Nvidia leads

The first computer chips designed to control a completely driverless car are set to hit the streets for a trial in Germany next year, with a test vehicle that follows a human delivery driver around. The system, developed by US chipmaker Nvidia, is set to extend the company’s lead over Intel and other rivals in one of the industry’s most important development areas. However, Nvidia executives said the technology was likely to be used only in very restricted circumstances at first, and that it would take time for road safety regulations and software to catch up with the advances in hardware. Nvidia announced the new system yesterday at an event in Germany, along with a trial in the second half of next year by Deutsche Post DHL. The logistics company will equip a fleet of electric delivery vans with sensors and the new chips. The US company said the chips were the first designed for the top “Level 5” category of autonomous vehicles, which will be built without steering wheels, brake and accelerator pedals and other human controls… Nvidia’s expertise in graphical processing units, or GPUs, has given it an early lead in developing artificial intelligence and has helped to drive its stock market value up to more than $110 billion, a six-fold increase since the start of last year.
Richard Waters