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Nexar, an Israeli AI computer vision company, announced the release of its Driver Behavioral Maps, which aim to make autonomous vehicles (AVs) drive more naturally.
The maps make use of crowd-sourced driving data from Nexar’s dash cameras, which provide information about human driving behavior. This data is aggregated and overlaid on a high-definition base map to assist AVs in learning the local driving culture and important driving habits.
“A self-driving car that drives only according to a raw map would be an immediate danger due to its robotic style of driving,” Eran Shir, co-founder and CEO of Nexar, said. “It’s not necessarily that humans drive better than robots, it’s that AVs need a lot of human data obtained by those who have driven through a particular area. Without even being aware, we make hundreds of decisions that adapt to local conditions, culture, and comfort each time we get behind the wheel. AVs need to sync into this behavior in order to provide the most secure and comfortable ride.”
Nexar’s behavior maps could be used by AVs to determine the best time to switch lanes before a turn, how to decelerate when covering, where virtual step lines are located, and more. AVs that use the behavior maps can provide smoother and safer rides by being better able to understand, measure and benchmark safety-related behavior, like the best way to handle stop signs or school zones.
Nexar’s smart dash cameras capture over 160 million miles of driving a month. This positions the company to provide real-time driving data about areas all over the U.S.
“Nexar is used by both commercial and ordinary drivers, during all hours of the day, on different road segments, and in all weather conditions,” Shir said. “There is no more efficient or cost-effective way to collect this diverse set of human driving data that is such a crucial part of our journey to advance a safe future for autonomous driving. With the right data, an AV operating off of Nexar’s Driver Behavioral Map will continue on the road to becoming indistinguishable from a human-driven car in terms of the flow of driving.”
Nexar was founded in 2015, and has developed a portfolio of vision-based data services and solutions for companies across a range of industries, including OEMs, fleets, insurance, autonomous vehicles and the public sector.