Elon Musk has revealed his director of artificial intelligence, Andrej Karpathy, is currently on a sabbatical from Tesla.
Musk shared the information when discussing why FSD Beta is geofenced and doesn’t work in the Toronto downtown core, explaining that Karpathy’s sabbatical is for approximately four months.
Toronto streetcars are not yet handled well by FSD. Btw, @karpathy is on a ~4 month sabbatical.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) March 27, 2022
The news immediately led some to believe that Karpathy’s time off was a bad sign and that he could be on his way out.
Karpathy personally calmed those fears soon after Musk’s tweet, saying he needed some rest and relaxation after nearly five hard years of work at Tesla, adding that he can’t wait to get back to work.
Taking some time off to rest&travel after almost 5 years at Tesla. Esp excited to get focused time to re-sharpen my technical edge and train some neural nets! Though I already miss all the robots and GPU/Dojo clusters and looking forward to having them at my fingertips again ❤️😅 https://t.co/R2Yidw9Yma
— Andrej Karpathy (@karpathy) March 27, 2022
Those nearly five years of work have likely been very stressful with little time off as the automaker has had to completely rewrite the code for FSD after switching to Tesla Vision (amongst his other projects).
As he notes in his tweet, one of the projects waiting for him upon his return will be Dojo.
The supercomputer is being built to be able to take in the massive amount of video data captured from their fleet of vehicles and use it to train its neural nets, all with the end goal of accelerating the progress of FSD.