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As Uber and Waymo argue, a new self-driving entrant emerges

Austin Russell is making headlines today for the launch of a new company called Luminar. Five years ago, when he was 17, Russell decided to forgo college and instead took investments from PayPal mafioso Peter Thiel and others to improve laser-based imaging sensors. Those sensors, otherwise known as lidar, are a key component in self-driving systems. Russell’s new tech is supposed to be able to see through rain and snow, a failing of current lidar. 

And one can’t help but note his fortuitous timing: Luminar is emerging as Uber is being accused of stealing self-driving secrets from Google, both of which are set on crafting their own lidar technology. Meanwhile, others in the self-driving space will no doubt welcome new technology to add to their stack. Read our story about Luminar here.


[Image: Luminar]RR