A Friday night cruise with Elon Musk has shown the world just how far Tesla’s Full Self-Driving has advanced and gave viewers a preview of real-world problems. To take a line from Rob Zombie, the latest iteration of FSD may be "More Human Than Human," which could be an issue.
"Nothing but net!" proclaimed Musk as he live-streamed to X.com, a video with more than 42 million views. The Tesla CEO referred to neural nets, the technology underpinning Version 12 of FSD. Tesla is removing 300,000-plus lines of code running the current FSD and is now relying on the car's neural networks to drive the car in V12.
Driving through Palo Alto, California, Musk, with Ashok Elluswamy, Tesla’s Director of Autopilot Software, sitting shotgun, picked random places for the Model S to drive to, and it did so smoothly and almost perfectly.
Technology Behind FSD
The test drive started with a construction zone, which was easily handled, but interestingly, at the end of the cones, the car wasn’t jerking over to find a lane immediately. Instead, like a confident human driver, it easily made its way to the lane with no oncoming traffic. We also watched as it effortlessly navigated speed bumps, roundabouts, pedestrians, bicyclists, and, of course - traffic.
For those who have had successful drives with FSD, you may be thinking, what's the big deal? Musk underscored that this version of FSD does not rely on hard-coded programming or a constant internet connection to function. All necessary inference occurs locally, a significant departure from previous versions.
“This is all nets, baby, nothing but net,” Musk exclaimed, emphasizing the vehicle’s dependency on machine learning rather than programmed instructions. The software operates at full frame rate, taking eight cameras at 36 frames per second to decide what to do. No line of code tells the car what to do at an intersection, on the highway or around other vehicles.
The software was impressive to watch, with its countless improvements over the current V11 version of FSD. Musk's vehicle kept a reasonable speed throughout the drive, even though Autopilot was set to a maximum speed of 85 mph.
When Musk reached his destination, the vehicle also automatically pulled over to the side of the road to park itself instead of just stopping in the middle of the road like it does today.
The Real-World, Real Person Challenge
Instead, Tesla has shown the car countless videos of real-world driving so that it will learn what to do in those situations. But that has caused a problem. As the car noticeably did not come to full stops, Musk explained the challenge posed by the fact that less than 0.5% of drivers come to a complete stop at stop signs.
This makes it incredibly difficult to program the vehicle with such sparse data on people obeying the law. This lack of data highlights Tesla's obstacles in training its AI systems to operate in real-world scenarios where human drivers frequently do not adhere to the rules.
Musk's FSD V12 Stream in 10 Minutes
Watch the highlights of Musk's 45-minute video stream below.
This appeared in a few other instances where the car behaved like a confident driver, not endangering anyone but technically breaking the rules of the road. FSD suddenly went from the nervous teenager learning to drive to a good driver. But we know how the NHTSA feels about Tesla not following the rules.
In February, the watchdog issued a recall stating that Tesla was acting too human — I mean not following the rules. It cited FSD Beta software:
Traveling or turning through certain intersections during a stale yellow traffic light;
The perceived duration of the vehicle’s static position at certain intersections with a stop sign, particularly when the intersection is clear of any other road users;
Adjusting vehicle speed while traveling through certain variable speed zones, based on detected speed limit signage and/or the vehicle’s speed offset setting that is adjusted by the driver.
Yes, I’m sure we all stop at every yellow light, come to a complete stop at every stop sign, and never go over the speed limit.
Kudos to Tesla and Musk for this real-world demonstration, and if there was any speculation that it was rigged, Musk did have to intervene at an advanced left-hand signal. This small glitch, Musk reassured, could be addressed with further training and data collection. There will be a lot of training announced Tesla’s commitment to invest $4 billion over the next two years in training computing, signaling the company's dedication to perfecting this groundbreaking technology.
A glance at X at any moment reveals a continuous stream of fresh, intriguing, and sometimes eccentric content revolving around the Cybertruck. Since its production debut in December 2023, Tesla's latest sensation has commanded attention. Cybertruck's presence grows with each new owner, spawning a flurry of YouTube videos, social media posts on X, and articles across news outlets.
Bullet Test: Adin Ross's Impact
YouTuber Adin Ross recently subjected the vehicle to gunfire, testing its ability to withstand ballistic impacts. Ross's video, which gained significant traction online, captured the Cybertruck enduring 9mm ammunition without sustaining critical damage, further validating Tesla's claims of creating an apocalypse-proof vehicle. While such extreme tests may seem unconventional, they underscore Cybertruck's reputation for toughness and resilience in challenging environments.
Thwarting Break-In Attempts
Beyond its celebrity allure, the Cybertruck has proven its practicality in real-world scenarios, demonstrating its resilience against break-in attempts. Recent incidents have highlighted the vehicle's robust construction, with its stainless steel exterior and shatter-resistant windows effectively deterring vandalism. Despite attempts to breach the vehicle's security, the Cybertruck emerged relatively unscathed, reaffirming its status as a reliable choice for safety-conscious consumers.
Snow Trax Modification
One of the most captivating developments surrounding Cybertruck is the innovative CyberTrax modification, spearheaded by automotive modification luminary Dave Sparks. With an eye for adventure and a penchant for pushing boundaries, Sparks has embarked on a project that promises to transform the Cybertruck into a snow-conquering beast. The CyberTrax modification, aimed at enhancing the vehicle's off-road capabilities, has garnered widespread attention and support, even earning recognition from Tesla itself.
I was trying to hold off on posting any videos of the CyberTrax until we had the full YouTube video ready to go but I’m impatient and really just wanna share it with you right now, so here ya go….enjoy 😎
The Cybertruck's durability extends beyond security features, as evidenced by its performance in road accidents. In instances of rear-end collisions, the vehicle's stainless steel exoskeleton has shown remarkable resilience, minimizing damage and ensuring occupant safety. While concerns persist regarding the lack of a traditional crumple zone, Cybertruck's design philosophy prioritizes structural integrity, providing peace of mind for drivers in unforeseen circumstances.
Celebrity Ownership Expands
The list of celebrities acquiring a Cybertruck continues to grow. Music icon, Jay-Z and Beyoncé's recent purchase of a Cybertruck, styled in a sleek matte black finish reminiscent of a Batmobile, made the roads on social media. The power couple's endorsement of the Cybertruck reinforces its status as a symbol of luxury and innovation in the automotive world. Their Cybertruck delivery came just days after Kim Kardashian lit up social media with her “Cool Car Pool Mom” post.
Jay-Z and Beyoncé have been Tesla owners and fans for many years. That's why I am more than happy that they got the Cybertruck before everybody else ❤️ pic.twitter.com/Hc61ILKMIZ
Edmunds put the Cybertruck to the test, equipped with all-terrain tires. The vehicle surpassed initial estimates by covering 334 miles (537km) on a single charge, outperforming advertised figures and showcasing its efficiency on the road. For more range, Tesla has a range extender available.
Ramping Up Production and Expansion
As Tesla continues to ramp up production of the Cybertruck, anticipation grows for its availability in international markets. With early units already sold in the U.S., Tesla's Vice President of Public Policy and Business Development has confirmed plans for expansion into Canada, signaling further growth opportunities for the electric pickup. Despite regulatory challenges in certain regions, Tesla remains committed to delivering the Cybertruck's innovative design to a global audience.
In conclusion, Tesla's Cybertruck continues to captivate audiences with its groundbreaking performance, celebrity endorsements, and ongoing advancements. From surpassing range expectations to withstanding gunfire, the Cybertruck has proven its mettle in various real-world scenarios, reaffirming its status as a revolutionary addition to the automotive landscape.
Tesla has added a new menu to its app that organizes various settings
Today, Tesla has updated its app to introduce a new menu that reorganizes vehicle, home energy, and account settings in a more logical and more discoverable manner.
Tesla updated its app to version 4.30 back on February 15th for iOS and followed suit with an Android update shortly thereafter. The app update included some significant changes such as a new Home Energy demo, Wall Connector charging charts, and a better view of your last Supercharger session.
However, the addition of the new menu arrived today thanks to under-the-hood changes Tesla had already made.
Tesla has added a presumably AI-based chat assistant to help out with common customer queries. The assistant button can be found in the support section of the app, which is now accessed by tapping on the new menu at the top right corner of the app. Once the menu is open, tap the question mark icon to open the support section. At the bottom of the screen, you should see a chat bubble that will bring up the chat assistant.
Tesla added a chat assistant to its app
The assistant starts by asking you which product you need help with. Afterward, you can ask it any question. Right now the assistant appears to bring up mostly relevant parts of the owner’s manual or Tesla’s support pages, without necessarily answering the question directly. For example, asking it a specific question such as ‘Until what state of charge will Sentry Mode remain activated?’ will bring up a section about Sentry Mode, and not immediately reveal that Sentry Mode will automatically turn off when the vehicle reaches 20% state of charge.
It’s not immediately clear whether Tesla is using AI for this feature, but providing an assistant is a great idea and one that will likely ease the burden on Tesla service. Hopefully, Tesla will continue to build upon the feature so that it becomes more useful and can answer customer questions directly.
The changes in the latest Tesla app don't require an app update
The main change in the app is the new menu which replaces the user's profile picture.
Since this area was already used to change Tesla account and app settings and Tesla product preferences, the menu icon is more intuitive than an avatar.
However, after tapping into the menu, the user is greeted with a completely reorganized section. Instead of featuring horizontally scrolling tiles for different products and features, which was getting fairly long, Tesla has consolidated the features and now presents them vertically.
In the new profile section, Tesla has grouped lumped in account information and app settings. This includes personal information, order history as well as app settings, including calendar sync and app notifications.
Charging is now a top-level feature instead of being buried in the Account section. This section highlights your most recent Supercharger charging session which was redesigned during the 4.30 app update. It also lets you manage your payment method and view your Supercharger history.
My Products is the new way to add or remove Tesla products from your account. It now nicely displays all of your existing Tesla products and lets you dig into each one. By diving into each product, you're able to give access to another user, remove the product from your Tesla account if applicable, rename the product, or jump into the product view.
Vehicle and Home Screens
If you have a Tesla vehicle and a Home product, such as Solar or a Wall Connector, the way to switch between products is to swipe to the side. However, this wasn't very intuitive and Tesla has now added a dropdown next to the Home or Vehicle name that brings up a quick menu that lets you jump to other products.
If you already have app version 4.30, there's no need to update your app, just open the existing app and you should see the new menu in the top right. However, if you're still on Tesla app 4.29.5 or earlier, head over to the app store and upgrade to the latest Tesla app to see these new features.
TeslaFi logs your drives and charging sessions, letting you keep a log of your vehice's activity. We highly recommend checking them out if you use your car for business trips and would like to keep track of reimbursements, if you like to see how much you spend on charging or if you just love statistics. Visit their site and see everything they have to offer!
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Tesla Android Project enables you to run Android apps in your Tesla. The platform is Open Source and you can deploy it on your own Raspberry Pi 4. Consider supporting the initiative by donating or purchasing the Compute Module 4 Bundle that delivers the best experience. Get $20 off by using the code: NotATeslaApp
The official Tesla app only notifies you if your car is broken into. By installing Sentry Pro on your phone, you will be notified for all Sentry Mode events. Stay connected and avoid potential surprises by receiving notifications. Stop constantly checking the cameras to ensure safety. Check only when necessary, save battery and get peace of mind. Get a 7 day free trial here!