Self-driving vehicle trial pitting Waymo against Uber delayed until December

  • Self-driving vehicle trial pitting Waymo against Uber delayed until December

Self-driving vehicle trial pitting Waymo against Uber delayed until December

The report, prepared by risk-management firm Stroz Friedberg, also states that Mr. Levandowski and other early Otto employees appeared to hide their activity ahead of interviews with Stroz investigators. The newly released document details cybersecurity firm Stroz Friedberg's investigation of Uber, and suggests that Levandowski employed cloak-and-dagger tactics to commit and hide corporate espionage.

However, Alsup said he would grant Waymo's request for more time to investigate documents and e-mails that Uber only recently disclosed. In addition, Mr. Levandowski used his smartphone to take thousands of covert photographs of computer screens displaying Google confidential files.

The crux of Alphabet's lawsuit against Uber rests on a claim that Levandowski stole the design for a key sensor technology called lidar before he left the company to start Otto.

On the very day that Levandowski showed up for an interview at Stroz Friedberg's office, he tried to empty the trash bin on his computer - even though there were no files in the trash folder at the time, according to the report.

Last month, Waymo asked for a two-month delay for the trial set to begin next week.

Anthony Levandowski is a multi-millionaire engineer who was at the center of Google-Waymo battle. For instance, he admitted that he retained five disks of Google information after he left Waymo in January 2016. "Given the timing, these deletions could be a good-faith effort by Levandowski to attempt to purge from his laptop Googleconfidential material prior to his departure".

Waymo alleged in a lawsuit earlier in the year that a former employee, Anthony Levandowski, stole 14,000 files on its self-driving auto technology before leaving.

The document was part of a public filing made by Google's parent company Alphabet in its major trade secrets case against Uber.

It was written by cybersecurity firm Stroz Friedberg and it includes details about Levandowski's personal computers and the data on them, deleted text messages, and a rough timeline of how Levandowski and his partners formed a new startup and sold it for a reported sum of $680 million in under a year. However former Uber CEO Travis Kalanick said he "wanted nothing to do with the disks" and told him to "do what he needed to do".

Uber, on the other hand, said the report helps explain why "no Google material has been found at Uber". The proprietary data "included source code, design files, laser files, engineering documents, and software related to Google self-driving cars". In a recent hearing (3 October) in San Francisco federal court, Judge William Alsup postponed the trial on the case to December.

"It's hard to believe", Alsup said, "you're going to find anything in there that will show that Uber was using the trade secrets". Waymo has been testing its technologies in Phoenix, Arizona and the report suggests that the division's first self-driving cars in the service might pick up passengers in this city as early as this month. "In the end, the jury will see that Google's trade secrets are not and never were at Uber".