18:07 12 April 2017
Self-driving autonomous cars are the next step in the evolution of motor vehicles and every big company from Google Waymo and Tesla to Ford and General Motors are trying to get a big slice of this future. In the meanwhile, Avneesh Agarwal and David Julian, both of whom are ex-employees of the chip manufacturing giant Qualcomm, have apparently figured out a way to make roads all around the world safer by using the Internet of Things or IoT. The promising device from Netradyne is capable of capturing data regarding a driver’s on-road performance, measuring it, and then analysing that data in order to guide him/her into being a better and safer driver. Let’s take a closer look at how the device actually works.
In terms of hardware, the device mainly comprises of four cameras, all of which are connected to each other and centrally to the AI framework. While two of the cameras are dedicated to face both sides of the road, the third and the fourth cameras keep a watch on the driver and the road in front of the car respectively. The entire setup is installed at the back of the rear-view mirror, so as to get a clear view of everything, without actually obstructing the driver’s view in any way.
The cameras record everything from all manoeuvres that the driver makes to the conditions through which he/she is driving. After that, the AI framework analyses these factors to determine the driver’s performance and provide suggestions accordingly. The best part is that it simultaneously provides real-time feedback by pointing out any mistakes that he/she might be making. Apparently, it can also answer direct questions in regard to the car’s current safety status and traffic rule compliance. It sounds like an experience that’s reminiscent of the first driving lessons we have all had with our instructors, but with the pinpoint accuracy of a machine.
Netradyne is confident that their product stands out from the rest of the AI-powered technology that is powering the current generation of autonomous vehicles. According to Agarwal, the device is not just a research in progress but an actual working piece of technology built around IoT, machine learning, and artificial intelligence that can be prepared as a commercially viable product right now.
It cannot be denied that IoT is indeed the future and once you start using something like that, it's hard to go back. It was just last month that I had to find a tradesmen in my vicinity to install the IoT connected home security system and the Google Nest Protect smart smoke detectors that I invested quite a bit into. Although there was a lot of scepticism about whether it would actually turn out to be a good investment or not, all of that is in the past and I feel it is one of the best investments in technology that I have ever made.
Hopefully, this new device from Netradyne and more IoT products in the future will continue to change the way we live our lives for the better.