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Image: Perceptive Automata

Hyundai’s corporate venture business, Hyundai Cradle, is taking a stake in Perceptive Automata, a developer of AI software for autonomous vehicles. The start-up, which recently joined the Renovo AWare ecosystem, uses rich sensor data and deep learning models to gain an understanding of how people – other motorists, pedestrians, cyclists – behave. Its predictive software algorithms are thus said to give a more human-like intuition with the ability to anticipate what other road-users may do next. A particular case it cites is when a pedestrian decides to stop crossing a street and ‘waves’ to a car to continue: while a typical autonomous car would simply stop and wait for the person to cross, Perceptive Automata’s software is said to be able to detect their gestures and intentions.

John Suh, VP of Hyundai Cradle, said in a statement: “One of the biggest hurdles facing autonomous vehicles is the inability to interpret the critical visual cues about human behaviour that human drivers can effortlessly process. Perceptive Automata is giving the AV industry the tools to deploy autonomous vehicles that understand more like humans, creating a safer and smoother driving experience.”

Sid Misran, CEO and co-founder of Perceptive Automata, which has offices in Somerville, Massachusetts and Sunnyvale, California, added: “We are ecstatic to have an investor on board like Hyundai that understands the important of the problem we are solving for self-driving cars and next-generation driver assistance systems.”

-Farah Alkhalisi