This week, Tesla has been a mainstay of the news. Their AI day served as a recruitment tool as they unveiled their Dojo super-computer and a Tesla robot.
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Tesla AI day
Tesla robot (hopefully) going to Mars
The Tesla robot is, well, a long way away. Beyond the static figure, 3d renders, and a dancer in a suit they don’t have that much to show for it. It certainly created a lot of hype though. Tesla will be able to rely on the visual ai they make use of in their cars, as well as training on the Dojo supercomputer, as they develop the robot.
Tesla’s robot is not directly in line with Tesla’s mission, “to accelerate the advent of sustainable transport by bringing compelling mass-market electric cars to market as soon as possible.” Despite this, Elon sees the robot as, “improving the probability that the future is good.” This aspiration did not stop him from ensuring that the robot will be physically weaker and slower than most humans, so you can overpower or outrun it if need be.
While Tesla has no previous experience with robots like these, Elon says they have, “almost all the pieces needed,” comparing Tesla vehicles to robots with wheels.
While possible use cases on the ground are easy to see, many wondered if Tesla’s robot could assist in SpaceX’s goal of making life multi-planetary. Thankfully, Elon confirmed their eventual goal of “hopefully” sending these robots to Mars.
Tesla’s robot is still a long way from mass production or reliability. They hope to have a prototype sometime next year, but as Elon says, at scale production is 100 times harder.
Also unveiled at Tesla’s AI day was the new most powerful AI training machine.
Telsa uses video from more than one million vehicles to train their neural network. They have long teased an in-house supercomputer to process the data, but now it has been unveiled. The whole supercomputer is based on a custom processor solution, the D1 chip. The impressive numbers, “a quintillion floating-point operations per second” can hardly put into scale the immense processing capabilities, but Elon put it into more digestible terms in a tweet.
“Enough to simulate a human brain.”
The Dojo computer has been covered in a bit more detail on Electrek, but this computer will serve to train and improve full self driving as well as Tesla’s robot.
Starship flap design change
While the primary focus this week was on Tesla’s AI day and their new robot, we also learned about new changes coming to SpaceX’s Starship vehicle. At this point, Starship design changes seem like a regular occurrence.
This most recent change will see the front flaps moved closer together. This will move them more toward that rear of the vehicle during reentry, and decrease drag at the nosecone. This allows the vehicle to enter more level and protect the Raptor engines from the plasma of reentry.
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