Intel researchers are developing a "black box" similar to those used for aviation to record vehicle telemetry and other data.
Having a black box, or event data recorders, in vehicles could help police investigate accidents or help insurance companies determine fault. It could also be connected to the vehicle diagnostics and control center to help determine if the car a working improperly or if driver error is responsible a vehicle malfunction (think: Prius and unintended acceleration).
Don't blame Intel for putting the backseat driver under the hood, the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration is requiring automakers … Read more
Starting Monday, you'll be able to send directions from a Web browser to your SYNC-equipped Ford, Lincoln, or Mercury vehicle using the new Send to SYNC button on Google Maps.
If you use Ford's SYNC TDI (traffic, directions, and information) application, you can send directions directly from your computer or smartphone to Ford's cloud-based application. Once in your car, you can ask SYNC to retrieve the map, which it will download from the cloud; it will then calculate turn-by-turn directions using the latest traffic information and incorporating the driving preferences you set up in the app.
It'… Read more
From the wheel to the router, technology has changed us almost as much as we've changed the world using technology. And each time, we've struggled to balance the positive effects with the drawbacks.
It's hard to imagine that any technology created over the last several decades has had as big an impact on culture, learning, and communication as the Internet and the Web. But in his new book "The Shallows: What the Internet is Doing to Our Brains," author Nick Carr argues there's a downside to this explosion in creativity and information: we're … Read more
Taking the concept of the mobile office a step further, BMW is including BlackBerry smartphone integration with its vehicles starting in September with its 2011 BMW models.
Using Bluetooth, many smartphones can already sync contacts, photos, music, and offer voice activated functionality and text-to-voice capability for text messages while driving. However, in addition to the usual smartphone feature list, BMW's ConnectedDrive gives its vehicles the capability to read out loud incoming e-mail messages from compatible BlackBerry smartphones.
Using the iDrive control interface that's on models equipped with Assist, Bluetooth, and onboard navigation, occupants of a BMW can … Read more
The micro-carmaker recently released its Smart Drive app ($9.99), which it showed at the Geneva Motor Show, on iTunes in U.S. and E.U., and it offers radio, Bluetooth, and geomapping capabilities. While any driver can download and use this app, Smart designed it specifically to fit in the dashboard of its ForTwo and integrate with the fun-size car when it's coupled with its proprietary Smart Drive kit--an iPhone cradle.
According to the … Read more
Google is in the driver's seat with Ford and now General Motors, as both automakers are unveiling services to enable car owners to send Google Maps directions to their in-car systems.
GM said Tuesday that its new service will let drivers download Google Maps from their smartphones to their OnStar navigation systems, where they can listen to turn-by-turn directions. The feature, known as OnStar eNav, will become available through Google Maps at the end of this month, according to the automaker.
Ford owners with Sync-equipped vehicles will be able tap into Google Maps to download directions to their cars before month's end.
The free Send to Sync feature, announced Tuesday by Ford, will let drivers send Google Maps data from their Bluetooth-enabled computers or mobile phones to their in-car Sync systems. The electronic directions are downloaded directly into Sync and converted into audible turn-by-turn steps. The route is then calculated on the spot using the latest traffic information.
Ford is touting the service as a way for drivers to keep their eyes on the road by eliminating the need to … Read more
Red lights aren't just torture devices that make your daily commute worse or God's way of keeping you from having fun; they're also a huge waste of fuel. Tackling that problem, Audi demonstrated Wednesday in Germany its "travolution" technology that enables cars to communicate with traffic singles using wireless LANs and UMTS links so drivers can better time the lights and reduce fuel consumption.
It's not just the flow of traffic that's improved by missing red lights--a 2006 study revealed that reducing waiting times at traffic lights could cut fuel consumption by 17 percent. In Germany, this calculation would save almost 185,000 gallons of fuel each year.… Read more