8 universities given three years to develop a self-driving Chevy Bolt

April 7, 2017 by  
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We’re getting closer to the year many automakers predicted would see self-driving vehicles on the road. While Ford has made great advances lately, General Motors isn’t yet ready to stand on the side line with other automakers in 2020. In order to help bridge that gap, GM has announced it is giving eight American universities a Chevy Bolt as part of the new autonomous vehicle design competition called AutoDrive Challenge. The AutoDrive Challenge includes teams from Kettering University, Michigan State University, Michigan Tech, North Carolina A&T University, Texas A&M University, University of Toronto, University of Waterloo and Virginia Tech. Each school will be given three years to to develop and demonstrate a fully autonomous Chevy Bolt. Related: The new Nissan Leaf will be able to drive autonomously on the highway While three years may seem like a long time, the AutoDrive Challenge will be quite tough. At the end of the three years, each team will have to complete the development of a Chevy Bolt that will be able to navigate an urban driving course, autonomously and without any human interaction. In addition to receiving the Bolt, GM has also tapped strategic partners and suppliers to aid the students in their technology development by providing vehicle parts and software. Additionally, throughout the competition, students and faculty will be invited to attend technology-specific workshops to help them in their concept refinement and overall autonomous technical understanding. “GM is very excited to work closely with these eight universities over the next three years,” said Ken Kelzer, GM vice president of Global Vehicle Components and Subsystems. “The students and faculty at these schools bring deep knowledge and technical skills to the competition. We are proud to help offer these students the hands-on experience necessary for them to make an immediate impact on the automotive world when they graduate.” The AutoDrive Challenge kicks off this fall. Images @GM + General Motors

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8 universities given three years to develop a self-driving Chevy Bolt

Ford’s new headlights can automatically shine a light on pedestrians and animals

July 30, 2015 by  
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Click here to view the embedded video. Driving at night can be a bit unnerving on unlit roads, since potential hazards can be difficult to see. Ford has revealed that its engineers are working on new advanced headlights that use radar and infra-red camera systems to detect pedestrians and animals that may be in a vehicle’s path. Traditional headlights can only show a part of the road ahead, which may not fully illuminate potential hazards, but Ford’s new headlights use radar and camera systems to detect everything front of the vehicle and making it easier for the driver to take action before something bad happens. Read the rest of Ford’s new headlights can automatically shine a light on pedestrians and animals

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Skoda unveils a seat belt to keep your dog safe on the road

July 20, 2015 by  
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Most of us wouldn’t think twice about buckling up ourselves or our kids, but a AAA survey found that only 16 percent of dog owners use a restraint to keep their pup safe on the road. Fortunately, some automakers are working to change that, and Czech automaker Skoda just became one of the first car manufacturers to offer a dog-specific seat belt as an option on their vehicles. Read the rest of Skoda unveils a seat belt to keep your dog safe on the road

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Skoda unveils a seat belt to keep your dog safe on the road

Insane Skysphere is a solar-powered man cave with voice-activated electronics

July 20, 2015 by  
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Thailand’s $7.8 billion seafood industry is built on human trafficking and slave labor

July 20, 2015 by  
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A new investigation has uncovered the inhumane and often gruesome reality lurking behind Thailand ’s fishing industry. For the past decade, hundreds of Rohingya migrants have been sold from trafficking camps in Malaysia and Thailand, forced to work on seafood boats for years on end, and often dumped in mass graves upon their demise. In May this year, investigators traced the source of slave-harvested prawns sold in the UK to Thailand, which led to the discovery of a string of trafficking camps along with mass graves that zig-zag through southeast Asia. Read the rest of Thailand’s $7.8 billion seafood industry is built on human trafficking and slave labor

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Hyundai to release semiautonomous car later this year

April 7, 2015 by  
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Self-driving cars are poised to forever change how we “drive” a car, but up until now, forward-thinking carmakers have told us we’ll have to wait until the year 2020. However, Hyundai seems to think the future is already here. Later this year, owners of the Hyundai Equus will get a host of self-driving features that will transform the large luxury sedan into a semi-autonomous vehicle. Read the rest of Hyundai to release semiautonomous car later this year Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: autonomous car , car safety , green car , green transportation , HYUNDAI , hyundai equus , safety technology , self-driving car , semiautonomous car , Technology

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Traditional pole houses may be ideal shelters for a weather-ravaged future

April 7, 2015 by  
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With the unpleasant prediction of more devastating weather patterns over the next twenty years (and beyond), safety and resilience are becoming top priorities for builders in disaster-prone areas. A company based in Hawaii has taken a traditional building style that traces its roots back to indigenous Polynesian, Japanese, and African cultures, and applied 21st century principles to create sustainable prefab dwellings that hold up to earthquakes, hurricanes and high water. Tim Cornell began building his PoleHouses in 1988 and now offers both building plans, and prefabricated pole house kits . Read the rest of Traditional pole houses may be ideal shelters for a weather-ravaged future Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: African , African pole houses , architecture for the future , Climate Change , floods , hurricanes , Indonesian houses , Indonesian pole houses , Japanese , pole house construction , pole house designs , pole house plans , Pole Houses , PoleHouses , Polynesian , Polynesian pole houses , prefab pole houses , prefabricated pole houses , severe weather , Sustainable Building , sustainable building methods , Sustainable Materials , sustainable pole houses , Tim Cornell , traditional architecture , traditional pole houses

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Traditional pole houses may be ideal shelters for a weather-ravaged future

USDA links insecticide to 20 year decline in monarch butterfly populations

April 7, 2015 by  
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Planting a butterfly garden isn’t enough to help monarchs thrive in North America, according to the USDA. A new study published last week in the journal  Science and Nature illustrates the deadly relationship between the neonicotinoid insecticide clothianidin and the rapid decline of monarch butterfly populations over the past 20 years in North America. The USDA research shows that the butterflies are facing a two-fold fight for survival . On one hand, farmers are eradicating milkweeds, the main food source of monarch caterpillars, by using the Monsanto herbicide RoundUp. On the other, neonicotinoids used to control other insect pests are also being applied in agriculture fields and, as the report indicates, “negatively affect larval monarch populations.” The USDA report is the first to link neonicotinoids to monarch butterfly survival and reproduction. This news comes on the heels of a ban on neonicotinoid insecticides in Portland, Oregon, where city officials were concerned about its lethal impact on local bees. Via ISN Images via Shutterstock Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: agriculture pest control , butterfly population decline , effects of neonicotinoids , farming pest control , insecticides and butterflies , killing butterflies , Monarch Butterflies , monarch butterflies endangered , monarch butterfly population , neonicotinoid insecticides

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Honda Demonstrates Collision-Free Automated Driving Tech in the U.S.

September 11, 2014 by  
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This week Honda introduced its connected car and automated driving technologies at the 2014 ITS World Congress in Detroit. Marking the first-ever U.S. demonstration of Honda’s automated driving technology, the automaker also highlighted its latest advancements in vehicle-to-vehicle communication technology. This technology is designed to provide enhanced protection for automobile occupants, motorcycle riders, pedestrians and other road users as part of its dream to create a collision society. Read the rest of Honda Demonstrates Collision-Free Automated Driving Tech in the U.S. Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: Acura , Acura TLX , automated driving , automated driving technology , autonomous driving , car safety , connected cars , connected vehicle safety , Honda , V2V , vehicle safety

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Michigan is Building a Fake 30-Acre City to Test Driverless Cars

June 24, 2014 by  
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Testing automated vehicles is a risky process, which is why Michigan’s Department of Transportation and the University of Michigan have joined forces to create a 30-acre urban environment that will be used specifically for testing driverless cars. If automated vehicles are to becomes the norm, then testing these new technologies in a realistic off-roadway environment is an essential step before they hit the real roads. Read the rest of Michigan is Building a Fake 30-Acre City to Test Driverless Cars Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: automated cars , automated vehicles , car safety , driverless cars , google cars , Michigan , Michigan Department of Transportation , test facility , university of michigan

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