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Waymo self-driving simulator is doing a century of driving daily

Release Date:2020-05-02


 Christian Puno


Waymo self-driving simulator is obtaining a century of driving experience every day. Artificial Intelligence (AI) continues to work from home to improve the simulation.

The ongoing pandemic affects a lot of industries and it includes the car industry. Waymo suspends their self-driving test programs due to the pandemic. Other car companies continue to work amid ongoing quarantine. But, Waymo chooses to work from home with their self-driving simulator.

Driving experience

On-road testing is crucial for self-driving cars. It works the same with the simulation. AI allows the Waymo to train while at home. In 24 hours, the Waymo self-driving simulator can gain up to 100 years of driving.

As of now, Waymo holds a simulation of 15 billion miles. It is like going to the moon 31, 394 times.

“Waymo’s simulation technology allows us to create completely simulated scenarios using data from what we’ve seen and experienced driving in the real world. In a simulation, we can manipulate the environment around our Waymo Driver to gauge how it will respond to various situations like continuous oncoming traffic while making an unprotected run.”

Waymo self-driving simulator uses the 20 million miles of real-life on-road test data. Putting the AI in the same scenarios allows it to gain driving experience. It also allows them to handle difficult road situations that can happen in real life.

Working from home

Most people stay at home during a pandemic and watch Netflix. It is not the cause for Waymo. Despite working from home, the company continues to improve Waymo self-driving simulator. The Waymo team utilizes the latest technology. It allows them to continue business despite the pandemic.

Waymo has its web-based versions of their essential tools. It allows the engineers to test and simulate from home. Engineers can focus on difficult road situations. They call it the “corner cases.” These cases rarely occur in the real world. But, it still needs proper planning.

Engineers can customize the difficulty of the situation. They can increase the speed. Adding a cyclist or another car is also possible. It is to see how the system reacts. Engineers can also create artificial scenarios.

Waymo can also simulate passengers. They use the feedback from real people in creating machine learning models. It will help them to predict how driving behavior can affect passenger comfort. They also use it in fine-tuning the cars. It ensures a smooth driving experience. They use these models to make sure that every passenger in the car is comfortable.

After the pandemic, the company expects massive improvement of the Waymo self-driving simulator.

Images courtesy of All Used Cars for Sale/Pinterest, The EconomicTimes/Pinterest

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