George “Geohot” Hotz, the guy who made quite a name for himself by jailbreaking PlayStations, iPhones and iPads is also the guy who started Comma.ai – a company that intended to sell aftermarket $999 self-driving car kits capable of making just about any car at least semi-autonomous in the same way a Tesla can drive and park itself.
Unfortunately, that never really stood a chance of seeing the light of day thanks to some legal wranglings, but that doesn’t mean the software behind the Comma One is gone forever. Far from it.
Apparently keen to ensure that his team’s work does not go to waste, Hotz has made the underlying technology behind Comma One available for all via the open-source community.
The move means that anyone with the programming nous required will be able to take what has already been achieved and then add to it in ways that we haven’t yet envisaged. It’s unlikely that we will see homebrew self-driving cars any time soon thanks to this release, but who is to say that the software will not be used to augment work already underway on similar projects or to create something entirely new?
On top of the Comma One OpenPilot software, Hotz and his team have also made the software behind their NEO robotics platform available for anyone who knows what to do with it. That rules me out, but if you are so inclined, I can only imagine what wonders may be lurking inside there. Just try not to set Skynet loose, please.
As you can probably imagine, all of the data made available as open-source is now available to download via GitHub. If you have the mind to play around with the self-driving software platform, head on over to github.com/commaai and have at it!
(Source: comma ai [Twitter])
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