Want to try out self-driving technology for yourself? If you own a Tesla (or know someone who does), you might soon have the chance: the electric-car manufacturer is reportedly offering some vehicle owners a one-month trial that “enables automatic steering, speed, lane changing, and parking.”
Tesla CEO Elon Musk has made no secret of his interest in self-driving cars, and rumors suggest that the upcoming Tesla 3 could feature that technology under the hood. A midsize sedan that costs $35,000 before tax incentives, far below the sticker price of the company’s current “luxury” models, the Tesla 3 may make its debut late next year—if Tesla can produce them fast enough. Nearly 400,000 people have pre-ordered the vehicle.
In addition to Tesla, companies such as Google have spent a considerable amount of time perfecting autonomous cars’ driving skills. The more cars on the road, the more data these companies can use to refine their software; anyone who owns a Tesla and participates in this self-driving program isn’t just allowing their car to drive them to work—they may be contributing to this technology’s evolution.
A 2015 report by Boston-based Lux Research estimated that the self-driving car industry would generate $87 billion worth of value by 2030. Those tech pros interested in pursuing autonomous vehicles as a career opportunity don’t necessarily need to learn everything they can about the automobile industry as a whole; a background in computer science, with heavy emphasis on machine-learning techniques can prove enough to get your foot in the proverbial door.