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Providing traffic condition [warnings] through use of common place GPS and CVS technologies

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000171755D
Original Publication Date: 2008-Jun-18
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2008-Jun-18
Document File: 3 page(s) / 72K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Abstract

Traffic congestion and traffic jams are a very pervasive problem nowadays, and this problem is not going to be relaxed anytime soon, based on the increasing car production and limited roads improvements at the whole world at large. It would have been very helpful for people to know ahead of time of such conditions, so that they can choose their routes better. On major highways the authorities provide dynamic road signs which advise the drivers on the average traffic speed. Radio stations also try to assist with the help of their listeners and give head up warning on traffic problems to their audience. An automatic solution http://www.physorg.com/news76178303.html which is based on the fact that cell phones continuously communicate with their bases stations is exploited as well. However all the existing solutions lack the visual information. Today one has to settle for verbal/numerical/statistical description of a traffic tangle. Be it the radio anchor or the automated gadget. It is time to move forward and allow for the drivers to see for themselves, the traffic conditions along the road they take. One picture speaks better than thousand of words.

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Providing traffic condition [warnings] through use of common place GPS and CVS technologies

Coupling the GPS (Global Positioning System) and the CVS, makes viewing the traffic a reality. The CVS stands for Cellular Vision System - to describe the 3rd generation and beyond, of cell phones, which can transmit still-shots/video ...). Together with a GPS it can provide a better position accuracy than the cell-clustered-based signals (as opposed to the almost pin-point GPS signals) and also communicate the scene on on-going basis for the benefit of all drivers querying about the particular road traffic condition and any other road conditions for that matter (rain, flood, snow etc.).

    The more pervasive the advanced cell phones are the quicker the adoption of the proposed technology will be. The idea in a nut-shell is to have the cell phones communicate their GPS based position (instead of their closet base-station) along with video of the scene they are at. The transmission occurs when the phones are idle (not in use by their owners). The central station monitors all such transmissions and re-transmit them to the relevant subscribers. The GPS is enhanced to include an option to "view" the road (on top of the schematic map of today). That way the subscribers can have the data at their finger tips (or rather eye pupils) on demand. For instance a driver can ask the new system to advise him of the road conditions some distance -- 2 miles or kilometers, for example -- ahead. Such an information can be informative as well as life saving when a pileup accident is just around the corner. Viewing the scenery while driving, can deviate the driver's attention off the road itself and it would be best if it is being watched by the passenger sitting next to the driver or better still if it could be superimposed (toggle-able) on the windshield (as it is done in aircraft's.

    Additionally, rescue personal might be able to access the visual information to determine the nature, scope, and more precise location of a traffic event. Towtrucks / wreckers could be dispatched more appropriate by law enforcement when an accident occurs. Firefighters could be dispatched based on risk of fire / explosion. A wide variety of applications, beyond the desire to tell a driver what is causing the traffic snarl, potentially exist.

    Looking forward, the cell-phone may be equipped with compass or other orientation-sensing device such that the device can figure out its own physical orientation (in addition to its position via GPS). Then its produced pictures can be labeled and be used for smart sort and cuts. For example, when requesting a picture showing the north-east side of a certain intersection, the left or right side of the freeway, etc. "Alerts" similar to the "Amber Alert" system, could be deployed based on GPS / cell cluster location information, which might prompt users who are not presently operating a vehicle of coming haz...