I can’t quite let go of the subject of self-driving cars. Let’s have a look at the cause of the deadly Uber crash that happened in March, and what everyone should take away from it.
You probably know the story, but let’s recap anyway: On March 18, a self-driving car struck a woman crossing the road in Tempe, Arizona. She was taken to the hospital, where she later died from her injuries. I covered the incident in my post Self-Driving Cars Must Be Banned Now!.
Since I wrote the thunderous entry, there has been some progress in Uber’s own investigation of the deadly March 18 crash. On May 7, The Information broke an exclusive story explaining what probably happened.
The Volvo XC90’s sensors detected 49-year-old Elaine Herzberg as she crossed the road, but the software decided it was a false positive. A “false positive” is a false alarm, i.e. the software decided that the sensors had detected something that could be ignored. As a result of that, the vehicle didn’t take evasive action, and Herzberg was hit by the car.