Turns Out Self-Driving Cars Are Completely Baffled By Kangaroos
This could be a bit of a problem.
People, specifically car companies, keep telling us that driverless vehicles are the way of the future. Still, it could be a while before they’re up and running in Australia, because it turns out they’re absolutely flummoxed by kangaroos.
Swedish car manufacturer Volvo is currently in the process of testing self-driving cars, with plans to have them on the road by 2020. But a recent trip down under revealed a bit of a problem: while the company’s Large Animal Detection system can successfully identify and avoid collisions with animals like deer and elk, the same cannot be said of kangaroos.
Volvo Australia managing director Kevin McCann says they are currently working on a fix for the issue. “Any company that would be working on the autonomous car concept would be having to do the same developmental work,” he told The Guardian. “We brought our engineers into Australia to begin the exercise of gathering the data of how the animals can move and behave so the computers can understand it more.”
I have to admit, I am confused by kangaroos also.
— ₱ⓐ∩∑ᶬ ⋶⊺ ⊆∣ƦÇƹᴻᴤ⅀s (@andy_tweetz) July 1, 2017
Kangaroos are responsible for 90 percent of all road accidents involving animals in Australia. So yeah, would probably be good if your fleet of autonomous robot cars knew how to avoid hitting them.
Until that day comes, I guess we’ll just have to keep getting around the old fashioned way.