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Toyota to show Driver Awareness Research Vehicle 1.5 at Meeting of Minds in Detroit

At next week’s Meeting of the Minds 2014 summit in Detroit, Toyota will show the latest generation Driver Awareness Research Vehicle—DARV1.5—which is part of the company’s ongoing research into the dynamics of driver distraction at the Collaborative Safety Research Center (CSRC) in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Toyota introduced DARV, developed in partnership with Microsoft Research to help reduce driver distractions before the key is even in the ignition, at the Los Angeles Auto Show in November 2013. (Earlier post.)

The Toyota DARV 1.5 uses advanced technology, including Microsoft’s Surface and Kinect and custom biometric software and algorithms by Infosys, to help driver, passengers and the vehicle itself work together as a team to achieve safer driving.

The technology allows for features such as “driver lock-in,” which tracks the driver’s body frame and automatically enables or disables features based upon who is interacting with the navigation panel. The Toyota research vehicle also explores new ways to use emerging wearable devices, such as smart watches, to control key vehicle functions in an effort to understand the potential impact of these devices on auto safety.

In addition, the Toyota DARV 1.5 looks at new ways to create a safer driving environment by measuring driver behavior and providing a driving “score” based on safe driving choices.

Destination sharing. In the DARV 1.5, a passenger in the back seat can either create a route and send it to the navigation or modify the current route, all from a tablet or smartphone. Once the system receives it, there is a notification on the screen letting the driver know. The driver only needs to do something if the new route is unwanted. Otherwise, the new route goes into effect after 10 seconds.

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The annual Meeting of the Minds summit is a global knowledge sharing event that unites leading opinion-shapers, policy-makers, thinkers and innovators. The Meeting of the Minds 2014 summit will explore urban transformation and ways of harnessing the power of technology. Toyota is co-founder of the event and has been the presenting sponsor since its inception in 2007.


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