clever phones, clever fridges, smart towns — built-in is built-ingly more related to built-in the entirety else. The built integrated-of-built-ing integrated revolution has built-in new (and regularly frivolous) features to the most mundane of everyday integrated gadgets. but one built-in it would built-integrated help us to have synced up? our road system.
you can have observed, roads are built integrated dumb right now. They’re luxurious to built-in, and typically can’t do a whole lot beside built-integrated above-ground transportation (credit built-in credit score is due, although). howeverKansas town tech startup built integrated Roadways integrated to exchange that.
unique built-in a record built-in integrated the Kansas town celebrity, the startup’s “clever pavement” built-in promises to make roadways more secure, and typically provide roads a little extra 21st-century pizzazz, built-inimbu integratedg the street itself with clever generation.
By knowing where vehicles are, and how fast they’re going, smart roadways could theoretically call first responders to the site of an accident. It could also collect real-time data on road conditions and congestion data, letting drivers — and self-driving cars in particular — choose the route that is the most efficient and safe.
Integrated Roadways also envisions the system to be the backbone of a much-anticipated “nationwide 5G network” — an ultra-fast wireless communication standard of the very near future — without the need of additional infrastructure by sending data over an integrated fiber optic mesh. So far, so good.
But inquiring, skeptical minds must wonder: why is all of this necessary? Conventional asphalt roads have sufficed for a while now. Autonomous vehicles — while far from perfect in their current state — have sophisticated path detection technologies built-in. So why would the road have to inform the car of potential dangers?
And then there’s the data: who has access to it, and how much information will our smart roads be collecting about us? Would we have to accept the terms and conditions before driving on the highway? Tim Sylvester, founder of Integrated Roadways, tells the Kansas City Star that personal data will not be collected. “We aren’t going to say this is John Smith’s Lexus, but we can say that this is a Lexus.”
And what about tolls? In its flashy demo video, Integrated Roadways mentions its roads will be self-funded by allowing third parties to use the data for value added services — think interactive billboards or location-based advertising. And where’s that data going? So far, it’s impossible to get real answers because smart roads aren’t a thing yet. But we might get some soon: Integrated Roadways is working with the Colorado Department of Transportation, according to its web site, though the initiative is still conceptual.
You’re not imagining it: it really does seem like everything is connected to a network that collects data about you and your habits, whether you like it or not. And smart roadways like Integrated Roadways’ concept are only another example of that. But it will likely take more than a promise of connectivity and autonomous vehicle safety to convince municipalities and governments to shell out the cash to put it in place.