastic challenge to do Go, and we now the fate of that challenge.
There used to be, on slashdot and I believe in the early days of HN, this running complaint of the new-at-the-time CSI-style shows, specifically the "enhance" trope: "you can't reconstruct a license plate from a bad frame in a video. That information is just lost. It's not there anymore", they would say, usually with all the aura of letting you in on a secret only a very smart mind could gleam, although there were five others in the same thread making this point.
Today we have superresolution algorithms that can reconstruct license plates from low-res images. Turns out the information wasn't really lost, at least not in the sense applicable to the situation (i. e. you are allowed to train on other data).
Many tech people dismiss such progress as "just statistics", but I haven't seen much of an attempt to find a definition of intelligence that is meaningful different from "just statistics". In fact I doubt it's possible within the realm of science, i. e. without resorting to mind-body dualism.
As to driverless cars: they exist, right now. Google does thousands of miles without any need of human intervention. Yes, maybe it doesn't yet work well enough in a hailstorm. But predicting that these problems will endure for 50 years plus, against a combination of restricting these cars to certain situations, improving the models, and/or improving maps, seems at least as overconfident in your ability to make predictions as those made by self-driving optimists.
Dylan16807 3 days ago
> When chess was basically solved, it was dismissed brute force
Deep blue was brute force. There are different ways to solve a problem, and only some of them are impressive in certain ways, even if they're impressive in other ways.
> Today we have superresolution algorithms that can reconstruct license plates from low-res images.
You need to take another look at CSI. You can reconstruct a little bit, usually with the help of multiple frames or exact font data. You can't do this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I_8ZH1Ggjk0 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3uoM5kfZIQ0
> Many tech people dismiss such progress as "just statistics", but I haven't seen much of an attempt to find a definition of intelligence that is meaningful different from "just statistics". In fact I doubt it's possible within the realm of science, i. e. without resorting to mind-body dualism.
That's about as useful as saying everything is 'just chemistry'. It's true but not helpful. And the same way that your brain and a science fair volcano are both just chemistry, demonstrating a simple reaction isn't impressive.
spookthesunset 3 days ago
They exist now as what amounts to fancy amusement park rides. Wake me up when I can get sloppy drunk and catch one home. Only I was drunk and didn’t provide the exactly correct drop off address and need to somehow communicate to the robo-Uber where exactly it should drop me off... (how will I do that, by the way? talk to it? What if it doesn’t understand my accent?)
Also, I’m at a wedding and the pickup is in a grass field in front of the venue. Can’t pick me up on pavement... it’s a two lane road 50mph road with no shoulder to pull over in. Also the entrance to the venue is a poorly marked dirt road. Also, the “pin” I told the robo-Uber to pick me up at has it at the street ‘cause that is the address.
I’ll wait for the robo-Uber to call me on how the hell it should pull into the lot. I did mention cell sucks here, so hope you’ve got that all offline, right?
And I fully expect my use case to be waved away as “edge case” and “doesn’t matter”. Except it does. Every trip that isn’t a pre-planned, set route amusement park ride is an edge case. Until you can meet my use case, a common one for an Uber driver, self driving cars are empty hype.
HeWhoLurksLate 3 days ago
> Until you can meet my use case, a common one for an Uber driver, self driving cars are empty hype.
For you. The semi-autonomy we have now- not "this vehicle will get me from point A to point B without need for intervention- but "this vehicle can take out some amount of the area between points A and B" is incredibly useful. I don't know how hard it is for you to keep going straight while fumbling about with a hamburger- I'm not that great at it- but if I can get a bot to help me steer in a relatively straight path and keep me in my lane while I take my jacket off because I'm beginning to sweat, send a message or place a call (having something make that easier is also useful), fire at an armed robber, or let me give more attention to a child who needs it, I will be safer.
spookthesunset 3 days ago
Nice for you until the “self driving” car gets into an accident and kills the other driver. You don’t get 50% attention with driving. It’s either 100% or 0%. Anything other than that will put everybody else on the road at risk.
If you are driving around in your Tesla using its adaptive cruise control and not paying attention to your driving... I can only hope the accident you will eventually cause hurts nobody but yourself.
jaxn 3 days ago
I have easily driven 12,000 miles under autopilot and regularly do the kind of tasks the parent described.
Maybe I will have an accident and comments like this one will age poorly. Or maybe we will find that the scary technology wasn't as scary as first thought.
Your phone knows where your home is.
What if the human doesn't understand your accent!
> Every trip that isn’t a pre-planned, set route amusement park ride is an edge case.
That is not even remotely true.
And you could have a fleet that's 80% or 90% robot. It's not hard. $5 discount if your end points aren't all wonky and robot-confusing.
xiphias2 3 days ago
- I thought fully autonomous driving was meant to be done by now?
One thing that Elon did is gathering lots of video data instead of perfecting LIDAR, and at this point it seems that he was right: until detecting objects in 3D from video data is completely solved, self driving can't work. After it's solved, LIDAR is not needed.
- Tesla & SpaceX have a reputation for being a terrible place to work
When I'm looking for jobs, my main criteria is market cap / number of employees, and Tesla (as most startups/small companies) was very bad before the stock price went up. Now with high stock prices Tesla can afford to pay market rates (even if it's in stock).
justapassenger 3 days ago
> When I'm looking for jobs, my main criteria is market cap / number of employees, and Tesla (as most startups/small companies) was very bad before the stock price went up. Now with high stock prices Tesla can afford to pay market rates (even if it's in stock).
All big companies grant stock based on monetary value at the time of the grant. If you join company X when their stock went up 2x, stock grant will be smaller 2x.
You can get market rate, from historically underperforming company, only if you got grants that appreciated, don't expect grants to improve pay rate.
xkjkls 3 days ago
> When I'm looking for jobs, my main criteria is market cap / number of employees, and Tesla (as most startups/small companies) was very bad before the stock price went up. Now with high stock prices Tesla can afford to pay market rates (even if it's in stock).
You don't care about the work culture at all?
xiphias2 3 days ago
Of course I care, it's just in my experience it's much easier for a company to provide any kind of benefits when the company has money for employees.
Before 2008 when I was working at Google, we were just getting more and more fun stuff all the time, and it seemed like it's never ending. I was together with about 200 people in the Zurich office.
After the stock price went down, although we just had a hiring stop, the food got worse, the bonuses got smaller, and later every new year more and more people came, the stock went up, but the benefits got worse every year until the point where you have to stand in a queue to go to toilet if you are a male.
I think Google is still a great place to work at, but very far from what it was 13 years ago.
xiphias2 3 days ago
Sure, I'm also too old to go to Tesla, but if I would want a great carreer, really change the world (not just talk about it) and not care about having a private life, I would seriously consider going there.
At the same time Zurich is small, and many more men go to work there than women, so dating was so hard that I didn't have a real private life anyways.
solidasparagus 2 days ago
> One thing that Elon did is gathering lots of video data instead of perfecting LIDAR
I really don't understand this thought. Every self-driving car company has more raw data than they can realistically use. I don't see how Tesla has some advantage
Reedx 3 days ago
It's pretty clear at this point what you're signing up for at Tesla and SpaceX. They're intentionally trying to filter for people who will dedicate much of their life to the mission of electrifying transport and becoming interplanetary. If you want to do that, there are few better options. If you don't, avoid.
As for firing, well, who knows... The story about Elon's assistant was apparently rife with misinformation, as these things often are.
zaroth 3 days ago
> I thought fully autonomous driving was meant to be done by now?
That is not what Elon predicted at Autonomy Day last April. He thought they would be feature-complete by the end of 2019, which is to say, that all the basic code paths necessary for best case city driving would be functional.
If you've done software development, you understand that getting to "feature-complete" is different from "code-complete", which is also different from "Beta", which is different from "GA". Those are each progressively later stages in the software development / release cycle.
Feature complete is merely the day that you can say that there is some functional code in place for all of the code paths that you expect to write. You would expect to be able to do an internal demo showing all the functionality working in the "happy case" at that point. Usually QA has not really even begun in earnest at this point. It is by no means the point where development is "done", which is for FSD in fact, approximately, never.
Code complete isn't always distinguished from feature complete, but in my experience, code complete would contemplate negative testing, error handling, and alternative processing modes which might not have been implemented at the point of "feature complete". Code complete typically signifies that from that point forward only bug fixes will be added into the next release.
Some projects can reasonable be expected to remain in testing, validation, and certification for several years after the point of "code complete".
karpodiem 3 days ago
He said a million self driving vehicles would be on the streets a year from FSD day.
To try to say the hardware for FSD is now present in 1M vehicles (which I doubt) is disingenuous to the insinuation Elon made that FSD is right around the corner. They're not meaningfully closer to FSD today than they were three years ago. Somewhat closer? Sure. A few feet on a journey that's a few miles though.
zaroth 3 days ago
> They're not meaningfully closer to FSD today than they were three years ago.
Actually driving a Tesla for 15,000 miles, of which perhaps 5,000 of those miles have been AP over the last 18 months, I can state this is totally false.
There has been extremely significant incremental progress with AP which is totally evident in everyday usage.
bdamm 3 days ago
Looking at how much has happened over the last two months though it seems that they are on the verge of something big. I'm on pins just waiting for stop light and stop sign detection to be integrated into lane keeping. They're already seeing them, they just need to put that data into action. In terms of my personal driving that'll be pretty big, road trips get a lot shorter when my attention isn't forced.
Turns through intersections is another area where Tesla's current implementation needs a lot of help (read: can barely do it at all) but should be within range soon given where they are at. And lane splits in city streets is definitely something the Tesla implementation is going to need to get better at before really making it door-to-door.
It's a very exciting, even historic time for self driving.
But yeah, taxi fleets are a ways out. There's a turn in the road just a 1/2 mile from my house where my Model 3 gives up every time.
sib 3 days ago
I'd like to understand this better. Intentional interference with satellites? Too mountainous or too heavy tree cover?
I can imagine navigation services not working, but I've not been in places outside of the high Arctic (~82'N) where GPS itself wasn't very reliable.
bdamm 2 days ago
Deep in large cities (New York, San Francisco, etc) with all the RF reflections can actually be quite challenging for GPS. Challenging == actually terrible and everyone knows it. Off by blocks, and definitely no help at all for vertical location.
And inaccuracy at start-up is also surprisingly challenging; think a person requesting a car within 5 seconds of opening the app, before the location service of the device has really resolved the location, thus ending up with a pick-up pin that is a hundred feet wrong or more. And maybe on the wrong side of a street, fence, etc.
xkjkls 2 days ago
There's also issues like Australia, which because of plate tectonics the maps corresponding to GPS coordinates had to recently be moved close to a meter.
We think of GPS as just the positioning part, but its just as important to remember that there is a large amount of work to translate that position into a meaningful data point within each given country. Just knowing someones exact GPS coordinates isn't helpful.
xkjkls 2 days ago
Have you ever used Google Maps in a country like Costa Rica? Because the country isn't mapped to nearly the same degree (also, they have a habit of not even naming their roads), it becomes barely useful. I'm not talking about the technology of global positioning, I'm referring to all of what we take for granted with it for.
jsight 3 days ago
I've gotten the impression that the "firing people in weird and capricious ways" bit has been greatly exaggerated.
I do think anyone taking this has to expect grueling and challenging work. The job description practically demands that.
scrumbledober 3 days ago
Anecdotal evidence here, but I have a friend who worked in their palo alto office for several years. One day as Elon was walking through the Fremont factory he saw a large empty floor space and asked someone why there were no workers occupying that space. It was then decided that her job would be moved from Palo Alto to Fremont. She was not fired in a weird and capricious way, but she was managed out of the company in a weird and capricious way, and that was less than a year ago.
arexxbifs 3 days ago
I don't doubt for a second that people like Musk (and before him for example Steve Jobs and Jack Tramiel) can be very demanding and sometimes difficult to work for. I also don't doubt for a second that a lot of the stories told have a sour grapes quality to them: If you're good at the kind of job they're offering, you can easily find employment somewhere else and you're also probably smart enough to move on of your own volition, before being capriciously fired.
I worked for an erratic, sociopathic boss once. I quit after about six months. Unless you're a masochist or truly have no other options, you'll soon realize it's not worth whatever extra money or prestige the company name might possibly come with.
hermitdev 3 days ago
I worked for a hedge fund that fired the bottom 10% every year. I lasted 9 years and my first boss was fired after I was ready to quit 6 months in (figured iwas about 2 weeks away from quitting). Not all firms that employ such tactics are terrible. Sometimes, you need to get rid of the people that just arent cutting their weight. 10% isnt a hard rule, just a guideline.
xkjkls 3 days ago
> I worked for an erratic, sociopathic boss once. I quit after about six months. Unless you're a masochist or truly have no other options, you'll soon realize it's not worth whatever extra money or prestige the company name might possibly come with.
Many people move their families, buy houses, and make large commitments taking new jobs (plus are normally granted large stock vesting at a given schedule). There's a lot of reasons people might put up with abuse for awhile.
>> Tesla & SpaceX have a reputation for being a terrible place to work, with Musk expecting everyone to be working as hard (or harder) than him, and firing people in weird and capricious ways.
> specially SpaceX has been rated very highly in some rating I have seen.
IIRC, SpaceX has a COO who handles much of the day-to-day management, so the employees there are shielded from much of Musk's management style.
Rebelgecko 3 days ago
I may have a biased sample because I know more former SpaceX employees than current ones (and I'm sure it varies from team to team), but being overworked is the #1 complaint I've heard. Like, to the point where someone working 60 hour weeks is considered a slacker because they take Sundays off.
dylan604 3 days ago
I have often wondered about this, so I do find this interesting. Of all of the info presented, one question I have is how does the AI decide when to go at a 4-way stop? In real life, I'm am constantly amazed at how confusing a 4-way stop is to humans.
Not that I ever had any doubt into how complicated real-time video analysis could be, this just makes my appreciation of the complexity of the problem that much more qualified.
calebegg 3 days ago
The proper rules[1] of a 4 way stop are probably pretty straightforward to encode, and probably easier for a computer to apply than a human, but the real issue is that you can't trust the other drivers (or AIs) to understand/follow them consistently. So the interesting part is how these kinds of systems can almost instantly react when another driver starts to go, and let them go.
In NYC, where I live now, the de facto rule seems to be if you hesitate at all then the other person just goes, rules be damned. In the rural south, where I'm from, there's a lot of "no no, you go first" waving/gesturing/light flashing, which I'm curious if/how a self driving car would handle. (Do we need to give the self driving cars hands to gesture with?!)
dx87 3 days ago
The car stopping if another car goes before it brings up another issue. If self driving cars start showing up on the road and are recognizable, you'd be able to "bully" the self driving cars since you know it'll always give right away. Imagine being stuck on an on-ramp behind a car that is programmed with infinite patience and extreme risk aversion; you could be sitting there quite a while.
kodablah 3 days ago
That's not the real issue, that's just the initial domino. The real issue is how self-driving companies will combat that. They'll surely want to record film at all times and have a pipeline to law enforcement to curb suspected bullies. It's often the over-correcting solution that becomes the bigger problem. There are analogues in other human-robot interactions.
allannienhuis 3 days ago
I imagine if enough self-driving cars were on the road, that would be less of a problem, because more regular speeds & distances between cars would allow for more opportunities for merging. Perhaps even between-car negotiations of merging or 4 way stop type of behaviour.
I think we're quite a ways away from that though - hopefully not as far away as the flying car thing :)
mstade 3 days ago
> In NYC, where I live now, the de facto rule seems to be if you hesitate at all then the other person just goes, rules be damned.
This has been my experience pretty much everywhere I've driven, which includes a half dozen or so European countries and about as many U.S. states. Notably though I've never driven in New York, state or city.
My experience is that in larger cities, and cities with a lot of tourists, this "aggressiveness" seems to be the norm. I put that in scare quotes because I'm not sure I'd call it aggressive, I just feel it's the pragmatic way to break the tie.
Maybe that's why this is my experience everywhere – I'm that guy! (My apologies to all my fellow drivers out there!)
spookthesunset 3 days ago
> Wouldn't the data decide what the rule is?
Lawyers will define what the rules are for a manufacturers self driving cars. After all, any accident at a 4-way stop will immediately result in blaming and then suing the manufacturer. And what are they gonna have for a defense? "Sorry, your honor, we use machine learning to decide how our car drives--as a result there is no real way to truly understand how our car will react to every situation it encounters".
triska 3 days ago
There is an interesting and important theorem from control theory that is relevant for this situation. In a paper from 1984, Leslie Lamport has called it Buridan's Principle and phrased it as follows:
“A discrete decision based upon an input having a continuous range of values cannot be made within a bounded length of time.”
The paper is available from:
Note that Lamport admitted that his result was never accepted by the scientific community.
> continuous
(The paper implicitly assumes non-discrete continuity) Differential-equation based hysical models are continuous. Computational systems are discrete, as long as the clock is slower than the . Lamport surely knows this, the transition duration. He waves away the empirical disproof of his claim by arguing that reality is merely a finite approximation where low probabilities runs down to zero.
He even mentions this stuff in the paper, making the paper quite weird.
My only guess is that he fell into the trap of forgetting that infinitesimal objects ate idealized mathematical models not physical realities.
rrauenza 3 days ago
My father taught me this trick -- if you're going to arrive simultaneously, just make sure you stop clearly second (especially if the other car is on your right).
I find it is usually pretty efficient and have yet to notice someone doing the same to me at the same time.
Slartie 3 days ago
I do exactly the same - not with 4-way stops as we don't have those in Germany, but with areas where a two-lane road is intentionally narrowed to one lane for a very short piece of road, which we sometimes have in order to slow down traffic around pedestrian crossings. If I see someone approaching from the other side and we are about to arrive roughly at the same time, I slow down just enough so the other person hopefully realizes she can go first. If I see the other person doing the same I add light flashing, which is typically understood as "You go first". But it is rarely necessary, because if I start going slow early enough, the other person rea


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