Vehicle-based networks get sexy names, remain impractical

While the idea of the networked car has been simmering on the back burner for years now, the farthest we've gotten is niche single-vehicle products like AutoNet -- but a pair of new proposed systems could actually get past the drawing aboard before flaming out and failing like all the rest. The first is a collision-avoidance system being developed in Europe called Vehicle2Vehicle (or V2V), which uses GPS and wireless networking to constantly analyze the speed, position and trajectory of nearby cars and alert drivers to impending collisions. The developers say the tech is simple enough to be deployed relatively rapidly, but that the mess of different in-car integration standards is keeping costs high and interest low -- which is the same problem faced by the developers of a different system called CarTorrent at UCLA. CarTorrent is more about getting cars connected, and it's pretty much what the name implies -- distributed networking across cars. The system is based on something called digital short range communication over the 5.9GHz spectrum, and it allows cars to transmit and receive navigation, media, and telemetry information -- and what's more, it's based on a proposed IEEE car-to-car networking standard called 802.11p, which should speed adoption by automakers when it's finally approved. Even still, we've been burned too many times in the past to keep our hopes alive -- guess it's back to eBay for that KITT auction.

Read - V2V
Read - CarTorrent