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Off to "Driverless Car Summit" and speaking to SV Autonomous Vehicle meetup Jun 20


I'm off for AUVSI's "Driverless Car Summit" in Detroit. I attended and wrote about last year's summit, which, in spite of being put on by a group that comes out of the military unmanned vehicle space, was very much about the civilian technology. (As I've said before, I have a dislike for the term "driverless car" and in fact at the summit last year, the audience expressed the same dislike but could not figure out what the best replacement term was.)

I'll be reporting back on events at the summit, and making a quick visit to my family in Toronto as well. I will also attend the Transportation Research Board's conference on automated vehicles at Stanford in July.

Then I'm back for the opening of our Singularity University Graduate Studies Program for 2013 at NASA Ames Research Park this coming weekend. My students will get some fun lectures on robocars, as well as many other technologies. Early bird tickets for the opening ceremony are still available.

On June 20, I will give a talk at a meeting of the new Silicon Valley Autonomous Vehicle Enthusiasts group. This group has had one talk. The talks are being hosted at Nissan's new research lab in Silicon Valley, where they are researching robocars. I just gave a 10 minute version of my talk at Fujitsu Labs' annual summit last week, this will be the much longer version!

SU consumes much of my summer. In the fall, you'll see me giving talks on Robocars and other issues in Denmark, London, Milan as well as at our new Singularity University Summit in Budapest in November, as well as others around the USA.


A bit off-topic, but the fact that there is no on-topic post is the reason.

As an EFF man, libertarian, defender of the faith etc I would have expected you to weigh in heavily on PRISM and especially Google's cooperation. Does your position as consultant to Google mean that there is a conflict of interest?

No, I have not been involved in that part of Google so I feel little restriction there and have been critical before. However, our folks at have been writing extensively on the matter.

The way the law works, it forbids people who have received orders for this surveillance from disclosing it. It does not, however, require they lie about it, just that they don't disclose it. So I think that most of the specific denials from all the companies (not just Google) are probably true, they have not put in any direct access. They would just have to say "no comment" if that were going on. However, they didn't, and couldn't talk about the more traditional access requests they are getting. It's more than was known, though we've always suspected it was high. It would be nice if we could find a way to figure out just how much is going on.

Similar to "naming problem" of "Artificial Intelligence", to describe "Computer Assisted Intelligence/Automation". "Computer Assisted" is used in CAI (Computer Assisted Instruction), aka MOOC (Massively Open Online Courseware)

Something like Computer Assisted Driving/Transportation" would be better. BTW, the CORE Technology for AVN (Autonomous Vehicle Navigation) is Artificial Intelligence / Computer Vision / Robotics. I just bought a Hobbyzone R/C (radio control) Super Cub aircraft. It has sensors to do ACT (Anti Crash Technology), i.e. if flier (me) tries to do an unstable manuever, the ACT will make the right control-inputs, to PREVENT A CRASH. "Driverless Cars" basically is the equivalent of this type of thing ("driver enhanced automation"), in a generalized sense.

How can you talk about these issues, WITHOUT a background in AI / Computer Vision / Robotics ?? My PhD is in this area, as well as Martin Eberhard (his Masters Electrical Engineering is in Robotics), we were office-mates at UIUC/Coordinated Science Laboratory/AARG (Advanced Automation Research Group). Stanford robot arms, Computer Vision facilities, etc

I do have a degree in computer science actually, and you hardly have have to have done your thesis on robotics to understand or discus robotics. I mean, there are also people who do pretty decent eclipse photography without degrees in astronomy.

Here, the goal is not for the driving to be computer assisted, but to eventually have vehicles which operate unmanned or with a non-capable human in them, so that's a bad term for it.

A lot has changed in the field in the past few years though. You may have just come into this blog, because the article from earlier in the week was all about how computer vision is NOT a core technology for "avn." A lot of AI techniques and robotics techniques are used extensively, but there is a fair bit of work that you might not traditionally associate with AI.

Hello Brad, can you provide some more details on your visit to London/Denmark?

Was canceled. Why? Send me real e-mail for private conversation.

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