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Tech Week: Autonomous Vehicles May Never Be Fully Autonomous, CA Lawsuit against Amazon & More

September 16, 2022 (2 min read)

Autonomous Vehicles May Always Require Human Supervision

Autonomous vehicle (AV) industry executives and experts say remote human supervisors may always be needed to help robot drivers deal with unexpected incidents or so-called “edge cases.” In addition to employing safety drivers to sit behind the wheel of their cars, many AV startups also use remote human supervisors who monitor video feeds from multiple AVs, sometimes from hundreds of miles away, and step in to help robot drivers that run into trouble.

Koosha Kaveh, CEO of Imperium Drive, said the number of edge cases would drop as more self-driving cars – with more predictable drivers than human ones – get on the road, “but you will never get to zero edge cases.”

“Even decades from now you will not get to 100% truly autonomous vehicles,” he said. (REUTERS, INSURANCE JOURNAL)

CA Sues Amazon over Merchant Contracts

California has filed a lawsuit against Amazon accusing the company of engaging in anticompetitive contracting practices with its third-party merchants, in violation of the state’s Unfair Competition Law and its Cartwright Act, an antitrust law.

“Amazon coerces merchants into agreements that keep prices artificially high, knowing full well that they can’t afford to say no,” said California Attorney General Rob Bonta (D). (LOS ANGELES TIMES)

Ethereum Merge Goes Live

The Ethereum network’s major upgrade, the Merge, went live last week. The shift in the way the network verifies transactions from proof-of-work - involving miners and millions of highly specialized computers crunching complex math equations - to proof-of-stake, replacing miners with validators who’ve staked ether as collateral, is expected to cut the network’s energy consumption by over 99 percent. (CNBC)

Twitter Whistleblower Testifies before U.S. Senate Committee

Peiter “Mudge” Zatko, former head of security for Twitter, told the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee last week that security problems at the company “make it vulnerable to exploitation, causing real harm to real people.” In July Zatko filed a whistleblower complaint with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, the Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission, alleging the company puts user growth ahead of privacy and security. (CNET)

Twitter Shareholders Approve Musk Buyout Offer

Twitter shareholders voted last week to approve Elon Musk’s $44 billion offer to buy the company. The approval comes despite Musk’s recent efforts to back out of the deal, over which Twitter has sued him. The case is expected to go to trial in mid-October. (CNBC)

NFL Facing Proposed Class Action Suit over Data Sharing

An subscriber has filed a federal lawsuit against the National Football League for allegedly sharing subscribers’ personal data with Meta Platforms Inc.’s Facebook. The suit is seeking $2,500 in compensation for each individual who joins the class action, in addition to unspecified punitive damages. Similar lawsuits have been filed against Warner Bros. Discovery Inc., Huffington Post and Bloomberg LP. (BLOOMBERG, INSURANCE JOURNAL)

Tesla Facing Proposed Class Action Suit over Self-Driving Technology Claims

Tesla is facing a potential class action lawsuit over the advertising of its Autopilot and Full Self-Driving features. The suit alleges the company and its CEO Elon Musk have claimed since 2016 that the company’s self-driving technology was fully functioning or “just around the corner,” despite knowing it didn’t work and made vehicles unsafe. (REUTERS, INSURANCE JOURNAL)

-- Compiled by KOREY CLARK


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