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  • Quantum computing and cars (#6)
  • Machine Morality (#14)
  • We need cybersecurity (#9)
  • Remote-control scooters (#20)


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Fraunhofer Society

Many experts assume that, in the long run, cars will be driving on our roads autonomously. However, this requires the necessary safety technologies – including radar sensors. These have to be tested on several millions of kilometers of road first, an effort that is extremely hard to tackle. A radar target simulator will make these tests significantly easier and cheaper.


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New York Times

If any place was prepared for quarantine, it was Milton Keynes. Two years before the pandemic, a start-up called Starship Technologies deployed a fleet of rolling delivery robots in the small city about 50 miles northwest of London.


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Vice

In late February in an auditorium in Buffalo’s tallest building, the city’s mayor, Byron Brown, presented a vision of a “renaissance of Buffalo” spurred by “new technologies” at the forefront of the “mobility revolution.” It’s a buzzword salad of a speech read straight off the paper, the kind of speech mayors of midsize cities across the country have been making in recent decades about attracting “talent” and jobs and businesses to grow the tax base and make their cities prosperous again. It’s a speech big on aspirations and light on specifics. It’s exactly the type of thing David Dixon has been invited to Buffalo to put an end to.


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The arrival of autonomous cars will come into cities with their own histories, and own challenges for making everything work. Here Aaron Gordon of Vice looks at Buffalo, once called the “best-planned city,” and the task of moving forward.

CarScoops

Americans remain skeptical about autonomous driving technologies, a research from Partners for Automated Vehicle Education (PAVE) has revealed.


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Forbes

A recently filed lawsuit against Tesla in the U.S. District Court of Northern California where Tesla is headquartered alleges that a Tesla Model X using Autopilot struck and killed a pedestrian, doing so on April 29, 2018.


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Columbia Engineering

Waves, whether they are light waves, sound waves, or any other kind, travel in the same manner in forward and reverse directions-this is known as the principle of reciprocity. If we could route waves in one direction only-breaking reciprocity-we could transform a number of applications important in our daily lives. Breaking reciprocity would allow us to build novel “one-way” components such as circulators and isolators that enable two-way communication, which could double the data capacity of today’s wireless networks. These components are essential to quantum computers, where one wants to read a qubit without disturbing it. They are also critical to radar systems, whether in self-driving cars or those used by the military.


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Bloomberg

Uber, which for years burned cash in exchange for user growth, had also faced challenges even before coronavirus hit. Its food delivery operations, a bright spot in terms of adoption, loses money, and other bets like autonomous vehicles and air taxis have yet to be proven.


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UT Dallas

Dr. Yang Hu, assistant professor of electrical engineering at The University of Texas at Dallas, has received a five-year, $500,000 grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to develop new hardware and software to handle the complexity of an automated driving ecosystem in which cars communicate both with other cars and with roadside information nodes.


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Tech HQ

Why a cybersecurity framework for autonomous vehicles is now vital Like every other advancement of technology, in every industry, autonomous vehicle innovation brings new opportunity for exploitation. 18 May 2020


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Reuters

The coronavirus crisis is accelerating a shift in the world of autonomous cars toward delivering packages instead of people, as big players open up a lead over startups in the race for funding.


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Bloomberg

Arculus GmbH wants automakers to ditch rigid production lines and adopt its more flexible platform where self-driving robots move half-built cars to different sections. London-based venture capital firm Atomico is among the investors who put in a total 16 million euros ($17.3 million).


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The Conversation

The move towards driverless cars isn’t just a chance for people to relax at the wheel. It’s an opportunity to revolutionise personal transport in a way that offers life-changing benefits to people with disabilities. But for this to happen, we need the car industry to commit to more inclusive design practices that right now are widely absent, and overcome the challenges of designing new ways to interact with autonomous vehicles. The solution could involve manufacturers drawing inspiration from diverse areas of product design to get the balance right between style and real-world user-friendliness.


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Business Insider

Still, the surge in demand for groceries is exposing some cracks in the e-commerce business, which has led Borders to believe that his company, HDS Global, has an opportunity to rapidly grow its customer base.


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UNC Chapel Hill

After a late-night shopping trip one Sunday evening in Tempe, Arizona, Elaine Herzberg loads her grocery bags onto her bicycle. She approaches a four-lane highway and decides to push her bike across. Upon crossing two lanes of traffic, she is struck by a vehicle — a self-driving Uber Volvo XC90 — and becomes the first pedestrian to be killed by a self-driving car.


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Morality, ethics, responsibility. Big advances in self-driving cars come with big questions. Here UNC taps its researchers in psychology to help start finding answers.

Forbes

For many workers, labor experts, and even journalists, a series of recent moves by Uber Technologies has seemed particularly hard to follow, and/or digest.


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Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg

People, bicycles, cars or road, sky, grass: Which pixels of an image represent distinct foreground persons or objects in front of a self-driving car, and which pixels represent background classes? This task, known as panoptic segmentation, is a fundamental problem that has applications in numerous fields such as self-driving cars, robotics, augmented reality and even in biomedical image analysis. At the Department of Computer Science at the University of Freiburg Dr. Abhinav Valada, Assistant Professor for Robot Learning and member of BrainLinks-BrainTools focuses on this research question. Valada and his team have developed the state-of-the-art “EfficientPS” artificial intelligence (AI) model that enables coherent recognition of visual scenes more quickly and effectively.


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Times of Israel

German sports car maker to integrate Tactile Mobility’s software to give cars better road grip; announcement comes during EcoMotion smart mobility conference, held virtually.


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Stuff NZ

Volvo will introduce new technology this year that will allow owners to control their vehicle’s maximum speed with their key and not allow speeds over 180kmh.


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Associated Press

A self-driving shuttle service that was ordered to stop carrying passengers in February has been cleared to resume operations with new safety precautions.


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The Verge

A different kind of shared electric scooter has landed in a small suburb outside Atlanta, Georgia. These scooters look bulkier than your average shared two-wheelers, with extra components attached to the deck and handlebars. And they’re also not technically two-wheelers, but rather four-wheelers with an added set of training wheels in the middle of the deck. That’s because they’re the first remote-controlled scooters to launch into commercial service in the US.


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They aren’t quite self-driving, but a project set in Georgia is looking at the possibilities of scooters with autonomous technology, controlled from thousands of kilometers away with XBox controllers. The Verge has the details.

AI Business

Google spin-off and presumptive autonomous vehicle frontrunner Waymo has provided rare insight into some of the technology behind its self-driving cars.


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Reuters

WASHINGTON – Alphabet Inc’s Waymo self-driving unit said on Thursday that its chief safety officer, Debbie Hersman, was stepping down but would remain as a consultant to the company.


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Xinhua

From self-driving delivery trucks to driverless vans disinfecting roads, the COVID-19 outbreak has put driverless vehicles in the spotlight.


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Vice

Cars that can drive themselves in certain situations are an expensive luxury, but programmers, hobbyists, and gearheads across the world are working to drive down the cost of the technology and make it easier to use. Comma.ai, founded by infamous hacker George Hotz (AKA “geohot”). is one of those companies. Drivers can install the “comma two” kit in supported models and take the technology for a spin.


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Houston Chronicle

Falling gasoline prices, weakening supply chains and stalling economic growth are putting the brakes on road projects and electric vehicle sales, but these headwinds will only delay, not stop, the necessary overhaul of the U.S. transportation system.


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