I had an idea as to how Tesla’s Autopilot could save even more lives. Unfortunately, this idea was inspired by something sad, but with an ending that didn’t result in a fatality. Earlier today, a friend of mine was in a car accident. She drives a van and had recently had a lot of health issues that landed her in the hospital last year. One of those is her heart. She’d just been put on a new medication. Today, the medication caused her to blackout and crash her car. She’s fine and only had minor injuries. I’m grateful that she’s okay.
This made me think: could Autopilot sense when a driver is in distress and be able to take over if they are about to crash. I replied to one of Elon’s tweets asking this and he promptly replied: “Operating on a prime directive of crash avoidance, it could automatically intervene when crash probability is approaching 100%.”
Operating on a prime directive of crash avoidance, it could automatically intervene when crash probability is approaching 100%
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 8, 2020
In other words, yes, it could one day take over and prevent an accident. There are many scenarios in which this would be vital. If it was possible to have that as an automatic feature for all customers, this would be ideal. Another suggestion, which I find brilliant, was added by Fourth Root.
You may want to consider an emergency override. In very rare cases crashing is necessary, such as fleeing attackers or getting off railroad tracks.
— Fourth Root (@Fauble2000) May 8, 2020
Having been in a situation where I had to fight off a gunman trying to get me to do things I didn’t want to do, I am crazy enough to crash a car if someone jumped in with a gun. So, in these rare cases that crashes are the better or safer option, having an emergency override would definitely come in handy. This brings me to an idea by Third Row Tesla’s Kristen Netten.
Gun detection … car could have a voice activated code word overdrive to drive you to the nearest police/ emergency location.
— K10✨ (@Kristennetten) May 8, 2020
This, in my opinion, is genius. Having a code word that would alert your Tesla that you are in distress and, depending on the type of distress, take you to the ER or to the police station. These ideas and the ability of a car to sense a driver in some type of distress sound like something out of a science fiction film, but the fact that they can and most likely will one day become reality shows just how far Tesla has truly advanced vehicles. Another thing that is a high priority, according to Elon Musk’s reply to Third Row Tesla, is improving map data and Autopilot’s ability to read speed limit signs.
Yes, this is a high priority
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 8, 2020
I think that one of the coolest things ever is getting to watch in real-time how Tesla is advancing the auto industry. Not only does Elon Musk listen to his customers, supporters, and shareholders, but he answers our questions, collaborates with ideas, and uses many brilliant suggestions to not just make a safer product, but to continually improve it with every update. This is one major reason why Tesla isn’t seen by many as just an auto manufacturer, but as a tech and data company.
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