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When Robert Whitehead invented the self-propelled torpedo in the 1860s, the early guidance system for maintaining depth was so new and essential he called it “The Secret.” Airplanes got autopilots just a decade after the Wright brothers. Yet one deceptively modest dream has rarely ventured beyond the pages of science fiction since our grandparent’s youth: the self-driving family car.
Driverless Car of the Future, advertisement for “America’s Electric Light and Power Companies,” Saturday Evening Post, 1950s.
Sketch of a pre-programmed clockwork cart by Leonardo Da Vinci, circa 1478Had it been built, this cart would have been powered by large coiled clockwork springs, propelling it over 130 feet. Sailboats were likely the first self-propelled vehicles, and possibly the first to have some form of automated steering, the auto-tiller. The kind of self-guiding that carried torpedoes to their targets was repurposed for another medium – the air.
Driverless cars and taxis have been improving the lives of millions in the pages of science fiction since 1935.
Of course, in the pre-computer days of the 1930s, giving cars meaningful smarts was literally the stuff of science fiction. Much of the danger of early motoring was not the cars but the era’s narrow, ill-marked roads, designed mostly for local travel. Autonomous Highway System tests, 1950sGM and RCA developed automated highway prototypes with radio control for speed and steering. If you’ve ever seen a cockroach, you know that even insect nervous systems are capable of navigating through a complex environment at tremendous relative speed. Because making cars smart is so hard, early self-driving plans focused on special freeways for guiding suitably equipped cars safely along them, more railroads than robots. The digital computer promised to make vehicles smart in ways rarely imagined outside of fiction.
By the late 1960s experimental robots were navigating through novel environments at SRI and Stanford, [testing out still-new AI techniques]. Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI) Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV)AUV’s like this one can roam the depths of the ocean on their own, using powerful sonars to map the ocean floor and even the geology below. By the 1960s, enthusiasts of artificial intelligence (AI) on computers began dreaming of cars smart enough to navigate ordinary streets on their own. Early AI pioneers dreamed of breakthroughs that would bring human-like robots by the millennium.
ARGO Project, Universities of Parma and Pavia? An offshoot of the European PROMETHEUS project, the ARGO team drove their Lancia Thema testbed car 1200 miles around Italy in 1996, 94% of the time in autonomous mode.
Sebastian Thrun, team leader for Stanley, winner of the 2005 Grand Challenge.Thrun lost a friend to an auto accident in his youth, which motivated him to research self-driving.
Several factors made the difference: Better software for road-following and collision avoidance, and improved radar and laser sensors. Like many emerging technologies, self-driving has found uses in specialized applications long before reaching the general public.
Don’t forget that more and more self-driving features also come as options on high end conventional cars, like the BMWs and Volvos that keep lanes, self-park, and brake for emergencies. Google, of course, is famously working on self-driving systems for the open road, with full autonomy as an explicit goal. Nissan self-driving carThe first such car to be permitted on Japanese roads, Nissan’s Autonomous Drive test car has been taking dignitaries for a ride – including Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. Dual-mode autonomous or piloted forklift, SiemensOff public roads, driverless vehicles harvest the wheat for your breakfast cereal, move goods in factories, and much more. Google over the past few years has been hard at work developing all sorts of cool and futuristic self-driving car technologies. All kidding aside, we’re still many years away from a world where we can just hop in a car, type in a destination, and then relax as the car does all the work.
Jared Leto’s turn in Suicide Squad is the latest reminder that the technique has become more about ego and marketing than good performances. Of all the stories surfacing about the new DC Comics film Suicide Squad—from the dismal reviews to the box-office reports—the most disconcerting are the ones that detail how Jared Leto got into his role as the Joker. Watching Leto tell one disturbing tale after another makes one thing abundantly clear: Method acting is over.
The presidential candidate has resurrected divisive GOP campaign tactics that target and alienate minorities. Earlier this week, the Republican National Committee hired three new staffers to assist with African American outreach.
These cynical methods are precisely what the leaders of the Party of Lincoln have spent the last decade trying to bury.
So instead of heading to law school this fall, she’ll be teaching constitutional law to a group of 10th graders at Brooklyn’s Urban Assembly School for Law and Justice, one of eight recent Harvard graduates who will step into New York City classrooms as part of a teacher-preparation program launching this year. In a touching Medium post a few days ago, the writer and programmer Paul Ford shared what he thinks is the secret to his politeness. I once went to a party and met a very beautiful woman whose job was to help celebrities wear Harry Winston jewelry. In 2006, Donald Trump made plans to purchase the Menie Estate, near Aberdeen, Scotland, aiming to convert the dunes and grassland into a luxury golf resort. Each year, I keep a running list of exceptional nonfiction that I encounter as I publish The Best of Journalism, an email newsletter that I curate weekly for its subscribers. Washington’s reliance on private contractors to fight its wars has mutated into a strategic vulnerability.
Ten years earlier, the Rwandan genocide left a trail of ash and tears in its wake, claiming 800,000 lives in 90 days—nearly a soul a minute.
Fifteen years ago this September 11, 19 terrorists, using four jetliners as guided missiles, killed 2,977 people—and enveloped the country in fear. Barack Obama remembers that after the second plane hit, he left the Chicago building that housed his state-Senate office.
The history of science has been distorted by a longstanding conviction that correct theories about nature are always the most elegant ones. Imagine you’re a scientist with a set of results that are equally well predicted by two different theories.
This, it’s often said, is just where you need a hypothetical tool fashioned by the 14th-century English Franciscan friar William of Ockham, one of the most important thinkers of the Middle Ages. Occam’s razor is often stated as an injunction not to make more assumptions than you absolutely need. In a StoryCorps animation, Patrick Haggerty remembers the remarkable advice he got from his dairy farmer dad.

Autonomous vehicles detect surroundings using radar, lidar, GPS, Odometry, and computer vision.
Cognitive computing (CC) describes technology platforms that broadly speaking, are based on the scientific disciplines of Artificial Intelligence and Signal Processing. Nissan, Toyota, Audi and the ride-hailing service Uber are among those also working on a self-driving technology.
Mercedes is preparing customers for a future in which self-driving car design will be fundamentally different from what they’re used to. I wish to convey my greetings and felicitations to my fellow Filipinos in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia on the occasion of the 118th Anniversary of the Proclamation of Philippine Independence which reminds us, once again, of our inspiring history, and our heroes’ selfless sacrifices. This year’s theme, “Kalayaan 2016: Pagkakaisa, Pag-aambagan, Pagsulong”, reaffirms the Filipino nation’s collective resolve to continue striving for the Philippine’s pursuit for unity and peace to create a more prosperous and equitable nation.
Over the years, the Philippines and Saudi Arabia have been enjoying close bilateral ties, not only because the Kingdom plays a good host to Filipino workers, but the two countries have been collaborating and coordinating in various fields of endeavors — political, trade and investment, labor and culture — for their mutual benefits.
I am certain that these close relations between the two countries will be further strengthened as they continue their engagements in various fields of cooperation and share common interests in the international fora. Unlike Mars rovers or sailboats, cars need to navigate the complex world of city streets, passing inches away from fragile, litigious human beings.
But with the first self-propelled vehicles came the need to have an alert human guide the craft at every moment, or risk disaster. This device uses ropes to connect something like a weathervane to the boat’s tiller, so that the craft stays on course even with shifting winds.
The latter adopted their guiding tracks more to support their huge weight than for directional control, but tracks serve both ends. By the early 1940s the German V-1 drone bomb was buzzing its way to London on stubby wings.
Developed in the 1860s by Robert Whitehead, self-propelled torpedoes initially had only simple guidance systems for keeping a constant course and depth.
Joined by GM’s automated highway plans in its seminal 1939 Futurama ride, the basic driverless dream has changed little in the ensuing decades. Visitors rode for a third of a mile in audio-equipped chairs through the 35,738 square foot scale model of an imagined world of 1960, complete with automated highways. But American designer and futurist Norman Bel Geddes mated the Autobahn vision with the sorts of electronic speed and collision control systems common to railroads. Prime goals remain safety, speed, access, more cars sharing the road, intelligent intersections, and reducing congestion. Magnets in the car tracked a steel cable embedded in the road; control towers managed overall traffic flow.
However distant or exotic, the sea, the air, and even the surface of Mars are relatively forgiving environments for self-guiding vehicles. Both the Mars 2 and Mars 3 missions carried landers with sled-like Prop-M autonomous rovers, which were meant to roam short distances around the lander on an umbilical cord. Nuclear-equipped ballistic missiles were some of the first autonomous vehicles to be guided by digital computers.
Similar models were used to search for missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 at a depth of 20,000 feet. Along with Shakey the robot at neighboring SRI, the Stanford Cart pioneered techniques for navigating through an unfamiliar environment with artificial intelligence and machine vision. A car whose ”mental” model mistakes a pedestrian for her reflection in a puddle can be a dangerous thing indeed. Dickmanns’ laboratory substantially pioneered practical self-driving technology; this van tested three generations of systems.
This pioneering computerized driverless car achieved speeds of up to 20 miles per hour, by tracking white street markers with machine vision. The winning Stanley VW Touareg team was headed by Stanford Artificial Intelligence Laboratory professor Sebastian Thrun. Defense Advanced Research Projects Administration (DARPA) challenged dozens of teams then working on autonomous vehicles to compete for a $1 million prize. Designed to shuttle passengers around a closed campus, its low 12mph top speed lets it make a full stop for unexpected obstacles. In the pit mines of northern Australia, trucks the size of a spacious house rumble over gravel roads without a human touch. While their manufacturers are eager to point out that such cars augment your skillful driving, rather than replace it, some systems are getting so powerful that distinctions blur. But from Toyota to Nissan, several other companies are quietly chasing very similar dreams. Some futurists feel that self-driving taxi “pods” could one day replace much public transit. With an extensive array of sensors, Google’s autonomous cars are designed to safely navigate through city streets with ease. In addition to traversing through a myriad of governmental regulations, autonomous driving technology is still relatively new and needs a whole lot of refinement before it becomes part of our everyday living. Leto was reportedly so committed to the part that he gifted the cast and crew with a litany of horrible items: used condoms, a dead pig, a live rat. Not the technique itself, which has fueled many of cinema’s greatest performances and can be a useful way of approaching difficult roles. In conversations with new acquaintances, Ford asks plenty of questions and lets the other person do the talking. I could tell that she was disappointed to be introduced to this rumpled giant in an off-brand shirt, but when I told her that her job sounded difficult to me she brightened and spoke for 30 straight minutes about sapphires and Jessica Simpson.
He and the estate’s owner, Tom Griffin, sat down to discuss the transaction at the Cock & Bull restaurant.
I was in Burundi, sipping a Coke with Domitien Ndayizeye, the country’s then-president, U.S.
Since then, Rwanda had recovered, but neighboring Burundi remained at war with itself, ravaged by infighting with Hutus massacring Tutsis and vice versa.
It was the first sustained attack on American soil since the bombing of Pearl Harbor, which was a far-off military base. Not just to disease, tornadoes, accidents, or criminals, but to the kinds of enemies that had always threatened others but never us. Called Ockam’s razor (more commonly spelled Occam’s razor), it advises you to seek the more economical solution: In layman’s terms, the simplest explanation is usually the best one.
And while these cars will ultimately be safer and cleaner than their manual counterparts, they can’t completely avoid accidents altogether.

For decades, the Saudi people have acknowledged, appreciated and given recognition to the Filipinos in the Kingdom for their contribution to its progress. This article explores both the history of autonomous vehicles in general, and that elusive goal of a car that drives itself. Several groups say they are now close to making it a reality.
The modern experience of driving was born – that peculiar mix of anxiety, alertness, and boredom. Besides reducing accidents and congestion, such cars might liberate city centers by eliminating the need for most parking. By the 1920s, a few began to dream of transforming roads into something more like a modern freeway system, where controlled access would simultaneously raise speeds and reduce accidents. His spectacular Futurama ride for General Motors at the 1939 World’s Fair also imagined trench-like lanes that would keep cars apart in their own “tracks.” The idea was to drive to the freeway normally, then engage the automatic systems and kick back until your exit. There are no children to dart out in their path; no traffic lights, or distracting billboards. Bulging cold-war budgets let designer build these with still bleeding-edge semiconductors instead of fragile vacuum tubes. This early example for the submarine-launched Polaris missile was designed by the MIT Instrumentation Laboratory, which later developed the Apollo guidance computers that landed on the moon. Had a parachute not failed to deploy, the Soviet Mars 2 rover might have been crawling the surface of Mars on its own that year. Air Force and CIA’s infamous Predator has been used for surveillance since 1995, and for remote killing since 2001. In the 1980s, German pioneer Ernst Dickmanns got a Mercedes van to drive hundreds of highway miles autonomously, a tremendous feat especially with the computing power of the time.
Dickmanns’ 1993 VaMP Mercedes sedan would cover thousands of miles in traffic at up to 110 mph as part of the massive Eureka PROMETHEUS project. He later co-founded Google’s self-driving effort and Google [x]The first year’s crop of entrants failed miserably, traveling barely a few miles before crashing.
While machines lag behind animals in interpreting their environments, a car that always “knows” what’s around it can focus its interpretive skills on variables that change. It’s only designed for closed environments, like a resort, and its top speed is 12 miles an hour, or about the same as gasoline powered cars in 1895.
Combine harvesters and other farm vehicles are increasingly outfitted with self-driving capabilities, as are specialized vehicles in warehouses, factories, and other industrial environments. Today, you can take a limited version from Heathrow’s Terminal Five to the parking lot or public transit stations. To wit, a report earlier in the week relayed how fixed-gear bikes can confuse Google’s self-driving cars. When the Republican nominee announced his stable of economic advisers on August 5, he was promptly criticized for failing to include any women. A former lieutenant governor of New York, McCaughey (pronounced “McCoy”) is a veteran fixture among the conservative think-tank set. To get into the character’s twisted mindset, he also watched footage of brutal crimes online. But Leto’s stories show how going to great lengths to inhabit a character is now as much a marketing tool as it is an actual technique—one used to lend an air of legitimacy, verisimilitude, and importance to a performance no matter its quality. He tries not to ask what they do for a living, but if it comes to that, he responds to their job description—whatever it is—with, “Wow. Griffin recalls that Trump was a hard-nosed negotiator, reluctant to give in on even the tiniest details. I could not read or note every worthy article that was published last calendar year and I haven't included any paywalled articles or anything published at The Atlantic. In 2004, the United States had intelligence that Hutu extremists wanted to trigger a new genocide that would end Tutsis once and for all.
This massacre hit the center of our government and blasted away part of our most iconic skyline. Filipinos will continue its participation in the development of the Kingdom, particularly in the realization of its newly-launched National Transformation Plan under Saudi Vision 2030. Semi-autonomous military drones kill from the air, and robot vacuum cleaners confuse our pets. Related visions involved magnetic trails built into the road’s surface, or physical slots or troughs, or train-like rails engaging hidden steel wheels on the inside of each tire. Mostly, there’s just a lot less delicate stuff rushing by in close proximity – other vehicles, pedestrians, outdoor restaurants, flimsy wooden buildings. The Predator is semi-autonomous, but its Hellfire missiles are fired only by a human operator. But the next year an odd flotilla of driverless cars and trucks were crossing huge swathes of California’s Mojave desert with nary a scratch.
If you’re not ready to buy your own robocar – the Navia costs $250,000 – you can still ride in another example at London’s Heathrow airport. For decades, her specialty has been fighting against health-care reform—Hillarycare in the 1990s and Obamacare more recently. Leto’s Joker is the latest evidence that the prestige of method acting has dimmed—thanks to the technique’s overuse by those seeking award-season glory or a reputation boost, as well as its history of being shaped by destructive ideas of masculinity. But, as Michael D’Antonio writes in his recent biography of Trump, Never Enough, Griffin’s most vivid recollection of the evening pertains to the theatrics. It left a stench that New Yorkers could smell weeks later as remains continued to be recovered from the ashes. The Voyager space probe, launched in 1977, recently became the first human object to travel beyond our solar system. For a guy whose popularity among women is slightly lower than that of a urinary tract infection, the situation could not stand.
He has demonstrated a steady penchant for resurrecting racially divisive campaign tactics of the past, tactics that simultaneously ignored black voters and used race as a wedge to attract disgruntled white voters in the South. It was as if the golden-haired guest sitting across the table were an actor playing a part on the London stage.
The Hutu rebels attacked the capital in November 2004, in an attempt to assassinate the president and spark mass killing. A fierce night battle erupted in the streets of Bujumbura, and the extremists were killed or beaten back into the jungles of the Congo.

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