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Google hires the man in charge of Tesla's Autopilot feature

Google hires the man in charge of Tesla's Autopilot feature


Another day, another job change

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Google has hired Robert Rose, the man who led the development of Tesla's "Autopilot" project. 9to5Google spotted the news on Rose's LinkedIn page.

Rose spent six months helping Tesla launch its Autopilot and Autosteer features, and he also worked at SpaceX for more than five years. There, he was a software engineer on some of the first Falcon 9 flights, and eventually was the director of flight software for all of SpaceX.

Rose spent six months at Tesla, and 5 years at SpaceX

It's unclear exactly what he'll be working on at Google, but he listed his new role as a "software engineer" for Google Robotics, and 9to5Google rightly points out that Google has used similar language in job listings for its self-driving car project. But it could mean anything from the self-driving car program to the various companies that it owns, like Boston Dynamics. (The Verge has reached out to Google for comment.)

Stealing talent has become the weapon of choice in the autonomous car arms race. Tesla poaches employees from Apple. Apple hires employees that Tesla fires. And secretive startup Faraday Future has poached employees from both.

Google has done some poaching, too. The hiring of Rose comes just a few months after Google named John Krafcik, who worked for Ford and ran Hyundai America, as CEO of the company's self-driving car project. Rose could just be the next one in a long line as the company continues to expand the testing of its tiny self-driving cars.

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