Posting in Design
GM's Research and Development lab challenged design students in Israel to develop what could be the backseat windows of the future.
No, we're not in a scene from Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol. This is simply the latest bit of R&D from General Motors. The automaker challenged researchers and students from the FUTURE LAB at Bezalel Academy of Art and Design in Israel to conceptualize new ways to enhance the experience of backseat passengers, children in particular.
GM said it developed the Windows of Opportunity Project in an attempt to turn car windows into interactive displays to stimulate awareness, nurture curiosity and foster a stronger connection between backseat passengers and the outside world.
“Traditionally, the use of interactive displays in cars has been limited to the driver and front passenger, but we see an opportunity to provide a technology interface designed specifically for rear seat passengers,” said Tom Seder, GM Research and Development lab group manager for human-machine interface. “Advanced windows that are capable of responding to vehicle speed and location could augment real world views with interactive enhancements to provide entertainment and educational value.”
The students at Bezalel, Israel's oldest institute of higher education, had free reign to get as creative as they wished when designing the applications, disregarding whether or not the designs could be mass produced.
Using motion and optical sensor technology developed by EyeClick, in order to turn window glass into a multi-touch and gesture-sensitive surface, the students produced a functional prototype of a rear passenger side window.
They came up with several apps, including Otto (see image above), an animated character that responds to real-time car performance, the weather, and the surrounding landscape; Foofu, an app that allows passengers to draw on simulated window steam; Spindow, an app that lets users see what other users are seeing out their windows around the world; and Pond, an app that allows passengers to stream and share music with other passengers on the road.
Were such technology to be implemented in automotive production, they would likely use "smart glass" technology, which can achieve various states of translucence and transparency and can also reflect projected images.
GM currently has no plans to produce cars with these apps, but the automaker says it currently has several projects underway that could reinvent the experience of backseat passengers in the future.
See more about the Windows of Opportunity Project:
Jan 18, 2012
told the the kid 'no' to smearing crud all over the insde of the window. Now GM wants to encourage it. I can imagine this will be forced on anyone who wants the better interior package. Hey, why not make it so it can project a picture of a steak, and the dog can spend all afternoon slopping up the window too.
Wow, that really is nice. Nice use of a virtual app for entertainment, but what is the utility? Will this enable subpar GM cars to run better? GM should be worrying about the quality and durability of their vehicle lines instead of worrying about a stupid window, When will GM wake up and realize that they are badly trailing in quality foreign imports?
...over my shoulder to check my blind spot and see some application running instead, am I supposed to assume that the road is clear? At night, how much of a distraction am I supposed to tolerate from bright lights or blinking in the backseat just to keep the kids "entertained"? This is ludicrous. Our kids are so damn spoiled today that they can't handle a few hours in a vehicle without interactive activities; Why exactly should we exacerbate the problem rather than working to solve it? Thanks, GM, for yet another dangerous option to placate our children who have no concept of entertaining themselves.