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A Computer For Your Car's Windshield


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rendering of a windshield using augmented reality technology

Concept rendering of a windshield using augmented reality technology.

Credit: Daimler AG

General Motors and Daimler AG are developing new windshield technology that could provide drivers with information about their surroundings, improving safety and efficiency. The windshields use augmented reality to display driving directions, text messages, or oncoming hazards, all without requiring the driver to look away from the road. "The goal is to reduce head-down time and maybe make driving a more interactive experience," says GM chief technologist for human machine interface Tom Seder.

Augmented-reality windshields are likely to have simple graphics enabling drivers to see digital renditions of their surroundings, including difficult-to-see road edges or animals. "It has to be done very judiciously, you don't want to clutter the windshield with too much information and cause it to be a distraction," Seder says. The technology combines sensors outside the vehicle with inside sensors that track the driver's eyes. The windshield also could display facts about a city's landmarks, weather and traffic updates, and social media posts.

"If we can link the whole car, including the windshield, to drivers' smartphones you can imagine a future where so much of their world can be brought to them while they are driving," says Daimler CEO Johann Jungwirth.

From The Wall Street Journal
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