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How to build your own self-driving ride

Welcome to the University of Toronto. Established way back in 1827 and one of the worlds leading universities, the University of Toronto is now cordially inviting budding engineers to take part in a one-of-a-kind academic experience that up to now is not being offered anywhere else.

Quite an introduction, right? Weve peaked your interest, so the drumroll please the Self-Driving Cars Specialization.According to the university website, this specialization gives you a comprehensive understanding of state-of-the-art engineering practices used in the self-driving car industry. You’ll get to interact with real data sets from an autonomous vehicle (AV)―all through hands-on projects using the open source simulator CARLA.

While this might sound like just another set of engineering courses,the fact that a university is teaching students how to construct a self-driving car in a climate when there are just a handful of private firms engaged in this and the whole industry is shrouded in secrecy (because the technology is worth billions) is odd to say the least. The University of Toronto is not getting behind the closed doors of Waymo, Ford, Lyft or others to poach their competitive advantage and bring it to the classroom. Rather, theyve identified companies such as Zoox and Oxbotica that are serving as consultants to put together a broad overview of how the sector generally works.

Market researchers predict there will be 20 million self-driving vehicles on the streets by 2025 which equates to a $42 billion market. Thats a lot of cars, a heck of a lot of money, and to bring all that to fruition human labor will be required. This was the impetus to start the certificate program as the university realized there is a labor demand being created that they could prepare a host of students to eventually occupy. The program requires incoming students to have a firm command of areas such as linear algebra, calculus, physics, probability and Python programming. Students will be emerged in a realistic driving environment with 3D pedestrian modelling as well as a range of environmental conditions.

The result students will be able to build their own self-driving,software stack which lies at the heart of every self-driving vehicle.Exciting stuff, so bookmark this post and send it along to any budding engineers. The future has arrived.

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