Jaguar, the Tata-owned British luxury car maker, has recently revealed that it is hard at work on several technological developments which could bring us much closer to the future car. The company is in fact working on new ways to sense the state of the driver and provide haptic feedback, warning messages or maybe someday even take control of the car to avoid any accidents or mishaps. They are collectively calling these technologies ‘Sixth Sense’ (via Autoblog). Quite an intuitive name., if we say so ourselves.
While all the features the car manufacturer is working on are pretty cool, what caught my immediate attention, ahead of others, was this tech called ‘Mind Sense’. And as you might have already figured it out, Jaguar’s Mind Sense tech will read a driver’s mind by intercepting his/her brainwaves.
The technology, Jaguar says, is inspired from a NASA tech used to enhance a pilot’s concentration skills. Mind Sense basically reads your brainwaves which are amplified and filtered by proprietary software using sensors embedded in the steering wheel. The human brain continually generates four or more distinct brainwaves at different frequencies. By continually monitoring which type of brainwave is dominant, an on-board computer could potentially assess whether a driver is focused, daydreaming, sleepy, or distracted.
Because the sensing is taking place further away from the driver’s head, software is used to amplify the signal and filter out the pure brainwave from any background ‘noise’.
It checks your status and determines whether or not you are in a state of driving a car. If, by any means, you are distracted or nodding off, it will supposedly provide you with a haptic feedback or a warning message and bring your attention back to the wheel.
Jaguar Land Rover is currently conducting user trials to collect more information on the different brainwaves identified through the steering wheel sensors and says that it will involve leading neuroscientists in the project to verify the results.
The automaker is also working on medical-grade sensors to embed in the driver’s seat, which will sense the drivers physical and psychological conditions, making sure that you are fit to drive. It will perform predetermined functions like playing some music if it senses stress, for instance. Also, if your health fluctuates, or god forbids, gets as bad as a heart attack or seizure, the car will drive you to the nearest health facility or get you home safely.
Other notable tech to be provided under the ‘Sixth Sense’ masthead, include a mid-air touch sensing infotainment system, which will sense your finger even before you touch the display using sensors, and a feedback generating accelerator pedal, which will warn you if you are over-speeding or are too close to another vehicle. It will probably provide you a sudden jerk to stop you from over-speeding and that will save you a lot of tickets ! and money ! Yay !
Jaguar says that it has already started working full throttle on this project, however a proper launch or demo date is yet to be known. Stay Tuned.