Cleantech & EV'sNews

Tesla’s own former AI engineer trolls the company: ‘full self-wiping’

Tesla’s own former head of AI infrastructure, Tim Zaman, is impressed with the latest FSD v12 Full Self-Driving software, but he trolls the company’s AI effort.

Up until last year, Tim Zaman was the head of AI infrastructure and platform at Tesla, where he worked on AI products since 2019.

He was among the presenters at Tesla’s AI Day in 2022.

Zaman was also among the engineers that Elon Musk brought from Tesla to Twitter, now X, to help as the CEO was firing more than half the staff at the social media platform.

In 2023, he brought his talents to Google DeepMind.

Zaman is active on X and he commented on the recently released FSD Beta v12 update:

He is referencing Tesla’s AI-powered automatic wipers, which had inconsistent performance.

Like most premium vehicles today, Tesla has an automatic wiper system that automatically matches the speed of the wipers to the intensity of the rain or snow.

However, unlike most other automakers, Tesla doesn’t use a rain sensor for its system.

Instead, the automaker is using its Autopilot cameras to feed its computer vision neural net to determine the speed for the wipers.

It has been deployed in Tesla vehicles since 2018, but many owners have been complaining that it is not as accurate as other systems using rain sensors.

Tesla’s auto wipers often start when there’s no precipitation or their speed don’t match the actual intensity of the precipitation.

Over the last few years, CEO Elon Musk has been talking about Tesla improving on the system with the release a new “Deep Rain” neural net.

Electrek’s Take

Top comment by Indy

Liked by 10 people

Why do people brag about features that are inferior to what already exists?

It risks damaging your brand and future sales.

I have no interest in Tesla no matter the specs, prices, CEO, fanbase, support, etc. I simply do not trust them to make a vehicle I want to drive fully manually, let alone claimed features here and there.

Technology for technology’s sake is not cute, charming, or a desirable feature for me, it is the opposite. It turns me away because I have worked in tech for 35 years and seen what it does to the rest of a product line.

I hope Tesla can take a hard look at its leadership and work towards producing cars that work well, designed well, and don’t lose the users’ trust.

I’m apparently an outlier, I understand, as it’s one of the most popular car companies now. And I’m OK with that. I don’t need to be “right,” or popular, or “cool.”

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I know he is just joking, but he has a point. Tesla’s auto wipers have been subpar compared to systems using rain sensors at best – and completely useless at worst.

Personally, I have to shut the auto wipers off every other time, especially in the winter, because they either don’t activate fast enough when the precipitation starts or they go crazy when they don’t have to.

If those are powered by neural nets, it’s hard to understand how Tesla can solve this AI problem, but we should believe that it will solve the much bigger software problem of self-driving?

Again, I know Zaman is joking here, but it’s still interesting that an AI expert in the know (he was at Tesla as recently as last year) is pointing it out. Even if it’s just to troll.

Author: Fred Lambert
Source: Electrek

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