The future is automated

One of the hottest current topics is self-driving vehicles. Driving is undergoing a change and the whole attitude towards moving seems to be in a transition. Optimizing the commute and boosting one’s time management via intelligent travel is beginning to be a thing of today.

Self-driving cars have existed in the themes of both movies and science fiction literature for a long time now. In recent years, cars have received many features that make driving easier, such as lane departure warning, parking assistant, and target identification – all of these provide first steps towards automated driving. The above-mentioned functionalities are so-called Partly Automated Driving (PAD).

At the next level, the car will start steering itself although the driver still always needs to remain near the wheel. Going further, we will have situations where the driver can fully – albeit momentarily – become a passenger and let the car do all the driving on its own. This adds comfort to driving, particularly on longer trips, as the driver gets a chance to relax and enjoy the ride.

Let’s take another step further, and the driver may sleep if they so wish while travelling since the car requires no attention whatsoever.



In the future we’ll be mere passengers

If we go even further, people will become nothing but passengers as the car moves fully autonomously and makes all the necessary stops along the way if required. In this scenario, the car is a fully autonomous traveler on the road and must be able to react to its environment to make independent, although pre-programmed, decisions.

What benefits can technology provide to driving?

Driver alertness monitoring, or automatic stopping in case the sensors detect a hazard ahead, are simple examples of how we can increase safety.

Using technology, we can decrease the number of human errors and add multiple pairs of eyes in every direction. Computer vision and sensors can identify and foresee situations that us humans might easily overlook. If we look at how the population pyramid is developing, we notice that one major future challenge will be assisting the elderly in moving around.

Still, the taxi business is surely getting the biggest headlines. Uber and Lyft have been quite visible in developing self-driving taxis, but those too suffer from teething problems. We will, however, see a noticeable increase in the number of fully automated taxis in the coming years.

There’s even been discussion of whether people will even have permission to drive at some point. In the United States, 38,000 people died in traffic accidents in 2016 and the most fatal of these were specifically caused by human errors. Technology brings safety and self-driving cars will be easier to manage also in larger numbers – we can optimize traffic flows, direct traffic away from the bottlenecks, and time commuter flows at intelligent intervals.

Collecting and utilizing data

Unikie Drive is a cloud-based data collection platform that gathers data from various sensors and then analyzes and visualizes the collected information. Unikie Drive can be set to collect all location-based data in, for example, moving vehicles, but meaningful additional information can also be derived from third sources such as moving or positioned sensors.

Unikie Drive enables both collecting data related to road conditions in moving vehicles and, for instance, using it as a data collection platform in racing vehicles. It will scale and expand as required, and its visual tools are easy to use and provide effortless analyses.

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Machine learning and computer vision

Unikie AI Vision is an application that uses the data it receives from sensors to form a 3D model of its environment. The application can identify objects and people in its surroundings and can estimate, among other things, an object’s direction and velocity. It can observe the environment, learn behavioral patterns based on these observations, and react to a similar observation in a desired fashion. The technology enables controlling self-driving vehicles and equipment effectively and reliably.

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