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Alphabet's Waymo filed an injunction against Uber for allegedly stealing intellectual property
http://www.recode.net/2017/3/10/14885270/alphabet-waymo-uber-lawsuit-otto-anthony-levandowski-lidar

Waymo filed sworn testimony that Uber's head of self-driving, Anthony Levandowski, stole key files.

Waymo, Alphabet's self-driving project, has asked a judge to stop Uber from using what it believes is stolen intellectual property.

The motion for the injunction comes a few weeks after Waymo filed a lawsuit against Uber and the head of its self-driving division, Anthony Levandowski, alleging the theft of a key part of Waymo's self-driving system before he left parent company Alphabet.

Levandowski joined Uber when it acquired his startup Otto last year. Waymo was originally known as Google's self-driving project.

To bolster its argument for an injunction, Waymo also filed sworn testimony from one of its security engineers, Gary Brown, who did a forensic search on Levandowski's Google-issued laptop. According to the testimony, Levandowski downloaded 14,000 files from a repository the company used to store the design schematics of its systems.

The testimony further claims that two additional employees who left Google's self-driving project to join Otto, Sameer Kshirsagar and Radu Raduta, also downloaded and transferred the company's proprietary information to a personal device including a file that listed the company's external vendors.

The company initially decided to perform a forensic investigation of Levandowski's computer after a Waymo employee was inadvertently copied on an email from a supplier with the subject line "Otto Files."

The email was being sent to a list of people that Waymo believes were working with Uber. Attached to the email were drawings of Otto's lidar circuit board.

Waymo alleged that it looked just liked its own technology, specifically the design of its circuit board for lidar technology, according to the testimony.

Additional testimonies the company included detail Levandowski's long flirtation with Uber before leaving Google.

According to a testimony by Pierre-Yves Droz, who co-founded 510 systems with Levandowski before Google acquired it in 2011, Levandowski met with Uber's vice president of mapping Brian McClendon around the summer of 2015.

Droz testimony reads:

"We were having dinner at a restaurant near the office, and [Levandowski] told me that it would be nice to create a new self-driving car startup and that Uber would be interested in buying the team responsible for the LiDAR we were developing at Google."

Droz then alleges Levandowski met with Uber in January 2016 - a month before Otto was officially founded but still in stealth mode.

"Later in January 2016, a colleague told me that Mr. Levandowski had been seen at Uber's headquarters in mid January. I asked Mr. Levandowski about this, and he admitted he had met with Uber, and the reason he was there was that he was looking for investors for his new company."

Uber called the original suit a "baseless attempt to slow down a competitor" and said that it looked forward to taking it to court.

Johana Bhuiyan is the senior transportation editor at Recode and can be reached at [email protected] or on Signal, Confide, WeChat or Telegram at 516-233-8877.

While this is not the first time an established company has attempted legal action against its former employees - in January, Tesla sued its former director of Autopilot for poaching people to join his new startup - this is the first time Waymo has taken such action.

In part, it's because lidar - or laser radar - plays a critical role in a self-driving system. The radar shoots lasers at objects in order to detect them and works closely with the cameras and normal radars to create a thorough image of the car's surroundings.

But it's also because Waymo, unlike its competitors, is building both its own hardware and software in house and has come up with a proprietary design that it believes can bring down the cost of lidar immensely with a possibility of selling that to automakers and other players.

So it's not just important for the functionality of the autonomous technology but also possibly for Waymo's business.

We've reached out to Uber for comment and will update when we hear back.

Update: This story was updated to include additional information from two more sworn testimonies Waymo has filed as part of the injunction.
 

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Is any driver anywhere not celebrating what google did? Uber is screwed. Their investors just saw their driverless pie in the sky collapse (wasnt going to happen anyways). On the flipside now uber can blame google for the next decade why their driverless cars are not on the road.
 

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Fascinating how specific the charges and trail of evidence are. Wonder if Travis can convince anyone he didn't know about this before purchasing Otto, or should he reserve a cell space next to Levandowski so they can contemplate how things could possibly go so wrong for the both of them.

First thought would be, it probably wasn't a smart idea to steal secrets from a well-funded company like, oh let's see Google? And use Google's own laptop to do it before giving it back??
 

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Is any driver anywhere not celebrating what google did? Uber is screwed. Their investors just saw their driverless pie in the sky collapse (wasnt going to happen anyways). On the flipside now uber can blame google for the next decade why their driverless cars are not on the road.
If Waymo ends up owning Uber, Waymo will just use their own autonomous vehicle.
 

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If Waymo ends up owning Uber, Waymo will just use their own autonomous vehicle.
These things dont generally win more than a billion in court. Even if google got a billion it would not be enough to "own" uber. I suspect there was a good reason why waymo was created as a separate entity to begin with. It is possible that google was blocked from suing uber due to a conflict of interest unless they spun off waymo. Its likely google will sink its teeth in and not let go. Uber will bleed a billion due to its otto aquisition and the same in costs related to the court case.
All the big VC have a piece in this scam. The big boys don't want to lose their money but want an IPO so the common folk can get fleeced again by corporate America. If uber goes down then the future fleecing will get exposed and become harder.
Well said. This is exactly what will unfold unless uber really does make people into slaves of their evil system
 

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Is any driver anywhere not celebrating what google did? Uber is screwed. Their investors just saw their driverless pie in the sky collapse (wasnt going to happen anyways). On the flipside now uber can blame google for the next decade why their driverless cars are not on the road.
Tied up in litigation for 10 years . . .
I'm looking at $1,800 a month social security alone,have 3 rooms to rent and hardly any bills . . .
10 years of litigation puts me 10 years closer to retirement . . .
 

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Who cares who's suing who. All I care about is feeding my family. Here is a fact: In NYC the only taxi people today who are making any reasonable amount of money are the Yellow Taxi Drivers. The owners have been cut to shreds and are leasing the taxis for less than ever before. There is also talk of a fare increase in the works that could take effect before the summer months arrive. Perssonally, I've had enough of struggling for a living. I've returned to the Yellow taxis and I'm doing better than ever before.
 

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Travis is a technology sucking droid. He sucked up a business called Uber Taxi when he and his rich buddy's could not get a ride home one night. He then "figured out" that he did not want to be a taxi company and dropped the Taxi part to become Uber. From there, everything has pretty much gone to $hit. Uber Taxi is still out there (where you can tip your driver) but Travis has figured out that Uber, Uber Eats, Uber Pool, Uber Freight, Uber the Frick you say, was a much better way to make himself and all of his friends Billionaires. He was/is incorrect but that will not stop him from trying to take over the free World on city at a time.
Who cares who is suing who? You should! Travis doesn't care if you or your family is starving. Uber only cares about ruling the World (this is not an exaggeration) while using their "independent contractors " to suck as much income as possible out of the traveling public.
 

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These things dont generally win more than a billion in court. Even if google got a billion it would not be enough to "own" uber. I suspect there was a good reason why waymo was created as a separate entity to begin with. It is possible that google was blocked from suing uber due to a conflict of interest unless they spun off waymo. Its likely google will sink its teeth in and not let go. Uber will bleed a billion due to its otto aquisition and the same in costs related to the court case.
First of all, Google is so much bigger than Uber and they could buy Uber outright if they wanted to.

Second, I'm not talking about Google buying Uber. I'm talking about the fact they own the rights to the technology Uber is using. It has nothing to do with how much money they could take in a court case.

Finally, Google has already filed suit against Uber. It is already in process. No one "blocked" them.
 

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First of all, Google is so much bigger than Uber and they could buy Uber outright if they wanted to.

Second, I'm not talking about Google buying Uber. I'm talking about the fact they own the rights to the technology Uber is using. It has nothing to do with how much money they could take in a court case.

Finally, Google has already filed suit against Uber. It is already in process. No one "blocked" them.
You didnt read nor understand my post. Google can not buy uber unless uber wanted to sell to google. Even if uber had the money and even if googles board approved it, why the hell would google want to own an application that they can easily develop them selves? What does uber have that is worth 60 billion? The answer is simple. Investors who believe their pie in the sky and drivers who unbenounce to most people, hate the company they work for. A recipe for disaster. Google is blocked due to an agreement they signed when they handed uber millions. They are an investor in uber. Pretty sure they cant sue uber easily. Thats why they have waymo
 

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You didnt read nor understand my post. Google can not buy uber unless uber wanted to sell to google. Even if uber had the money and even if googles board approved it, why the hell would google want to own an application that they can easily develop them selves? What does uber have that is worth 60 billion? The answer is simple. Investors who believe their pie in the sky and drivers who unbenounce to most people, hate the company they work for. A recipe for disaster. Google is blocked due to an agreement they signed when they handed uber millions. They are an investor in uber. Pretty sure they cant sue uber easily. Thats why they have waymo
OMG

You don't understand.

This is not about buying Uber.

Google DID develop it and they are saying Uber stole it. Read the law suit.

Why is this so hard for you to understand?
 
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