#科技头条#【像玩手机一样,用手势玩转你的汽车!】

#科技头条#【像玩手机一样,用手势玩转你的汽车!】谷歌新专利,通过手势就能控制你的汽车。这套系统的感应器被内置于汽车中,驾驶员通过手势就能打开车内音响、供暖系统等。有了它,驾驶就可以更专心于前方道路情况,保证行车安全!

Could cars be controlled like a smartphone? Google patent hints drivers could use hand gestures to control windows and air vents

Fiddling with buttons on a dashboard, smartphones and sat-navs can distract drivers, increasing the chances of a crash.

But a patent submitted by Google hints that the Californian tech giant may be working on a hands-free dashboard, enabling future drivers to keep their eyes on the road. 

It suggests that cars may be controlled in a similar way to tablets or smartphones - by using hand gestures to make audio and heating systems more intuitive to use, for example.

A patent submitted by Google hints that the Californian tech giant is working on a hands-free dashboard, enabling future drivers to keep their eyes on the road. This image shows a driver using a gesture to control the air conditioning system

The patent, which was awarded to Google on 27 January, indicates that sensors could be embedded in the car’s interior to pick up a driver’s gestures.

For example, a driver could swipe downwards with their hand to open a window, or swipe it over an air vent to adjust the temperature and strength of air flow.

The idea is that drivers would be able to concentrate harder on the road and keep one hand on the wheel at all times.

The patent indicates that sensors could be embedded in the car’s interior to pick up a driver’s gestures (illustrated))

While Google files a lot of patents, and many of them don’t appear in future products, it is possible that the company may incorporate its idea into its autonomous car.

Quartz spotted that the car in the patent diagrams resembles its original self-driving prototype and the patent says the car is ‘configured to operate in an autonomous mode’. 

Google's self-driving cars will be designed to exceed maximum speed limits, in a move to improve safety.

The lead engineer for the project has revealed the vehicles will go 10mph (16km/h) faster than the speed limit to avoid the Google car being significantly slower than speeding vehicles around it, which would increase the risk of an accident.

Dmitri Dolgov, the lead software engineer for the project, said research showed that sticking to the speed limit when other cars are speeding can be dangerous.

Therefore, the car’s speed would be altered depending on traffic conditions.

Other companies are developing cutting-edge ways to make driving safer too.

Mercedes-Benz has teamed up with LG to create a concept car capable of taking over if it thinks the driver is feeling sleepy.

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The idea is that drivers would be able to concentrate harder on the road and keep one hand on the wheel by using a variety of gestures (above), such as swiping over an air conditioning vent to increase the temperature

The car in the patent diagrams resembles its self-driving prototype and the patent says the car is ‘configured to operate in an autonomous mode’. An image of Google's latest autonomous car is shown

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The car in the patent diagrams resembles its self-driving prototype and the patent says the car is ‘configured to operate in an autonomous mode’. An image of Google's latest autonomous car is shown

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Gestures could also be used to control a car's sound system. This illustration shows a driver tapping their ear to turn off music swiftly, which could be useful in difficult driving conditions

DRIVERS MAKE RISKY MANOUVRES TO CORRECT GPS MISTAKES

A survey has revealed that one in seven drivers who use a sat-nav, make impromptu illegal or risky manoeuvres to correct mistakes when following GPS instructions.

The statistics, gathered by road safety charity Brake and insurance firm Direct Line, suggest that urgent u-turns are not the only danger.

The study says that one in 14 drivers have had a near miss and have swerved or braked suddenly to avoid a hazard because they were distracted by a sat-nav.

A total of seven per cent of the 1,000 individuals surveyed admitted to being distracted by the stereo, while 12 per cent said they took their full attention away from the road because of passengers.

A total of three per cent of people said they were distracted by their smartphone, while two per cent were preoccupied by food and drink.

The futuristic car will use LG’s Advanced Driving Assistance System (ADAS) technology to automatically dim headlights, brake and stay in lane, while biometric systems will monitor the driver’s eye movements and alertness to make sure they don’t fall asleep at the wheel.

It can plot the location of lane markings, to make sure the car doesn’t drift out of lane.

The cameras also spot when cars are approaching and will automatically dim the headlights to avoid dazzling the oncoming driver.

Elsewhere, the system brakes automatically if it spots potential dangers such as cyclists and pedestrians.

Honda has showcased a new system that can read road signs and spot pedestrians to lessen the chance of collisions. 

The Japanese company’s ‘Sensing’ technology offers a collection of driving aids to make journeys safer and easier for drivers. 

They work using a ‘millimetre-wave radar’ which is fitted to a car’s radiator grille and a monocular camera mounted near the car’s rear-view mirror. 

Meanwhile, Jaguar is planning see-through car pillars to eradicate the blind spot by using cameras to make the pillars 'transparent' when the driver looks towards them and give them 360 degree vision. 

The cameras are fitted to the outside frame of the car to provide a live feed onto screens on the pillars inside the car. 

This essentially makes them see-through, with the feed kicking in the moment the driver indicates, moves their head over their shoulder or approaches a junction. 

It is hoped the technology, which is still in concept form, could reduce the potential for accidents.

Many of the large car companies are working on their own smart safety devices. For example, Honda has showcased a new system that can read road signs and spot pedestrians to lessen the chance of collisions, using a camera and radar (illustrated)

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Many of the large car companies are working on their own smart safety devices. For example, Honda has showcased a new system that can read road signs and spot pedestrians to lessen the chance of collisions, using a camera and radar (illustrated)

THE DANGERS OF DRIVER DISTRACTION

A study of in-vehicle video footage estimated that 22 per cent of crashes could be caused, at least in part, by driver distraction.

It also showed that drivers who perform a secondary task at the wheel are two to three times more likely to crash.

Other studies have found that more complex secondary tasks, like talking on a mobile phone or texting, increase crash risk even more.

Researchers at the University of Western Australia have shown that talking on a phone (hands-free or hand-held) makes drivers four times more likely to have a serious crash, and texting raises the odds further.

A study by Liberty Mutual Research Institute for Safety in Massachusetts found that while drivers may think they can multitask, 98 per cent are not able to divide their attention without a significant deterioration in driving performance.

Scientists at Royal Holloway University of London found that using a sat-nav can increase driver speed and reduce observation, but research has also found that using a voice-based sat-nav is safer than using a visual display or paper map.

Listening to loud music has been found to slow drivers’ reaction times, and encourages aggressive driving, according to researchers at the Memorial University of Newfoundland.

Monash University Accident Research Centre in Melbourne, Australia, found that fiddling with a stereo while driving leads to slower reaction times and more errors such as accidentally lane drifting.

Devices such as cruise control, aimed at reducing the driver’s workload, can also have the unintended side-effect of making drivers less attentive and more susceptible to fatigue, a study by the University of Toronto concludes.

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