Apple computer navigation engineer departs for mysterious automaker Faraday Future

Posted:
in General Discussion
Computer vision and vehicle navigation specialist Bart Nabbe has left Apple's "Special Projects" division, and is now working at electric car company Faraday Future.




Nabbe worked for Apple's between September 2014 and July of 2016. He is adjunct faculty at Carnegie Mellon University, and has worked in robot navigation, coordination of multiple robots in hazardous environments simultaneously, robot vision improvement, and autonomous navigation in urban environments.

Previously listed as working in Apple's Special Projects division, Nabbe's body of work suggests that the specific Apple special project that he was working on is Project Titan, also known as the development group for a possible "Apple Car."

Nabbe's LinkedIn profile now lists him as the director of strategic partnerships at Faraday Future.

Faraday Future is in startup mode, and focuses on electric vehicles and autonomous navigation solutions. The company's first electric single-seat concept vehicle debuted at the 2016 Consumer Electronics Show, after two years in development. The company has no timeline for expansion of the line, nor has it commented on if the premiere vehicle will see retail sale.

Dan Dodge, the former CEO of QNX, left BlackBerry for Apple earlier this year. Dodge also works in Apple's Special Projects team, and is suspected to be involved in "Project Titan."

Bob Mansfield has reportedly been put in charge of Apple's automotive project, which was said to be at a crossroads in the development cycle in January.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 13
    "Director of strategic partnerships", intriguing, for sure. Speculation would suggest that he's "on-loan".
    This may not be new, but has anyone suggested that Faraday Future is Apple Car, out in the open in plain sight! :wink:
    cornchip
  • Reply 2 of 13
    "Director of strategic partnerships", intriguing, for sure. Speculation would suggest that he's "on-loan".
    This may not be new, but has anyone suggested that Faraday Future is Apple Car, out in the open in plain sight! :wink:
    I think these are two different companies. 

    S partnerships is more likely to mean that FF is behind the curve on autonomous drive IP and needs to cozy up with the supply base. 

    A retired former colleague was consulting for FF and instead of getting all new Apple gear, he bought MS because of compatibility needs with FF's Office suite (He's a master technologist but it seems computer gear and software are a void in his knowledge base.)
  • Reply 3 of 13
    ronmgronmg Posts: 163member
    Well, I would imagine that Apple would have had Nabbe sign a non-compete as part of signing onto Titan, so this would support the partnership that bigmaconcampus suggested. Or, FF paid Apple a large amount of money to buy Nabbe out of the non-compete.
    cornchip
  • Reply 4 of 13
    nolamacguynolamacguy Posts: 4,758member
    non competes aren't enforceable in right to work states. I once hired an employment attorney who confirmed this in my state. 
    Mike Wuerthelelollivercornchip
  • Reply 5 of 13
    non competes aren't enforceable in right to work states. I once hired an employment attorney who confirmed this in my state. 
    Don't think that CA is a right to work state.  FF is located in San Jose & consists of 700+ people -- not your typical size Apple acquisition.

    However, there may be other opportunities:  invest; joint venture; licensing tech; contracted manufacturing ...

    edited August 2016
  • Reply 6 of 13
    kkerstkkerst Posts: 330member
    "Director of strategic partnerships", intriguing, for sure. Speculation would suggest that he's "on-loan".
    This may not be new, but has anyone suggested that Faraday Future is Apple Car, out in the open in plain sight! :wink:
    Now if AI could find a tie with 68 research and FF....that would be a smoking gun...almost.
  • Reply 7 of 13
    calicali Posts: 3,495member
    Apple should just buy Faraday for $20 or whatever should they become a threat.
  • Reply 8 of 13
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 19,805member
    cali said:
    Apple should just buy Faraday for $20 or whatever should they become a threat.
    IMHO the only possible threat to Apple would be from a government as there is no company in existence with either the resources or the expertise to truly threaten them. On the contrary it's other companies/industries who need to fear Apple. 
    edited August 2016
  • Reply 10 of 13
    maestro64maestro64 Posts: 4,414member
    non competes aren't enforceable in right to work states. I once hired an employment attorney who confirmed this in my state. 

    Yeah ask Apple how well that worked out for them when they hire that guy from IBM, Apple got sued and the guy was put on a back burner for a period of time then He finally left. For the average job no competes are not enforceable especially if you left on your own. But people who have knowledge which they only gained due to them working for the company the company can bar them from using that knowledge at another company. In this case I would say the non-compete would stand. This could be why he is the director of strategic relationships verse doing development work. This hire could be just to get this guy out of Apple even if the new company can not use his skills for a couple of years. It could slow apple down. Which it might have already done since we heard Titians is delayed.
  • Reply 11 of 13
    jakebjakeb Posts: 557member
    "Director of strategic partnerships", intriguing, for sure. Speculation would suggest that he's "on-loan".
    This may not be new, but has anyone suggested that Faraday Future is Apple Car, out in the open in plain sight! :wink:
    There was a lot of talk about Faraday being an Apple front. http://appleinsider.com/articles/15/11/06/rumor-claims-new-electric-car-maker-faraday-future-is-front-for-apple ;

    If it is, it is some CIA-level misdirection on the part of Apple. For now, it seems like they are an entirely independent company run by Chinese Billionaire Jia Yueting. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Faraday_Future
  • Reply 12 of 13
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 19,805member
    "Director of strategic partnerships", intriguing, for sure. Speculation would suggest that he's "on-loan".
    This may not be new, but has anyone suggested that Faraday Future is Apple Car, out in the open in plain sight! :wink:
    Not. Faraday Future today is suspending any further construction on their $1B+ automotive development and factory. Reason? They're running out of cash, so definitely not Apple. 
Sign In or Register to comment.