Uber Crash Shows “Catastrophic Failure” of Self-Driving Technology, Experts Say

(From The Guardian)

Video of the first self-driving car crash that killed a pedestrian suggests a “catastrophic failure” by Uber’s technology, according to experts in the field, who said the footage showed the autonomous system erring on one of its most basic functions.

Days after a self-driving Uber SUV struck a 49-year-old pedestrian while she was crossing the street with her bicycle in Tempe, Arizona, footage released by police revealed that the vehicle was moving in autonomous mode and did not appear to slow down or detect the woman even though she was visible in front of the car prior to the collision. Multiple experts have raised questions about Uber’s Lidar technology, which is the system of lasers that the autonomous cars uses to “see” the world around them.

“This is exactly the type of situation that Lidar and radar are supposed to pick up,” said David King, an Arizona State University professor and transportation planning expert. “This is a catastrophic failure that happened with Uber’s technology.”

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