Knight Rider is one step closer to reality with Microsoft’s next generation of their Connected Car Platform! (Although shouldn’t that be “Kinected”?) The next-gen version of the system uses a combination of various Microsoft technologies including Kinect, Windows 8 and Tellme integrated into the dashboard to create what Microsoft describes as “intelligent assistants” for cars:

For the next generation of the Connected Car Platform, we plan to leverage the full power of the Microsoft ecosystem including Kinect, Windows 8, Windows Phone, Windows Live, Bing, Azure, and Tellme. The combination of rich local sensing, user identification, cloud access, and data mining will transform tomorrow’s cars from passive objects into intelligent assistants for both the driver and their passengers. The new Connected Car will know its riders, and will interact with them naturally via speech, gestures, and face tracking. It will learn their habits, and offer personalized contextual information and driving assists to get them to their destination as quickly and safely as possible. Through a growing catalogue of applications, it will inform and entertain them, and keep them connected with the people and information they care about. The possibilities are endless.

The website SlashGear says:

Most interesting is perhaps the degree of inter-device connectivity Microsoft envisages. Current in-car entertainment systems generally limit their interaction with phones and other devices to streaming music, making hands-free calls and occasionally tethering so as to share a 3G/4G data connection. However, Microsoft’s intentions call for “distributed, concurrent, and adaptive software running on a network of devices spanning cars, mobile devices, PCs, and the cloud.”

That could lead to cars that know your favorite routes, your preferred playlists, automatically adapt to changes in schedule, and that can be upgraded with downloadable apps in the same way that a Windows Phone might. Cloud synchronization could ensure your latest music downloads are automatically ready to be listened to on your next journey, or instantly load presets and preferences into a rental car.

Meanwhile the increasingly contentious matter of dashboard distraction – with too many buttons, dials, touchscreens and displays taking driver attention away from the road – could also be addressed using new motion gestures and simple speech commands.

No mention of whether the next generation Connected Car Platform will also include Turbo Boost, Ski Mode (AKA side-wheelies) or Super Pursuit Mode. :p

Source: SlashGear

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