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Game

Fortnite Challenge: Drive an IO Vehicle With Off-road Tires

It’s time once again for another set of Fortnite challenges, this time for season 7, week 9. The new challenges are all over the place in terms of complexity, though you shouldn’t have too many difficulties getting through them as long as you’re familiar with the new features for this season. One challenge that might cause trouble is for driving an IO vehicle with off-road tires. The act of completing the challenge isn’t tough, but actually finding the required materials can be tricky if you don’t know where to go.

In this guide, we’ll show you everything there is to know about completing the latest challenge. Here’s how to drive an IO vehicle with off-road tires in Fortnite.

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Where to find IO vehicles

Fortnite.gg

IO vehicles are found at satellite stations around the map. These are somewhat like fortresses that are home to IO guards, deadly NPCs who will attack you on sight. The map above (thanks, Fortnite.gg) shows all the locations of the satellite stations. In general, we advise you to visit whichever one is farthest away from the path of the Battle Bus. That way, you’re less likely to run into enemy players. It’s hard enough to deal with the IO guards at each station, so try to avoid other players if possible.

Once you arrive, you’ll want to look for a garage that houses an IO vehicle. The vehicles are black and often parked inside, but we have seen them spawn outside as well. As you search for the vehicles, also be on the lookout for gear like weapons and shields so you’re prepared if an IO guard comes after you.

How to equip them with off-road tires

IO vehicle with off-road tires in Fortnite.

The garages (as pictured above) often have a shelf full of tires. Smash the shelf with your pickax and then pick up the item that drops. This will allow you to throw the tire onto the vehicle, which will convert it to an off-road car needed to complete the challenge. If you can’t find them in the garage where the vehicle spawned, look for another garage. There is typically more than one at each base.

From here, drive the vehicle around the map. To complete the challenge, you must drive 1,000 meters in the off-road IO vehicle, which shouldn’t be tough as long as you stay away from enemies. It’s a good idea to avoid high-traffic areas while aiming to complete this challenge. And if for some reason you do get taken out before you reach 1,000 meters traveled, your progress carries over from match to match, so you can easily try again.

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Tech News

Verizon THOR command center vehicle deploys 5G coverage in emergencies

Verizon has unveiled a first-of-its-kind vehicle called Tactical Humanitarian Operations Response (THOR). The massive vehicle was revealed at Marine Corps Air Station Miramar as part of an ongoing partnership between Verizon Public Sector and the Department of Defense. THOR is a mobile private Verizon 5G Ultra Wideband and mobile high-performance compute rapid-response command center vehicle. It’s described as a prototype capable of deploying Verizon Frontline technology, such as Verizon 5G Ultra Wideband, along with additional applications and computing solutions for partners.

Partners include first responders and the Department of Defense. Verizon says that there’s an opportunity to enhance its available 5G network and technological capabilities for those in public safety and the US military. The vehicle can be fielded in a military assistance environment and for other tasks such as fighting wildfires where there may be no mobile network in remote locations.

THOR could also be deployed in the wake of a catastrophe such as a hurricane or an earthquake when the mobile network might not be available, preventing citizens and emergency services from communicating. The vehicle is a modified Ford F650 chassis with a six-seat cab and three-seat rear command center. It offers full radio interoperability and can provide its own mobile network and features capabilities, including commercial satellite options, and can be operated remotely from a tablet.

THOR can also integrate with commercial drone applications and has an onboard tethered drone to help with disaster response and risk assessment missions. THOR is part of Verizon Frontline, which is the advanced networking technology Verizon created for first responders as part of its three decades of partnership with the public safety community. The vehicle is massive and has integrated antenna towers and a satellite dish.

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Tech News

EHang long-range VT-30 autonomous aerial vehicle takes off and lands vertically

EHang has revealed the latest version of its aircraft that it calls an autonomous aerial vehicle or AAV. The aircraft is a long-range VT-30 meant to expand the company’s regional air mobility coverage. VT-30 is designed specifically for inter-city transportation featuring a hybrid structure. The aircraft can travel a distance of up to 300 kilometers with a planned flight time of up to 100 minutes.

EHang says that it designed the aircraft to be a safe, convenient, efficient, eco-friendly, and intelligent air mobility solution for inter-city travel. VT-30 is meant to complement the company’s EH216, focusing on intra-city air mobility and expand the air transportation and future urban air mobility ecosystem. The aircraft has a streamlined fuselage that combines a lifting rotor surface at the tail along with eight propellers on each side of the aircraft and a pair of fixed wings.

A propeller is in the rear of the aircraft in a pusher configuration. The aircraft supports vertical and taxi takeoff and landing modes depending on the needs at the particular landing site. The aircraft particularly focuses on longer distance and flight time. Safety features including triple redundancy fly-by-wire control system that can be altered into multiple modes to provide higher safety for the aircraft and passengers.

Two passengers can ride inside the VT-30, and the company promises the aircraft produces zero emissions and low noise. When landing aircraft in densely populated city areas, low noise is critical. EHang says that the VT-30 has conducted vertical takeoff and landing, power system, and other tests so far. In the future, additional tests and optimizations under different environmental conditions will take place.

EHang says the goal of its AAV is to be used in scenarios including air commuting, aerial sightseeing, and aerial logistics. It’s unclear when the aircraft might be ready to begin commercial operations at this time.

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Game

Fortnite Season 6, Week 10 Challenge Guide: How to Destroy Opponent Structure While Driving a Modded Vehicle

With the latest set of Fortnite challenges for season 6, week 10, you’ll likely have an easy time blasting through most of them. However, one that might cause some problems is to destroy an opponent’s structure while driving a modded vehicle. There are a few moving parts with this one, so you’ll want to do everything you can to prepare yourself for it. On paper, it might not seem too difficult, but a few things have to go right for it to work.

In this guide, we’ll show you everything you’ll need to know about destroying an opponent’s structure while driving a modded vehicle in Fortnite.

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How to mod your vehicle

Fortnite.gg

This challenge is a callback to one from week 5 of this season. We covered how to mod your vehicle in that guide, but the short version is that you need to find tires around the map. Using the map above (thanks, Fortnite.gg), you’ll see numerous locations that feature tires you can use to upgrade your vehicles. Although there are a lot of areas where you can do this, we recommend visiting one close to a high traffic area so you can prepare for the next step.

For instance, the areas around Retail Row are great since there are a few spots nearby that are frequently visited. You’ll find either a tire you can pick up or a stack of tires that can be destroyed. Either way, you’ll need to pick up the tire and throw it at the vehicle of choice to upgrade it. This will give your vehicle large tires, lifting it off the ground even higher.

How to destroy an opponent’s structure while driving a modded vehicle

fortnite-season-6-week-10-challenges-and-how-to-complete-them

So, once you’ve acquired a modded vehicle, you should drive around while looking for enemy player-built structures. This is tough because it’s usually unclear if these structures have been built by enemies or teammates. The most effective way to do this is to keep driving your vehicle around while running through any structure you see. With some luck, you’ll run into an enemy’s structure and get credit for the challenge.

Alternatively, if you last until the later portions of a match, you’ll almost certainly come across an enemy who will build in front of themselves for protection. When this happens, ram into the structure they’ve built to gain credit. You can attempt this in Battle Royale or Team Rumble. Both have pros and cons, but we’ve found it easier to finish in Battle Royale since there are more enemies in any given match. This means there’s a higher chance of finding their structures around — but it also means more opportunities to get taken out.

Either way, break through one structure, and you’ll earn 24,000 XP.

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Tech News

The Best Vehicle Anti-Theft Devices for 2021

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Stealing a car is no longer as simple as learning how to hot-wire an ignition, but technology isn’t driving the number of car thefts down. Thieves are simply learning new ways to drive off in your ride. If you routinely park in an unsafe area, or if you regularly leave valuable belongings in the cabin, we suggest investing in an anti-theft device. They’re not always cheap, but the peace of mind they bring is priceless. Here are the best anti-theft devices for 2020.

Steering wheel lock

Steering wheel locks are one of the oldest and best-known theft prevention devices on the market today. A steering wheel lock attaches to the steering wheel of the car to lock it in place, preventing someone from driving away. There are two main styles for this lock. The first goes across the steering wheel horizontally and attaches to the wheel at the 3 o’clock and 9 o’clock positions. On one side the lock extends farther, preventing the wheel from turning very far. The second style attaches to the top of the wheel with the end extending over the front dash to prevent the wheel from turning. The Club is one of the most popular models.

Tire lock

You have probably seen these used by police if a car is parked illegally, but they are also useful as an anti-theft device. If you have space in your trunk, a tire lock (or boot) is a great way to prevent a carjacking. This is only feasible if you are parking your car for an extended amount of time, though. It just doesn’t make sense to attach a boot every time you stop to fill up your tank or run into your favorite coffee shop for a double espresso. This also won’t prevent anyone from breaking in and stealing things, so continue locking your doors.

And, if you get a tire lock, remember to invest in locking lug nuts. Otherwise, anyone with a spare wheel can steal your car by jacking it up, removing the lock and the wheel it’s on, and putting a new one on.

Baby monitor

HelloBaby Baby Monitor

Video cameras are great deterrents, as would-be thieves don’t want to be caught on film breaking into your car. Unfortunately, cameras can be expensive and may not be able to show you a real-time picture of what’s happening. Baby monitors are great for this purpose because they’re mostly affordable, can transmit pictures, and can run on a separate battery to keep them off of your vehicle’s power supply.

Kill switch

One of the more advanced anti-theft devices is the kill switch. It works by disrupting the flow of electricity to the fuel pump or other critical systems. This interruption makes it impossible to start the car without flicking the switch. A thief needs to finish his robbery quickly, so anything that makes his task more challenging will encourage him to move on to the next car. 

A kill switch needs to be hidden to be effective. Otherwise, a thief can discover and disable the system and take off with your vehicle, defeating the whole purpose. You want to keep the kill switch close to the car’s other vital elements, so it’s typically a good idea to keep it beneath the dashboard or under the driver’s seat.

You can decide where the kill switch should be installed, but unless you’re a mechanic yourself, you’ll want to leave the actual work to a professional. Properly installing a kill switch requires a lot of work with the car’s ignition, which is something you don’t want to botch.

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Electronic tracking system

Vyncs tracker

Most security devices only prevent drive-off theft, but resourceful car thieves use various techniques to acquire cars, like towing or trailering their target vehicles. Using GPS is an ideal way to keep track of your vehicle, and you only have to pay a monthly subscription fee for the benefit.

Law enforcement can track the location data from your GPS, which means they can find your car and possibly get vital information to help track the thieves. A GPS tracking device can help you recover your vehicle no matter where the thief tries to hide it.

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AI

Cruise acquires driverless vehicle startup Voyage to tackle dense urban environments

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GM-backed Cruise today announced it is acquiring Voyage, following Bloomberg’s early March report of a potential deal. Terms of the buyout weren’t disclosed, but Voyage CEO Oliver Cameron said “key members” of the Voyage team will join Cruise when the purchase is finalized in the coming months. Cameron will take on a new role as vice president of product.

“Voyage’s experience and development of Commander (our self-driving AI), Shield (our collision mitigation system), and Telessist (our novel remote assistance solution) will only supercharge Cruise’s goal of superhuman driving performance,” Cameron wrote in a blog post. “I am thrilled that key members of our Voyage team — particularly those who worked on our third-generation robotaxi — will be able to use their extensive experience in vehicle development to put their stamp on the Cruise Origin, delivering a better and safer future for our roadways.”

Cameron, former VP of product and engineering at online education giant Udacity, founded Voyage in 2017 alongside MacCallister Higgins, an ex-Udacity senior software engineer. The San Francisco, California-based startup targets communities that may have a greater and more imminent need for a network of self-driving cars, particularly retirement villages.

Voyage’s vehicles are adapted Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid minivans that feature sensors and systems from third-party players and the company’s own AI technology. With a team of 60 employees, Voyage shipped three generations of robo-taxis — the G1, G2, and G3 — and signed partnerships with leading companies like FCA, First Transit, Enterprise, and Intact Insurance. Voyage counts a number of retirement communities among its customers, including The Villages in San Jose and The Villages in Florida.

The effects of the pandemic, including testing delays, have resulted in consolidation, tabled or canceled launches, and shakeups across the autonomous transportation industry. Ford pushed the unveiling of its self-driving service from 2021 to 2022; Waymo CEO John Krafcik told the New York Times the pandemic delayed work by at least two months; and Amazon acquired driverless car startup Zoox for $1.3 billion. According to Boston Consulting Group managing director Brian Collie, broad commercialization of AVs won’t happen before 2025 or 2026 — at least three years later than originally anticipated.

According to Gartner analyst Mike Ramsey, consolidation in the self-driving market is inevitable and necessary. “There still are dozens of players trying to tackle this market from both a technology and an operations standpoint,” he told VentureBeat via email. “Every smaller company gets to a point where they have to decide whether they are able to scale up and invest the resources to grow, change their model altogether to push into a different part of the market, or look to merge with another company.”

PitchBook’s Asad Hussain noted that smaller autonomous vehicle startups like Voyage face steep capital requirements to scale, while big tech-backed self-driving leaders like Cruise have achieved a formidable market position. “Voyage has targeted an attractive market, as the population of retirees is expected to grow significantly over the next few years. Additionally, we believe Voyage’s technology — which is focused on automated vehicles within retirement communities — is an attractive asset for Cruise, which largely focuses on automation in dense urban environments,” Hussain said. “Exposure to more structured environments such as retirement communities should enable Cruise to commercialize faster, as these use cases have much fewer variables and safety hazards compared to dense urban environments.”

Cruise is considered a pack leader in a global market that’s anticipated to hit revenue of $173.15 billion by 2023.

Recently, Cruise revealed that it has roughly 1,800 employees working on its self-driving cars, up from 1,000 as of March 2019. The also company claimed a 2.5 times increase in the utilization of its all-electric test vehicles between summer 2019 and early February, an improvement that’s expected to drive down costs.

Cruise is piloting its cars in Scottsdale, Arizona and the Detroit, Michigan metropolitan area. But the bulk of its deployment is concentrated in San Francisco, where it has a permit to test vehicles without safety drivers behind the wheel. Cruise has scaled up rapidly, growing its starting fleet of 30 driverless vehicles to about 130 by June 2017. The company hasn’t disclosed the exact total publicly, but it has 180 self-driving cars registered with California’s DMV, and documents obtained by IEEE Spectrum suggest Cruise plans to deploy as many as 300 test cars around the country.

Building on the progress it has made so far, in 2020 Cruise announced a partnership with DoorDash to pilot food and grocery delivery for select customers in San Francisco. And it’s making progress toward a fourth-generation car called Origin that features automatic doors, rear-seat airbags, and other redundant systems — but no steering wheel.

In May 2018, Cruise announced that SoftBank’s Vision Fund would invest $2.25 billion in the company, along with another $1.1 billion from GM itself. In October 2018, Honda pledged $750 million, to be followed by another $2 billion in the next 12 years. And in January, Cruise raised $2 billion in an equity round that pushed its valuation up to $30 billion and brought Microsoft on as an investor and partner.

But Cruise is burning through cash quickly. GM posted a $1 billion loss on Cruise in 2019, up from a $728 million loss in 2018.

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Safelite’s Advanced Safety Systems Recalibration: Keep Your Vehicle Safe

It’s important to keep safe on the roads and that’s precisely why advanced safety systems are increasingly common in newer vehicles. These vehicles offer features that keep you safe on the road with what feels like an extra pair of eyes looking out for any dangers. These safety features can include automatic emergency braking, forward collision warning, lane keep assist, and even the ability to detect when a pedestrian has stepped out in front of your vehicle. They’re an effective way of reducing the risk of collisions and injuries thereby keeping your family and everyone around you safer.

Such advanced safety systems typically work via cameras mounted on or just behind the windshield of your vehicle or integrated into vehicle components such as your car’s bumpers. However, for these systems to work accurately, vehicle manufacturers require these cameras to be recalibrated any time your windshield is replaced. At Safelite, windshield camera recalibration can often be done during the same appointment as the windshield replacement, meaning less hassle and less time spent getting your vehicle repaired.

Why do I need recalibration?

If your forward facing camera is not recalibrated after a windshield replacement, it could interfere with the ability of your vehicle’s advanced safety systems to accurately spot potential problems or even avoid collisions. That defeats the purpose of advanced safety systems. According to the 2019 CCC Crash Report, advanced safety systems are expected to achieve a 20% reduction in vehicle crashes.

Safelite technicians are highly experienced when it comes to the recalibration process and can complete the specific recalibration required by your vehicle manufacturer. When you book a replacement appointment online, you’ll be alerted if your vehicle needs recalibration.

Expertise is essential with different types of recalibration

There are different types of recalibration, which depend on the vehicle make and model, and are determined by the vehicle manufacturer. Recalibration service requires specialized tools, equipment, and skilled precision. Sometimes recalibration can be performed at the customer’s location, but other vehicles may need to be brought to a Safelite shop.

Safelite will know exactly what your vehicle requires when you make an appointment.

What is Safelite?

Safelite is America’s largest vehicle glass specialist. Starting out as a single store based in Wichita, Kansas in 1947, the company now services millions of customers every year across all 50 states. More than 97% of U.S. drivers can access Safelite’s services, with the company offering the best and simplest way to replace your broken windshield or other vehicle glass.

All you need to do is head over to safelite.com. Safelite has thousands of its MobileGlassShopsTM and repair facilities across the country so you can choose the location that’s most convenient for you.

Why Safelite is a great choice for recalibrating your advanced safety systems

Safelite offers windshield replacement and recalibration in a single appointment, saving you time and ensuring vehicle safety. With a nationwide lifetime warranty on auto glass replacements and a guarantee on recalibrations, you can trust Safelite. If you’re looking for a repair or replacement of your vehicle’s windshield, simply head over to the Safelite website and schedule an appointment online today.

What other services does Safelite provide?

Besides being able to replace or repair your windshield and perform advanced safety systems recalibration, Safelite also offers side window and rear glass replacement services, top-quality windshield wipers and glass cleaners, and Safelite AutoGlass Rain Defense, a technician-applied water-repellant treatment.

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Pony.ai raises $100 million more to advance its autonomous vehicle tech

Self-driving car startup Pony.ai today announced it has raised $100 million in an extension of its series C round. The funds bring the company’s total raised to over $1 billion at a post-money valuation of $5.3 billion, up from $3 billion as of February 2020.

Some experts predict the pandemic will hasten the adoption of autonomous transportation technologies. Despite needing disinfection, driverless cars can potentially minimize the risk of spreading disease. For example, Pony.ai says it has delivered more than 15,000 packages of food and health kits in California during the COVID-19 health crisis.

Pony.ai BotRide

Former Baidu chief architect James Peng cofounded Pony.ai in 2016 with Tiancheng Lou, who worked at Google X’s autonomous car project before it was spun off into Waymo. The two aim to build level 4 autonomous cars — cars able to operate without human oversight under select conditions, as defined by the Society of Automotive Engineers — for “predictable” environments such as industrial parks, college campuses, and small towns, with a tentative deployment window of several years from now.

Pony’s full-stack hardware platform, PonyAlpha, leverages lidars, radars, and cameras to keep tabs on obstacles up to 200 meters from its self-driving cars. PonyAlpha is the foundation for the company’s fully autonomous trucks and freight delivery solution, which commenced testing in April 2019 and is deployed in test cars in Fremont, California and in Beijing and Guangzhou in China.

Pony.ai, which has offices in Guangzhou and Fremont, is one of the few companies to have secured an autonomous vehicle testing license in Beijing. In California, it has obtained a robo-taxi operations permit from the California Public Utilities Commission. The only other companies to have secured such a license in California are Cruise, AutoX, Aurora, Voyage, Waymo, and Zoox.

Last October, Pony.ai partnered with Via and Hyundai to launch BotRide, Pony.ai’s second public robo-taxi service after a pilot program (PonyPilot) in Nansha, China. BotRide allowed riders and carpoolers to hail autonomous Hyundai Kona electric SUVs through apps developed with Via, sourcing from a fleet of 10 cars with human safety drivers behind the wheel.

Pony.ai BotRide

In August, Pony.ai inked an agreement with Bosch to “explore the future of automotive maintenance and repair for autonomous fleets.” Pony.ai and Bosch’s Automotive Aftermarket division in North America plan to develop and test fleet maintenance solutions for commercial robo-taxi programs. Pony.ai says it began piloting a maintenance program with Bosch in the San Francisco Bay Area in early July.

Among other potential advantages, autonomous driving promises the continuous operation of fleets and reduction of downtime. According to a 2017 McKinsey report, robo-taxis could reduce a fleet operator’s total cost of ownership by 30% to 50% compared with private vehicle ownership and by about 70% compared to shared mobility, significantly disrupting the market. But robo-taxis will need vastly different maintenance infrastructure than cars, in part because they might lack regular monitoring; have only minutes between passengers; and sport expensive, sensitive, and unconventional parts, like lidar sensors.

Pony.ai has competition in Daimler, which in summer 2018 obtained a permit from the Chinese government that allows it to test self-driving cars powered by Baidu’s Apollo platform on public roads in Beijing. And startup Optimus Ride built out a small driverless shuttle fleet in Brooklyn. Waymo, which has racked up more than 20 million real-world miles in over 25 cities across the U.S. and billions of simulated miles, in November 2018 became the first company to obtain a driverless car testing permit from the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). Other competitors include Tesla, Aptiv, May Mobility, Cruise, Aurora, Argo AI, Pronto.ai, and Nuro.

However, only Nuro, Waymo, Cruise, and Argo rival Pony.ai’s fundraising. With the exception of Argo, each has raised more than $3 billion in venture capital at valuations ranging from $7.5 billion (Argo) to $175 billion (Waymo).

Fortunately for Pony.ai, it has partnerships with Chinese state-owned auto group FAW and GAC Group, a Guangzhou-based automobile maker, to develop level 4 robo-taxi vehicles. It also has a joint collaboration with On Semiconductor to prototype image sensing and processing technologies for machine vision. And Pony.ai has driven over 1.5 million autonomous kilometers (or about 932,056 miles) as of year-end 2019, putting it within striking distance of Yandex (2 million miles) and Baidu (1.8 million miles).

Brunei Investment Agency, Brunei’s sovereign wealth fund, and CITIC Private Equity Funds Management participated in the series C extension. Previous and existing investors in Pony.ai include Toyota, video game publisher Beijing Kunlun Wanwei, Sequoia Capital China, IDG Capital, and Legend Capital. The Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan board’s Teachers’ Innovation Platform led this latest round, with participation from Fidelity China Special Situations PLC, 5Y Capital, ClearVue Partners, Eight Roads, and others.

“Technological innovation is constantly transforming traditional industries, and autonomous driving will change traditional ways of transportation in the near future,” a CPE spokesperson told VentureBeat via email. “CPE believes that Pony.ai will lead this trend, and will help it seize the opportunity for faster growth.”

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