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7 Ways the Internet of Things Will Change Driving Forever

7 Ways the Internet of Things Will Change Driving Forever

If you’ve been anywhere near the news lately, the invention of the “smart car” is nothing new to you. What might be new, however, is the technology that makes a car “smart.” See, cars aren’t becoming “self-aware, autonomous machines” in the same way that Optimus Prime is. That’s because smart cars are dependent on a lot more than just their own computers to function properly.

Sure, Elon Musk has announced that the self-driving car is ready ahead of regulators, and, to boot, the Uber’s made the world’s first autonomous delivery in a truck – but there’s a lot more to the saga than just one or two cars that can drive themselves.

What makes smart cars truly “smart” is their ability to connect to the growing Internet of Things (IoT). The IoT includes your smartphones and is expanding to include refrigerators, watches, and now  cars. In fact, Gartner predicts that by 2020, more than 250 million vehicles will be connected globally, with the number of installed connectivity units in vehicles worldwide increasing by 67 percent and consumer spend on in-vehicle connectivity doubling. So how exactly will the IoT change driving?

1. Cars Will Become the Ultimate Mobile Device

tesla_model_s_digital_panels
    Tesla Model S interface

    For cars to truly integrate into the IoT, they’ll need to operate in a fashion similar to smartphones.

    Deloitte’s consumer research suggests “that drivers of the next generation want their cars to act as smartphones on wheels, like to remain connected and productive while on the go, consider fully connected vehicles among the most beneficial futuristic technologies, and are ready to pay a sizeable amount for a vehicle that meets all their technology needs and wants.”

    What that means is that Siri, Alexa, and Cortana may become your regular co-pilots as the line between smartphone and smart car becomes blurred. SAS thinks that the future of smart cars will be dominated by them talking to you, with questions like:

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    • “You’ve been driving for four hours and it’s past 9 p.m. A hotel five miles from here has rooms available. Would you like me to reserve a room and guide you there?”
    • “Your friends Jeff and Kelly are at a restaurant around the corner. Would you like to call them? Would you like me to navigate you to your friends?”
    • “Traffic between here and home is moving slow and your brakes need service. I can get you a service appointment with a highly rated dealer in five minutes. Would you like me to make the service appointment and drive you there?”

    Welcome to the future where smartphones have wheels.

    2. Computer Companies Will Become Car Companies

    google_self_driving_car_at_the_googleplex
      Google’s self-driving car at the Googleplex

      … and vice/versa. At the very least, the partnerships will grow immeasurably stronger. As cars slowly transition into smartphones on wheels, it helps to remember that smartphones are basically just pocket-computers. The same way that companies traditionally existing in the computer realm moved on to smartphones, it really didn’t surprise anybody that Microsoft, Google, Amazon, Apple, Nvidia, and many other computer companies began staking their claims in the automotive industry.

      However, the reverse is also true. At the same time automakers like Ford are setting up offices in places like Palo Alto, CA, tech companies are heading to Detroit to better understand and collaborate with the auto industry. At the end of the day, it sounds like the computer companies will be more successful.

      “Apple and Google will to a large extent take away most of the business from automakers through cloud-based services over time,” says Egil Juliussen, research director at IHS Automotive.

      As nearly everything succumbs to the IoT, expect even more computer companies to infiltrate tangential industries.

      3. Driving Will Be Faster and Greener

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        Some day, you’ll never have to deal with this. Ever.

        One of the best parts about the IoT is that the amount of time we spend on the road will be cut drastically. It’s been reported that British drivers spend around 30 hours per year in traffic jams, while Germans spend about 35 hours. On the other side of the pond, in the U.S., it’s estimated that 30 percent of traffic congestion in some areas is caused by people looking for a place to park, while the national annual cost of traffic congestion is $87.2 billion in wasted fuel and productivity. Yikes.

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        Fortunately, new innovations in not just cars, but also in traffic fixtures will allow us to cut down on drive and idle time, meaning quicker rides and a greener planet for everybody. Ahmed Farrag over at ASmarterPlanet.com explains how IBM software, reading information from sensors embedded in the smartcar and the city surrounding it, will be able to:

        • Consolidate traffic data from different sources.
        • Analyze traffic information to provide near-real-time insights.
        • Monitor traffic operations and incidents.
        • Support the storage and presentation of geographic information systems.

        With this information, you could create optimal traffic patterns where cars never have to wait in red lights or look for parking again. Plus one for speed!

        4. Driving Will Become Undeniably Safer

        dummies
          You’ll never have to feel like these guys again…

          Even though we’ll be getting everywhere much faster, the fact that all cars will be connected with the Internet, and, eventually, one another, means unparalleled levels of safety. What some are calling a new era or crash prevention has seen “historic commitments” by automakers to create safer vehicles. In Europe, this growth is fueled by legislative initiatives, with new mandates for manufacturers to fit all cars with an eCall-equipped chip by 2018 that will automatically contact the nearest emergency centre in case of a collision.

          Even further down the road, automobiles will even communicate with one another, like a network or a “hive mind”, meaning that they will be able to predict and avoid more crashes than a human being, or even a non-networked self-driving car, could. The only problem comes in the form of a question… if accidents do occur, who will be responsible since nobody is driving? Industry experts tell us that we’ll just have to wait and see.

          5. People Will Lose Jobs

          510px-unemployed_man_-_exhibitor_at_apexpo_2010_012
            When life gives you lemons…

            Unfortunately, while fewer people will be in distress from accidents and injuries, many more will be out of jobs connected to driving services. A Los Angeles Times op-ed reports that autonomous vehicles could cost America 5 million jobs, due to the fact that they are safer, faster, and more efficient.

            IoT-connected vehicles never show up drunk, tired, or late, to work and safety on-the-job would go through the roof to boot. The CDC reports that motor vehicle accidents in the workplace are the leading cause of death for employees in the U.S., with approximately 2,000 worker deaths from accidents caused by moving vehicles. So that’s a plus. Don’t worry, there’s more good news…

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            6. People Will Gain Jobs

            Even though some will be losing jobs, there will be plenty more jobs opening up. Think about it this way. When the Industrial Revolution occurred, it meant that individual craftsmen would be replaced by machines. Luddites took to breaking these machines, like looms, printing presses, etc., fearing that automation and machinery would leave the whole world jobless, essentially.

            However, if we look at the history of the loom, the cotton gin, the printer – all these inventions share in common that they automated processes and eliminated certain jobs, while creating entirely new ones in new industries. The IoT and its relation to driving is no different.

            Technische Hochschule Aachen Rechenzentrum

              While the world may need fewer professional drivers, the IoT will be creating the need for millions of coders and developers by 2020. This is backed by the current reality that about half of the high-paying jobs in America now require coding as skill, as well as increased enrollment and interest in online only programs like Codecademy and DeVry Bootcamp.

              On top of that, a report from job market analytics firm Burning Glass, showed that seven million job openings in 2015 were in occupations that required coding skills, while programming jobs overall are growing 12% faster than the market average. Don’t let the scare tactics get you – the future of the job market is bright.

              7. Cars May Become Cheaper, Ridesharing Encouraged

              While it’s somewhat of an anomaly when prices on products drop, you can bet that the cost of car ownership will too. The average American pays about $1800 a year on car insurance, the cost of which would certainly go down, and possibly even disappear once IoT-safety reigns on the roads. Some are even saying traditional car ownership could be challenged, as scheduling could allow multiple people to own the same car, which would drive one owner to its location autonomously, and then depart to pick up its second owner.

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              The process could continue indefinitely if the schedule allows… owners might even be able to make money by “leasing” or putting their car up for ridesharing, say, when they’re at work, or even when they’re asleep. You might even be able to make money from already-rising trends like affiliate location based marketing, where your car would display ads for coupons (like modern taxis do), and where you would make money based off of coupon codes people used.

              Not only may your car become less expensive, but you could even make money off of it!

              Portrait
                Sharing is caring!

                We truly are at a crossroads when it comes to automobiles in the world. In another 10 years, driving may look completely different, with far more cars on the road, but far fewer drivers. Buckle up, because the Internet of Things is going to take us for a ride!

                Featured photo credit: DimiTVP via commons.wikimedia.org

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                Andrew Heikkila

                Owner-Operator of Earthlings Entertainmnet

                5 Crazy Future Tech Trends to Start Preparing for Now Understanding Luck: What It Is and How to Control It 12 Strange Remedies for Whatever Ails You 7 Ways the Internet of Things Will Change Driving Forever 7 Ways We’re Slowly Becoming Our Phones

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                Published on September 20, 2018

                11 Google Chrome Apps and Features to Help You Get More Done with Less Effort

                11 Google Chrome Apps and Features to Help You Get More Done with Less Effort

                In today’s fast-paced and never-ending busy world, we are overwhelmed by tasks that need to be completed by tight deadlines. With so much technology it is difficult to find the right tools to help boost our efficiency. And, many tools get obsolete so its essential to stay up-to-date to know when you will have to make adjustments to these tools. Independently of where you work, there’s a good chance that you have to be working on a PC or a laptop.

                Do you are feel like you do not have enough time, or cannot accomplish much as of late? It is recommended to take a step back and look at the big picture. Also, you want to explore new and innovative ways to improve productivity.

                In this article, I outline 11 features and apps within the Chrome browser that can help you do just that.

                Minimizing Tabs

                Let’s face it we all have more than a dozen tabs opened on our computers. One neat trick to still keep most of them open is to turn them into pinned tabs. On Google Chrome you can right-click the tab and select “Pin Tab” option. This turns the tab into an icon enabling you to continue multitasking.

                Pinning a tab anchors the tabs on the left of your toolbar; a great benefit of the “Pin Tab” feature is that you can’t close these tabs accidentally since the “X” disappears after pinning them.

                Incognito Mode

                Google Chrome is a very easy-to-use and intuitive. But, Google does collect our browsing data; so to remedy this, you can use Incognito Mode. This feature does not keep your browsing or download history. You can enable or access it in three different ways:

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                1. Press Ctrl/Command+shift+N
                2. Select File Menu and choose New Incognito Window
                3. Download extension New Incognito Window

                This feature is very handy if you’d rather not have your browsing history stored and utilized for future advertisement or suggested pages.

                Save Webpages as PDF Files

                Have you ever browsed interesting or important information and then forgot to bookmark or save it in “favorites”, making it impossible to find again? Chances are you have done this on a number of occasions.

                Thankfully, there is an easy solution. You can save webpages as PDF files. On your keyboard, press control/command+p and you will be able to save webpages as PDFs.

                Open Recently-closed Tabs

                Ever had dozens of tabs opened and all of a sudden your browser shuts down? It has probably happened to all of us. You can easily recover all of your tabs using two approaches. Don’t panic if this happens because there is a workaround and solution for it.

                One is by pressing Ctrl/CMD+Shift+T.

                The other approach is to click on the three vertical dots on your browser and hover over “History”.

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                Solve Mathematical Problems

                Google’s Chrome browser doesn’t just search for relevant and updated information. It is also capable of performing some mathematical problems. Within the omnibox (Chrome’s address or URL bar), you can perform mathematical exercises.

                For example, if you are struggling with percentages you can search 20 percent of x amount and it will instantly provide a result. Pretty handy, right?!

                Play Media Files

                Are you frequently met with difficulties when playing or watch a video files? Well, once again Chrome comes to the rescue. You can can listen or play videos from all sorts of movie or music files (mp3, mp4, .mov, .mkv, .ogv, .webm, .wav, etc.) by simply dragging the file into the search bar.

                In addition, you can view images, PDF files and Microsoft Office files, too.

                Navigate Swiftly Between Tabs

                With all of those tabs opened comes great navigation responsibilities. Rather than clicking through every tab, you can use shortcut keys like Ctrl+Tab to navigate all of the different tabs. Also, you are able to navigate to the first tab by pressing Ctrl-1, Ctrl-2, and so on. If you want to switch to the very last tab, press Ctrl-9.

                Stay Focus(e)d

                Computers nowadays have awesome capabilities.

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                Sometimes we like to get work done, but let’s face it, we’re all human. We sometimes procrastinate by visiting a website we really like, or maybe take a break with watching a flick on Netflix, a video on YouTube or browsing Facebook.

                With Chrome’s StayFocusd extension, you can truly stay focused and get more done in less time.

                This extension naturally helps you stay more productive by limiting the amount of time you spend on websites. You can set the time and it will automatically block those sites after a certain period.

                Grammarly for Editing

                Grammarly is a must have, and it’s really a complete powerhouse. Grammarly helps you check your grammar and spelling for everything you write online.

                You can use it professionally or as a student, which will make the editing process much easier and more efficient. Furthermore, it can automatically check for typos when you send an email, type a Tweet, or post a Facebook comment. It’s like having your own personal copyeditor!

                Loom

                There are times that words in an email or written text in a chat app will just not convey the right meaning.

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                There is a saying that a picture is worth a thousand words. Well, the same is true of videos.

                With Loom, you can capture, narrate and immediately share video recordings of your screen, which will help coworkers understand issues you are facing, or to easily convey an explanation on screen. Plus, with video you will be able to easily walk people through a process, and you can use it to create simple how-to videos.

                Chrome Calendar Extension

                No matter what your level of responsibility is at your job, Google Calendar is another essential resource to have at your fingertips.

                Specifically, you can have this extension added as an icon in the toolbar of your browser, which I highly recommend. Once you add the extension to your browser, you can check for upcoming events with a single click without leaving your current page.

                Final Thoughts

                Google Chrome has definitely evolved from its inception. As you can see you have a very powerful tool that comes as a free installation and is loaded with dozens of capabilities. The above listed Chrome apps can resolve some of the most common obstacles to your time management and productivity.

                Featured photo credit: Andrew Neel via unsplash.com

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