Tesla unleashes FSD V12.3

Max McDee, 18 March 2024

Tesla is seeding what it calls a “groundbreaking software update” to its controversial Full Self-Driving (FSD) system. The update has arrived after much anticipation, promising significant improvements in the quest for autonomous driving. As is the norm, CEO Elon Musk isn't shy about the update's potential, boldly hailing it as "mind-blowing."

The key difference this time? Tesla's throwing out the traditional coding playbook. Instead, it says it built the update around a sophisticated 'neural net' system – think of it as a massive, self-teaching artificial intelligence modeled after the human brain. This shift aims to accelerate progress toward the holy grail of driverless vehicles.

This major update, officially known as FSD Beta v12.3, is now making its way to Tesla owners across the United States.

It's important to put FSD Beta into perspective. Despite the flashy name, Tesla emphasizes that the technology remains a Level 2 driver-assist system; it's not a substitute for an attentive driver. Drivers need to keep their hands on the wheel and be ready to intervene at any moment – safety remains paramount and they will be held accountable if things go south.

What's truly remarkable though, is the progress. FSD Beta continues to gain impressive capabilities like confidently making U-turns, changing lanes smoothly, and even handling notoriously difficult unprotected left turns. This recent rapid evolution suggests the neural network is adapting quickly, making the system as a whole more capable.

The rollout of this update was carefully orchestrated. Initial versions of v12 were put through their paces by Tesla employees to ensure a smooth customer experience. It appears this rigorous testing paid off, with users commenting on the system's improved handling and reduced hesitancy.

While full autonomy might be a ways off, Tesla's relentless pursuit of innovation is undeniable. Each iteration of FSD Beta brings the company a small step closer to a future where the steering wheel is optional. However, this advancement in technology also highlights the ongoing debate about the potential risks and responsibilities that come with self-driving cars. And then, there’s Elon Musk’s unrelenting hype campaign, which - arguably - creates bad vibes and distracts both the engineers and the public from the actual achievements.



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