Apple co-founder Woz: ‘I do not believe in auto driving cars’ – Tesla experience proves it’s not possible yet

“Technologist Steve Wozniak told CNBC on Tuesday he had once hoped that Apple would build the first self-driving car,” Tyler Clifford reports for CNBC. “But the Apple co-founder said, ‘I do not believe in auto driving cars’ at this point. ‘I don’t really believe it’s quite possible yet’ that cars will be able to drive themselves without a steering wheel, he added.”

“Wozniak said on Fast Money Halftime Report that roads are not prepared for autonomous vehicles because they are built by imperfect humans who are ‘not as good as nature and mathematics and even evolution,'” Clifford reports. “However, Wozniak does support of advancements in ‘assistive driving’ technology that can allow cars to ‘spot red lights, and stop signs and avoid some of the accidents today.'”

‘Wozniak — who owns a Tesla and said he enjoys driving it — warned that the so-called Autopilot feature does not actually self-drive the car,” Clifford reports. “‘Tesla makes so many mistakes,’ he said, but didn’t elaborate. ‘It really convinces me that auto piloting and auto steering car driving itself is not going to happen.'”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Yes, it certainly seems like we’ve a long way to go to get to fully autonomous vehicles.

Ex-Navy SEAL is first person to die while using self-driving vehicle – July 1, 2016


    1. Flying an airplane and driving a car are two different things – two different environments. Except at takeoff and landing, an airplane can be tens of meters or more off in location at any time without consequence. And the air traffic control system is supposed to help steer aircraft around bad weather and maintain aircraft spacing to prevent collisions. In addition, the skies are large and relatively open given the number of aircraft versus the number of ground vehicles on the road.

      I am not saying that auto piloting an aircraft is not impressive. It is a complex task that engineers have largely perfected over the years. But to compare aircraft autopiloting to self-driving cars on the chaos of the American road system is to overlook many critical issues.

  1. With some farming equipment costing half a million dollars, tractors, cotton pickers, planters, combines follow a path of rows up to 150 to 200 miles in a single field a time with deviations of one millimeter or two at the most, – they do turn around at the end of the field and go back the other way, again tracking to within a millimeter or two. Then to the next field, and again with a tolerance of no more than a couple of millimeters over sometimes rough and curving rows.

    Why can’t a car follow within 2 feet to each side of a lane or follow a prescribed course. My wife’s Rav4 slows down and speeds up with traffic in specific situations without input from the driver; starts slowing down over 100 yards before getting closer to the car/auto in front; warns from lane drift. The technology is here.

    1. That technology has little in common with a truly autonomous car I’m afraid, even if those capabilities are a very basic element. I am happy to be proved wrong but I believe what most are thinking autonomous vehicals to be, and what we will actually get in the next 5 years or so will be very different. Only ideal conditions will allow any semblance of full autonomous operation I suspect even though it will no doubt be hyped intensely just as another Alphabet company has been hyping it’s almost human like AI technology of late. Let’s re-assess in 8 years or so shall we, but I’m still thinking it will be well in excess of that before what we deem true autonomy as a norm will be ‘potentially’ achievable, the complexity for all eventualities on a daily basis in complex environments should not be under estimated. Gradual gains in capabilities and sophistication will be the norm over blockbuster changes before then is most likely, despite the endless claims by those with the motivation to convince us otherwise. On this Woz is right I reckon.

    2. My cousin has one of the tractors that has that system. It is wonderful, he can even program to within 1% how much seed is planted and map the changes based upon soil type, etc. And yes it is that accurate in terms of location, to within 3 inches, it apparently must use military spec GPS, whereas my iphone has about a 30 foot tolerance in location.

      His opinion on self-driving vehicles: No because, as wonderful as his planting system is: so many more things are happening even on a simple county road than planting or harvesting rows.

      Accounting for other vehicles, driving conditions, weather,pedestrians, etc. etc. the list goes on for pages, that is a whole order of magnitude greater.

      A “breakthrough”, one of the great buzzwords that is bandied about, is not something that you just go down to Ace Hardware and buy off the shelf.

  2. The great and powerful Wizard of Woz is absolutely correct. No way Jose a computer can be programmed for all road conditions, all weather conditions, missing road signage for starters.

    The same as I don’t trust my computer backups to an auto cloud, concern about hacking and software bugs in a an auto cloud — prefer to keep it all under my control where it will work flawlessly…

  3. What needs to happen is autonomous vehicles need their own lanes where there are no pedestrians or human driven vehicles.

    Unfortunately we’ve paved most everything already for meat bags to walk and drive any way and where they please.

    1. Exactly true, in such an environment they can work almost perfectly but as you increasingly move away from that the scenario becomes more and more problematic and their acceptance more generally increasingly distant, with missteps no doubt along the way.

    2. “What needs to happen is autonomous vehicles need their own lanes where there are no pedestrians or human driven vehicles.”

      Good luck telling that to New Yorkers and taxi drivers in Manhattan, small rural areas that pass cornfields, in and out the valleys and deserts. Never happen, get a grip…

  4. Thanks for stating the obvious Woz. Cars cannot fully self drive today. No car can be driven today without a steering wheel…no kidding. He strikes me as a clickbait enticing buffoon and has for years now.

    That said, autopilot can already do a lot of the driving for you in certain circumstances that are still relatively limited but are extremely helpful. It’s functionality and features get updated and improved over time. Selling it short in headlines or interviews is not helping anyone understand things better.

  5. Waymo plans to launch the world’s first driverless car service next month, starting in Phoenix, operating under a new brand name and competing directly with other ride-hail services like Uber and Lyft. The launch of a commercial ride-hailing service will mark an end to the intense secrecy that has surrounded Waymo’s program — and self-driving research in general — since sibling company Google first started working on it a decade ago. Meanwhile, San Francisco-based e-scooter startup Lime is launching a free-floating car-sharing service in Seattle this week, starting with a fleet of 50 vehicles and quickly ramping up to 1,500 cars by early 2019. [Tom Randall / Bloomberg]

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