|Anthony Levandowski. Picture from Wired.com (which got it from NY Times)|
Uber Tech / Ottomotto Patent
|Part of the drawings from US Patent No. 9582003|
But it’s interesting now, because Waymo (the Google-owned spin-off) is now suing Otto (the Uber-owned company). And Anthony, an ex-Google employee, has his name in numerous patents filed by Google as co-inventor, for example, US Patent No. US 20160291134 A1, “Long Range Steerable LIDAR System“.
Anthony is the link.
Fox Business describes it as follows: “Waymo, a self-driving car company spun off from Google, sues Uber. Waymo alleges that Anthony Levandowski — a former top manager for Google’s self-driving car project and now the executive running Uber’s self-driving car division — stole pivotal technology propelling Uber’s effort to build autonomous vehicles.”
Highways are the backbone of America. They are the country’s original network, and have sparked new communities and businesses in their wake. Today, U.S. interstate highways total 222,000 miles and carry the 4.3 million commercial trucks that have become just as powerful a symbol of the American transportation system as the roads themselves.
But on these highways, these very same trucks are causing an unacceptable number of fatalities every year, and truck drivers have experienced a gradual decline in quality of life as conditions worsen and expectations rise. It is this that has compelled us at Otto to deliver the self-driving technology that will help transform our transportation system and bring safety to our roads.
On any given day, trucks move 70 percent of all cargo in the U.S. — that’s 14 billion tons of freight annually. In the coming years, those numbers will continue to tick upwards to keep pace with our growing demand for even more goods, delivered more quickly.
But what was a marvel of engineering and innovation a century ago is now no longer able to keep up with modern day demands. One in seven trucks is driving empty on the road, contributing to the severe congestion on our highways. Large trucks make up one percent of vehicles on the road but create 28 percent of road-based pollution.
These issues are compounded further by the fact that highways — which we already rely on so heavily — also have a poor safety record. Over the years, we’ve become complacent about the significant toll of traffic-related accidents, especially when it comes to trucks. While trucks drive just 5.6 percent of all U.S. miles, they’re at fault for nearly 9.5 percent of all driving fatalities: in recent years, on average, eight people die on the road due to truck accidents every day.
We currently lack both the infrastructure and personnel to support the surge in demand for trucking. In 2015 the American Trucking Association reported a shortage of nearly 50,000 drivers, projected to grow to nearly 150,000 by 2020. This is no small gap to fill, especially given the grueling nature of the job and the declining conditions in which the current 1.6 million truck drivers in the U.S. are expected to operate — something explored in this recent Atlantic article in detail.
It’s time to rethink the way we move goods on the road.
Noble thoughts. And May 2016 was also when the 9582003 patent was filed.
By the next blog post, Otto’s blog announced that they were joining Uber.
When we founded Otto, we committed to rethinking transportation. Today we are taking a leap forward by joining the Uber team to deliver on that promise.
Together with Uber, we will create the future of commercial transportation: first, self-driving trucks that provide drivers unprecedented levels of safety; and second, a platform that matches truck drivers with the right load wherever they are.
Things were picking up pace. Otto was going places.
Until Waymo sued this year.
There are various allegations now being made by Waymo against Anthony.
- Anthony downloaded more than 14,000 documents from Waymo’s design server;
- The documents comprise more than 9.7 gigabytes of information, and include the design for the circuit board of Waymo;
- Anthony had also downloaded confidential information pertaining to Waymo’s lidar sensors;
- In Decemer 2016, Waymo allegedly receives an email for circuit board drawings for Otto, which look remarkably like those of Waymo.
How do Google’s self-driving cars work?
|Here’s a self-driving Waymo-branded car.|
|Here’s a self-driving Google-branded car.|
Read my previous post
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