Autonomous cars get puzzled by road signs

According to a new study led by the University of Washington, it was found that autonomous cars can be puzzled by road signs. The computer brain set used in autonomous cars could be fooled into thinking a Stop sign is a 45 mph Speed Limit or other sign if a little graffiti is added to them.


As part of the test, stop sign was peppered with a few black and white blocks and stickers were used to make another read “Love Stops Hate.” Even though images retained their octagonal shape and red background color but in both the cases it was misread most of the time. In another test a slightly faded right turn arrow which was thought by the computer as Stop sign or added lane sign.

The results of the depended on the position and distance of the camera relative to the signs. The results also varied according to the type of system is being targeted. Although self-driving cars use several inputs, including hyper accurate GPS mapping, to help them avoid issues caused by confusing signage, still there is need to sort out this issue. The aim of the research was to help the programmers develop better defenses against these types of attacks.

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