Distracted driving survivors have Apple Watches and shock bracelets to thank for sparing their lives. However, car accidents remain abundant — but not if researchers at the University of Waterloo have anything to say about it. A new artificial intelligence software can now alert cars when you’re texting and driving, which can prevent oncoming disasters.
This system can detect signs of distraction, which could be caused by texting or talking on the phone, reaching into the backseat, or anything else that causes a change in head and face position.
With the rise of self-driving vehicles comes the simultaneous ascent of new safety features. In other words, you can count on your car to pick up the slack.
“The car could actually take over driving if there was imminent danger, even for a short while, in order to avoid crashes.”
Majority of crashes are caused by human error. Researchers claim that autonomous vehicles can save tens of thousands of lives every year. Of course, this isn’t to hand over free passes to reckless drivers. Staying focused remains a number one priority for anyone behind the wheel.
Seeing a steady increase in our busybody tendencies, everything is now available in the palms of our hands. You want it? An online app has got it. You may even be able to throw it onto the back of your electric cargo bike. But with no time on your hands, perhaps you’d prefer a delivery. Lucky for our fellow Brits, U.K. supermarket Ocado recently launched a self-driving grocery delivery van for all essential needs.
Orders are loaded into the CargoPod at a nearby depot. There are eight containers on the back which can hold up to 128KG of groceries and allow the vehicle to stop at multiple destinations during the same trip. Once the goods are onboard, a driver manually steers the van to a starting location, where it’s then flipped into autonomous mode.
If you were concerned about a loaded van running completely on autopilot, you can now rest easy. Manufacturers of self-driving vehicles do, in fact, take precaution. Strategically places cameras make the van autonomous. Even more impressive, the van doesn’t require GPS.
The CargoPod is powered by Selenium, an autonomous operating system developed by Oxbotica. It handles minute-to-minute visualization and decision-making: where the vehicle is, what’s nearby and what it should do next.
The vehicle is still on a trial mode, but if it passes a battery of tests, should be permanently hitting the road in no time.
There is no denying that climate change is a curse — but, in a way, also a blessing. Recurring heat waves have allowed bright minds to find alternative sources of energy, making the most of traffic and laptop batteries. Now, startup SkyCool wants to help homeowners save on electricity bills with an air conditioning system that beams heat into space.
Objects on earth give off heat in the form of an invisible type of light called infrared radiation. Emissions in the mid-infrared range of eight and 13 micrometers slip through the atmosphere and into the cool lower layers of space.
SkyCool invented a material that can take advantage of this natural occurrence. The material… radiates infrared light within the eight to 13 micrometer range. It also reflects 97 percent of sunlight, which prevents sun’s warmth from offsetting the effect.
The material, which is fitted over pipes, can save buildings up to 70% off air conditioning fees. Not only is it a dream cost-wise — it can lower carbon emissions, 10% of which arise from cooling systems worldwide. Word on the street is that SkyCool will be tending to potential customers by next year. Here’s to hoping construction costs are as cool as the actual product.