Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?


Autonomous Vehicles

Tesla Full Autonomy Coming “Hell Of A Lot Faster” Than You Think, Next-Gen Autopilot Solution To Be Focused Around “Narrow AI” & Neural Maps

The recent Tesla Quarter 2 financials call yielded a lot of new information, including some interesting new comments about the company’s progress towards the achievement of fully autonomous driving.

Of particular note was a series of comments made by CEO Elon Musk concerning the use of “increasingly sophisticated neural maps” and “narrow AI” as the company’s means of achieving full autonomy relatively faster than is currently expected.

The exact comments made by Musk were: “Well, again, major product announcements are not — I shouldn’t do those on an earnings call, obviously. And all I’d say is that full autonomy is going to come a hell of a lot faster than anyone thinks it will. And I think what we’ve got under development is going to blow people’s minds. It blows my mind, so.”

ELon Musk 2016 shareholder meeting QAAnd, when questioned about the obstacles in the way: “Well, full autonomy is really a software limitation. I mean the hardware is just to create full autonomy, so it’s really about developing advanced, narrow AI for the car to operate on. I want to emphasize narrow AI, it’s like not going to take over the world, but it needs to be really good at driving a car. So, increasingly sophisticated neural maps that can operate in reasonably sized computers in the car. That’s our focus. I’m very optimistic about this. It’s exciting, it blows me away, the progress we’re making. So I think if I’m this close to it and it’s blowing me away, it’s really going to blow other people away when they see it for the first time.”

What should someone make of that kind of relatively detail-free “sales talk?” As Musk has a pretty good track record to date on advancing technology faster than we think is possible, perhaps quite a lot.

How soon is “a hell of a lot faster?” In time for deployment in early Model 3s? That would be something, wouldn’t it?

If Tesla does manage to achieve a compelling, relatively reliable, fully autonomous driving technology years before any of the competitors, then it will likely lead to some big changes in the industry….

Just in case you haven’t read up on AI as much as cleantech, Teslarati provides some background here, noting that “narrow AI, also known as weak AI, defines non-sentient computer intelligence or AI that is focused on one narrow task. Weak AI is defined in contrast to either strong AI (a machine with consciousness, sentience and mind) or artificial general intelligence (a machine with the ability to apply intelligence to any problem, rather than just one specific problem). Wikipedia cites Apple’s Siri as an example of a narrow AI.”

Appreciate CleanTechnica’s originality? Consider becoming a CleanTechnica Member, Supporter, Technician, or Ambassador — or a patron on Patreon.
Have a tip for CleanTechnica, want to advertise, or want to suggest a guest for our CleanTech Talk podcast? Contact us here.

New Podcast: Cruise Talks Autonomous Driving Tech, Regulations, & Auto Design

New Podcast: Battery Mineral Mining Policies & Regional Trends

Written By

James Ayre's background is predominantly in geopolitics and history, but he has an obsessive interest in pretty much everything. After an early life spent in the Imperial Free City of Dortmund, James followed the river Ruhr to Cofbuokheim, where he attended the University of Astnide. And where he also briefly considered entering the coal mining business. He currently writes for a living, on a broad variety of subjects, ranging from science, to politics, to military history, to renewable energy.


#1 most loved electric vehicle, solar energy, and battery news & analysis site in the world.


Support our work today!


Power CleanTechnica: $3/Month

Tesla News Solar News EV News Data Reports


EV Sales Charts, Graphs, & Stats


Our Electric Car Driver Report

30 Electric Car Benefits

Tesla Model 3 Video

Renewable Energy 101 In Depth

solar power facts

Tesla News

EV Reviews

Home Efficiency

You May Also Like


A look at trends in the lithium industry, including forecasts for Tesla and reactions to Volkswagen Power Day.


If there is one achilles heel of the electric automobile, it’s the road trip. Even if the road trip is something we only very...


Italy's EV sales get a substantial boost in March as the first quarter of 2021 ends with electrifying new records. The year started with...

Autonomous Vehicles

It all started with a tweet. I guess that could start many chapters in the Book of Tesla. Less than an hour ago, Elon...

Copyright © 2021 CleanTechnica. The content produced by this site is for entertainment purposes only. Opinions and comments published on this site may not be sanctioned by and do not necessarily represent the views of CleanTechnica, its owners, sponsors, affiliates, or subsidiaries.