Do You Want Your Car to Know You?
9. July 2014
You’ve probably heard the term “the Internet of Things” bandied about of late. The short version is that this is things other than computers and smartphones being connected to the Internet.
The car is most certainly a thing.
So it isn’t entirely surprising that Ford and Intel are working together on “Project Mobii,” which is about the Internet of Things, as in car.
Said Doug Davis, vice president, Internet of Things Group at Intel, “Project Mobii is a great example of Intel collaborating with Ford to help enable a secure, more connected driving experience.”
Now one of the connections is for the owner of the vehicle to be able to see inside it via a smartphone. That should be “see inside a vehicle from a removed location,” because otherwise the windows would suffice.
In this instance, when someone got behind the wheel of the car, cameras would analyze the person to determine who that person is and whether that person has been cleared to drive the car. If that’s not the case, then the owner would receive a message, including a photo of the occupant, and then determine whether that person is going to be allowed to drive the vehicle, and if so, under what restrictions the driving is performed under. That is, should it be a teen, the owner might want to set up a speed restriction, as well as an audio volume limit.
According to the two companies, driver authentication through facial recognition software “offers improved privacy controls.”
However, wouldn’t this reduce privacy? That is, if you have a key or a fob, the car—a.k.a., a node in the Internet of Things—doesn’t need to know who you are. Does it?
Said Paul Mascarenas, chief technical officer and vice president, Ford Research and Innovation, “The use of interior imaging is purely research at this point; however, the insights we’ve gained will help us shape the customer experience in the long-term.”
Perhaps they’ll roll out with the NSA trim package for their cars.