Otto Brings Self-Driving Tech To Trucks | Crunch Report


Otto brings self-driving tech to trucks, Allurion
offers gastric bypass in a pill, a free coding university opens in Silicon Valley and more It’s Tuesday May 17, and this is Crunch Report
There’s a new startup founded by a group by former Googlers, including self-driving car
pioneer Anthony Levandowski, looking to bring self-driving technology to trucks. It’s called
Otto, and it just came out of stealth. Apparently the company started out building tools that
make truck driving safer but now it’s developing technology that can automate parts of the
drive on highways. And instead of building all-new vehicles, Otto is working on products
that can be fitted onto existing trucks. Does the world really need self-driving trucks?
Well, Otto’s founders say these vehicles cause a large number of fatalities and on top of
that, there’s a growing shortage of drivers. Otto isn’t the only super-ambitious startup
that we’re covering today. There’s also Allurion, which offers a pill that’s supposed to serve
the same function as gastric bypass surgery. The way it works is that you swallow Allurion’s
Ellipse device, and then it expands to fill your stomach so you don’t feel hungry. After
about four months, it opens up and then, well, you poop it out. And unlike other “gastric
balloons” the Ellipse isn’t supposed to require anesthesia or a doctor. Allurion is already
selling its pill in Europe, while in the United States, it’s seeking FDA approval and plans
to conduct a clinical trial next year. French entrepreneur Xavier Niel is hoping
to educate 10,000 students over the next five years at a new coding university in Silicon
Valley called 42. The school is free, and it will occupy a 200,000 square foot building
in Fremont that’s filled with thousands of iMacs. What it doesn’t have are professors
— instead it relies on peer reviews, coding projects, internships and gamification. There’s
already a 42 in France, but the US version is now open for applications. To get in, you
don’t need to worry about your grades or SAT scores. Instead, anyone between 18 and 30
can compete for a spot by completing coding and logic challenges. Time for a little culture. Google says it
has developed a new gigapixel camera designed to capture the finest details of the world’s
great works of art. This is part of the Google Cultural Institute, which aims to preserve
the world’s history and culture and put it online. The goal of the new camera is to not
just capture the basic image, but also to reproduce the experience of getting up close
and seeing the brush strokes. The company has already shared about 200 of these gigapixel
images before this, but without the new camera, the process for capturing the images was slower
and required expensive equipment and trained experts. Starting today, you can see the first
thousand images captured with the new camera, including artwork by Rembrandt, Van Gough
and Monet. Uber is introducing a new feature that allows
family members to keep track of each other when they’re using the ride service. It takes
advantage of a something that Uber unveiled earlier this year — Family Profiles, where
you can add other Uber riders to a group and then pay for all the rides on the same card.
Now there’s a Trip Tracker that allows the person in charge of the group to find out
about every ride taken — they’ll get a notification when the ride starts and they can follow its
progress. If you’re the person in charge, most likely the head of the family, you’d
find out about the ride anyway through the receipts, but this provides the information
in real-time. Uber has been testing the feature in a handful of cities before launching it
more broadly today. That’s the report for today. I’m Anthony
Ha Crunch Report airs every weekday at 7 pm Eastern,
4 pm Pacific, on Techcrunch.com. You can also find us on iTunes, and on YouTube. By the
way, this is going to be my last episode as host. Just to be clear — I’m not going
anywhere, I’m still going to be writing articles and making videos for TechCrunch.
But I just wanted to take a second to thank all of you for watching. And of course Crunch
Report will be back tomorrow.

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7 thoughts on “Otto Brings Self-Driving Tech To Trucks | Crunch Report

  1. If you guys can start adding the links to the articles of the different stories in the description that would be great!

  2. Thx Anthony for the news I liket you, please God pretty pretty please let the new host be Tito Hamze šŸ˜Ž

  3. An A380 can fly from dulles to Paris by itself also. Do you really think airlines will stick 400 souls in a pilot less aluminum tube?

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