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Udacity - Lyft Perception Challenge

Lyft is committing its vast transportation expertise to building safer, cleaner, and more efficient communities through the development of self-driving technologies. This is tremendous news for everyone who shares Lyft’s vision for a better future. Their commitment is a significant one—in the past year alone, Lyft announced the launch of a new self-driving division, opened a 90,000 sq ft Level 5 Engineering Facility in Palo Alto, and made significant investments and partnerships in the space.

Lyft and Udacity: Driving the Future Forward

Expectations for Lyft’s new self-driving team are high, and with demand for skilled talent in the self-driving field already at a fever pitch, the company is laser-focused on attracting the best and brightest to fill dozens of open positions, and to help the company drive the future of self-driving technology forward. Udacity is thrilled to play a key role in their efforts.

A New Approach to Finding Talent

Lyft recognizes that conventional recruiting strategies no longer suffice. What is needed is a future-facing hiring model as transformative as the field they’re hiring for. To that end, Lyft is partnering with Udacity on a new approach to identifying, attracting, and hiring top candidates—engineers that possess the ideal combination of problem-solving ability, specialized skills, hand-on experience, and systems thinking.

This new collaboration builds on previous successes, as the company has already hired a number of Udacity graduates.

The Lyft Perception Challenge

Given the specific skill sets and problem-solving abilities the company is seeking, Lyft and Udacity have designed an innovative challenge to help identify the perfect candidates for Lyft’s open roles on their Level 5 Team. The Lyft Perception Challenge is a software development challenge designed to test problem solving skills in the area of Perception for Autonomous Vehicles. Top challenge participants will earn an interview with Lyft!

Challenge: Overview

Perception—the ability to perceive and make sense of the surrounding environment—is central to self-driving technology. In this challenge, competitors will be asked to apply computer vision and deep learning techniques to identify objects in camera images.

To generate a dataset for the challenge, Udacity is utilizing CARLA, the cutting-edge open-source simulator for autonomous vehicles developed by Intel Labs and the Computer Vision Center. The CARLA simulator provides a realistic urban environment in which users can change environmental conditions like time of day and weather.  Competitors in the challenge will be provided with a dataset consisting of simulated camera images from a forward-facing camera on a car driving through a range of environmental conditions.

To complete the challenge, competitors will take the images extracted from the CARLA simulator and apply a perception algorithm to identify which pixels in those images correspond to other vehicles.

Challenge: Rules and Rewards

Participants in this challenge must be enrolled in, or a graduate of, Udacity’s Self-Driving Car Engineer Nanodegree Program. Submissions must meet minimum processing speed and accuracy requirements to be eligible for consideration. Each participant may submit as many times as they like. Participants will be able to chart their progress relative to other competitors on a leaderboard. Only the best submission from each competitor will be recorded.

The challenge opens today, and will close on June 1. The top 25 competitors (who are eligible to work in the U.S.) will have the opportunity to interview with Lyft! The top 150 candidates (regardless of location) will be eligible for exclusive interview preparation seminars with the Udacity Careers Team.

Join the Self-Driving Movement

Students in Udacity’s Self-Driving Car Engineer Nanodegree program are mastering the skills that will enable them to join the global self-driving movement, and contribute to a safer and better world for all. The Lyft Perception Challenge offers an opportunity to put these skills on display for one of the movement’s global leaders.

Ready to take up the challenge? Enter today!

Kirsten Bailey
Kirsten Bailey
Kirsten heads up Hiring Partnerships at Udacity. She works with our industry partners to connect them with the incredible talent coming from Udacity's Nanodegree programs. Her current side-passion is everything related to psychology, neuroscience and meditation.