DriveSmart: The tale of road networks, a database and an app:

Posted by admin at June 11, 2014

Let’s talk bad roads, people. Ok, first of all, if you are living in the first world, there is something in here for you but this solution is typically for the third world. In a typical second/third-world city, the road network consists of stretches of untamed pathways infested with potholes, soft shoulders, cracks, gulleys, illegal bumps, battered by cracks and downright negligence. And if you happen to live in a “high-emergency” states where security is an issue, you have to add roadblocks and checkpoints to the list. Road navigation becomes a pain. These roads in addition to not being properly graded, with set speed limits and traffic signs, are plagued with a number of problems.

Solution: A database of the coordinated of these “setbacks-to-sunday-drive-smoothness” plotted on a map and delivered to the drivers via a mobile app which will be consumed off the car’s console . The app should be able to locate the current location of the user, measure the distance from such point of interest and suggest a driving manoeuvre (“Slow down to such and such speed and take a slight turn to the curb”, for instance). This app will be useful for newcomers who are unfamiliar with a road network. Also a variant of the app can be integrated with Navigator devices to announce imminent road obstructions together with the directions.

Now, for first-world cities: Traffic lights! How long have we had traffic lights and still can’t get those lights inside our car. I mean, so we can see it up there on a pole, but there should be some read-only API out there that publishes this data in real-time in a format readable by mobile devices. It should be an integral part of modern car design to be able to detect these signals and project them on the console. That way instead of awkwardly looking up, the driver can maintain eye level with the road. Ok, I agree, security might an issue for this application, but I am sure with some sort of encryption we can make this work.


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