Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Road Sensors Could Aid Autonomous Driving

Volvo is continuing its work on autonomous vehicle technology with a research project that involves the use of magnets to keep self-driving cars on the road. In the 1990s, scientists Dr. Pravin Varaiya, Nortel Networks distinguished professor at Cal and former Director of PATH, and, Dr. Amine Haoui and Dr. Robert Kavaler, researched a solution using in-ground wireless sensors. ITS applications rely on traffic flow sensors to provide vehicle detection; incident detection; ramp metering data; real-time traffic adaptive signal control; roadway volume and vehicle classification archival and planning data; and data for traveler, commercial, and emergency information services. The success of these ITS applications depends largely on the proper design, installation, and maintenance of sensor components.

Read more here...

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Direct selling, facilitated by the internet, spreads

Buying direct from manufacturers saves consumers money, and potentially increases profit margins. Amazon, in Italy, is selling Fiats directly to consumers. This is the Tesla sales model, and how many Japanese car companies market domestically.

Read more here...

Monday, November 28, 2016

Robot Trucks take to Ohio Highways

From SlashDot--

"A vehicle from self-driving truck maker Otto will travel a 35-mile stretch of U.S. Route 33 on Monday in central Ohio..." reports the Associated Press. The truck "will travel in regular traffic, and a driver in the truck will be positioned to intervene should anything go awry, Department of Transportation spokesman Matt Bruning said Friday, adding that 'safety is obviously No. 1.'" Ohio sees this route as "a corridor where new technologies can be safely tested in real-life traffic, aided by a fiber-optic cable network and sensor systems slated for installation next year" -- although next week the truck will also start driving on the Ohio Turnpike.
Read more here...

Monday, November 7, 2016

Elon Musk: Basic Income, Because -- Robots

Space entrepreneur Elon Musk believes we’ll eventually need a basic universal income because of “automation.”

“People will have time to do other things, more complex things, more interesting things... Certainly more leisure time. And then we gotta figure how we integrate with a world and future with a vast AI.”

For example, in the future, semi-trailer trucks will be able to drive themselves. And though that won't become the status quo for a while, it will mean that there won't be a need for quite as many truck drivers, says Musk. Some drivers will transition to fleet operators, responsible for monitoring the status of a fleet of trucks, not any one individual truck. If a truck appears to be having issues, then the fleet operator would come in remotely and solve the problem.

"Actually, it's probably a more interesting job than just driving one [truck]," says Musk. It's likely those truck drivers who no longer have a job might see the situation differently. But the optimistic Musk sees increased automation as an overall benefit to society, even an opportunity.

Even the President thinks we should consider radical alternatives.

Read (and watch the video) here...