“The idea that you can have a vehicle that can make complex decisions for full self-driving is just not plausible at this point.” Mike Ramsey, an analyst at the Gartner research and advisory firm, expressed that skepticism of autonomous vehicles in reaction to Elon Musk’s prediction that Tesla (TSLA) would put a million self-driving robo-taxis into service by next year. Jon McNeill, chief operating officer at Lyft (LYFT) and former Tesla president of global sales and service, also said he doubts that Musk can back up his projection. Other skeptics point out that Tesla has yet to offer a single self-driving car for sale, even though it is developing an autopilot system. Lyft, like Tesla and competitor Uber (UBER), is investing in self-driving cars and has helped provide more than 35,000 self-driving rides in Las Vegas, according to Lyft initial public offering filings. luckbox: This wouldn’t be the first time Musk has exhibited overzealous optimism. He forecasted Tesla would make 500,000 cars in 2018, but it produced half that many. Last summer, he said Tesla would make 10,000 Model 3 sedans a week—about twice the number currently coming off the assembly line. Musk can be hard to pin down, but we take our best shot (See p. 10).
“In the twentyfirst century, the robot will take the place [that] slave labor occupied in ancient civilization.” —Nikola Tesla, inventor, engineer, futurist and designer of the modern alternating current electricity supply system (1937)
“I don’t think the robots are taking over. I think the men who play with toys have taken over. And if we don’t take the toys out of their hands, we’re fools.” —Ray Bradbury, screenwriter and author of Fahrenheit 451. (1976)
luckbox | june 2019
5/2/19 12:04 PM
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