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Driving

Livio Radio's Bluetooth Internet Radio Car Kit allows users to receive internet radio stat...

For those of us with iPhones, there are currently various apps that allow us to receive internet radio on our devices, but ... what if you’re one of those people who usually only listens to the radio while you’re driving? If your car has an auxiliary-in jack, of course, you can just run your phone into that. For the many cars that lack such a feature, however, now there’s Livio Radio’s Bluetooth Internet Radio Car Kit. Acting as a bridge between your iPhone and your automobile, it wirelessly receives an internet radio signal from your phone, then relays it onto the FM receiver of your car stereo.  Read More

The Vehicle Production Group's MV-1 van is designed with wheelchair-using passengers in mi...

The AM General auto assembly plant in Mishawaka, Indiana is where they used to build Hummer H2s. Now, its workers are making something a little less ... controversial. It’s a van called the MV-1, MV standing for “Mobility Vehicle,” and it’s designed specifically for wheelchair-using passengers. Its designers claim that it is better suited to the handicapped than converted conventional vans, and the first factory-built model rolled off the assembly line yesterday.  Read More

The insurethebox system uses telematics to monitor teens' driving habits, and rewards good...

It’s no secret that teen drivers have to pay higher automobile insurance rates than most people – after all, they’re less experienced, and some of them can be pretty reckless. If you’re a good teen driver or one that doesn’t drive much, however, it might seem rather unfair that you have to pay rates that are based on the worst driving habits of your peers. Well, Gibraltar-based insurethebox has what it claims is a better alternative – teens’ cars are fitted with a telematics box that records the way and amount that they drive, and they end up paying less for their insurance if they drive well.  Read More

The Car Connectivity Consortium is set to unveil the first products utilizing its MirrorLi...

Smartphones have become a large part of many peoples' daily lives, while computer-based in-vehicle infotainment systems are on their way to becoming standard equipment in all new vehicles. While there are some smartphone apps that are able to interact with some in-car systems, for the most part the two have been leading separate existences. The Car Connectivity Consortium (CCC), however, wants to change that. The group, which contains high-profile member companies from the automotive and mobile communications industries, has established a new technical standard for two-way communications between in-dash displays and applications running on smartphones. It's named MirrorLink, and the first products utilizing the standard will be unveiled this week at the Frankfurt Motor Show.  Read More

The Wikitude Drive augmented reality navigation app overlays directional markers on real-t...

Although many of us don't know how we ever managed without our car navigation systems, they are not without their flaws. For one thing, when that voice says "Turn left in 100 meters," you may find yourself looking out the windshield and wondering "Does that mean this left turn, or the one just past it?" The Wikitude Drive augmented reality navigation app is designed to address these problems, by overlaying directional arrows on real-time video of the road in front of you.  Read More

SignalGuru uses visual data from a network of smartphone cameras to tell drivers the optim...

The continuing increase in gasoline prices around the world over the past decade has also seen an increase in the practice of hypermiling – the act of driving using techniques that maximize fuel economy. One of the most effective hypermiling techniques is maintaining a steady speed while driving instead of constantly stopping and starting. Unfortunately, traffic lights all too often conspire to foil attempts at keeping the vehicle rolling. Researchers at MIT and Princeton have now devised a system that gathers visual data from the cameras of a network of dashboard-mounted smartphones and tells drivers the optimal speed to drive at to avoid waiting at the next set of lights.  Read More

The EV Profiler is a driving data recorder, that lets users know how specific electric veh...

You may have heard people saying that most electric vehicles have plenty of range for an average driver’s daily needs, but ... how does that apply to you? It would definitely be disappointing to purchase an EV, only to discover that your driving habits are significantly more taxing that what is considered “average.” What would be good is if there was some sort of device that you could attach to your existing car, that would observe your driving habits, then tell you how a certain make and model of EV would stand up to those demands. That device, it turns out, exists in the form of the EV Profiler driving data recorder.  Read More

OPINION: Distracted driving - the insanity of public roads

The distracted driving epidemic seems to know no bounds. With global road deaths set to exceed 1.5 million human beings in 2011, almost every country in the world continues to accept the mayhem on the roads as the cost of doing business. Distracted driving is the hot topic of the moment with research suggesting 5,800 U.S. traffic deaths last year were tied to motorists who failed to keep their eyes on the road. Another study claims American drivers are distracted between one-quarter and one-half of the time, two-thirds of drivers use a cell phone while driving, one-third used a cell phone routinely and observational studies suggest between 7% and 10% of all drivers are using a cell phone at any given time. If you think that's bad, you should see what happens in Asia. Mike Hanlon spent a few months on the road in Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia and Thailand - his photography of everyday motoring in largely motorcycle-mounted countries will leave you aghast.  Read More

The team recorded brain signals of subjects using a driving simulator

With human error the predominant cause of car accidents, automatic braking systems like the Pedestrian Detection system found in the Volvo S60 use cameras and sensors to assist drivers in detecting oncoming hazards and automatically applying the brakes. Now a team of researchers from the Berlin Institute for Technology has found a way to improve the response times of drivers by reading their minds. Using electroencephalography (EEG) by attaching electrodes to the scalp the researchers demonstrated that reading driver’s brain signals can provide quicker reaction times to potentially prevent many of the car accidents caused by human error.  Read More

TRW Automotive is developing a folding, retractable steering wheel, that would make it eas...

As small, ultra fuel-efficient or electric cars become more popular as urban runabouts, automotive designers are looking for more ways to maximize their interior space. One possibility: get rid of the steering wheel. Of course, you need a steering wheel for driving, but the engineers at Michigan’s TRW Automotive are working on one that folds up and retracts into the dashboard when the vehicle is parked. They claim it would making getting in and out of the car considerably easier, particularly for elderly or disabled drivers.  Read More

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