Pervasive computing on the road

Pervasive computing for road trips is a project by Marc Böhlen, Jesse Fabian, Dirk Pfeifer, and JT Rinker from The MediaRobotics Lab, University at Buffalo In this project, setudents had to design applications using sensors (temperature sensors, 2D accelerometers, miniature color cameras, an OBD-II diagnostic interface, and a microprocessor-based control environment) to react to the experience of being on the road. One of the project explored the possibility of using the changing scenery as an input into a massage seat:

The RGB vibrator extracted a histogram of the miniature camera’s three main color bands and mapped them to motor commands for a massage seat, resulting in situation-specific massages while driving. Blue colors will generate a lower-body massage, red colors an upper-body massage, and green colors a middle-body massage.

Another project was about soft toys collecingt image and vibrational travel data and relay it to a base station:

a student integrated the miniature camera and a 2D accelerometer into two stuffed toy animals. As the car drove around, the camera-enabled toy recorded the optical flow of the changing scenery and the accelerometer-enabled toy registered large bumps on the road. As the vehicle approached home, the toys sent their data via wireless link back to the garage where a screen greeted the returning passengers with a free-form interpretation of the data acquired during the trip.