Who is Ashok Elluswamy? Chennai man & the person behind Tesla's Autopilot innovations

Elon Musk, the CEO of Tesla, recently praised Ashok Elluswamy, an engineer of Indian descent who was the inaugural hire for Tesla's autopilot team.

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Elon Musk, Tesla's CEO, recently commended Ashok Elluswamy, an Indian-origin engineer who was the first person hired for Tesla's autopilot team. Starting with a post on social media, Elluswamy expressed how Musk has been the driving force behind AI and autonomy at Tesla. Elluswamy reminisced about the humble beginnings of Autopilot on a computer with only about 384 KB of memory and very limited computing power. Musk challenged the engineering team with seemingly impractical requests, pushing them to achieve very challenging goals that many thought unattainable. Nonetheless, Musk's persistence never wavered, inspiring the team to accomplish remarkable feats.

Who is Ashok Elluswamy?

  • Ashok Elluswamy is a robotics engineer with extensive expertise in computer vision, perception, planning, and control, as stated on his LinkedIn profile. He currently resides in San Francisco and was the first engineer hired for Tesla's Autopilot team.
  • Mr. Elluswamy has been a part of Tesla for 10 years, joining the company in June 2014. He was initially employed as a senior software engineer after 2.5 years, and in May 2019, he was promoted to Director of Tesla Autopilot Software, a position he still holds.
  • Holding a Bachelor of Engineering in Electronics and Communication from the College of Engineering, Guindy in Chennai, Mr. Elluswamy was praised by one of his professors as one of the top students. He then pursued a Master of Science in Robotic Systems Development from Carnegie Mellon University.
  • Before his tenure at Tesla, Mr. Elluswamy worked as a Software Engineer at WABCO Vehicle Control Systems for over two years and later served as a research intern at the Volkswagen Electronic Research Lab.