Tesla held its “Autonomy Investor Day” at their Headquarters in Palo Alto, CA today. The company came out to the public with a few of their ideas for superior driver assistance and eventual 100% driving autonomy in their cars.

Neural Networks

Tesla has built its own chip, custom designed to do processing based solely on what they believe a car needs, and it is now installing the chip in all their brand-new vehicles.

With its new network hardware, Tesla has put most of its focus on preparing better neural networks to analyze everything they will view on the roads. Neural networks are nothing but a network composed of a vast number of deeply interconnected processing elements working in correspondence to solve a particular problem. Neural networks process information the same way a human brain does.  They assume that their success will come from the massive armada of cars they can use to help train their networks which are around half a million cars today and growing.

Tesla has driven a very distinct approach from the majority of firms trying to develop an absolutely autonomous car that can drive empty or let the driver sleep. Tesla intends to use only radar and an assemblage of video cameras around the car to do the work. Elon Musk, Tesla’s CEO completely neglects the use of LIDAR, which is currently used by most companies.

The Tesla network and robo-taxis

Elon Musk further spoke about Robo-taxis, expected to launch as a  part of a broader vision for an autonomous ride-sharing network in 2020.

Tesla will allow car owners to add their vehicles with updated software and hardware to its private ride-sharing app, which might operate in a similar business model to Uber. Musk added,

“Tesla will take 25 percent to 30 percent of the revenue from those rides. In places where there aren’t enough people to share their cars, Tesla would provide a dedicated fleet of robo-taxis.

That is if you declare that you don’t need your car for the next 5 hours, it would automatically drive itself and join the Tesla network, to give rides, and then return back to you. Fascinating right?!

Tesla is planting a notable stake that they will be able to solve all self-driving problems using neural networks. If the work actually pays off it’s a huge win for Tesla, and they could have the edge in what is possibly the greatest opportunity in the modern transportation industry.