Thursday, February 25, 2010

Future cars tell you where they are parked.

One day cars could tell you where they are parked without you needing to remember.

Background : 5 floors of large parking lot with hundreds of cars often confuses me about where did i park my car. Going home for lunch doubles the confusion as i need to search my car twice. As most of you know during winter basements and parking lots are some of the coldest parts. Its drives you mad searching your car in the cold. I found that I am not the only one to find it hard to remember parking spots after checking with some more people on the way to parking spots. Almost everyone has the same problem once in a while(specially when they are pre-occupied with some thoughts and foget to actively remember where they parked the car).

I was wondering if we had the technology that could tell me where my car is parked on my iPhone.

Options: Yes technologies are already existing to achieve some of these. Here are some of them.
  • iPhone app can locate your parked location- This is the closest option for me. Yes this application can tell me only if I tell the app that i parked my car here(need to choose park here in the application). This does not track your car but remembers the location where I marked the location.
  • Your Car lock key can also beep loudly to tell you where it is located. I do have this feature, but if i am far from my car it does not reach the car.
  • OnStar service of GM is another closest technology that can track your vehicle. But no iPhone app or a website to track your car.
  • There are some keychains availavle that can mark the car location just like iphone app. This makes it a little bit easier, but again those compact devices arent yet as reliable and advanced as other GPS devices are.

    Some advanced thoughts...
    If there are 5-10 floors, GPS only marks the location in 2Dimension, so you wont be able to find out the floor where you parked it. There should be some way to figure out the height and map it to the floor number. I am sure some one picks this idea in future and makes a fundo gadget to locate your car.

    Conclusion: Man finds more and more ways to get lazy and handover the thinking to machines/gadgets. This is one of mine. I am sure future holds lot of such smart features in cars.

    Be Meo said...

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    sanjaykattimani said...

    Now a days i am going late and i do not get those good spots. So i am parking on the top floor. that leaves no confusion. It takes some more time to get there and come out, but i needn't bother about it.

    Vishnu M said...

    ha.. that would be a nice stuff. i think if the combination of GPs in the car and iphone app can be clubbed together there can be some way out. but the problem of floor still exists. which need to be tackled with some identifiers for each floor entrance which the car communicate with the gps device. This information can be send to your iphone/ smart phone(when you exit and lock the car) to analyse and record the exact location of parking!. with tech advancements i don't think that it will be hard to achieve.

    BTW. is it practical to put in those identifiers? can we change it with an altitude meter(are we flying?)?
    No comments!

    sanjaykattimani said...

    Hi Vishnu,
    The idea of having every floor have an identifier and communicate back it to GPS is possible but not viable option simply because no building owner will invest in such gadget that helps very very few geeky people like us. More generic way to calculate height from ground is required Like altimeter & hook it with other gadgets that exploit this technology. Future holds the key to answers of all such questions.

    Uditha Kumara Wijesinghe said...

    Yes that future is coming soon.Technology will change all of us.Sanjay,your blog is nice.
    Keep it up.

    This is my place

    Anonymous said...

    As far as I remember, the last time I checked the GPS location details on my Nokia 5800, the altitude above sea level was also mentioned. Not sure about its accuracy though!