Welcome back everyone and I hope you've had an awesome week. Today I'm going to outline some of the really cool security features in my Tesla Model 3. This blog is inspired by my good mate Marty, who was very interested in some of the Tesla security features.
First of all let me outline the five areas I'll cover:
I also wanted to share a link to an awesome new course that I'm very excited to launch with ALC Education & Consulting. It's a 3 day course leading to the Enterprise Big Data Professional certification, where I'll share all my personal Tesla, SpaceX and NASA personal stories.....
For everything that Tesla does...safety is their priority. Software updates are optional...in fact there is an option to be an 'early adopter' of updates or just a 'regular adopter'. I've gone for the early option which is setup on the system page of the Tesla. This means I will receive all the updates as soon as they are ready.
Firstly, the car must be stationery and in park. Secondly I need to be connected to a strong WIFI signal. Thirdly, it's also a good idea to be charging at home. So there are zero risks of updates whilst driving. I've done 3 updates in only 30 days of having the car. Each one took around 25 minutes, was flawless and gave me a heap of new features. Overnight whilst charging is the best time to do them.
Yes...Tesla software updates are 100% safe. The Spotify App was added in the latest version 10 of the Tesla Model 3 software updates.....
This is great when you leave your car in a car park or on the road, and you're worried about security. Once your phone is out of range...or you have locked the card with your key and walked away...the sentry mode is active.
Whenever someone approaches the car, all the cameras pick up the movement and start recording. This is after it warns you as the headlights flash quickly....just like the flash on a speed camera. Recording stops once the system is satisfied the threat has gone away. The picture below shows the pulsating red dot when the cameras fire and it periodically displays the words "Sentry Mode Enabled"...or words to that effect.
If the person is very determined and tries to break into the car....the alarm sounds and the owner is notified on the Tesla App on their phone. I've fortunately never had to test this feature.
The footage from the cameras, when Sentry Mode is activated is stored on a USB that needs to be plugged into the car's internal USB ports. Unfortunately the only way to view the footage is to plug the USB into a PC. I'm sure Tesla are working on a feature to make the USB material viewable in the car itself.
Pretty straight forward really....the car will record 60 minutes of footage from all the cameras in the car. So if you were to have an accident...you simply hold down the dashcam icon button and it saves the 60 mins of footage to the USB key. Simple really. Below is a picture showing the dashcam recording. Denoted by the red dot.
Pin to Drive
Even when you have the Tesla key, which is a card, or the app which authenticates you as the geniune owner of the against the vehicle, it's possible that if someone steals your key or mobile....then they can drive your car. So, I've enabled a feature called Pin to Drive, which means I need to enter a pin password before I can take off.
We call this two-factor authentication. Something I have....which is the key card or mobile phone.....and something I know.....which is my PIN. The car also has an internal camera, so I'm sure in the future, it'll be possible to identify the driver using biometrics. This is a 3rd factor of authentication and we call this something you are.
You could also use geolocation as another factor. I've setup Tessa to fold the car's wing mirrors as I approach my garage. Extra safety measure that minimise the risk of clipping my mirrors. Tesla think of everything.
That's it from me this week. Feel free to share this blog post and the new Tesla video. Have an awesome weekend.
It's not often I blog about someone else's work, but these stats on Tesla's meteroric rise, are too good NOT to share. Credit has to go to Tom Randall (@tsrandall), Senior Reporter at Bloomberg for the awesome pics and stats in this blog post.
But first I wanted to share my awesome experience of the latest version 9 Autopilot, that I tried out in Brisbane, a few months back,
Boy....has there been some serious improvements. Last time I took a Tesla Model S for a test drive, was around 1.5 years ago. And since then, the 'stay in lane' feature has come on leaps and bounds. I used the feature for around 5 minutes on a stretch of highway. The car in front was doing 70kmph in a 90kmph zone, and the Tesla slowed down gracefully. It kept perfectly in the centre of the left lane, as the road curved, left, then right and sharply left again.
At the next slip road, the vehicle in front exited. Once it was clear of the Model S, the car gracefully accelerated up to the speed limit of 90kmph without a hitch and without any input. All I had to do was to keep my hands on the wheel, so the car knew I was still alive. The 'hands-on wheel' feature was brought in by Tesla after a couple of accidents in the US, where drivers had totally relied on the Autopilot and were not paying attention to the driving. This feature aims to prevent such occurences.
All I can say it that is absolutely amazing, and I'm sure the experience translates precisely into the Model S and Model X cars. Unfortunately you can not test drive a Model 3 in Brisbane, so here is the closest I got:
In Q3 of 2018 you can see that the production of the latest Model 3 car increased exponetially. And it's likely this curve will continue through 2019 and 2020, as Tesla forfil a backorder in excess of 500,000 Model 3 orders.
It took Tesla 10 years to see 0.5 million cars, which includes significant amounts of research and development time and money. This was to hone the battery technology, the look of the various cars, and ensuring that all the components integrated seamlessly, and costs effectively. This includes the following models:
It looks like it will take only 15 months to reach the first 1 milion cars. Check the stats below:
You can see from the stats below that the Model 3 is the 5th Best-Selling Sedan in the US.
Not bad for a car that still costs around $55,000 USD.
Let's now take a look at the value, known as market capitialisation, of the world's most valuable automotive makers:
Now this next graphic shows the progression of Tesla's cash flow. This will likely lead to a positive $837millionUSD, as opposed to spring 2018, which was a negative at $795millionUSD:
Mmmmm...maybe I should invest in Tesla stock???
I've given a few runs of my presentation on Driverless Cars in #Australia, #Malaysia and #NewZealand. One thing I've noticed is how engaged and excited the audience become when they see a #Tesla Model S, driving itself for the first time. So, what I wanted to achieve in this blog, is to share with you some of this magic and to show you some of the graphics and features I present to the audience.
The reason I've picked the Tesla Model S is because: 1 - it's a cool car, 2 - it's Tesla and who doesn't love Elon Musk and 3 - They make the most advanced and lowest price #Driverless cars in the world…oh…and did I tell you they have the best range of any electric car, maxxing out at around 667km for the lower-end model at 70 kph (see diagram 1 below) and decreasing to 368km at 120 kph. (see diagram 2 below).
Pretty impressive huh.....
The key to the driverless car is the Tesla Enhanced Autopilot system which provides a number of different automatic features. Basically, new features are added as software upgrades, with the Autopilot hardware already set to support years of automation ahead. And for those worried about hackers, the software upgrades only happen whilst the car is parked safely at home. The car is completely independent when on the road, so essentially all update traffic is blocked.
There are 3 driver assist features I want to demonstrate via a series of compelling videos.
These features do not make the car driverless or fully autonomous, but provide a pathway to automated driving in the future:
The final feature is the full Driverless mode. The best video I've found is the one shown by Tesla. Bear in mind, this video is now over 1 year old. The video is speeded up to make it shorter.
The 3 screens on the right, show 3 of the 8 cameras that the Autopilot system is using. The green boxes show seeing threats to the car, such as other cars and pedestrians, the blue boxes show out-of-path objects which it does not deem as threats to the car. It even picks up the traffic signals, see the orange colours, against the bright cloud background. All this is controlled by Artificial Intelligence which is delivered through a variety of technologies and techniques. The key technique at play here is Deep Learning, otherwise known as Neural Network modelling.
To find out more around how to use Deep Learning, you can visit Tesla’s partner, Nvidia:
Paul Colmer is a digital coach for ALC training and consulting, with a real passion for learning and applying disruptive technologies. Paul has responsibility for building and delivering ALC's digital architecture strategy and the development and execution of a number of cloud courses, including Cloud Security (CCSP), Amazon AWS, DevOps, Microsoft Azure and Office 365.