In the Australian Financial Review, Data61 CEO Adrian Turner’s latest op-ed explores the autonomous vehicle as a symbol of the value of ‘combinatorial innovation’, and first-mover advantages in ambitious new technological fields. Read an extract below, and the full article here:

“Any country wanting to create export value in the fourth industrial revolution will need globally competitive digital capabilities, and because of their combinatorial nature, the countries boxed out of today’s car and mobility platform opportunities will be at a significant disadvantage. Australia has strong robotics, AI and LIDAR capability to build from, and some early success with companies like Baraja, the creator of Spectrum-Scan LIDAR. Zoox is a stealthy start-up that’s re-imagining mobility. Founded by Australian Tim Kentley-Klay it was valued at $4.3 billion in its last fundraising, led by Mike Cannon-Brookes. Our mining sector also has a strong track record with vehicle autonomy and the Department of Defence is investing, recently establishing a Co-Operative Research Centre (CRC) focused on Trusted Autonomous Systems.

Just as the mobile phone evolved into the ubiquitous smartphone – creating a billion dollar ecosystem of apps, products and services around it – so too will the autonomous car transform society and the economy. The famous words of Alan Kay have never rung more true: “the best way to predict the future is to create it””

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