Waymo, by most measures, is still the leader of the world’s autonomous vehicle effort. The company hit a historic milestone last year when it started its completely driverless taxi program in Arizona.
One person hired at the company was told its robot fleets would expand to nine cities within 18 months. Staff often discussed having solved “99% of the problem” of driverless cars. But it turns out that last 1% has been a killer.
Small disturbances like construction crews, bicyclists, left turns, and pedestrians remain headaches for computer drivers. Each city poses new, unique challenges, and right now, no driverless car from any company can gracefully handle rain, sleet or snow. Until these last few details are worked out, widespread commercialization of fully autonomous vehicles is all but impossible.
Read the article at Autoblog.