May 19, 2017
Driverless vehicles are a hot new industry, but the truth is that the technology is propelled by immense amounts of data and software. While the image of driverless cars is that they are self-contained computers that adjust to the changing road conditions. In reality, they are connected to data from the cloud so that they can anticipate the road ahead and make the necessary driving decisions using data. Further, this same data now can be used by city planners and officials to understand the flow of traffic and city conditions.
In particular, a new service called CityStream from start-up Nexar collects reams of visual data and driving information from active drivers. The firm's app for iOS and Android turns the phone into a dash cam. The data is uploaded from the driver's app as they are driving and stored in the cloud with a massive server infrastructure.
The Big Data stored in the cloud is quickly analyzed by the firm's AI software solution. It can then provide real-time data to urban planners, city officials and other safety personal on the state of the roads. Further, it can be downloaded by driverless cars to improve their decision making and anticipation of the road conditions. This helps to improve the flow of traffic and safety on the roads.
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