Alex Kersten profile picture Alex Kersten 2 years ago 89
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Tesla Is Changing Its Autopilot System Because People Are Being Stupid With It

The main man behind Tesla has said that measures will be taken to stop people acting like idiots when using the car's Autopilot system

Remind me later
This image shows what some people will get up to while driving in Autopilot, and Musk says it needs to stop.
This image shows what some people will get up to while driving in Autopilot, and Musk says it needs to stop.

Tesla’s Autopilot function has been in the news for a few months now. We’ve seen a bearded man get freaked out by the system, learned that serial Gumballer Alex Roy used the tech for much of his recent coast-to-coast record, and even saw a video of a Tesla-owning Uber driver whose car saved the day when cruising in Autopilot.

Then, there are the people who flout the Autopilot law by taking the vehicle off the car maker’s prescribed routes, which the system isn’t ready for. As this video demonstrates…

It’s because of videos like this, that Elon Musk said the following in the company’s third-quarter earnings conference call:

"There have been some fairly crazy videos on YouTube. This is not good. And we will be putting some additional constraints on when Autopilot can be activated to minimize the possibility of people doing crazy things."

Exactly what these constraints will be, remains unclear, but it could mean that the Autopilot function might not work unless the driver’s hand/hands are on the wheel at all times. For that reason, shaving your face might become more tricky when on the way to work…

Either way, Musk is right to babysit Autopilot users. After all, us human are inherently inquisitive, so it’s only a matter of time before drivers start swapping seats at 100mph or before couples make use of the system to join the Autopilot mile high club. And remember, Autopilot is still in its beta phase (it is learning and becoming more intelligent all the time), so to trust it with your life is just plain stupid.