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Toyota revs up its digital mapping subsidiary Woven Planet

4 Comments
By YURI KAGEYAMA

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All major automakers are working on similar technologies, and no one is ahead of the pack

Of course no one is ahead, because it can’t and won’t work in real practice, mass traffic, natural environment etc.

In a model comfort zone, horizontal area, low speed, no people, everything well installed, signed and painted for optical or other sensor’s recognition, those automated cars have astonishing capabilities, but no practical use at all. Reminds me a bit of that drone delivery hype, that is quite similar, working but in general useless. That’s all still , beside some higher sophisticated technology , no real difference to a simple remote controlled toy car in your children’s room or a moving robot car developed by a junior high school robotics club in their leisure time. Nice to have and show, but that’s it.

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Of course no one is ahead, because it can’t and won’t work in real practice, mass traffic, natural environment etc.

It is done with precision munitions. I vividly recall during Operation Desert Storm a CNN on the balcony of a hotel in Baghdad filming American cruise missiles flying up the center of a major street and each one in line executed a nice right turn in front of their balcony to head down the street in front of their balcony, the missiles flying at an altitude of maybe four or five meters above the streets. Those early Tomahawks had terrain maps of the route to their target that included buildings and streets and a radar that was reading the terrain below the missile. The computer on the missile compared the terrain below it to the terrain in the map loaded with the mission plan and adjusted its course accordingly. They could maneuver around obstacles and avoid certain enemy threats on the way in like anti aircraft sites. This was 1980s tech before GPS. Developing high fidelity three dimensional maps of the Earths surface using satellites with side looking radars is essential for such TERCOM (TERrain COMparison) navigation. The Russians had missiles that could communicate with each other and coordinate their attacks on our ships so they all arrived at the same time attempting to saturate our defenses. There was even a pecking order of one missile being the leader and if it was shot down another missile became the leader. Granit and Bazalt missiles both had this feature. More 1980s tech. Today infinitely more can be done but in a way what the car companies are doing is not much more sophisticated that TERCOM.

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Their choice of name is good, but it has one drawback.

“Woven” is incredibly difficult for Japanese people to pronounce correctly. In Japanese the chairman Mr Toyoda pronounces it ウーブン “ühbuhn”, so I guess that must be officially ‘correct’.

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After the hype version 9 FSD , didn’t materialise, now without radar, just eight cameras.

I’d be interested to know if Akido Toyoda was going to stick with Hybrid ?

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