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Archive for the ‘Semi-autonomous Driving’ Category

CES Focus Shifts From Smartphones, Smart TVs to Smart Cars

“The potential applications of...technology are incredible."

by on Jan.08, 2018

A Nissan engineer monitors a volunteer's brain activity while testing new brain-to-vehicle software.

Anyone who has driven a relatively recent-vintage vehicle has probably experienced the benefits – and occasional snags – of using voice control to plug in a destination, dial a call or change the radio station. But Nissan’s IMx concept vehicle aims to take things a step further. It uses brain-to-vehicle technology to respond to what the driver is thinking.

“The potential applications of the technology are incredible,” helping motorists relax more while driving, while also improving vehicle safety, said Dr. Lucian Gheorghe, senior innovation researcher at the Nissan Research Center in Japan.

LA Auto Show News!

While you’re not likely to see Nissan’s B2V technology wind up in showrooms for at least five to 10 more years, the automaker plans to demonstrate its potential during the CES show in Las Vegas next week. And Nissan won’t be alone. Formerly known as the Consumer Electronic Show, the annual gathering traditionally focused on gizmos and gadgets, smartphones, TVs, computers and drones. But over the last few years, it has become a showcase for the auto industry, as well.

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Nissan to Demonstrate Brain-to-Vehicle Technology at CES

System can anticipate what a driver is going to do.

by on Jan.03, 2018

A volunteer uses the Nissan B2V technology to test how it works will driving on a simulator.

I think, therefore I drive? So, classical philosopher Rene Descartes might have opined after checking out the new Brain-to-Vehicle technology that Nissan Motor Co. will unveil at the Consumer Electronics Show next week.

Anyone who has driven a relatively recent-vintage vehicle has probably experienced the benefits – and occasional snags – of voice control. But Nissan’s system is designed to decode what a driver is thinking and use that to help control how a vehicle steers, accelerates or brakes. In an emergency, for example, it could allow a car to begin slowing down as much as a half-second before the driver’s foot actually hits the brake pedal.

Brain Power!

“The potential applications of the technology are incredible,” helping motorists relax more while driving, while also improving vehicle safety, said Dr. Lucian Gheorghe, senior innovation researcher at the Nissan Research Center in Japan.

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Musk Gives Twitter Users a Peek Behind the Curtain

Popular CEO fields questions via Twitter, reveals upcoming Tesla updates.

by on Dec.29, 2017

Tesla CEO Elon Musk held court on Twitter recently, promising everything from a pickup truck to improved Autopilot.

Tesla founder and CEO Elon Musk went “all Oprah” on Twitter yesterday. He asked his followers for input on how to improve the company’s vehicles and as the answers came back he basically rubber stamped approvals like Oprah gives out cars.

The charismatic EV company leader received more than 13,000 responses to his query, which also sought feedback on his other companies, such as SpaceX, SolarCity and The Boring Co., but most centered on what Tesla mavens wanted to see in the future.

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He responded to about a dozen, promising one respondent that the company will “make a pickup truck right after Model Y.” He added that he is “dying to build it,” so when the company debuts the Model Y, the truck could be part of that unveiling, based on the last event. (more…)

Is This the Apple Car?

Patent application hints at Apple’s plans.

by on Dec.26, 2017

A sketch of a possible Apple Car interior helped illustrate the tech giant's patent application.

Despite the company’s traditional reticence to discuss projects in the works, it’s widely believed that Apple is working on a major automotive project – speculation that took on new life when CEO Tim Cook described self-driving vehicles as “the mother of all AI.”

As expected, Apple isn’t saying anything, but it gave another hint as to what’s apparently in the works this past week when the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office published the company’s application for a patent on a new “autonomous navigation system” last week.

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Many of the autonomous systems being developed are intended to operate by linking up a broader network that would provide things like weather and traffic information. The Apple filing, which actually occurred in 2015, appears to focus on ways to make self-driving technology more efficient and able to operation on its own, rather than depending on a link to other vehicles or a highway infrastructure system.” (more…)

UPS Jumps on Tesla Semi Bandwagon with 125-Truck Order

Company already had partnership with EV maker.

by on Dec.20, 2017

UPS is the latest company to place an order – 125 trucks – for Tesla electric semi truck.

The popularity of Tesla’s not-yet-on-the-road semi continues as UPS became the latest company to plunk down big money to place an order. UPS wants 125 trucks, Tesla’s largest order to date.

The truck, which was unveiled in November, provides unparalleled performance, such as a zero to 60 time of five seconds unloaded and 20 seconds with a full 80,000-pound load. It features an simplified interior where the driver sits in the center of the cab and streamlines all of the information and data a driver needs into two simple screens.

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Tesla’s founder and CEO Elon Musk said the company will begin producing the trucks in 2019. (more…)

Volvo Taps Brakes on Drive Me Autonomous Vehicle Program

Move delays program by four years.

by on Dec.15, 2017

The Simonovski family is one of the first two to participate in Volvo's Drive Me program.

Volvo’s tapping the brakes on its Drive Me test program in Sweden as it believes the technology is not quite ready for humans.

It was expected to yield big results when its introduced in 2014. Designed to get real people, in Sweden, behind the wheel of autonomous vehicles for additional testing, the program is being slowed down after engineers decided the program wasn’t ready for prime time.

Safety News!

Initially, Volvo said that 100 self-driving cars would be made available for members of the public to drive on the streets of Gothenburg, Sweden, the automaker’s hometown, by the end of this year. (more…)