Uber self-driving guru in Catch-22

Lyft Partners With Waymo For Self Driving Cars

The self-driving vehicle industry is still reverberating from news of a recent partnership between ride-hailing giant Lyft and the autonomous vehicle aficionados at Waymo, Google's self-driving auto spin-off.

However, in a ruling also critical of Waymo's attempts to protect its trade secrets, Judge William Alsup denied the company's request to stop Uber's development of the photonics technology - saying that Waymo had "over-reached" its claims in the case.

Uber said in a statement Monday that it's pleased the court allowed it to continue self-driving vehicle research, including its own Lidar innovations.

Waymo said on Monday it welcomed the ruling. Yesterday, though, a federal judge ruled in favor of Google's self-driving vehicle unit. The Judge also says evidence shows that before he left Waymo, Levandowski and Uber planned for Uber to acquire a company formed by Levandowski.

A federal judge has given its verdict in the Waymo-Uber lawsuit case, saying that Uber Technologies will have to promptly return the stolen files to Waymo, however, the ruling prevented Uber from shutting down their work on autonomous auto program forever, which Waymo had demanded, reported Reuters.

Alsup referred the case to the U.S. Department of Justice for investigation of possible trade secret theft on Thursday, when the ruling was released under seal.

Amid the legal battle, Waymo has aligned itself with Lyft, Uber 's chief US ride-hailing competitor.

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In a statement, Lyft said looks forward to further discussions with the mayor's office.

Levandowski, who is not a defendant in the civil case, has asserted his Fifth Amendment privilege against self-incrimination and has refused to testify.

Waymo has alleged that Levandowski stole trade secrets and used them to found his own self-driving startup, which Uber then bought. Introducing a handful of self-driving cars will have an impact on overall traffic conditions, that much has been determined already.

Levandowski formed Ottomotto, a self-driving vehicle startup, on January 15, 2016.

The auto industry and technology companies are racing to develop self-driving technology, which they expect in a number of years will transform transportation, cutting costs of ride services and changing the way people buy and use cars.

A major announcement was made late last week, as Waymo and Lyft are partnering up for a new venture. The companies are revealing very few details about deal to launch self-driving auto pilots.

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