This Company Wants To Make All Cars Capable Of Being Driverless
Drive.ai is a Silicon Valley startup working on a kit to retrofit your ride
If Drive.ai is a success, your first self-driving car might already be parked in the driveway.
The Silicon Valley start-up, founded recently by a team of former Stanford University Artificial Intelligence Lab products, is working on a software kit that can be used to retrofit existing vehicles.
“We started Drive.ai because we believe there’s a real opportunity to make our roads, our commutes, and our families safer,” the company announced in a statement on its blog, citing a statistic that more than one million people die each year worldwide in automobile accidents caused by human error.
At its foundation, Drive.ai is looking to use deep learning — which its founders consider the most effective form of artificial intelligence ever developed — to key a breakthrough in a field that giant companies such as Google and General Motors have been trying to master for years.
“Unlike other forms of AI, which involve programming many sets of rules, a deep learning algorithm learns more like a human brain. You provide examples, tagged and labeled by an expert, and the system starts to learn for itself — creating its own rules.”
Because the real world presents so many unpredictable scenarios, and the stakes for a self-driving vehicle are so high, traditional algorithm-based AI is simply not robust enough to safely guide an automobile, Drive.ai contends.
While testing the software on its vehicles, Drive.ai says that it has encountered such diverse obstacles as people doing cartwheels and a dog riding a skateboard behind a roller-blader. If a traditional AI system had no rule for a skateboarding dog, this scenario could result in an accident.
But the Drive.ai system aims to learn how to respond to ever-changing, real world situations the same way that a cautious human driver would.
Another key feature of the Drive.ai system is a dynamic, roof-mounted display that communicates with the drivers and pedestrians around it using words and even emojis.
“We don’t want people to just tolerate self-driving vehicles. We want people to love self-driving vehicles,” Drive.ai says.