“Nissan’s R&D chief believes the truly driverless car [...] is an unreachable short-term goal.”

Call centres operated by humans to assist stuck self-driving cars


Sun, Jan 8th, 2017 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

According to Wired, Nissan does not believe the self-driving car will have the level of cognition needed to figure itself out of some situations. In those cases a call for help will connect the car to a teleoperator that, using a modified version of the software used by NASA to operate rovers on Mars, will assess the situation and then give instructions to the car on how to proceed.

Now, Nissan’s cubicle-based drivers aren’t emergency backups. If the car hits black ice, it’s in charge of staying on the road. There’s no feasible way to get the human into the loop in time to act. But they can help out when the car encounters conditions it’s unsure how to handle. If a Nissan happened upon the construction scene from Sierhuis’ photo, it would stop and ping its control center. A human operator would look around using the car’s cameras and other sensors and issue new instructions—direct control would pose latency issues. Like: When it’s safe, cross the double yellow and get back to the right side after 20 yards. Or a new instruction set could ensure packages and disabled passengers get dropped off in exactly the right spot, and help assess potentially dangerous situations on the road. But most of all, the teleoperator is there to make sure the car’s doesn’t just shut down when it’s too dumb to know what’s going on.



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