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Ford Demonstrates Networked Cars

Soulskill posted more than 2 years ago | from the p2p-road-rage dept.

Cloud 115

An anonymous reader writes "Ford is touring U.S. cities demonstrating a technology that appears to closely resemble a private dynamic network among multiple cars. The cars connect to each other via short-range Wi-Fi (which actually has a reach of half a mile) and enables vehicles to exchange location and movement data. Being aware of each other's location and movement direction enables them to help drivers avoid collisions, especially in situations where obstacles cannot be identified fast enough. The technology could be available for consumers as soon as 2013."

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115 comments

Police (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36780028)

Will we be able to use this to be aware of police within a half mile radius?

Re:Police (2, Interesting)

Flyerman (1728812) | more than 2 years ago | (#36780056)

Not only that, but you'll be aware of the people spoofing police in order to get everyone else out of their way.

Re:Police (1)

Necroman (61604) | more than 2 years ago | (#36780222)

Faking a policy identity will probably be highly illegal if policy do have a unique identifier they could broadcast. Just like even having possession of a box that can change a red stoplight to be green is illegal [wired.com]. Or maybe it would be considered impersonating an officer, which is probably worse if you get caught.

Re:Police (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 2 years ago | (#36780400)

So any laptop with an ir port is now illegal?
Or only if I install software that lets me send arbitrary ir signals?
Or only if I Install software that sends that signal?

Where is the line?

Re:Police (1)

SomePgmr (2021234) | more than 2 years ago | (#36782324)

I'd expect the line would be exactly where you start to effectively impersonate some kind of official signalling or intentionally interrupting the operation of the same, just like anywhere else.

But then, all this stuff about the involvement of law enforcement and such is all speculation (best I can tell), so I guess it's not worth worrying about too much just yet.

Re:Police (1)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | more than 2 years ago | (#36780780)

Just like even having possession of a box that can change a red stoplight to be green is illegal.

The article you linked to does not support your assertion.
It says selling and using are illegal but makes no mention of possession.

Re:Police (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 2 years ago | (#36782400)

Not only that, but you'll be aware of the people spoofing police in order to get everyone else out of their way.

Why? Are you going to drive around with the blast shields down?

Re:Police (3, Insightful)

WrongSizeGlass (838941) | more than 2 years ago | (#36780064)

Will we be able to use this to be aware of police within a half mile radius?

No, but they will probably be aware of you and your data (including speed and how far you've travel over the last X minutes).

Re:Police (2)

dgatwood (11270) | more than 2 years ago | (#36781170)

On the other hand, if the cars know where they are, there's no reason for people to be driving, and thus no legitimate reason for any absolute speed limits to exist.

Re:Police (1)

PPH (736903) | more than 2 years ago | (#36782070)

Or they will be aware of the phony accident report that you injected into the network and they'll all divert to that location (and away from you).

Automated traffic congestion reports can also display a nonexistent tie-up on your preferred route to work and suggest that other traffic divert to alternative routes.

Re:Police (1)

El Mooriachi (1838842) | more than 2 years ago | (#36782658)

On a different but related note, say there's two gas stations on your way home. (Yes, only two.) Once the system is hacked, one station could feed false reports into the stream saying that traffic is gnarled around their competitor... people might be more likely go to the one that isn't as traffic-licious. Or, to extend this, what's to say that Shell wouldn't do this to all Exxon station, for example?

Re:Police (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36780332)

How about (and I know this may sound crazy) just obeying the road traffic laws, which are there to keep everyone safer on the roads?

tl;dr version: stop driving like a dick.

Re:Police (3, Funny)

cbiltcliffe (186293) | more than 2 years ago | (#36780370)

Make sure you install a HOSTS file, then the police won't ever be able to install malware in your car!!!

Re:Police (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36781544)

Saw your posts today where the guy you trolled on hosts files has put up a challenge you seem to be running from here http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=2324468&cid=36777380 [slashdot.org] why is that cbiltcliffe? Can't back up what you said?

Re:Police (1)

cbiltcliffe (186293) | more than 2 years ago | (#36781660)

What's the matter, apk? Don't know what hyperbole is?

Taking the untenable position of your debate opponent to ridiculous extremes to show the lunacy of it is a perfectly valid debate method.

You don't even astroturf well, because all your sock puppet accounts get banned for posting the same illogical claptrap that your AC posts do.

Re:Police (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36781702)

Not apk here. I read your comment off topic here and wondered why you did it. You should seek counselling or therapy in my opinion.

Re:Police (1)

cbiltcliffe (186293) | more than 2 years ago | (#36781858)

Counselling? Therapy? For poking fun at a belligerent idiot?

Yeah....you're definitely apk.

Although it is unusual that you're able to make a short post without all sorts of bizarre formatting....

Why do you feel the need to astroturf your own posts, apk? Is that the only way you can get a post to agree with your insane viewpoint?

Re:Police (1)

GooberToo (74388) | more than 2 years ago | (#36785488)

Not to mention, you're broadcasting your speed and location to every officer within 1/2 mile. They no longer need a radar/laser gun. Only now the ticket can't be disputed because you incriminated/testified against yourself. The police officer only wrote the ticket based on your confession.

As soon as the hit men hack the information (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36780048)

the other car will either ram the first, or will drive off the road into a bridge.

Re:As soon as the hit men hack the information (1)

interkin3tic (1469267) | more than 2 years ago | (#36780272)

Yes, please, lets immediately start worrying about boogeymen. The only thing keeping you safe from becoming the victim of a mob hit is the fact that they can't find you on their wifi card.

[/s] You're approximately a million billion bajillion times more likely to die in a random traffic accident than at the hands of hitmen unless you are a mob boss. Maybe avoid naming your car's wifi network things like "witnessprotectionprogram."

Re:As soon as the hit men hack the information (1)

peragrin (659227) | more than 2 years ago | (#36780468)

For every good idea.( forcing disparate government agencies to actually talk to each other) you get really bad side effects(DHS, TSA, unlimited wiretaps, etc)

If you look not at what you want the law to do, but instead look at how can it be exploited for/profit, personal gain, etc then you can adjust the law to be reasonable.

It is why it is never done.

Re:As soon as the hit men hack the information (1)

interkin3tic (1469267) | more than 2 years ago | (#36780932)

If you look not at what you want the law to do, but instead look at how can it be exploited for/profit, personal gain, etc then you can adjust the law to be reasonable. It is why it is never done.

Also because it's nearly impossible to think up every downstream consequence of any law. And I mean impossible even for smart, informed people, let alone your average voters and politicians.

Anyway, what law are we talking about here? I think it's unlikely this will be legally mandated for every car in the US anytime soon. Every -new- car maybe in 10 years.

I think "hitmen OMG!!!" is not a real concern regardless of the time frame.

Re:As soon as the hit men hack the information (1)

peragrin (659227) | more than 2 years ago | (#36781124)

I am not thinking OMG hitman. I am thinking TSA OMG that person drove by a chemical factory let's scan them.

NO! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36780136)

Just no.

This is so many bad exploitable ideas in one place it can NOT be allowed to happen. Until humans and our goverments and companies are a lot better, honest, and trustworthy. And that's just so far out of reach right now...

Just no.

Re:NO! (1)

modmans2ndcoming (929661) | more than 2 years ago | (#36780304)

exploit what? I guess a hacker could send out a false signal, giving bad information to the cars on the road.

As long as there is not a uniquely identifiable value for your car that is persistent from day to day, I do not see a problem with knowing if a car a half mile ahead is stopped and what direction that traffic ripple is going.

If the data is scrubbed and not executable and the security system of the car is not tied to this network, then there is not really any exploitability

Re:NO! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36781612)

If you can't imagine how this could be exploited by various groups for 'good' or 'evil'

You need to turn in your geek card and get the hell off slashdot forever. You lack imagination and vision. And have no depth of knowledge about history. Recent or otherwise.

I look fwd to exploiting this system for my own entertainment and profit.

Re:NO! (1)

Hsien-Ko (1090623) | more than 2 years ago | (#36780330)

I could imagine a hacker driving a car that would just make all the others he just swooped by to crash somewhere.

Worst Bruce Almighty ever.

What about unequipped participants? (was Re:NO!) (1)

danlyke (149938) | more than 2 years ago | (#36780404)

The heck with hacking, does this mean we're going to equip deer with WiFi, and fine children who ride near the street on tricycles that aren't equipped?

Cooperative communication can be used for things like platooning and adaptive cruise control, but it has to be augmented by enough situational awareness to understand what's happening without cooperation. So the "safety" thing doesn't make any sense to me: If you're depending on inter-vehicle communication for safety, all it takes is an unequipped roadway participant, or a failed transceiver, to create a dangerous situation.

Re:What about unequipped participants? (was Re:NO! (1)

ultranova (717540) | more than 2 years ago | (#36781928)

If you're depending on inter-vehicle communication for safety, all it takes is an unequipped roadway participant, or a failed transceiver, to create a dangerous situation.

Yes; except that computer vision is finally reaching the point of usefulness - because the computer chips are finally reaching a significant fraction of the brainpower of a typical animal - so you can simply divide the world to objects that are responding and those that aren't, and use some basic avoidance ruleset for the latter - while telling everyone else you are, and that there is a potential danger here, and so on.

BRING BACK THE CROWNVIC! (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36780186)

BRING BACK THE VIC! Damn Ford, discontinuing the best car ever made.

Re:BRING BACK THE CROWNVIC! (1)

cvtan (752695) | more than 2 years ago | (#36780300)

Personally I'm not in favor of dinosaur cars, BUT I did have a friend at work ask where he could get a car that had bench seats in the front like his old Crown Vic. I didn't understand why someone would go out of their way to have bad seats. He went and found a nice used one and was happy.

Re:BRING BACK THE CROWNVIC! (1)

bangwhistle (971272) | more than 2 years ago | (#36781030)

It's been a long time since I've owned a car with a front bench seat (not a Crown Vic but a lowly Galaxie) but IIRC they were more fun at the drive in movies. Though now I see people sitting in the back of their pickup or SUV at the drive in so maybe the same extracurricular activities are still taking place.

Re:BRING BACK THE CROWNVIC! (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 2 years ago | (#36780454)

Naturally aspirated, live axle, made of outdated materials, and only came in automatic transmission, do you hate driving? Or just really like driving only in straight lines?

In 2003 it at least got a 1970s state of the art suspension.

So when this gets hacked... (1)

cvtan (752695) | more than 2 years ago | (#36780188)

Avoid collisions becomes "create collisions"??

Re:So when this gets hacked... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36780234)

Don't be silly. They'll make it unhackable!

Re:So when this gets hacked... (1)

FatAlb3rt (533682) | more than 2 years ago | (#36780254)

It sounds like hacking this means you don't get warned, how is that creating collisions?

Re:So when this gets hacked... (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 2 years ago | (#36782418)

It sounds like hacking this means you don't get warned, how is that creating collisions?

It doesn't. He's mugging for an 'Insightful' mod.

Re:So when this gets hacked... (1)

davester666 (731373) | more than 2 years ago | (#36782770)

I think if if you can hack the system so it says to another driver:
"Vehicle approaching from left...change lanes to avoid vehicle...warning...collision warning...turn left now to avoid collision...turn left now to avoid collision..."
you will get a fair number of people who would turn left regardless of whether there is someplace to turn left to or there is something in the way.

Re:So when this gets hacked... (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 2 years ago | (#36782818)

I think if if you can hack the system so it says to another driver:
"Vehicle approaching from left...change lanes to avoid vehicle...warning...collision warning...turn left now to avoid collision...turn left now to avoid collision..."
you will get a fair number of people who would turn left regardless of whether there is someplace to turn left to or there is something in the way.

You watch too much TV.

Re:So when this gets hacked... (1)

davester666 (731373) | more than 2 years ago | (#36783112)

Yes. News reports of people following directions from their GPS navigators turning into ditches, going the wrong way down one-ways, etc...

And I would think people would be even more likely to blindly follow whatever directions this 'safety' system would provide versus the directions from GPS navigators.

Re:So when this gets hacked... (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 2 years ago | (#36783328)

Yes. News reports of people following directions from their GPS navigators turning into ditches, going the wrong way down one-ways, etc...

Not due to hacking.

Re:So when this gets hacked... (1)

davester666 (731373) | more than 2 years ago | (#36783510)

I think I have to go with both "whoosh" and you, sir, are an idiot.

1) My original reply started with "I think if if you can hack the system"
2) I refer to examples where people blindly follow directions from a device in their car. If they follow the faulty directions of a device in their car, it makes no difference if those directions are a result of hacking, incorrect data, or a butterfly flapping it's wings in the final pangs of death on the other side of Mars.
3) The software industry does not have a great record of producing software that cannot be hacked. Likewise, the car-industry for hack-proof cars. Further hope is given to the hackers by the fact that Ford Sync is written by Ford's partner in crime, Microsoft, known for their ability to write great, bug free, hackproof software. Perhaps Ford may turn to them to help write some of that anti-collision code. Or just the UI for it. I wonder how many days after cars with this system are released before the first factory recall occurs to update the firmware. I probably won't need to use both my hands and feet.

Re:So when this gets hacked... (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 2 years ago | (#36783586)

1) My original reply started with "I think if if you can hack the system"

Speaking of whoosh, you're not just talking about hacking the system, you're talking about completely pwning it in a way that, so far, hasn't even been managed with cell phones in the way you're describing. So were you inspired by Eureka or Smallville?

3) The software industry does not have a great record of producing software that cannot be hacked.

Enhance!!!

Re:So when this gets hacked... (1)

davester666 (731373) | more than 2 years ago | (#36786850)

> Speaking of whoosh, you're not just talking about hacking the system, you're talking about completely pwning it in a way that, so far, hasn't even been managed with cell phones in the way you're describing. So were you inspired by Eureka or Smallville?

Actually, this kind of thing has happened repeatedly. For example, there have been several jailbreaks for iOS devices simply by surfing to a specific website. And since this system, as described, involves the cars actively communicating with one another, it certainly is possible.

But you may not even need to remotely hack another car's system. For example, altering the system of your own car to provide false data may cause the other car to give false warnings.

Re:So when this gets hacked... (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 2 years ago | (#36787936)

Actually, this kind of thing has happened repeatedly. For example, there have been several jailbreaks for iOS devices simply by surfing to a specific website. And since this system, as described, involves the cars actively communicating with one another, it certainly is possible.

Not really. The reason it worked on iOS is that it had a malformed file (PDF I think?) that the USER had to DIRECT the phone to go open. How are you going to get two cars, that are talking to each other automatically, to do that? Are cars even going to have PDF support? Okay I'm being facetious, but there's no indication in the article that these cars are sending anything binary to each other. In fact, they go into numbers about what these things send to each other and it's comically small . You'd have to break their encryption and find an exploit in their software to trigger the, for lack of a better term, jail break. Then you've gotta get this car to reboot, download a new package to install, execute it, activate again, and finally tell its human that it should crater the car all without raising suspicion.

Not a very plausible scenario.

For example, altering the system of your own car to provide false data may cause the other car to give false warnings.

That depends on being able to even know how to malform the data (not easy on several fronts), getting the car to transmit it, and on the message being of one that is trollish in nature. Again, not plausible. These cars aren't going to send, for example, data on an imminent collision you're going to have. Since these cars won't ever send it, they won't have a way to receive it with a case that'd alert the driver.

This is not 'drivers surfing the net', it's cars sending a swarm of small packets to each other. The two main ingredients you need, a human making the requests and a broad enough range of packages to deliver, aren't there.

Re:So when this gets hacked... (1)

davester666 (731373) | more than 2 years ago | (#36788408)

Ugh, this is pointless.

You have exhibited a:
-lack of awareness of history of issues with software (namely their vulnerabilities and how they have been exploited by others)
-lack of the ability to extrapolate a scenario that has happened repeatedly in the past to a new situation
-lack of a basic understanding of inter-computer communication (in particular, you have some bizarre belief that it makes a difference if the communication is initiated by an end-user versus a computer)
-lack the awareness of how good some people are at reverse engineering hardware and software to see how it works and then modify it to work as they want it to

Re:So when this gets hacked... (1)

interkin3tic (1469267) | more than 2 years ago | (#36780298)

You might get phony alerts, but this doesn't take control of the car. You're still driving it. Bored teenage "hackerz" might break the system, cause it to cry wolf too often, but you're still the one operating the car and presumably won't follow instructions to drive into another car.

Re:So when this gets hacked... (1)

VortexCortex (1117377) | more than 2 years ago | (#36781212)

You might get phony alerts, but this doesn't take control of the car. You're still driving it. Bored teenage "hackerz" might break the system, cause it to cry wolf too often, but you're still the one operating the car and presumably won't follow instructions to drive into another car.

So, I spoof my location data, and all of a sudden your carputer takes control to avoid the accident you apparently didn't see coming. I'll LOVE it. Finally, I'll be able to get that tailgating asshole off my 6 without having to break-check 'em.

The tech that takes over and slams on the brakes is already in cars today. Hooking it up to a wireless network will be buckets of fun for everyone!

Re:So when this gets hacked... (1)

ultranova (717540) | more than 2 years ago | (#36781678)

The tech that takes over and slams on the brakes is already in cars today. Hooking it up to a wireless network will be buckets of fun for everyone!

As long as I get to weld feet-long hardened steel spikes fitted with explosive heads on my rear bumber first, I'm all for it.

And, just for good measure, on the front bumber as well. Just in case some fucker going under the speed limit brakes needlesly.

Re:So when this gets hacked... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36780436)

Oh, don't worry, this isn't shipping with visual basic. Hah, how will the hackers get in now?

Re:So when this gets hacked... (1)

Anarchduke (1551707) | more than 2 years ago | (#36784344)

either that or all the fords will suddenly start spamming jeeps with "Nigerian offroad driving" offers.

Traffic jam avoidance (1)

interkin3tic (1469267) | more than 2 years ago | (#36780190)

That management center would then help you avoid a traffic jam by sending traffic information to your car via a cellular signal. However, such a system is even further out in the future and it is unclear who would even pay for the technology. Consider the fact that Ford says that the combined technology could reduce gasoline consumption by 4 billion gallons a year, which could cost the government upwards of $1 billion in tax revenue. Would or could the government pay for such a system? I doubt it.

Odd reasoning. For one thing, GPS systems already can do this. For another, "Could the government pay" for the tax cut? Since we're talking about politics, that doesn't make sense. Taxes get cut if the politicians can sell it, not because of silly things like numbers, or because tax revenue is higher than spending.

Silly journalists...

Re:Traffic jam avoidance (1)

cdrguru (88047) | more than 2 years ago | (#36780458)

Most of the real problems in rerouting around traffic jams is that there really isn't anything great in alternatives. Maybe there is an alternate expressway, but you need to know so far in advance that the traffic problem you were avoiding has disappeared by the time you get there. And getting off the expressway onto surface streets usually doesn't help. You may not be as frustrated sitting parked on the road, but you do not get where you are going any faster.

Then there is the traffic management problem. What happens if surface streets are a real alternative? What do you think happens if all the cars from the three or four lanes of the highway suddenly just get off and start driving on ordinary streets? This is in part why there are no real alternatives shown to the driver because if the systems did recommend surface streets state and local governments would either ban the devices or sue the makers out of existance. This isn't a huge problem in the US today because few cars have traffic-enabled navigation systems. But should they become more common, the idea of divirting highway traffic onto surface streets would be outlawed if anyone was silly enough to actually do it.

Re:Traffic jam avoidance (1)

Ichijo (607641) | more than 2 years ago | (#36780652)

The problem of dumping too much traffic onto city streets is avoided by setting the exit toll to the market equilibrium rate.

Similarly, the problem of congestion on adjacent freeways is also avoided by setting the per-mile toll to the market equilibrium rate.

Allowed to work, the market actually does a pretty good job of avoiding shortages, including the kind known as "traffic congestion."

Re:Traffic jam avoidance (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36783524)

Unfortunetly it is a captive market. You cannot just go take someone elses tollway if the tolls are too high. You can bet your life that if such a strategy were introduced, market equilibrium rate would have nothing to do with the cost of the exit tolls...

traffic jams? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36780196)

Avoiding traffic jams and saving money is is great! But how about creating convoys for long drives? IT would be nice to hook up to a network of cars going from City A to City B and go driverless and maybe be able to drag - yeah, I know the lead car will take a huge hit in miles/km per gallon/liter but still, you see where I'm going.

Good grief, along I-20 from Atlanta to Myrtle Beach could use that during the Summer - or even Birmingham to Myrtle Beach!

Re:traffic jams? (1)

FatAlb3rt (533682) | more than 2 years ago | (#36780244)

the lead car will take a huge hit in miles/km per gallon/liter

That's better than today where pretty much every car is the lead car. I imagine the networked cars can ride about 24 inches between one another too.

Re:traffic jams? (2)

cbiltcliffe (186293) | more than 2 years ago | (#36781196)

yeah, I know the lead car will take a huge hit in miles/km per gallon/liter but still, you see where I'm going.

Actually, it won't. Unless the rear cars shut off their engines and physically connect up to the lead car, it can even make the lead car more efficient.

Spoilers on cars (not ricer 6 foot high plywood ones, but the little lip molded into the trunk lid) improve fuel efficiency by breaking up the vacuum behind the car with turbulence. The alternative is the vacuum tries to suck the car backwards.
If another car is 2 feet behind you, powering itself into your vacuum, then the compression of air in front of it will balance the vacuum behind yours, and completely eliminate this drag. Then you'll only have to work against the compression at the front of the lead car, and the vacuum behind the last one.

Certainly the middle cars benefit the most in improved fuel efficiency, and the front car the least, (the rear one is in between these for improvement) but everybody in the line should see improved efficiency to some degree.

Well... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36780198)

This will make the next GTA "the weird one"

range may be to long and overload (1)

Joe_Dragon (2206452) | more than 2 years ago | (#36780214)

range may be to long
and overload
on the wifi
on the cpu
on the software.

may happen in a area with a lot of cars

also how will older non wifi cars work with the new wifi ones.

Re:range may be to long and overload (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36780276)

It is a crash avoidance system not a driverless card situation.

Re:range may be to long and overload (1)

andrewd18 (989408) | more than 2 years ago | (#36780344)

range may be to long
and overload
on the wifi
on the cpu
on the software.

Burma Shave!

Mesh networking? (1)

SleepyHappyDoc (813919) | more than 2 years ago | (#36780224)

I'd be very interested to see this used for some kind of mesh networking. I suspect it'd be way cheaper to equip every car on the road with some kind of repeater, than it would be to build out a nationwide set of cell towers. Assuming they could address the security (some kind of encrypted tunnelling, maybe), it could be a way for a smaller operator to get into the ISP business.

Re:Mesh networking? (1)

paulsnx2 (453081) | more than 2 years ago | (#36780514)

We need to develop mesh networking for all sorts of reasons.

1) This will be the only way to have affordable networking over roads
2) This is the only way to compete with ATT and Verizon over the long haul
3) We need actual privacy. We can build encryption into the protocols and avoid "checkpoints" as we have in our ISP based access
4) The more devices on the network, the higher its capacity
5) As storage continues to fall in costs, such mesh networks can be increasingly important in storing data in distributed, fault tolerant fashions.
6) Once the devices become the network, freedom of speech becomes far harder to break
7) With increasing computational power in many ordinary devices, we save time by interacting with more devices that are self configuring to our needs. But this only works when all the devices can exchange information in real time.

Re:Mesh networking? (1)

psyclone (187154) | more than 2 years ago | (#36780518)

That would be an insane amount of hops and ultra-high latency to pass packets from your car down a few streets/miles to a node on a landline somewhere.

Would be sweeter to use this network to "chat" with cars around you. Like "D-bag in the red truck, get off my ass!" or "milf in yellow sports car!", or even the intended action of real-time and local traffic information. (E.g. congestion ahead for next 2 miles, then clears after that (near exit 14))

Lots of potential (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36780396)

FWIW, services like On-Star are already starting to use some of these concepts, just not between moving vehicles.

I can think of several ideas for uses besides "safety."

For instance, LEO's could have a sort of "Pied Piper" setting that overrides the computer in a perp's car and forces it to lockdown and follow them.

Re:Lots of potential (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 2 years ago | (#36780474)

The moment the Police have that the criminals will too. At least car jacking will now be convenient for the criminals I guess

Avionics (Western, of course) in the car? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36780450)

see the stupid Batmobile story below.

Yours In Moscow,
K. Trout.

Why wait on Corp America to provide this? (2)

paulsnx2 (453081) | more than 2 years ago | (#36780456)

Why are we waiting for Ford to build these kinds of systems?

What do you need? A radio? A computer? A display?

Sounds like an android app. Then I can use it in any car.

Re:Why wait on Corp America to provide this? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36781218)

1. we're too lazy to even spell out 'corporate'
2. it is more fun do other things when tinkering/hacking than make cars 'talk' to each other
3. have you seen transformers? this is how it started.
4. I know how to drive and not hit things.

Re:Why wait on Corp America to provide this? (1)

EmagGeek (574360) | more than 2 years ago | (#36781586)

Probably because Ford owns patents that cover much of the technology and will sue anyone else who tries to do it into oblivion.

Re:Why wait on Corp America to provide this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36781872)

I agree. Every year US car menufacturers HAVE to find the killer-new-feature. Its the only way they can keep propping up the price. Then Hyundai comes in with "what we want" and I buy from them. I am convinced that Intel is behind this. They have laid this out and no one wants it.

As far as your app comment I completely agree.

If you fall asleep their is an
app that beeps. [goo.gl]

If you speed, there is an
app that beeps. [goo.gl]

If you want a smart cruise control, there is an
app for that. [goo.gl]

Help eliminate stupid speeding tickets [wikispeedia.org]

Re:Why wait on Corp America to provide this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36782988)

Yeah, this.

But my computer said I was safe! (1)

DoomHamster (1918204) | more than 2 years ago | (#36780476)

The one thing I worry about is people becoming reliant on the technology to warn them of danger and becoming less observant. Sort of like when my brother couldn't figure out which way was West until the GPS told him despite many very obvious indicators (mountains, sun, etc.).

Re:But my computer said I was safe! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36780998)

Actually it's fine if people use that excuse. So long as the computer is wrong less often than people without the computer are wrong there will still be fewer accidents.

Re:But my computer said I was safe! (1)

VortexCortex (1117377) | more than 2 years ago | (#36781294)

The one thing I worry about is people becoming reliant on the technology to warn them of danger and becoming less observant. Sort of like when my brother couldn't figure out which way was West until the GPS told him despite many very obvious indicators (mountains, sun, etc.).

::Hack:: Please turn OFF at the next light.

Re:But my computer said I was safe! (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 2 years ago | (#36781392)

I have known people like that from well before GPS.
If people aren't trained in it the won't know. Often in cities there is no reason to know.

Doesn't matter, soon cars will not have drivers. As much as I love driving, I can't wait for that day to get here.

Re:But my computer said I was safe! (1)

ultranova (717540) | more than 2 years ago | (#36781790)

Doesn't matter, soon cars will not have drivers. As much as I love driving, I can't wait for that day to get here.

Neither can the lawyers, which is why it'll never become. And it it does, well... it'll give a whole new meaning to the Blue Screen of Death!

Which, in turn, means that the lawyers were actually saving human lives. That kinda boggles the mind.

The real value of this system... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36780572)

The only quesiton I have: Do the bitcoins mined by the distrubuted processing system belong to me or Ford?

Finally (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36780770)

Hackin' and Jackin' is here!!!

Hmm, I wonder about wi-fi congestion (3, Interesting)

geekoid (135745) | more than 2 years ago | (#36781372)

There are several cars on my street that have wi-fi. Whenever they go buy, it impacts the signal. now it's just a couple of cars, but what about when its 30 cars, most of which will be on the same channel? Or hundreds of cars going buy n the free way?

Re:Hmm, I wonder about wi-fi congestion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36782394)

There are several cars on my street that have wi-fi. Whenever they go buy, it impacts the signal. now it's just a couple of cars, but what about when its 30 cars, most of which will be on the same channel? Or hundreds of cars going buy n the free way?

If 100s of cars go and buy the freeway they'll probably start charging a toll for it, I'd imagine.

Re:Hmm, I wonder about wi-fi congestion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36782438)

There are several cars on my street that have wi-fi. Whenever they go buy, it impacts the signal. now it's just a couple of cars, but what about when its 30 cars, most of which will be on the same channel? Or hundreds of cars going buy n the free way?

Cars that have wifi?

In what capacity, pray tell? I'm honestly curious. Wifi syncing for music (can't be that bad, just another client on the periphery of your network)? Or do they take your cell phone and make it a wifi network? If so, wouldn't that need to be turned on?

Re:Hmm, I wonder about wi-fi congestion (1)

phoebus1553 (522577) | more than 2 years ago | (#36782642)

There are several cars on my street that have wi-fi. Whenever they go buy, it impacts the signal. now it's just a couple of cars, but what about when its 30 cars, most of which will be on the same channel? Or hundreds of cars going buy n the free way?

Cars that have wifi?

In what capacity, pray tell? I'm honestly curious. Wifi syncing for music (can't be that bad, just another client on the periphery of your network)? Or do they take your cell phone and make it a wifi network? If so, wouldn't that need to be turned on?

Dodge and I think it was BMW made lots of noise about this being a built-in option a few years ago. I know I could get a module in my Ram that made it a wifi hotspot for a cell phone on data, just like my Thunderbolt does today. I'm sure others have quitely added it as well since then.

This was a big deal for people that had too much expendable income a few years ago, but now you can just do it with your own Droid/iPhone probably for less than the car data option. Add in the Verizon MiFi (and if anyone else makes something similar... I don't know) and this is now a product searching for a market.

Re:Hmm, I wonder about wi-fi congestion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36782478)

buy = purchase, fool

Re:Hmm, I wonder about wi-fi congestion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36785648)

They should be using another channel.

I can see it now... (1)

Afell001 (961697) | more than 2 years ago | (#36781432)

"Honest officer! My car is infected with malware and it told it to speed down the road at 95 miles per hour!"

First Step in government controlling your car (1)

satcomjimmy (1228562) | more than 2 years ago | (#36781788)

http://www.its.dot.gov/connected_vehicle/connected_vehicle.htm [dot.gov] I can't possibly add more info than the government is already putting out on this subject and we need to let the government know this is ridiculous. It was formerly known as Intellidive but the US DOT is moving forward on funding a road system and cars that will eventually take over when they believe a crash is imminent, or I assume any other reason the government believes you should (or shouldn't) stop. This should scare the shit out of you coming from the same government that decided they would just start listening to all our calls. Not to mention they are calling this a green initiative, so are you ready for the road to decide you're going too fast and slow you down without your help to save gas? Ready to have insurance hiked for not driving a car that can be overridden by the roadway itself?

Where is the "Station Wagon Full of Tapes" ? (1)

SpockieTech (1958314) | more than 2 years ago | (#36782222)

What, nobody quoted this yet ? "Never underestimate the bandwidth of a station wagon full of tapes hurtling down the highway" Mix in some Johnny Mnemonic data courier services, P2P Mesh Networking, Onion Routing, Geotagging and presto, the Diamond Age "MediaNet" is here ! IPV6 Ptooey, Who needs it in a world with Traffic Lights and Ford Transport Protocols ? ;)

Finally! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36782498)

Finally, a way to make all the other cars around me listen to my playlist!

"Hi I'm Stanley the Speed Limit Sign..." (1)

DesertNomad (885798) | more than 2 years ago | (#36782752)

"... and you are exceeding the posted speed on this highway. Your vehicle ID has been logged, and your vehicle is now being rerouted to McDonalds indicated here, "where America is lovin' it", and you will be served with a notice of infraction as well as a discount on a cup of McCoffee (limit one per violator)."

The US DOT Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) Program has been going on for a very long time. It's taken at least half a decade just to get to the point where there are some practical standards.

http://www.its.dot.gov/factsheets/v2v_factsheet.htm [dot.gov]

It's not your average basement-dwelling Slashdotter's Wi-Fi - this is 802.11p in the 5.9GHz band, the work for which was only completed last year.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IEEE_802.11p [wikipedia.org]

Will be licensed restricted access, between vehicles and roadside infrastructure like talking signs and signposts, warning devices, all that happy stuff. Perhaps using multihop, traffic jams and accident scenes could get propagated out to allow motorists to recompute route before becoming mired. No one has figured out how to pay for it or what it will really do. At least in the past, there was talk about commercial organizations subsidizing the infrastructure in return for being able to advertise their service/location on the vehicle's nav system.

Stick to cars (1)

stewbacca (1033764) | more than 2 years ago | (#36783022)

Based on the scathing reviews of My Touch and Synch, I'd suggest Ford stick to just making cars and leaving the tech to somebody else.

re: networked cars (1)

Phusion (58405) | more than 2 years ago | (#36783720)

I had this idea many years ago, but only for car-to-car communications.. some kind of short range WiFi, text and voice communication between cars. I think it would be kind of cool, like having a CB radio, but geekier.

Supporting Idiot Drivers (1)

nukenerd (172703) | more than 2 years ago | (#36784706)

When I learned to drive, I was told that a fundamental principle was not to exceed a speed at which you could comfortable stop in the distance you can see is clear.

When did that go out the winddow?
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