Thursday, December 18, 2014

Fuel-Cell Cars: All Ramped Up With No Place to Go?

According to the U.S. Energy Department’s Alternative Fuels Resource Center, there are all of 13 hydrogen-refueling stations open to the public in the entire U.S.: Nine in Southern California, two in Northern California and one each in Connecticut and South Carolina.

ITSA 2015: Call for Papers and Special Interest Sessions submission close on 19 January

The Call for Papers and Special Interest Sessions submission deadline is approaching! Submit your Paper/Special Interest Session now to have the opportunity to present your contribution at the ITS event of the year. Authors can submit technical, scientific, commercial papers, and special interest session proposals until 19 January. No extension will be granted.

Microsoft unveils its vision for the future of connected cars

Microsoft's Bryan Biniak laid out the company's vision for the future of connected cars, complete with integrated, gesture-based interfaces that incorporate Point of Interest recognition, gamification and voice recognition to anticipate and cater to the "soul of the passengers." Biniak highlighted the potential of Microsoft's future concept models, which include in-car applications that can pick up on drivers' personal needs, while also communicating via a fully connected network that includes systems outside of the vehicle.

Here’s how electric cars could be cheaper than gas guzzlers within a decade

The internal combustion engine’s dominance is actually almost over. Over the next decade, the cost of electric and combustion vehicles will more or less equal out, Deutsche Bank analyst Rod Lache writes in a new note to clients. Electrics could even be cheaper than combustion vehicles, Lache writes, which could “serve as a catalyst for significant expansion” of electric car sales.

Nokia HERE plans to produce HD maps for autonomous vehicles

Nokia's maps division, HERE, says it will begin developing high-definition maps for autonomous vehicles to keep up with the demand for real-time, accurate navigation systems in driverless car models. Nokia says it is testing the new technology with its own fleet of vehicles using sensors, satellite and aerial imagery, and computer vision algorithms.

Waze app brings increased traffic to less traveled Calif. routes

The Waze traffic application, designed to help drivers avoid heavy traffic and find alternate routes, has stirred up some trouble in quiet neighborhoods in and around Los Angeles, John Rogers writes. As more traffic is diverted from highways, residents of small neighborhoods say their streets have been congested because of the Waze app's side street recommendations. The Los Angeles Department of Transportation says it is working with residents on a "road diet" plan to help ensure streets remain bicycle- and pedestrian-friendly.

Chicago taps Cubic for regional transit mobile app

Chicago area transit agencies Chicago Transit Authority (CTA), Metra, and suburban bus operator Pace have awarded Cubic Transportation Systems a contract to supply an integrated, smart phone-based system supporting a variety of mobile ticketing, mobile top up, and contactless mobile payment applications using Near Field Communication (NFC), account management, and advanced trip planning technologies that incorporate all three regional agencies.

Your electric vehicle might not be as green as you think it is

A new study published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences shows that if you live in a coal-dependent state, driving an electric vehicle might make your net effect on the environment and public health worse than if you had just stuck with a gas-powered vehicle. A team from the University of Minnesota compared cars powered by 10 different gasoline alternatives.

Calif. DMV is set to release new driverless car regulations

The California Department of Motor Vehicles is reportedly going to release official changes to road regulations made to accommodate autonomous vehicles in the early part of next year. The news comes after the DMV hosted a workshop with automakers last spring to discuss ways to improve safety and wireless security for new connected technology, as well as for liability and proper usage.

Jaguar Land Rover introduces navigation aid

Jaguar Land Rover has unveiled its "ghost car" navigational system as part of its rollout of new virtual technologies, including the company's 360 Virtual Urban Windscreen. Land Rover says the navigation aid provides a heads-up display to keep drivers less distracted and their eyes on the road. The company says its 360, live video feed HUD windscreen technology will improve visibility and will be able to utilize connected car technology to guide drivers based on "visible landmarks."