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Running Apps From Your Car's Dashboard

timothy posted more than 2 years ago | from the how-do-you-get-extra-lives? dept.

Transportation 171

An anonymous reader writes "I guess is was inevitable, now that BMW is letting you view and make tweets from behind the wheel, but is it really a good idea to let people run smartphone apps from their dashboard monitor? I guess for navigation you could run your favorite map-app there, but there is nothing to stop people from running other apps on their dashboard too. It might be better than texting from the handset, but I'm not sure I want people playing Angry Birds while they drive."

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Boston (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39904277)

>> I'm not sure I want people playing Angry Birds while they drive

Here in Boston, we use the same techniques for both.

Re:Boston (3, Funny)

thegarbz (1787294) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904831)

I'd be more worried about people playing Drunk Man. Imagine the story you tell to the police for swerving all over the road.

Re:Boston (2)

Quiet_Desperation (858215) | more than 2 years ago | (#39905675)

I made several multiweek trips to the Boston area for work over the years. Everytime I came back to So Cal people noticed I was driving more aggressively for a while afterward.

How fucking stupid is this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39904291)

Anyone who use a phone while driving should be hanged, drawn and quartered.

The same is true for any stupid German car maker who thinks drivers can concentrate on fucking Twitter and fucking Facebook while driving.

I hope they miss all the cyclists they're going to kill while they're distracted in this way.

Obvious troll (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39904343)

cyclist should realize that cars are real and will win everytime

Re:Obvious troll (0, Troll)

gbjbaanb (229885) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904727)

cyclist should realize that cars are real and will win everytime

in much the same way that car drivers realise that articulated lorries are real and will win everytime. No-one needs to remind a car drive of that. but apparently we need to remind cyclists all the time. I say if a cyclist doesn't get this, they shouldn't be allowed on the roads.

Re:Obvious troll (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39904915)

True. Though I don't care how defensive you are, people are fucking morons and they'll try to kill you anyway. Motorcyclist here... in case you couldn't tell.

Sometimes I don't think people should be allowed to pilot multi-thousand pound vehicles at speeds many times faster than the human body was meant to deal with. Yeah, call me a fascist.

It's really a testament to good design, that cars are generally manageable by an average human using the UI we have for them, but it's lowered the bar for who's allowed to operate them... and that's bad. People don't pay the slightest bit of attention, and do things just don't make any goddamn sense. 90mph, weaving through dense traffic doing 55? Fuck it. Merge onto the expressway while on your phone, no shoulder check, knowing people will just get out of your way? Yeah, fuck it... my car will protect me.

At the very least, we should be way more liberal with permanent revocations of peoples' driver's licenses. Possibly corporal punishment, and we throw your mobile phone in a device shredder without compensation.

Re:Obvious troll (0)

Capt. Skinny (969540) | more than 2 years ago | (#39905527)

we should be way more liberal with permanent revocations of peoples' driver's licenses

Just prepare to be way more liberal with social support and criminal justice systems, too. Outside of a few major cities, public transportation in the US ranges from impractical to non-existent. In many places, no license == unemployed == government checks OR crime. I'm not advocating for letting dangerous drivers remain on the road, but we do need to consider the whole picture before making policy changes that have far-reaching repercussions.

Re:How fucking stupid is this? (5, Insightful)

0100010001010011 (652467) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904469)

Maybe the Germans can exhibit a bit of self control behind the wheel while driving?

So the story goes with VW's engineers that they kept getting complaints from the American dealers that their cars lacked cup holders. The engineers couldn't fathom why you would want a cup of anything while driving. So they determined it was just to store something while driving to a destination. So for the Mk3 Golf/Jetta we got cup holders... That will hold exactly a 12 floz can. Anything larger won't fit.

The Germans have a complete different mentality about driving that most Americans don't get. I got to visit a while ago for a week and when you're doing 200 kph you don't have time for a cell phone. The autobahn gently twists and turns unlike some American highways which you could write your biography if the car's aligned.

Re:How fucking stupid is this? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39904813)

Lets be honest about German Engineering.

I think the lack of cup holders has more to do with their inability to identify a good location, rather than their understanding of their use.

For example, in the R8 it's difficult to adjust the climate control while in certain gears. They make prioritized decisions on how to layout a car.

I think that they're both lazy and myopic, but that's just MHO. The R8 is a perfect example of German auto engineering (from a usability standpoint). The car is very capable, just totally boring to drive.

Re:How fucking stupid is this? (2)

Gimbal (2474818) | more than 2 years ago | (#39905621)

I hope it would be appropriate to denote the observation that your comment presents a fine example of common ethnography.

To return to the common vernacular, however: Lyk, geez you mean they don't do it like us?

(cough cough lol and such)

Re:How fucking stupid is this? (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39905729)

The Germans have a complete different mentality about driving that most Americans don't get. I got to visit a while ago for a week and when you're doing 200 kph you don't have time for a cell phone. The autobahn gently twists and turns unlike some American highways which you could write your biography if the car's aligned.

After spending a week on the road in germany recently, this makes absolute sense to me.

In germany I activated cruise control whenever possible, because I felt like I needed to keep my eyes on the road, I didn't want to look at my speed when I could be looking ahead or in my mirrors instead. On the autobahn the speeds are so fast (not just my speeds, but also the speeds of traffic around me) and lanes so narrow I was on a razor's edge the whole time, in the city the traffic and streets and pedestrians were tight enough to keep me similarly occupied.

There is no way I would drink a can of coke while driving in germany. No way.

Back home, I'm usually bored out of my mind while driving. Without something else to keep me occupied I'll probably fall asleep on the way home from work.

Re:How fucking stupid is this? (2)

sunderland56 (621843) | more than 2 years ago | (#39905737)

Maybe the Germans can exhibit a bit of self control behind the wheel while driving?

I think it is more the fact that the USA is a much, much larger market than Germany. Cars are designed to sell, so they need to be built with things that will sell in their largest markets - currently China and the USA.

Apropos cupholders: on the E46 BMW (3-series cars circa 2002) there were cupholders on the American cars, but none in the German/European versions. That way they sold more cars in the USA, but didn't annoy people and lose sales in Germany The smartphone app ability may not be built in world-wide either.

Re:How fucking stupid is this? (4, Funny)

couchslug (175151) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904969)

Distracted morons are one reason why I drive full-size trucks with ugly accessories such as liftgates and tow-truck bumpers.

Besides using them for their intended purpose, such add-ons get driver attention. Flat black Rustoleum FTW!

I also keep my triball Reese hitch installed as a standoff. Anyone who rear-ends me deserves to lose a radiator, not just a bumper cover.

Re:How fucking stupid is this? (4, Interesting)

Fjandr (66656) | more than 2 years ago | (#39905151)

I'm surprised there isn't yet a reply to this along the lines of "You drive a truck, ergo you're an asshole and a bully as a driver." I see that all the time, especially in the context of a conversation about driving etiquette.

I drive a full-size truck myself, and am a very polite driver. The nice thing about my truck is it forces people around me to be polite as well.

Re:How fucking stupid is this? (2)

cusco (717999) | more than 2 years ago | (#39905673)

I used to drive a 1969 Dodge Dart with great gaping rust holes, a spider-web cracked windshield, and Bullwinkle the Moose painted on the hood in house paint. People took one look at that car, thought "He's got nothing to lose", and got the hell out of my way.

I live in Seattle, and the only non-polite drivers that I regularly encounter are in Escalades, Navigators, Hummers, and (for some reason) Mustangs. Even Beemer drivers, who tend to be assholes in real life, tend to be all right here.

I grew up in Michigan though, and anything smaller than an F150 would get pushed around there.

Re:How fucking stupid is this? (2, Insightful)

Dodgy G33za (1669772) | more than 2 years ago | (#39905683)

Okay, I will bite...

The OP showed that his reasons for driving a truck were pretty selfish (larger vehicle = more damage to environment and roadways), and misguided (safety rating of large vehicles tend to be worse than low fuel consumption compacts, such as the VW Golf, although this is changing).

I don't care how polite you say you are, if you drive a vehicle that is unnecessarily large and obstruct my view of the road ahead as a result (I am talking city driving here) then I will think of you accordingly. Oh, and coercing behaviour out of people isn't something I would equate with polite.

Re:How fucking stupid is this? (1)

Quiet_Desperation (858215) | more than 2 years ago | (#39905681)

Had a woman on her phone blow through a stop sign just the other day and I nearly broadsided her. She had three kids in the car.

Why should you have a say? (0, Flamebait)

_Sharp'r_ (649297) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904301)

but there is nothing to stop people from running other apps on their dashboard too

Why do you think what you want people do to with their cars is any of your business, as long as it doesn't involve hurting you or someone else?

Punish them if they do something stupid and cause a traffic accident... let them work out what they're allowed to do with their insurance company that may have to pay for the consequences, but how did we get to the point where joe anonymous may get a say via the police over what software people are allowed to run?

Re:Why should you have a say? (4, Insightful)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904323)

Where would the police come in here?

Yes, in the Wild Wild West, everybody could do whatever the hell they wanted in the privacy of their own automobile while driving down the public roads. However, in the real world, we should probably think this through a little bit.

But I'm not sure that an article whose first paragraph contained the phrase 'Smartphone-centric in-vehicle infotainment (IVI) systems are the next step in mobile convenience' is the place to start.

Re:Why should you have a say? (1)

WillDraven (760005) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904475)

You know what driver's also shouldn't do? Mess with the radio, change the A/C setting, reach into the glove box, read a book, use the rear seat cupholder....

For a place where lots of people say we should carpool more, a whole lot of you seem to have forgotten about a little thing called PASSENGERS.

Not every feature on a vehicle is meant to be operated by the driver while it is moving.

Re:Why should you have a say? (4, Insightful)

Amouth (879122) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904521)

So explain to me why a passenger would need to have their smartphone in hand and have the application for it appear on the dash, rather than just looking at it in their hand, that doesn't involve the driver.

Re:Why should you have a say? (1)

WillDraven (760005) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904675)

Why would a group of people want a display they can all see, with a wireless control mechanism... why, why, why?

Everyone here complains about the "$foo on a computer" patent nonsense, but every time i see "$foo in a car" articles they are full of people shouting about mutilated accident victim porn.

Look, I get it, drivers shouldn't be messing around while they are driving. I agree that far. But that doesn't mean the passengers have to cower in silence for fear of creating a distraction. I would think if the passengers are entertained they would be much less likely to distract the driver.

ALSO:

In the not too distant future we are going to be seeing self-driving cars, and I don't blame the car makers for beginning to test the waters for socially enabled in car entertainment. Yes, some idiots are going to kill themselves and some innocents messing with it, but idiots already kill plenty of people with the widgets, makeup, pets, etc. that people interact with in their car. You can only engineer around stupid to a certain degree, after which, sure, you've made a perfectly safe car, but only a handful of people can afford the damn thing, or it's incredibly boring to operate (which can be dangerous in itself).

Re:Why should you have a say? (4, Insightful)

Amouth (879122) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904821)

So your situation is to have the passengers display entertainment on the dash board for everyone to see when they could just use the built in displays in the head rests for the back and again the actual smartphone for the person in shotgun..

I understand the "passenger" argument, and i do believe that passengers have a responsibly not to create a distraction.

As for your comment on self driving cars, if you are in a self driving car, then you are all passengers, a computer is the driver, and i wouldn't want the computer distracted beyond it's ability to operate the vehicle.. if you want to "test the waters for socially enabled in car entertainment" that effects the current meat space driver/operator wait till you have the self driving cars so you can let them be entertained by i while the computer drives the car, but it would be unwise to do it before hand.

If you really want to watch a movie on your way to work, do it in a manner where you aren't the one in control of a 3000lbs object traveling at 50 mph while watching the movie.

Re:Why should you have a say? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39905017)

You (and presumably the submitter) are hung up on the word "dash" meaning where the drivers instruments are located, but if you read the article they are pretty clearly talking about the center console. There's even a picture clearly showing that, and the phrase "display the data and apps on the in-dash head unit" should tell you that we're talking about the standard existing location for the hi-fi/satnav/tv. Really not a big deal.

Re:Why should you have a say? (1)

gbjbaanb (229885) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904687)

the point of putting your smartphone platform on the car's dash is that you can leverage the developer base and existing software that is already developed. The entertainment software on a car is pretty primitive compared to what you have on your phone, so there's no real reason not to put it there. If you have a problem with putting iOS on a car's dashboard, you've probably got a problem with running the existing software there anyway.

Re:Why should you have a say? (1)

Amouth (879122) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904783)

Good job on not even attempting to post an answer to my post.

Re:Why should you have a say? (1)

cusco (717999) | more than 2 years ago | (#39905713)

The other 'point' is that car designers are cheap, and don't want to spend the extra couple hundred Euros to put a decent CPU/OS/Memory in their product. Slightly higher profits if they let the phone companies do the heavy lifting, they just have to provide an interface.

Re:Why should you have a say? (2)

Gimbal (2474818) | more than 2 years ago | (#39905649)

So explain to me why a passenger would need to have their smartphone in hand and have the application for it appear on the dash, rather than just looking at it in their hand, that doesn't involve the driver.

Because innovations like this can drive sales. ...and that, I think. is as far as it goes, honestly and in all candor.

So I can drink beer now? (5, Interesting)

Immerman (2627577) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904623)

By your logic I should be allowed to get shitfaced drunk while driving and society gets no say unless I screw up.

Mind you I personally have no problem with this, I've known people that are safer drivers blacked-out drunk than some people are stone sober. They rarely get caught because they don't give off any "warning signs" no weaving, skipping stop signs, etc. But if we go that route lets start actually enforcing reckless driving laws with severe penalties. If you can't stay in your lane and obey the traffic laws what does it matter if it's because you're drunk, texting, or trying to break up a fight between the kids? Your vehicle is just as big a threat either way.

"Infotainment"? Well that's a new one (2)

Gimbal (2474818) | more than 2 years ago | (#39905635)

I'm for personal responsibility, not necessarily for government stepping in beyond the limits of basic law, if to enforce a sense of political responsibility - I think that it sets a bad precedent for government, to say the least.

I find myself distracted at the original occurrence of the word, "Infotainment" however. What a shiny.....

Correction ... (1)

Gimbal (2474818) | more than 2 years ago | (#39905643)

Erm, to correct myself, I meant: If to enforce a sense of personal responsibility - though I'm afraid it only becomes political, at which point.

It seems I have a Freudian slip, at the matter. My apologies.

Re:Correction ... (1)

Gimbal (2474818) | more than 2 years ago | (#39905645)

To quote the Bard's Tale, in regards to these recurring typos: Beer beer beer, tiddly beer beer beer. Cheers.

Re:Why should you have a say? (1)

Quiet_Desperation (858215) | more than 2 years ago | (#39905695)

Not a lot of autos in the Wild Wild West. Giant fucking mechanical spiders, but not many autos.

Re:Why should you have a say? (4, Insightful)

Voyager529 (1363959) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904347)

Why do you think what you want people do to with their cars is any of your business, as long as it doesn't involve hurting you or someone else?

Punish them if they do something stupid and cause a traffic accident... let them work out what they're allowed to do with their insurance company that may have to pay for the consequences, but how did we get to the point where joe anonymous may get a say via the police over what software people are allowed to run?

Because frequently it *does* involve hurting someone else: it's called a fatal car accident, where the person who wasn't playing Angry Birds dies. The person wrecklessly driving will of course face all kinds of consequences from the police/courts/insurance company for the accident (and quite possibly manslaughter charges on top of it), but that doesn't bring the victim back to life.

Re:Why should you have a say? (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39904373)

Recklessly, not wrecklessly. They've definitely caused a car wreck.

Re:Why should you have a say? (1, Troll)

_Sharp'r_ (649297) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904497)

Would this person's prosecution for causing an accident resulting in death deter other people from behaving similarly?

Do you really think that setting up regulations to ban or approve applications that are allowed to run on a computer would deter someone more than the possibility of causing death, either theirs or others? Have you thought through the enforcement regime required to ensure people don't have "unapproved" applications loaded on their car computer? Are we talking an annual inspection of their data, or what, you must be a government approved vehicle computer system or application provider? Gee, the possibilities for abuse are just endless, aren't they?

How about we skip all that and just hold people responsible for their actual actions that actually harm others, instead of creating a police and nanny state because we're afraid someone may misuse their freedom in some minor way "we" don't approve of?

What's next, regulations about the types of toilet paper, flushing mechanisms or light bulbs "we" approve of? Ridiculous, right?

How about, mind your own damn business until it actually affects you? Have people really lost sight of liberty so much? Or do they just not think things like this through?

Re:Why should you have a say? (2)

BootysnapChristAlive (2629837) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904615)

Have people really lost sight of liberty so much?

Yes. They get too emotional about casualties in the name of freedom and opt to restrict what other people are able to do. They cannot handle even a single loss, and they don't even realize that their 'solutions' will often not even solve the problem.

This is why some people support the TSA and the Patriot Act. "We must restrict everyone's rights in exchange for a bit of safety." It's just that there are different things that they want to sacrifice freedom for. In some cases, it's terrorism (restricting people's rights to "stop the terrorists" doesn't seem popular here). In some cases, it's children (I've noticed this is more popular here, especially when it comes to issues like child porn).

Re:Why should you have a say? (2)

vinehair (1937606) | more than 2 years ago | (#39905023)

Have people really lost sight of liberty so much?

Yes. They get too emotional about casualties in the name of freedom and opt to restrict what other people are able to do. They cannot handle even a single loss, and they don't even realize that their 'solutions' will often not even solve the problem.

This is why some people support the TSA and the Patriot Act. "We must restrict everyone's rights in exchange for a bit of safety." It's just that there are different things that they want to sacrifice freedom for. In some cases, it's terrorism (restricting people's rights to "stop the terrorists" doesn't seem popular here). In some cases, it's children (I've noticed this is more popular here, especially when it comes to issues like child porn).

Comparing the negative response to the idea of installing Twitter in a car to the hysterical comparison of such negative responses to the support of the TSA and the Patriot Act and strongly implying support of totalitarianism? Slashdot's all well and normal then, the cute little hippy libertarian tykes.

Fucking ridiculous.

Re:Why should you have a say? (1)

BootysnapChristAlive (2629837) | more than 2 years ago | (#39905113)

Comparing the negative response to the idea of installing Twitter in a car to the hysterical comparison of such negative responses to the support of the TSA and the Patriot Act and strongly implying support of totalitarianism?

They're merely inconsistent. The logic is the same. "Surrender some freedom for security." The amount of freedom is irrelevant. Getting fondled at an airport, for instance, is much less severe than it could be. But some people pretend that because it's only a small loss of freedom that it isn't a bad thing. I disagree. And the reason I disagree is that people assume that everyone will abuse these features, and that's not necessarily true. I'm against collective punishment.

I have a solution for you (2)

Shavano (2541114) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904625)

Make the auto manufacturer liable if they made provisions for the driver to be able to display to the driver applications not related to operation of the vehicle.

Re:Why should you have a say? (3, Interesting)

number11 (129686) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904663)

How about we skip all that and just hold people responsible for their actual actions that actually harm others, instead of creating a police and nanny state because we're afraid someone may misuse their freedom in some minor way "we" don't approve of?

But how to determine their 'actual action'? Would you be ok with data recorders that log all the actions, so we can hold them responsible? Or do you just want to throw up your hands and say "Oh, there's no way to know, we have to trust what they tell us because they wouldn't lie."

And should we do the same for everyone else? Trust truck drivers (who get paid by the mile) to take long, relaxing rests cross-country instead of being wired on white crosses? Trust school bus drivers not to drink too much from the bottle they keep beneath the seat? Trust that dump truck driver not to get distracted by the TV he's got propped up on his dash?

Personally, I'd rather have neither the data recorder nor the game-boy dashboard. But I do know that if the driver has access to that game-boy, some of them will be using it. Some of them are already texting, reading, drinking coffee, chatting on the phone, applying makeup, or all of the above, we know that some of them will be playing Angry Birds. And these are people who can barely walk and chew gum at the same time.

I'm sure that extra "freedom" is worth your life (and that of your children, given that they're from your gene pool). But, you know, after you've been squished into a twisted ball of metal and shredded meat, whether the perp is "held responsible" isn't going to be real important to you.

Re:Why should you have a say? (2)

cusco (717999) | more than 2 years ago | (#39905735)

Saw a woman turning onto an on-ramp one morning with a cell phone and cigarette in one hand and a latte in the other. Not really sure how she was steering. The guy behind her was shaving, and the woman behind him was putting on makeup. Made me just want to turn around and go home.

Re:Why should you have a say? (4, Insightful)

Voyager529 (1363959) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904761)

Would this person's prosecution for causing an accident resulting in death deter other people from behaving similarly?

Probably not, but that's not the point.

Do you really think that setting up regulations to ban or approve applications that are allowed to run on a computer would deter someone more than the possibility of causing death, either theirs or others?

Yes, I do. If given the opportunity to play Angry Birds on the dashboard, many will opt to do it, because the barrier to entry is nonexistent. People generally believe that the worst won't happen to them, and that it'd be alright because the foreseen circumstances are just fine. However, it is inherently impossible to account for unforeseen circumstances. These circumstances can, in many cases, be avoided with quick reflexes and complete attention on the road, but trying to line up the perfect shot would inherently prohibit one from realizing the danger before it's too late.

Have you thought through the enforcement regime required to ensure people don't have "unapproved" applications loaded on their car computer?

Yes, and it's called "what's worked for the past century: don't run apps on your dashboard at all". Wanna add a trip computer or GPS stats on there? Fine, I'm down with that. But there's no conceivable reason to add games to a dashboard as it does nothing whatsoever to provide better performance to the vehicle or the driver. Just because something is possible doesn't make it a good idea.

Are we talking an annual inspection of their data, or what, you must be a government approved vehicle computer system or application provider?

No, we are talking a dashboard that doesn't run apps.

What's next, regulations about the types of toilet paper, flushing mechanisms or light bulbs "we" approve of? Ridiculous, right?

Redacto ad absurdum much? I'm pretty sure that there are some form of regulations in place to limit the possibility of making toilet paper out of fiberglass or light bulbs out of nuclear waste, because that's the level of absurdity this line requires to make it work.

How about, mind your own damn business until it actually affects you?

My best friend lost her mom in a car accident to a distracted driver. Sue me for the one degree of separation.

Have people really lost sight of liberty so much?

If you want to play angry birds while driving on a closed course or the middle of the desert, go right ahead. It's not a significant infringement of your personal liberties to say that while you're on public highways and operating a motor vehicle that you should act in a manner that doesn't risk the lives of the people next to you for your own entertainment.

Or do they just not think things like this through?

You're defending the notion of adding entertainment in an unnecessary and potentially dangerous manner to cars that will be driving on public roads and putting it under the vise of a liberty issue. I'll take the hit on the "not thinking things through" schtick once you can explain to me how this benefits anyone.

Re:Why should you have a say? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39904961)

Have you thought through the enforcement regime required to ensure people don't have "unapproved" applications loaded on their car computer?

Yes, and it's called "what's worked for the past century: don't run apps on your dashboard at all". Wanna add a trip computer or GPS stats on there? Fine, I'm down with that. But there's no conceivable reason to add games to a dashboard as it does nothing whatsoever to provide better performance to the vehicle or the driver. Just because something is possible doesn't make it a good idea.

So you're saying we can't run apps ("don't run apps on your dashboard"), but we can run apps ("a trip computer or GPS stats on there? Fine"), implying either you haven't "thought through the enforcement regime required", or you have, but realize 'forbid users to execute their own code on their own computer' will be unpopular on /., where we still care about (certain) freedoms, and elected to sweep it under the rug. So, dense or dishonest... that's all I see.

Re:Why should you have a say? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39905481)

Have you thought through the enforcement regime required to ensure people don't have "unapproved" applications loaded on their car computer?

Yes, and it's called "what's worked for the past century: don't run apps on your dashboard at all". Wanna add a trip computer or GPS stats on there? Fine, I'm down with that. But there's no conceivable reason to add games to a dashboard as it does nothing whatsoever to provide better performance to the vehicle or the driver. Just because something is possible doesn't make it a good idea.

So you're saying we can't run apps ("don't run apps on your dashboard"), but we can run apps ("a trip computer or GPS stats on there? Fine"), implying either you haven't "thought through the enforcement regime required", or you have, but realize 'forbid users to execute their own code on their own computer' will be unpopular on /., where we still care about (certain) freedoms, and elected to sweep it under the rug. So, dense or dishonest... that's all I see.

Can't refute me, since GP's contradiction doesn't make sense without the assumption of stupidity or dishonesty?

No trouble, you can sure as hell mod me down. I love /.!

Re:Why should you have a say? (2)

Capt. Skinny (969540) | more than 2 years ago | (#39905651)

How about, mind your own damn business until it actually affects you?

Because we have a reasonable expectation that it WILL affect us. With irrevocable consequences. You've already acknowledged that someone who "may have to pay for the consequences" should have a say in what is allowed behavior:

let them work out what they're allowed to do with their insurance company that may have to pay for the consequences

The potential consequence to the insurance company is a cash payout. The potential consequence to me is pain, death, or dismemberment. In both cases they are potential consequences. No one disputes that. But they are consequences that have happened before, and we have a reasonable expectation they will happen again.

Have you thought through the enforcement regime required to ensure people don't have "unapproved" applications loaded on their car computer? Are we talking an annual inspection of their data, or what, you must be a government approved vehicle computer system or application provider? Gee, the possibilities for abuse are just endless, aren't they?

What science fiction novel are you living in? Have you thought it through yourself? Drunk driving laws have been on the books for years and no one is clamoring for an Orwellian enforcement regime to ensure that people don't have "unapproved" beverages in their car. Police check behavior when looking for drunk drivers. No one inspects our cars annually for beer cozies, Jägermeister empties, or keg taps. We don't have breathalyzers attached to our ignitions unless we've already driven drunk. And rounding out the analogy, our alcohol providers -- retail stores and bars -- require government approval, with very little burden to the consumer.

Get a grip.

Re:Why should you have a say? (5, Insightful)

ArchieBunker (132337) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904359)

You must not drive apparently. The majority of people are barely capable of driving without any distractions. I'm all for the Libertarian idealism but too many slack jawed mouth breathers ruined it. Sorry.

Re:Why should you have a say? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39905657)

Slack jawed mouth breathers might not typically be able to afford cars with built-in mobile digital devices in the dashboard - not that they wouldn't try to emulate it - just sayin ;)

For the same reason... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39904371)

... that people are required by law to wear seatbelts. It's a legislative mandate (sounds familiar doesn't it?) that requires you to do something that is in the best interest of everyone who uses the same public system you do.

If you don't wear seatbelts, it could jeopardize your ability to control your car properly, not every second but when it's crucial. If you do use twitter, of any other onboard app, while you're responsible for controlling your 2-ton vehicle, traveling at anywhere from 44-88 ft/sec (30-60 mph), you will probably be distracted by the cognitive requirements of the app.

Really, it's a no-brainer...

Re:For the same reason... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39904481)

If you don't wear seatbelts, it could jeopardize your ability to control your car properly, not every second but when it's crucial

Seatbelts are in no way helping you to control your car (like it is for aircraft pilots e.g.) but only protection in case of an actual accident.

Wrong (5, Insightful)

Immerman (2627577) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904751)

In the case of a glancing collision, spinnout, etc you can easily get thrown around the cab by forces considerably stronger than you could hope to resist. A seatbelt will keep you in place behind the wheel where you still have a some control over your still-moving vehicle and can hopefully bring it to a stop without any secondary collisions. An only slightly weaker argument applies to front-seat passengers, since they can easily be thrown into your lap severely impairing your control. Rear seat passengers on the other hand are more a case of "think of the children" since any collision which manages to throw them into the front seat will likely have stopped the car anyway. Though, now that I think about it, without seatbelts children are far more likely to be clambering around the back of the car distracting you, or perched between the front seats so they can see out the windshield (and get thrown around the cab), so there's might be some validity to it after all.

Re:Wrong (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39904981)

Seatbelts do next to nothing in that way -- okay, your passengers lap belt may keep him out of your way, but the shoulder belt does fuck-all to keep your upper body behind the wheel. Racing harnesses do, but of course they're unsafe without a roll-cage, because roof-crush standards are horribly lax.

Re:Why should you have a say? (1)

JustOK (667959) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904375)

Difference between proactive and reactive, I guess. Proactive is generally better because, really, how much help would you be after you're dead in getting justice from the stupid? The dumb mass is everywhere.

Re:Why should you have a say? (1)

Arancaytar (966377) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904389)

Neither the court nor the insurance company can raise your victims from the dead. It's too late then.

Re:Why should you have a say? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39904445)

So people should be allowed to drink as much alcohol as they want to and drive and only the ones who get in accidents should be punished? People should be able to fire guns from moving vehicles and only get in trouble if someone gets hit?

Re:Why should you have a say? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39904505)

Quite frankly? Yes.

Re:Why should you have a say? (2)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904449)

Why do you think what you want people do to with their cars is any of your business, as long as it doesn't involve hurting you or someone else?

You can't make a statement like this without also defending the idea that "Smartphone-centric in-vehicle infotainment (IVI) systems" won't involve hurting yourself or someone else.

Punish them if they do something stupid and cause a traffic accident... let them work out what they're allowed to do with their insurance company that may have to pay for the consequences

A) Driving is a privelege, not a right.
B) Your statement accepts that the law can force you to purchase car insurance. Why are other restrictions on driving so much more onerous?

Re:Why should you have a say? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39904561)

A) Driving is a privelege, not a right.

That's quite a shame. Your property, your right to move... it's truly a shame that the government classifies it as a privilege.

B) Your statement accepts that the law can force you to purchase car insurance. Why are other restrictions on driving so much more onerous?

Wow. With retarded arguments like this finding their way around, I've finally realized what a "slippery slope" actually looks like.

"We let X do Y. Why not let them do Z, too!? After all, they can do Y!" That kind of argument completely ignores any differences because Y and Z and whether Z is even a good idea. It's just, "Well, let them do Z since they can do Y!"

Re:Why should you have a say? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39904923)

Ah, Slashdot: The land where everybody's a socialist until somebody proposes something that challenges their self-proclaimed exceptionalism, at which point they become raging libertarians.

You're not a special little snowflake. If statistics support the notion that distracted driving is as bad as drunk driving (and they do), then people have every right to demand a ban on operating while under the influence of common causes of impaired driving, whether it be alcohol, cell phones, or road head from your girlfriend or boyfriend while you drive. The police won't be pulling you over and asking you to prove you weren't running Angry Birds when you crashed; the police will simply pull the black box data after you crash, and determine whether or not you were doing something illegal when you crashed.

And to that, I say: good. You don't belong on the fucking road. Maybe this level of deterrence will convince you douchecanoes that "avoiding an accident" isn't the same as "driving attentively."

Re:Why should you have a say? (1)

swalve (1980968) | more than 2 years ago | (#39905743)

The statistics only support it in studies where they force people to text or talk.

Angry Birds (4, Funny)

Arancaytar (966377) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904367)

Could lead to playing Angry Cars inadvertently.

Re:Angry Birds (0)

outsider007 (115534) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904599)

Just remember not to suicide bomb the pigs when they pull you over.

Well what do you expect (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39904377)

BMW is short for Braindead Motorised W*nk*er

Does anyone else not like the idea of touch... (5, Insightful)

Ogi_UnixNut (916982) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904437)

...enabled in car systems?

Until recently, I had no touchscreens in my car, but once I got my new shiny smartphone, it had a rather cool "Car mode", where it made all the buttons large and easy to press, etc...

However nice it was in theory, I found that once I mounted it on my dash, it became a right PITA to operate while driving. While complex things (like setting up the maps) would make sense to stop at the side and fiddle with, other things (like setting the volume, or switching playlists/songs) shouldn't.

The biggest annoyance was the fact that operating the touchscreen required me to look at it, even for simple things like the volume control or music switching. I could operate all the major functions of my old car radio without even looking at it, it was well laid out, and buttons were different shapes and sizes, really easy to learn.

I really think touchscreens are not ready for car use just yet, at least until they develop some overlay that can change its tactile feedback. Anything that requires you to look at it to operate should have no place in the dashboard IMO (if it was mounted only on the passenger side out of reach of the driver, that would be good as well, but then I suspect some people would just lean over while hurtling down the motorway).

I don't know, I feel this will just increase the number of accidents due to people looking at the screen in order to find the song they want, or to tweet or something else... and as someone who has to share the roads with them, it is somewhat of a worry.... :/

Re:Does anyone else not like the idea of touch... (1)

oyenamit (2474702) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904565)

True. That is why the current trend in In-Vehicle Infotainment (IVI) software is that for the front seat, both touch as well as "button" interfaces are provided (touch interface can be used by the passenger sitting next to the driver while the driver continues to use the buttons). On the other hand, the interface for rear seat passengers is suitable for being completely touch based.

Re:Does anyone else not like the idea of touch... (1)

Ogi_UnixNut (916982) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904631)

Oh, good to hear it :) I'm planning on building a PC into my car eventually (once I iron out all the other problems with it), and I figured it would have both a touchscreen and some tactile buttons on the centre console.

Have you used any of these systems? I'd really be interested to see how modern cars dealt with this problem and what button interfaces they used, might get some ideas from them :D

Re:Does anyone else not like the idea of touch... (1)

oyenamit (2474702) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904875)

I have been involved in developing infotainment solutions for cars :D

Are you talking about what buttons to have on the dashboard? Almost all high-end cars have buttons which allow the user to switch between various sub-systems (Audio/video playback, Navigation, Phone, Settings etc). Along with that, they also have a rotating knob for scrolling and selecting items. See Audi's MMI [technofile.com] or BMW's iDrive [wikipedia.org] for inspiration.

Re:Does anyone else not like the idea of touch... (1)

Ogi_UnixNut (916982) | more than 2 years ago | (#39905603)

Oh cool! :D

No, I intend to have no buttons on the dashboard. My DB looks like this: http://c767170.r70.cf2.rackcdn.com/R20924.jpg [rackcdn.com]

There is a nice rectangular hole in the middle, where the centre speaker would go (optional extra). In my case that is an empty cavity, and would make an excellent place for a LCD screen.

At the moment I'm debating whether to make it a touch screen or not, but if I do make it touch sensitive, it would be rarely used (only instead of a keyboard, e.g. if I want to type in an address), due to my original post w.r.t distractions, and because I don't like fingerprints on the screen :)

The place I was thinking of putting the buttons is on the centre console, between the gear stick and the armest. That is currently being used by the ashtray (which I never use, as I don't smoke), seen here on the left: Centre console [ebayimg.com] .

I built an in-car PC for a friend ages ago, and found that a simple usb numpad (12 buttons in 4x4 arrangement) was more that enough to fulfill all the functions we needed, including having some dedicated buttons for music/movie control, so you could switch tracks e.g. even when you were on the GPS map. As it was just in front of the armrest, when you rested your arm your fingers were right on the keys, for easy access while cruising, seemed to work pretty well for years.

However I don't have the space for a 4x4 grid there, so need to trim down the button count, or find a better interface. I tried the BMW iDrive system when it first came out, but I didn't really like it, doing simple tasks required you to remember patterns (e.g. Shift left, rotate twice, shift right, then up, then rotate left, etc...).
Once again I found myself having to look at the screen in order to make sure what I was doing was correct. Ideally I'd want an interface that is limited enough so that the basics, such as track/app switching and volume control, can be done without me needing to look at the buttons or the screen.

Not an easy goal, eh? ;) Also, even if I found an in-car system that I was happy with, how could I interface it with my own hardware and software? Most of these parts aren't exactly easy to come by for the hobbyist :)

Re:Does anyone else not like the idea of touch... (5, Insightful)

liteyear (738262) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904613)

Amen - so much so that I voted with my cash by avoiding the 2011 Holden and buying a 2010 second hand instead. The 2011 model's greatest selling point (according to the ads) is the "iQ" touchscreen interface - making them Holden's "smartest" cars yet. I hired one for a few days and found it a grand step backwards. With no tactic feedback it was almost impossible to operate while driving. You basically had to have a passenger, or pull over to change the radio station.

The ideal user interface for car entertainment/information devices has already been invented. It's a button for binary operations and a knob for analog operations. It's incredibly clever because get this - you can feel it!

Just because a touchscreen is a wonderful interface for a mobile phone doesn't mean everything else in your life will get better with one.

Re:Does anyone else not like the idea of touch... (4, Insightful)

bmo (77928) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904651)

I really think touchscreens are not ready for car use just yet, at least until they develop some overlay that can change its tactile feedback. Anything that requires you to look at it to operate should have no place in the dashboard IMO (if it was mounted only on the passenger side out of reach of the driver, that would be good as well, but then I suspect some people would just lean over while hurtling down the motorway).

You've hit upon something that comes under the study of ergonomics. Tactile feedback matters. It's the reason why the start button on a CNC machine, a round, recessed, and sometimes molly-guarded green button looks and functions differently than the emergency stop button, which is a big, fat, red mushroom that you can hit with the back of your hand which then requires a twist to physically reset it once pressed. You *can* tell the difference between the two by touch alone. Because having to actually look may mean the difference between someone living or dying.

Sure. Touchscreens look cool and all that, but for a lot of things they are less than useless.

If you cannot operate something on the dashboard of a car with gloves and not looking, it's not designed right.

(The thing about emergency stop buttons brings me to my pet peeve that a missile launch button in bad science fiction movies is always a big, red, real-life estop button instead of a molly-guarded toggle switch or something actually more realistic. Also, with all the shiny touchscreens using the LCARS interface on Star Trek series and movies, how come we never see any janitorial staff keeping these things clean and gleaming?)

--
BMO

Re:Does anyone else not like the idea of touch... (4, Insightful)

aaronb1138 (2035478) | more than 2 years ago | (#39905067)

I've come to realize that while in certain use cases, touch screens are great (basically any general computing situation where the user chooses apps). They are only useful in a small minority of industrial design scenarios.

Industrial design engineers are increasingly using lcd+touchscreen as a kludge because they lack the intellect to fully step back and imagine the full breath of use cases for a device at the beginning of a project. The only industrial design use case where lcd+touchscreen belongs is where an image or similar visual media need to be manipulated by panning, zooming, or placing indicators by hand or finger. If you need a touchscreen to operate functions of an automobile while driving, you have failed as an engineer.

Re:Does anyone else not like the idea of touch... (1)

aaronb1138 (2035478) | more than 2 years ago | (#39905131)

My apologies for the double post... but I would hope that by the 24th century we are properly using hydrophobic / oleophobic / self cleaning substrates for touchscreens. Titanium dioxide and micro texturing have all but solved that problem here in the 21st century when manufacturers choose to implement them.

Re:Does anyone else not like the idea of touch... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39904873)

That's the texting while driving issue as well. Before it was not hard because you could look on the road. With touchscreens it's almost impossible, and much more dangerous if you still try.

Re:Does anyone else not like the idea of touch... (2)

rtb61 (674572) | more than 2 years ago | (#39905361)

Having been on the receiving end of a permanently life changing incident, with someone paying more attention to their mobile phone than the colour traffic, I whole heartedly agree. Any distractions that have nothing to do with driving that can be restricted should be restricted. Basically a lot of these additional features should simply cease to function once the vehicle is in motion, activate with parking brake, then adjust, once parking brake off the device is off.

Re:Does anyone else not like the idea of touch... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39905585)

Having been on the receiving end of a permanently life changing incident, with someone paying more attention to their mobile phone than the colour traffic, I whole heartedly agree. Any distractions that have nothing to do with driving that can be restricted should be restricted. Basically a lot of these additional features should simply cease to function once the vehicle is in motion, activate with parking brake, then adjust, once parking brake off the device is off.

When you invent a way to reliably make a baby/toddler/small child "simply cease to function once the vehicle is in motion" and reactivite with parking brake, I will payoff the politicians necessary to make that legally required. Until then we are stuck with the single most distracting thing that has nothing to do with driving.

It'd need a slight upgrade (1)

Grayhand (2610049) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904459)

"I'm not sure I want people playing Angry Birds while they drive" They just need at add a speed dial button for your insurance company. On the bright side you can play it while you wait for the police and tow truck to arrive.

BMW Not the First (1, Informative)

EmagGeek (574360) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904507)

BMW is hardly breaking ground here.

Ford SYNC has done SMS and Email from the dash for years, and units from several aftermarket stereo makers will link to your phone's Wifi hotspot to run Pandora and other Internet apps.

Nothing in this story constitutes anything new.

Re:BMW Not the First (1)

madprof (4723) | more than 2 years ago | (#39905205)

I think this is screen sharing, so not the same.

Yeah, 'cos some inevitably would.... (1)

Gimbal (2474818) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904585)

But then again, some people drive apparently without having payed any attention in driver's education, and society deals with that too. I think we should focus, moreso, on sense of personal responsibility, in such things.

As far as the app thing: We could try to stop that matter of innovation,but I do not know if we could succeed at halting it. I am, admittedly, biased about it however. I think it sounds like a reasonable development in concepts of vehicle utility - and I am not enough convinced that it would be of any concern for the many responsible drivers around - overall, per capita, and so on.

Oh the irony (2)

aaronb1138 (2035478) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904589)

I'm waiting to see how many posts pile up about voice recognition being the way to go in automobiles. It is arguably a better alternative to controlling multimedia functions in a car, definitely better than anything touch screen based. Frankly I wish the legislators would wise up and ban all touch input built into cars going forward. It is a disaster. Hard buttons are the safest way to control auxiliary functions in an automobile. I am being a bit hypocritical though, as I have considered integrating a really cheap Android tablet into my car for GPS and music. I also don't see there being a chance for any kind of ban given the propensity of GPS to use touch input.

Really, their just need to be better UI design guidelines for automotive use. Car mode on Android is alright, but still offers too much for the average mind to scan and pick from. I always thought the UI styles used in most GPS units was best, never really more than 2-4 choices at a time on the screen.

I could see a TTS system reading feeds from twitter, facebook, rss, etcetera being useful and cool even if I would never use it. Get in the car, get on the morning commute and get your /. feed instead of AM talk radio I suppose.

I joke about voice recognition and commands because as many here are aware, vocalization takes 80% of the average person's brain processing power. That is why so many people can't talk on the phone and drive (besides the fact that they are self-centered, spoiled a-holes).

Re:Oh the irony (1)

Miamicanes (730264) | more than 2 years ago | (#39905351)

With a little luck, somebody will eventually come up with a way to interface one of Sony's old control sticks to an Android phone & configure it for both Android & App control. They rocked, because once you learned how it worked, you could literally control almost everything with one hand by feel alone.

That's the #1 Ultimate Universal Suck of touchscreens - you have to actively look at them and focus most of your attention on using them. There's a lot to be said for controls that you can grab & manipulate 'blind' :-)

For those who've never seen the control I'm talking about: http://www.amazon.com/RM-X5S-Mobile-ROTARY-COMMANDER-Control/dp/B000WWNIDM/ref=sr_1_fkmr0_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1336265895&sr=8-1-fkmr0 [amazon.com]

NO! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39904645)

I do not want my car to run apps.

I want my car to be a mechanical device that moves me from point A to point B.

Not an electronic entertainment center. I have a home already.

BMW iDrive design (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39904649)

This whole theory is significantly flawed. Not to flame the post but here's a little FYI from a current BMW driver:

Firstly. BMW (and german manufactures in general do not use touchscreens). They use a button an dial system which is MUCH better that touch screen because its tactile and you can feel everything without looking at it, bumps and turns don't make it anymore difficult to enter the options you want. Playing angrybirds in my BMW is not an option. The apps need to be modified and loaded into the idrive system before you can use them on the nav screen.

The BMW's navigation system (idrive) - had a lot of research before being put into play. It is systematically designed through a lot of testing using fun caps and optical sensors to allow your eyes to watch the screen but still have full preferential vision of the road ahead. They actually did tests where one car would have the driver staring at the nav screen and a car in front of that BMW would slam the brakes randomly to see how the driver behind reacted.

Cluster (1)

c0lo (1497653) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904655)

On the "good" side... the technology increases the chances for many cars getting close enough to run a Beowulf cluster using their dashboard computers.

And this is different how? (1)

brokeninside (34168) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904685)

The other day, I pulled up behind a lady driving a Smart four two. In one hand, she had a phone held to her ear. In the other, she had a cigarette that she was ashing out the window.

Prior to that, I've seen people watching DVDs on portable players on their dashboard while driving.

Prior to that, I've seen women putting on their makeup, men shaving, people of both sexes eating with both hands while driving.

Prior to that, I've seen couples making out while driving.

I'm not going to argue that any of this is good. But the fact of the matter is that some drivers will always be unfit behind the wheel. If they aren't playing Angry Birds, they'll be finding some other way to distract themselves and other drivers, pedestrians, cyclists, and small furry animals will find themselves at their mercy.

The solution isn't to worry about apps on the dashboard. The solution is to be more careful about who gets a license to begin with and to be more vigilant about taking it away when a driver proves themselves to be unfit to be on the road.

Re:And this is different how? (0)

BootysnapChristAlive (2629837) | more than 2 years ago | (#39905161)

You piece of garbage! Why aren't you using Gamemaker!?

Get with the times, friend. Use Gamemaker. Everyone is using Gamemaker. Gamemaker is great. There is nothing better than Gamemaker.

Gamemaker, Gamemaker, Gamemaker! Start using Gamemaker if you know what's good for you.

It's coming (1)

oyenamit (2474702) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904717)

Whether we like it or not, smartphone and app integration with cars is quite inevitable in near future. Apart from opening up a plethora of possibilities with apps, it is also about convenience (just a wild thought: sitting in your house, you plan a road trip with your friends using maps on your smartphone and later simply download them to your car's navigation system). One major example of such an integration is Toyota's Entune [toyota.com] .

I'm almost certain (2)

sa1lnr (669048) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904731)

that the result will be similar to those in the user images for this product:

http://www.amazon.com/Wheelmate-Laptop-Steering-Wheel-Desk/dp/B000IZGIA8 [amazon.com]

Re:I'm almost certain (1)

aaronb1138 (2035478) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904829)

My hat is off to you sir.

The 614 reviews are a nice touch.

No problem (1)

jones_supa (887896) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904839)

I guess it all depends how well you multitask. For example I'm driving right now and playing Angry Birds while typing this message. I really don

NO CARRIER

let's not diss Angry Birds (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39904869)

Come one, pick some other game. Angry Birds uses a decent physics model at least. Nobody has been thrown off a plane for Angry Birds. What about words with friends?

Illegal here (1)

tomhath (637240) | more than 2 years ago | (#39904887)

Where I live (Pennsylvania, USA) using a phone for anything except a GPS while driving is illegal. If course it's impossible for a police officer to prove you were doing something else so the law is generally unenforceable, but it made some people somewhere feel good. Apparently there's still no law against being a complete idiot while driving, but that seems to be everywhere.

Not imposible at all (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39905333)

Your phone has records and even if you erase the records, the carrier has a record too.

So no ... it is not impossible to prove you were in violation of the law. To the contrary, it is VERY EASY to prove ... and defend when you are in the right.

Re:Not imposible at all (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39905553)

The carrier doesn't have records of when you are, say, playing Angry Birds, only calls and SMS... so your point doesn't make much sense.

brakes.sys has caused a system error (1)

Joe_Dragon (2206452) | more than 2 years ago | (#39905339)

brakes.sys has caused a system error please hold start to reboot.

Will these apps review your typing too? (1)

MiniMike (234881) | more than 2 years ago | (#39905457)

I guess is was inevitable,...

Was this submission proofread while driving? Or ever?

BMW Apps (3, Insightful)

sg3000 (87992) | more than 2 years ago | (#39905509)

It's a little more restricted than playing Angry Birds. BMW Apps supports a few functions:

- Reading tweets/Facebook posts (and with a flick of the iDrive, it will read the tweet out to you)

- Posting one of five/six canned tweets/Facebook status messages (e.g., "It's xx outside, and I'm driving my BMW!") - so you aren't trying to compose a message while you drive

- Web radio

- Looking at your calendar/address book

- News RSS feeds

So it has the capacity to be dangerously distracting, but BMW's implementation is limited enough that it's not. Of course, the driver could still be distracted if they're reading Facebook while they're driving, but if they're going to do that, they would do that anyway with their smartphone in their hand.

Re:BMW Apps (1)

SilverJets (131916) | more than 2 years ago | (#39905733)

Does someone that is driving a vehicle really need to be tweeting or updating their facebook status to "I'm driving my BMW" ?

Maybe they should be more concentrated on what they are doing and what is going on around them rather than moronic social network updates.

A round of perosnal responsibility, on the house (1)

Gimbal (2474818) | more than 2 years ago | (#39905677)

In discussing governmental regulations in regards to such matters, I'm afraid that we overlook the angle on which the matter boils down to a concern of personal responsibility. Not to suggest that we should give up the ghost, but government truly cannot enforce such a thing. Community leaders may themselves be able to inspire sense of personal responsibility in a community - but only if the community leaders, themselves, represent personal responsibility themselves, and then only if it's understood as such.

Granted, there is the concern in regards to public safety, I understand, in the motivation of laws regulating such things as cel phone use on the roads. I can understand that, I simply wish to note that no regulation is a suitable substitute for plain sense of reason.

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