Monday, 25 March 2019 21:59

Most Americans Are Terrified of Getting in a Self-Driving Car

Written by Jessica Miley, Interesting Engineering
Most Americans Are Terrified of Getting in a Self-Driving Car Marc van der Chijs/Flickr



Riding in cars isn’t the only problem. If you are a person of color, a recent study has shown that an autonomous vehicle is less likely to recognize you as a pedestrian compared to a person with a lighter skin tone. Researchers from Georgia Tech investigated eight AI models used in state-of-the-art object detection systems to complete their study.


These systems allow autonomous vehicles to recognize road signs, pedestrians and other objects as they navigate roads. They tested these systems using two different categories based on the Fitzpatrick scale, a scale commonly used to classify human skin color.


Overall, the accuracy of the system decreased by 5 percent when it was presented with groups of images of pedestrians with darker skin tones. And according to the published paper, the models showed “uniformly poorer performance” when confronted with pedestrians with the three darkest shades on the scale.


We thank Interesting Engineering for reprint permission. 

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