By Ami Cholia
Posting in Design
Ford will use its inbuilt Sync system to help drivers monitor their diabetes and other chronic illnesses.
While several new cars come with nifty in-built technological systems that control all your entertainment, cell phone and temperature needs -- Ford has decided to take it one step further. The automotive giant plans to expand its Sync technology to enable people who suffer from diabetes and other chronic illnesses to monitor themselves and take precautionary measures.
Ford announced that it will work with several health and medical companies to come up with a diagnostic feature in its vehicles within the next one or two years.
"We want to create the car that cares," Gary Strumolo, Ford manager of vehicle design and infotronics said.
Ford will be working with Medtronic, a medical technology company in Minneapolis, WellDoc, a medical software developer, and SDI, a health care analytics company in Pennsylvania on the project.
WellDoc and SDI are, in fact, already developing smart phone applications for people to monitor their own health.
Drivers would essentially use the same wireless glucometers they use at home in their vehicles and the Sync-connected devices would then alert the driver if his or her blood-sugar levels were too high or low.
For the allergic amongst us, SDI has come up with an allergy alert system that will let drivers know the pollen counts for any area within the U.S. SDI will even help you trace the source of the pollen.
Critics have argued that the new systems could harm the drivers more than help them by being a distraction, however Ford insists that the company is working on measures to combat driver distraction.
May 20, 2011
...that minds its' own business? I don't need space-based radio, I don't need a talking car, or an in-dash video game, I just want a car that starts when I turn the key, goes when I step on the 'go' pedal, and corresponding performance when depressing the 'stop' pedal. I don't need real-time global telecommunications interfaces, a CD player that didn't skip because it digitally 'jumped time' would be nice, but the rest of it is frankly an in-car distraction. Your attention, while motoring, needs to be on what's going on OUTside the car(see: just about any article covering 'driving while distracted'). I understand the desire of automakers to sell more cars, that's how they make money, but in the case of diabetes, if you're diabetic, diagnosed as such, so forth and so on, then you need to get a handle on that condition, and if you feel that it might make you unfit to drive, then you need to make other arrangements to get your groceries and get around. There's a bunch of different stuff that can make motorists 'unfit for the road', including fatigue, illness, intoxication, a laundry list of medications, general lack of emotional self control, and and and. And, if any of those match YOU, even remotely, then leave those keys in your pocket until you feel well enough to operate. Computer Car Of The Future can do about so much, and then it's time to put the geek-toys away, and get down to the real deal, which is that despite all the technology, we still lose about 30k people/year, because people just don't have a good focus on what they're doing when they're sitting in that chair with the wheel poking out of the dashboard in front of them. I say use the computer technology to facilitate better driver training, but keep the driver's portion of the car as distraction and gimmick-free as design limitations will allow. ABS is nice, interval wipers are nice, cruise control is nice, power steering is nice, wraparound multi-screens full of irrelevant information? Not so nice.