Self-driving cars and the Rubik’s Cube puzzle

A 20-year-old Dutchman called Mats Valk on Sunday set a new world record for solving a Rubik’s Cube puzzle, completing the task in just 4.74 seconds. But the fastest robot can perform the same feat in less than one second, then do it again and again. Now Infineon is hoping to show how the speed and reliability of these machines will make for a safer world. The German semiconductor maker will tomorrow attempt to break the Rubik’s Cube record using the same sensors and microcomputers — called microcontrollers — that power its self-driving car technology… The robot seeking to break the world record features six motors to rotate each side of the cube… and the machine typically takes 24 moves to solve the puzzle… Infineon cannot prove that self-driving cars are safer than human drivers in all scenarios, but the Rubik’s Cube experiment drives home the point that its technology could detect a human stepping in front of a car, then react by applying the brakes, before a driver might have even seen the person.
Patrick McGee