Delphi to Begin Testing On-Demand Robot Taxis in Singapore
Keith Naughton / July 31, 2016
Three-year pilot program seeks solution to growing gridlock
Goal is to provide service by 2019 ‘with no driver in the car’
Delphi Automotive Plc, the vehicle-electronics supplier that last year conducted the first coast-to-coast U.S. demonstration of a self-driving car, will begin testing autonomous autos in Singapore this year that may lead to robot taxis by the end of the decade.
The test will involve six autonomous autos, starting with the modified Audi Q5 the supplier used last year to travel from San Francisco to New York in self-driving mode. In Singapore, the cars initially will follow three predetermined routes and by 2019 will range freely based on customer requests, without a driver or a human minder, according to Glen DeVos, a Delphi senior vice president.
“We actually will have point-to-point automated mobility on demand with no driver in the car,” he said at a briefing with reporters at Delphi’s Troy, Michigan, operations base. “It’s one of the first, if not the very first, pilot programs where we’ll demonstrate mobility-on-demand systems.”
Singapore’s Land Transport Authority chose Delphi for the test as the city, like congested urban areas globally, looks to driverless vehicles to address growing gridlock. It asked Delphi to provide robot rides to get commuters to mass-transit stations so fewer cabs will be clogging the roads, DeVos said. Automakers are pouring money into developing autonomous cars as more than 9 billion people are expected to move to megacities over the next 25 years. Self-driving cars moving in harmony are expected to eventually ease congestion and make roads safer.
“Singapore is a small island and right now for the individual to get to the mass-transit systems, it’s not easy,” DeVos said. As a technology hub, the city is “really trying to lead the world in addressing urban congestion.”
For a QuickTake on driverless cars, click here
Delphi plans to announce similar pilot programs in the U.S. and Europe later this year, DeVos said.
On the Singapore project, Delphi will work with several technology partners, which he declined to name. For its cross-country demonstration last year, Delphi used high-speed computing technology from Ottomatika Inc. and Nvidia Corp., as well as cameras from Mobileye NV, to help the vehicle quickly make complex decisions, such as timing a highway merge or calculating the safest way around a slow-moving vehicle.
Besides providing the driverless vehicles, Delphi will develop software that lets commuters call them. Initially, the cars will travel at slow speeds along predetermined loops of about 3.5 miles (5.6 kilometers), with a human driver ready to take the wheel if needed, DeVos said.
In 2018, Delphi will begin running tests without the driver, which will lead to removing the human minder entirely by 2019, he said.
“The no-driver scenario won’t be open to the general public,” DeVos said of the 2019 testing. “It will be for a controlled group of people.”
If all goes as planned, the next phase will be deploying fully autonomous cars without steering wheels for commuters to hail by 2022, he said.
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/ ... e-irbidct9
Meet Danger Drone -- A Flying Computer Designed To Hack Into All Your Unprotected Devices
For Fran Brown, one of the managing partners at renowned security firm Bishop Fox, it all started with Top Gun. “I was watching [the movie] as I often do, and Kenny Loggins’ song came on, and I suddenly thought ‘Danger Drone‘ — that would be an awesome name for a project,” he told Digital Trends. “It went from there.”
Feeling inspired, Brown went on to co-create Danger Drone — or, as he puts, “a hacker’s laptop that can fly.” In essence, the concept is a $500 Raspberry Pi-based quadcopter drone, kitted out with all the regular hacking software security firms deal with on a regular basis.
“[The goal was] to make a cheap, easy-to-create hacking drone so that security professionals can test out the defenses that they’re rolling out,” he continues. “It’s a drone for penetration testing, to see how effective the defenses against this kind of thing actually are.”
You may, of course, be wondering why hackers would have need of a drone. After all, some of the most publicized hacking attacks of recent times have come from thousands of miles away — in places like North Korea. This is true, but as Brown points out, there has also been a rise in proximity-based “over the air” attacks, where people are able to gain access to other people’s devices, which are physically located nearby. Danger Drone takes “over the air” attacks and raises the stakes. You could say it deals with “into the air” attacks.
“Today there’s an abundance of targets that are ripe for hacking,” Brown explained. “The appeal of drones is that you can fly them over buildings, land on people’s roofs, and attack not just their WiFi and their phones, but their FitBit, the Google Chromecast hooked up to their TV, their smartwatches, their smart refrigerators. A drone would be perfect for attacking them.”
“What protects a lot of devices right now is that you need to be close,” Brown’s colleague David Latimer continued. “You need to be close to the wireless signal to be able to read it. [Danger Drone] removes that barrier of physical access.”
Fortunately, both Brown and Latimer are on the side of the angels. When they demonstrate Danger Drone at next week’s Black Hat security conference in Las Vegas, they’re doing it so that security companies can get a head start on the possible next frontier of hacking. As Brown says, “Right now, there are no best practices about how to protect yourself from a drone.”
Hopefully, projects like Danger Drone will help change that, before people find out the hard way.
Of course this calls for rigorous safety standards, for the building as well as the increase in air traffic around residential buildings.
elfismiles » 28 Jul 2016 13:39 wrote:Funny that this British Starship company should talk about how forward / progressive Austin is regarding new technology considering the recent spate driving out Uber & Lyft (who also want to replace their drivers with robot drones).
Drone startup Aptonomy introduces the self-flying security guard
Posted 2 hours ago by Lora Kolodny (@lorakolodny)
Aptonomy Inc. has developed drone technology that could make prison breaks, robberies or malicious intrusions of any kind impossible for mere mortals.
Dubbing it a kind of “flying security guard,” the company has built its systems on top of a drone often used by movie-makers, the DJI S-1000+, a camera-carrying octocopter.
Beyond Terminator: squishy 'octobot' heralds new era of soft robotics
Ditching conventional electronics and power sources, the pliable robot operates without rigid parts.
24 August 2016
http://www.nature.com/news/beyond-termi ... cs-1.20487
FAA rules for the commercial use of drones go into effect Monday.
"It's an important moment," said Brian Wynne, chief executive of the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International. "But it probably won't be like a light switch going on."
Interested drone pilots must pass an aeronautical exam before they are allowed to fly. The first exam will be available at 8 a.m. Monday morning, which 3,351 people have signed up to take.
The exam has generated "great excitement" from a wide range of industries around the country, according to Mark Dennehy, president of Computer Assisted Testing Service, which administers the test.
Drones are appealing because they provide aerial photos and video at a fraction of the cost of traditional methods. Potential uses include crop monitoring, construction site management, search and rescue, surveying, film-making and firefighting.
The key rules for businesses are this: Do not fly at night or over anyone not involved in your operation. Drones also may not fly higher than 400 feet, must be under 55 pounds and must remain in the visual sight of a human operator.
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