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Ford Building Cars That Talk To Other Cars

samzenpus posted more than 3 years ago | from the who-does-your-tires? dept.

Transportation 239

thecarchik writes "Ford's new system works over a dedicated short-range WiFi system on a secure channel allocated by the FCC. The company says the system one-ups radar safety systems by allowing full 360-degree coverage even when there's no direct line of sight. Scenarios where this could benefit safety or traffic? Predicting collision courses with unseen vehicles, seeing sudden stops before they're visible, and spotting traffic pattern changes on a busy highway. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported in October that vehicle-to-vehicle warning systems could address nearly 80 percent of reported crashes not involving drunk drivers. As such, it could potentially save tens of thousands of lives per year."

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These systems which preach safety and security.. (4, Insightful)

intellitech (1912116) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015544)

In the sense of network architecture, the only way I would be even semi-okay with this would be if it really was completely decentralized and peer-to-peer. These types of systems which preach safety and security worry me, as they also could lead to large-scale privacy concerns decades down the road, since you know the various Traffic Management Authorities would jump head over heals for the ability to see real-time position of all cars on the expressway. Then a few years down the road, somebody commit's a crime in or with a car with one of these systems, a politician jumps on the new piece thinking it would make a great "brand item" for his campaign, and given a little bit of misguided legislation, BOOM. The main problem with centralizing management and data.

Though, I _am_ taking this a little far, I hope some of the things from Minority Report [wikipedia.org] never come to be.

By the way, off-topic, but is the "There was an unknown error in the submission" just there for old-times sake, or did that whole thing get ignored again?

Big traffic cop is watching (2)

TiggertheMad (556308) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015624)

as they also could lead to large-scale privacy concerns decades down the road, since you know the various Traffic Management Authorities would jump head over heals for the ability to see real-time position of all cars on the expressway.

Nothing says that a system like this would have to inform other cars of who you are, just that you are there. And as far as that goes, if you aren't broadcasting some sort of unique id to traffic control systems, they would only know you are say, a car traveling north at 20mph. How is this a problem?

Re:Big traffic cop is watching (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35016090)

Without broadcasting some form of unique ID, how are the cars themselves to determine if the information they received is from which car? You get a signal that a car is 100 feet away followed by one that says a car is 20 feet away could mean that the car is coming at you fast, the other car is stopped and you are about to hit it, or that there are two cars.

Unique ID is a must for anything meaningful.

Re:Big traffic cop is watching (2)

Nikker (749551) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016186)

Heh. You don't need to know everyones name on a busy city street to navigate down the sidewalk do you?

Re:Big traffic cop is watching (0)

cayenne8 (626475) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016278)

"Heh. You don't need to know everyones name on a busy city street to navigate down the sidewalk do you?"

Trouble is in most cities...the only time one sees a sidewalk is when getting the newpaper outside the doorsteep...or in my case...when I get outta the car and walk around the French Quarter for a bit.

To get anywhere in most cities, walking ain't gonna do it.

HOW TO END 95% OF ALL TRAFFIC CRASHES (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35016286)

From the summary:

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported in October that vehicle-to-vehicle warning systems could address nearly 80 percent of reported crashes not involving drunk drivers.

In other words.. those drivers who, despite not being physically impaired, nevertheless engaged in activities such as, but not limited to: tailgaiting, failing to yield right-of-way, driving too slow with reference to the speed limit and conditions, and/or performing a "rolling roadblock" by both refusing to pass the traffic to your right AND refusing to merge into the right (slow) lane so faster drivers can get past you. Those are the four most dangeous behaviors in which any driver can possibly engage. The first two directly endanger others; the last two tempt other drivers to perform dangerous maneuvers to get around a driver who has voluntarily decided to become a bottleneck. You make something tempting enough, and right or wrong, legally or illegally, drivers WILL eventually try it.

I suppose a distant fifth would be those drivers who just refuse to plan ahead even a little bit. For example... those drivers who know their left turn is coming up within the next 1-2 miles ... yet they wait until the last possible moment to actually get into the left lane, despite multiple opportunities. So they cut rudely in front of other drivers, or otherwise perform a poorly planned, poorly executed maneuver. All because they couldn't plan ahead a little.

If a logic-based, computer-calculated system can prevent accidents, it's only because so many accidents are 100% preventable, foreseeable, thoughtless, stupid. negligent failures to account for the knowable circumstances.

In the long run ... I wonder what good these ever-sophisticated machines really are, when most of society in general and its constitutents in particular seem to accept lower standards as a sign of progress.

Re:HOW TO END 95% OF ALL TRAFFIC CRASHES (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35016326)

I note that according to you, speeding isn't involved. Ever. It's always other people driving to slow.
Funny, that. Lets remember, someone driving the speed limit isn't impeding anything but your ability to break the law. Maybe you need to add speeding to your list, or modify your "driving too slow" to "driving at an unsafe speed."

Re:Big traffic cop is watching (2, Interesting)

Nyeerrmm (940927) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016218)

That was my thought to, but after thinking some more, there's a pretty easy solution.

Whenever the car starts, generate a random ID that's statistically certain to be unique. All the short term benefits of a unique identifier without the long term privacy risks.

Of course the devil would be in the details and I am way not qualified to speak on what it would take to ensure privacy with that kind of system. But it seems possible.

Re:Big traffic cop is watching (2)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016332)

Whenever the car starts, generate a random ID that's statistically certain to be unique.

I'll do you one better - role it roughly every 60 seconds - but randomize the amount of time between iterations. All these collision avoidance systems don't even need 15 seconds - people pass each other on the highway in less time than that, so if the system can deal with a 'new' car every 60 seconds then its going to be broken for plenty of normal cases.

Re:Big traffic cop is watching (1)

spazdor (902907) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016316)

It doesn't have to be eternally static, like car MAC addresses. The unique ID could change incrementally over time, along with notification broadcasts, in a way that would allow you to differentiate between cars currently within range, but doesn't allow you to recognize a car as the same one from yesterday.

Re:These systems which preach safety and security. (4, Interesting)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015770)

Exploit 'em.

Crack 'em, hack 'em, exploit 'em...

Wipe 'em off, and do it again....

This will be a blackhat's paradise.

Re:These systems which preach safety and security. (4, Insightful)

rockNme2349 (1414329) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015942)

More importantly to me, is whether or not these are implemented using open standards.

Car-to-Car communication isn't helpful when 10% of them use FORD wireless communications, 10% have GM brand Safety wireless etc. etc.

Re:These systems which preach safety and security. (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35016294)

Absolutely. Intellidrive [intellidriveusa.org] is the name for this in the US (previously VII, Vehicle Infrastructure Initiative). The plan is to specify an open protocol, some base DOT-specific applications, and then leave the field open for others to come up with creative uses for it.

And yes, the car manufacturers are on board with this. They've agreed to implement the minimum system necessary in new model cars, and anything above the minimum system is going to be how they differentiate themselves between products.

(The system is more than just car-to-car, it's car-to-car and car-to-infrastructure)

Re:These systems which preach safety and security. (2)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016174)

Car makers have time and time again shown themselves incapable of writing secure code.

Unless the FCC & NHTSA exert FAA levels of scrutiny over Ford's V2V software,
I can only see this ending poorly.

Re:These systems which preach safety and security. (2)

buchner.johannes (1139593) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016238)

In the sense of network architecture, the only way I would be even semi-okay with this would be if it really was completely decentralized and peer-to-peer.

The associated research area -- pretty old by now -- is called VANET [wikipedia.org] s.

Re:These systems which preach safety and security. (2)

westlake (615356) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016320)

you know the various Traffic Management Authorities would jump head over heals for the ability to see real-time position of all cars on the expressway.

They will be getting that ability anyway.

Satellite technologies, navigation and video. Pilotless aircraft. RFID or something of that sort. There are many, many, ways of doing this. The railroads were working on the problem over a century ago.

The problem with these predictions... (4, Insightful)

catbutt (469582) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015560)

...about how many lives will be saved, is that they don't take into account that once in place, people rely on them, and change their behavior accordingly. So if I feel like my car is going to alert me if I am likely to hit something, I don't feel so obliged to pay close attention to my driving -- effectively canceling out much of their effect.

Re:The problem with these predictions... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35015608)

As soon as they make a system that's "idiot proof", someone goes & creates a bigger idiot!

Re:The problem with these predictions... (1)

Dr Max (1696200) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015710)

Not to mention for this system to work every car in the country would need to have this installed (quite a problem on older manual cars).

Re:The problem with these predictions... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35015882)

That's the same as airbags, seat belts, ABS and every other safety innovation for automobiles. It only works for cars that have them installed. If new vehicles implement them, it will just be a matter of time before the vast majority of the automotive fleet has them. After all, how many cars on the road don't have 3 point safety belts now? How many don't have airbags? In 10 years how many cars won't have those?

The inertia of an existing system is no reason to not try to improve it. Every change has to start somewhere.

Re:The problem with these predictions... (2)

Dr Max (1696200) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016086)

That's the same as airbags, seat belts, ABS and every other safety innovation for automobiles. It only works for cars that have them installed.

Its nothing like abs, seat belts, or airbags (an active radar system would be like that). If only your car had those features then your car would stop faster and if there was an accident you would have air bag and seat belt safety to save you. If only your car had this wifi talking installed then it would do absolutely nothing. Any car that doesn’t have this installed is completely invisible (apart from the driver) to all the others with it installed.

Re:The problem with these predictions... (1)

bds1986 (1268378) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016088)

That's the same as airbags, seat belts, ABS and every other safety innovation for automobiles.

Not really. You missed the parent's point. This system only becomes useful once a critical mass of cars have it installed, and thus creates a problem similar to the free-rider problem from economics. As a car buyer, what motivation would I have to pay extra for a car with this new system installed when hardly any cars have it? The system is useless to me until many others buy it, while those others benefit from my extra early adoption expense. Why not wait for everyone ELSE to buy cars with this system, while in the meantime I buy a cheaper car that is not so equipped? Everyone can delay their adoption waiting for "someone else" to create the swarm of vehicles.

Airbags, seatbelts and ABS don't suffer from this problem because they provide a benefit regardless of how many other cars have them. I incur all of the cost of the airbag but I also incur the vast majority of the benefit.

Re:The problem with these predictions... (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016192)

As a car buyer, what motivation would I have to pay extra for a car with this new system installed when hardly any cars have it?

You assume you'll have a choice of buying a car without the system. Can you legally buy a car without seat belts or airbags today?

Re:The problem with these predictions... (1)

Dr Max (1696200) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016308)

You can legally buy cars without airbags, but with the seat belts its much simpler to get everyone to install some straps than it is to get them to install a computer systems, drive by wire, and wifi.

Re:The problem with these predictions... (1)

Nyeerrmm (940927) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016268)

Actually, from what i gathered from TFS, this specifically doesn't require it. It simply provides an extra bit of warning if it's able to detect something bad about to happen. It still requires the driver to pay attention.

Based on that, i would say that until nearly every car has it will definitely increase safety. If you can't depend on it to work with every car, you have to pay just as much attention, but it will still give warnings on occasion.

Of course once you get to the point of having it in most every vehicle, you get to the point where truly automated cars are possible, which would theoretically be even safer. This seems like a good thing to me (although caution is as always warranted).

Re:The problem with these predictions... (1)

cayenne8 (626475) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016324)

"quite a problem on older manual cars)"

Older manual cars? Err..they still make plenty of manual transmission cars. Personally, I've never owned a car with an automatic transmission in my entire life...

Re:The problem with these predictions... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35015714)

So if I feel like my car is going to alert me if I am likely to hit something, I don't feel so obliged to pay close attention to my driving -- effectively canceling out much of their effect.

Fair point, but I think that problem would be reduced a lot if the alert is really annoying or obnoxious. Instead of "warning, imminent collision" delivered in a calm female voice like the computers on Star Trek, have a loud klaxon that really grates on your nerves (and maybe automatically turns off your radio so it isn't drowned out). You'd still have a reason to pay attention to your driving, and it would be one that feels immediate and concrete (as opposed to the potential accident that feels distant and abstract right up until the point where it really happens).

Re:The problem with these predictions... (1)

catbutt (469582) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015932)

Then you have the problem that people will turn it off, or just not buy/support the technology in the first place if it is too annoying.

Re:The problem with these predictions... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35015904)

This only works if all cars have this system.
It will also show how many people break the law by speeding and how often.
I'm not sure if I want Ford to know I drove to Vegas from SoCal in less than 3 hours.

Re:The problem with these predictions... (1)

Proudrooster (580120) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016108)

The black box [wikipedia.org] in your car is already storing a lot of this data. I think the standard black box or computer has a very limited historical time range, it does store min/max/and average, thus the max speed for the vehicle is in their somewhere :) Just as your insurance company. [thebuzzmedia.com]

Re:The problem with these predictions... (1)

Dhalka226 (559740) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016004)

I don't know. I'm not sure the average driver could manage to pay less attention than they already do.

Re:The problem with these predictions... (2)

ToasterMonkey (467067) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016198)

...about how many lives will be saved, is that they don't take into account that once in place, people rely on them, and change their behavior accordingly. So if I feel like my car is going to alert me if I am likely to hit something, I don't feel so obliged to pay close attention to my driving -- effectively canceling out much of their effect.

Clearly giving people the tools to drive safe does not mean they will be used, the huge number of people who don't use signals at all because.. well I don't know what they think.. "nobody is there anyway?" is evidence of this.

This sounds like it could be very helpful when used appropriately, and a wash when not.

Awesome (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35015568)

Can't wait until I can send a message to the driver in front of me and GTFO the way

Re:Awesome (1)

by (1706743) (1706744) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015612)

Buy a CB radio ;)

Re:Awesome (1)

jeepien (848819) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015752)

Oh, and also buy the guy in front of you a CB radio.

Re:Awesome (1)

joeme1 (959209) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016010)

Or, just patch it through to an external loudspeaker...

Re:Awesome (0)

masterwit (1800118) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015794)

You beat me to it. But seriously I've considered installing a megaphone before just to do just that. Preferably I would have buttons with prerecorded messages in a modular steering wheel horn attachment:

  • "The light is green moron!"
  • "If your going slower than the right hand lane, your breaking the law and causing our blood pressure to rise"
  • "Your turning signal has been on for the past 5 blocks...Stop lying"
  • For the tailgater: "You are welcome to tailgate me but I gotta warn you, I tend to slam on my breaks unexpectedly and sue religiously"
  • "It is ok to make a right turn on red at this traffic light!"
  • "I am speeding up, I suggest you do the same unless you want to get hit..."
  • (There are so many more I could put here!)

Actually I think I will go buy/make one now, so tempting... Either that or an LED sign above my front bumper that can produce text messages would be nice.

Re:Awesome (1)

Vegeta99 (219501) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015928)

You American?

Us dumb Americans are very afraid to use that damn horn. It works - even on the freeway! Most of the messages you want could be conveyed with a little courteous blip of the horn. Of course, it usually gets you a finger, but it works. For the tailgater? I'm an asshole. They get one of two things: I drive a stick, so I can dramatically slow down the car without ever lighting up the brake lights. Or, they get two blinks of the brake lights and then I make sure that the brakes are indeed, operational.

Drive Courteously (2)

jabberw0k (62554) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016030)

And I would reply with "I cannot see around the truck and past the shrub, so I will not block the crosswalk out of consideration for the bicyclist you cannot see, that's why I am not turning right on red" and "I am going just under the speed limit, you do know that speed is illegal, do you not, please see under 'less than or equal to' -- Thanks"

cant wait (1)

chibiace (898665) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015576)

cant wait until this shit is hacked, then that guy riding my bumper will get whats coming to him.

Re:cant wait (2)

RobertM1968 (951074) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015616)

cant wait until this shit is hacked, then that guy riding my bumper will get whats coming to him.

Why? That's retarded. It's not like the stuff in Ford cars runs Windows....

...oh wait, never mind. [wikipedia.org] ;-)

Hey, I thought it was funny...

Re:cant wait (1)

thenewt (1974712) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015676)

Ford and Microsoft teaming up? Now there's a shudder-worthy proposition.

Re:cant wait (1)

Bai jie (653604) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015778)

Ford and Microsoft....giving new meaning to the words "system crash".

breaks.sys has caused a system error! (2)

Joe The Dragon (967727) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015914)

breaks.sys has caused a system error!

Turn key to off and then back on to restart!

Re:cant wait (1)

Vegeta99 (219501) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015946)

I'd tend to agree, but Ford and Microsoft are both rather good examples of companies that saw their pervasive quality issues and made effective changes to mitigate that problem.

Seriously, seen a new Ford lately?

Re:cant wait (1)

c0lo (1497653) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015992)

I'd tend to agree, but Ford and Microsoft are both rather good examples of companies that saw their pervasive quality issues and made effective changes to mitigate that problem.

Seriously, seen a new Ford lately?

Please, wake me up when they'll start to take changes to prevent quality issues instead of mitigating them, will you? Thanks.

HUD Support (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35015598)

Now, if I can get a cheap HUD with this (which I don't think exists yet) I can have a wireframe image of the unseen car appear on screen, in its exact location in real life. Just like those see-through-walls hacks in first person shooters.

Re:HUD Support (1)

MrEricSir (398214) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015698)

Wallhackers must be stopped!

Can we ... (2)

PPH (736903) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015622)

... mod other divers down?

STUPID BEYOND BELIEF. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35015638)

Hackers delight! Now I can either shutdown an entire freeway, or cause other mayhem! WHOPPIEEE! I love stupid.

Intel is behind this. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35015646)

There are so many other safety things that make more sense before this.
Self steering gear in the steering column.
Electronic brake.
Vision systems.
Speed Limit systems.

IMHO, this Ford trial is just a way for Intel to sell chips. Like the SABRE trial, they conveniently don't mention trucks. Why? Because Intel can sell more chips in cars than trucks. I think the tech is called WAVE or something like that.

Jim Pruett, Founder
http://www.wikiSPEEDia.org

Yea I will go there (0)

Osgeld (1900440) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015652)

My crappy wifi can barley cross a 10 foot room without blinking out and I went through 3 hubs before I found one that didnt suck (a refurb netgear out of all things), the one at work can barley make it 50 feet of open air before dropping off to doing the 0-5% dance

And people want to trust their lives to it while hauling ass down the interstate inside of a metal box?

Re:Yea I will go there (1)

camperdave (969942) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015758)

Maybe it's your laptop, not the hubs?

Re:Yea I will go there (1)

Osgeld (1900440) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016002)

well its the laptop, a wifi bridge a psp, wifi printer and a pci card, printer worked ok, but its friggin 3 foot away

Re:Yea I will go there (1)

Freaky Spook (811861) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016144)

It's 2011, who still uses Hubs?

With my Billion 7800N I can get signal from down the end of my street which is about 40m away and never drops out, even with 6 access points the immediate area.

Re:Yea I will go there (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35015834)

My crappy wifi can

Wow, that whole post makes a LOT more sense when you don't read "wifi" as "wife" like I just did.

Re:Yea I will go there (1)

riverat1 (1048260) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015846)

Sounds like you should use your barley to make some beer. (I think the word you wanted was barely).

Re:Yea I will go there (1)

Osgeld (1900440) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015970)

I blame the education system!

Re:Yea I will go there (1)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015982)

My 30E Belkin router maintains more than -60dBm across four walls, 65 feet.

My only problem is that it locks up when doing transfers at 9-10mbps if WPA is on, but I doubt that's relevant for this system.

Luckily... (5, Informative)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015660)

It will be completely impossible for either hacked Ford computers, or any other Wifi device operated by somebody who knows hat "MAC spoofing" means, to present inaccurate, deceptive, or otherwise unhelpful information to these Ford vehicles. I, for one, take comfort in that.

FFS, dudes, trusting the client in a life-critical application? Srsly? Srsly?

Re:Luckily... (5, Funny)

Yakasha (42321) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015840)

It will be completely impossible for either hacked Ford computers, or any other Wifi device operated by somebody who knows hat "MAC spoofing" means, to present inaccurate, deceptive, or otherwise unhelpful information to these Ford vehicles. I, for one, take comfort in that. FFS, dudes, trusting the client in a life-critical application? Srsly? Srsly?

Of course its safe. The FCC allocated a SECURE wifi channel for this.

Note that... (2)

msauve (701917) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015888)

the author (Nelson Ireson) is clueless. This isn't "Wi-Fi," which is a trademarked term referring to 802.11 technologies. Wi-Fi isn't "dedicated," and doesn't run on "a secure channel."

Awesome for movies and 24/hr news (0)

orphiuchus (1146483) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015672)

Just imagine if someone made a virus where all they had to do is drive by your car and connect via wifi which could kill your engine at highway speeds! I cant wait for Glen Beck to explain how it works to me.

In fact, I've already come up with the movie idea! A basement dwelling malicious hacker team... I'm thinking Mila Khunis and Shia LaBeouf, use this virus to rob armored cars! You can post in this thread with offers, I'll start the bidding at $500,000.

Re:Awesome for movies and 24/hr news (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015872)

$500 grand to kill the kid that ruined Indiana Jones seems pretty fair to me.

Getting the info to the driver (1)

camperdave (969942) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015674)

Are italics working yet?
Nope!

So your car knows that Car B is hidden behind Car C. How does the driver get informed? Is there some sort of head's up display or audio clue? All the pictures show is a line of LEDs. Besides, it's quite often the non-car items (pedestrians, debris, icy patches, etc) that are the problem. How does this system inform you that there is a deer on the road behind all that fog?

Re:Getting the info to the driver (1)

BradleyUffner (103496) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015848)

How does this system inform you that there is a deer on the road behind all that fog?

Simple, all the deer with be RFID chipped from birth.

Re:Getting the info to the driver (1)

iwannasexwithyourmom (1804754) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016250)

Simple, all the deer with be RFID chipped from birth.

Oh my god what the FUCK! You fucking DICKWEED! Proofread your FUCKING POSTS before you FUCKING POST THEM. GOD DAMNIT SHIT!

Re:Getting the info to the driver (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35015860)

That is a silly question! It's obvious that all the deer will need to be equipped with these device too!

So, AIS for cars? (1)

Chmcginn (201645) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015704)

Just like AIS [wikipedia.org] , except in cars?

Except for the fact that the much-shortened reaction time in operating a car versus a ship makes that almost useless, that's a great idea!

Furbies (1)

Nethemas the Great (909900) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015724)

I don't know why, but when I read this I couldn't help but think of a group of Furbies chattering amongst themselves...

Why Not Drunk Drivers Too? (1)

severoon (536737) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015764)

From TFA summary: "The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported in October that vehicle-to-vehicle warning systems could address nearly 80 percent of reported crashes not involving drunk drivers."

Why does the NHTSA go out of their way to exclude drunk drivers? They won't benefit at all from this system? Really?

Re:Why Not Drunk Drivers Too? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35015870)

Drunk drivers aren't worth saving?

Re:Why Not Drunk Drivers Too? (1)

luther349 (645380) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015952)

lol to me no. but realty is they dont even get the standard alerts like blaring horns people yelling get off the road and getting arrested repeatedly. so you think a warning you gonna hit something alert is gonna make any diffrence most of them dont even knoe there own name or where they are there so wasted.

Re:Why Not Drunk Drivers Too? (1)

severoon (536737) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016352)

Well, this shows how ignorant you are about the state of the law in this country. The fact of the matter is that most accidents caused by drunk drivers are caused by the very small fraction that are really very drunk. Most of the apprehensions for drunk driving, on the other hand, are on people that have statistically less chance of getting into an accident than someone who is short on sleep.

Why do you suppose that drunk driving was quickly busted down to a misdemeanor class offense after it was introduced as a felony? The answer is: it would have created waaaaay too many felons.

This doesn't mean I'm for drunk driving in the least. It does mean that I think we have an area of law that is not in sync with reality. The effect is that the enforcer is given license to behave capriciously. If you are legally drunk but still relatively safe on the road (compared to, say, a tired person for instance), you are much, much better off statistically speaking if you happen to be dressed professionally, white, male, 35-50, have a nice but not too nice car, etc. Whenever we have laws that don't accord with reality, we invite unfairness into the system.

(Back to the topic at hand, though, even if you don't feel like the drunk person is worth saving, what about the people he'll hit?)

Re:Why Not Drunk Drivers Too? (1)

luther349 (645380) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015926)

drunk drivers probably wouldn't even notec the alert. 80% seems like a high number but like 70% of accidents are dui. others are driving mistakes or something failing like the brakes..

Re:Why Not Drunk Drivers Too? (1)

olsmeister (1488789) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016042)

More like 40% [ezinearticles.com] of accidents involve alcohol.

Re:Why Not Drunk Drivers Too? (1)

luther349 (645380) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016068)

well some math then. take there 80% by the 40% of dui and you get the real number. still not bad but not as great as there claming.

Re:Why Not Drunk Drivers Too? (1)

Dcnjoe60 (682885) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015944)

From TFA summary: "The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported in October that vehicle-to-vehicle warning systems could address nearly 80 percent of reported crashes not involving drunk drivers."

Why does the NHTSA go out of their way to exclude drunk drivers? They won't benefit at all from this system? Really?

Because the NHTSA knows that the percentage of multi-vehicle accidents involving drunk drivers is significantly smaller than the public thinks it is (most drunk driver accidents are single vehicle accidents -- ie the drunk driver goes off the road).

And of course, "addressing" nearly 80 percent of reported crashes does not mean eliminating or preventing 80 percent of reported crashes. One could also legitimately argue that by lowering the speed limit, one would also address the same crashes by giving drivers more time to react.

Re:Why Not Drunk Drivers Too? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35016032)

That makes no sense. If the percentage is smaller than people think it is, why exclude the drunk drivers? After all, if the number is really small, what effect would it have on the percentage? Does it go from 80% to 75%? That is still a pretty impressive number. However, if the number of drunk driving accidents is large, and the percentage of 'addressed' accidents goes from 80% to 30%, then it is well worth excluding them because 30% is not an impressive number at all.

Re:Why Not Drunk Drivers Too? (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015980)

It could be as simple as them not validating that the system improves the reaction times of inebriated drivers.

ADSB (1)

riverat1 (1048260) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015852)

This sounds similar to the ADSB system developed for aircraft.

how often do you have to reboot your computer? (1)

Yakasha (42321) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015876)

Now imagine doing it at 70mph with your wife screaming "OMG WE'RE GONNA DIE!"

Re:how often do you have to reboot your computer? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35015964)

How often do you reboot your car's computer today?

ECM (1)

roc97007 (608802) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015880)

I wonder if you could manipulate the data to make it seem like your car didn't exist?

Too smart? (1)

Lord_of_the_nerf (895604) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015890)

I don't want my car bitching to other cars about my driving over the petrol pump.

how do the cars now where they are? and what heigh (1)

Joe The Dragon (967727) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015892)

how do the cars now where they are? and what height they are at?

I don't think GPS can tell that you are in lane 1 and a other car is in lane 2. Also in some areas a car can on a ramp on top of you going the same way or under you.

What about areas where there is a poor gps signal?

How many cars can the wifi system handle be for it gets over loaded?

So what about the REAL problem? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35015922)

"...address nearly 80 percent of reported crashes not involving drunk drivers..." Drunk drivers are the real problem. Solve that and I'll be impressed.

Forget about talking to cars -Talk2 traffic lights (5, Interesting)

brad3378 (155304) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015936)

There's few things more irritating to me than waiting for a red light when there are no other vehicles at an intersection.
All I want is a simple way to communicate to the traffic light to let it know that I am approaching so I don't have to stop. It seems that most automatic lights I have encountered wait until I have come to a near full stop - which partially defeats the purpose.

Implement this and then BAM - instant time savings and 3+ Miles per gallon savings for every vehicle on the road.

Re:Forget about talking to cars -Talk2 traffic lig (1)

RicktheBrick (588466) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016304)

There is a section of highway east of my town that is both a highway going north and south and a highway going east and west. It is about 8 miles long and it is 5 lanes(2 lanes going each direction and a center lane for left turns). Since it is a well traveled highway there are a lot of commercial stores on each side. The traffic lights are not just for the cross traffic at their intersection as they are for all the stores in between the lights. If there is no break in traffic for customers to get in and out of the highway than people will not shop there.

Great idea! (1)

Noodlenoggin (1295699) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015962)

This sounds like a great idea to me. Although, I'm still confused as to why cars don't already come with some kind of radar/sonar device that would tell you when another vehicle or object is sitting in your blind spot while belting down the freeway. I often see cars in front of me swerving to avoid an accident just becuse some driver had decided to merge without looking, or change lanes, also without looking. I guess we're a step closer with reversing sensors and such. Maybe when they get this sorted out they can start working on my flying car that I was promised as a child.

first hack i'd want.. (2)

LodCrappo (705968) | more than 3 years ago | (#35015972)

..some way to represent my vehicle as being about 10 feet behind and in front of where it actually is. cut me off, ride my ass, and maybe your car will complain.

cool i guess (1)

luther349 (645380) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016020)

i dont mind all the new tech in cars. heck even with auto drive become a realty im cool with it. as long as i can always take over quickly and effectifly if something goes wrong. like taping the brake with cruse control.

Re:cool i guess (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35016362)

like taping the brake with cruse control.

You mean like with a brick? I think that's called the Alabama Overdrive or something like that.

What if... (1)

Exclamation mark! (1961328) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016054)

What if the car is feeling a little suicidal? How safe is it then?

How to Exploit (1)

EverlastingPhelps (568113) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016076)

Step 1: Hack a transmitter to show the highway completely blocked ahead.

Step 2: Wait for cars to stop

Step 3: Rob the now stopped cars.

Step 3a: Profit!

Re:How to Exploit (1)

Fex303 (557896) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016322)

Step 1: Hack a transmitter to show the highway completely blocked ahead.

Step 2: Wait for cars to stop

Step 3: Rob the now stopped cars.

Or, you know, go to the nearest set of traffic lights.

DoT IntelliDrive has been going on for a while (1)

Isao (153092) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016080)

The IntelliDrive [dot.gov] program has been working on this for a while, and the OEMs are starting to test this on the road. You can look at some concept videos [intellidriveusa.org] .

The RF band is around 5.4GHz, allocated specifically for short-range transportation communication.

Seen this before (1)

Opr33Opr33 (1180091) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016170)

I just finished reading One Jump Ahead [webscription.net] by Mark L. Van Name (Baen Publishing).The story is set in the future where all machines and appliances have AI and are connected to the "Net". So you have to be nice to your washer so it doesn't gossip about you, etc. I trust (as I adjust my tin foil car bra) that the system would be used only for good purposes, but I can't help think that we are hurrying to reach the cool/scary future that is often depicted in sci-fi literature.

ATMOS lives? (1)

grapeape (137008) | more than 3 years ago | (#35016336)

Are we sure the Sontarans arent behind this?

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