Yes, Elon Musk is completely full of crap with claims about “fully” self-driving cars

After deciding recently to end his company’s partnership with established computer chip manufacturer Nvidia Corp., Tesla’s Elon Musk went on a bragging spree, making all sorts of false claims about how his company’s new proprietary chip technology is somehow “the best in the world” – which couldn’t be further from the truth.

In typical technocrat form, Musk took the stage at a recent investors day gathering to tell lofty tales about how Tesla cars are amazing and perfect – this, despite increasing incidents of Teslas veering off the road or simply exploding for no apparent reason.

But perhaps the biggest lie being peddled by Musk is the one about Teslas being “fully” self-driving, which experts say is plain and simply false. While Teslas have a few features that some might say make them at least semi-autonomous, there’s currently no technology in existence that equips any vehicle, including a Tesla, to drive itself – but, naturally, Musk insists otherwise.

“Many leading industry experts have said that this claim is false,” reports Breitbart News‘s Lucas Nolan about Musk’s continued doubling down about how Teslas simply need a “software upgrade” in order to have the full ability to safely drive themselves.

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In trying to explain away his decision to cut ties with Nvidia, Musk made another false claim that his company’s new chips, which were developed internally, are superior to everyone else’s chips, including Nvidia’s, because they’re supposedly capable of performing 114 trillion operations per second (TOPS) – Nvidia’s chips, he further claimed, only clock in at 21 TOPS. But this, too, is false.

As it turns out, Tesla’s chips only perform at 114 TOPS when they’re stacked together with one another. Individually, they’re actually much slower than Nvidia’s.

“A fair comparison with an equivalent Nvidia computer would have Tesla’s 144 TOPS stacked up against 320 TOPS from a machine based on semiconductors from the graphics maker,” reports Bloomberg.

Musk also arrogantly criticized a concept known as Lidar, which stands for “light detection and ranging,” which refers to the use of a combination of laser and radar technologies for detecting the surroundings of a vehicle during autonomous travel. According to Musk, Lidar is a “fool’s errand,” and any company that tries to use it is “doomed.”

In Musk’s view, the best technology is image recognition, which just so happens to be what he plans to incorporate into his Tesla cars to equip them for running on auto-pilot. But critics say that Lidar combined with image recognition, cameras, radar, and ultrasonic technologies, among others, represent the best approach, as each one has its own strengths and weaknesses that the others can help to offset.

“After Tesla’s boasting about results of its three-year initiative, we saw nothing tangible that would suggest Tesla could have a lead over well-established competitors,” Craig Irwin, an analyst at Roth Capital Partners, one of Tesla’ investors, stated in criticism of Musk’s bombastic ego fest.

“The company’s misrepresentation of Nvidia chips, which Tesla previously used, undermined Tesla’s message,” he added.

Analysts K.C. Rajkumar and Jahanar Nissar of Lynx Equity Strategies, also Tesla investors, levied similar criticisms against Musk, insinuating that it’s pretty stupid of Musk to try to go it alone when well-known veteran companies like Nvidia actually know what they’re doing.

“It will be tough for them to make it on their own – simply put, Tesla is not a semi (conductor) company, so they may need to partner with someone to do it,” the duo stated. “But then again, Musk has created a car by himself, so a chip is certainly possible.”

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