Is there too much 'big brother' in Ford's cloud-computing Evos?
|Luca Ciferri is chief correspondent at Automotive News Europe|
Despite being a technology-addicted consumer, always on the lookout for the latest electronic gizmo, I was fascinated – but at the same time seriously scared – when I saw how Ford's cloud-computing connected car could interact with its driver.
Listening to Paul Mascarenas, Ford's chief technical officer and vice president of Ford Research and Innovation, describe the features in the new Evos concept, I wondered if I was attending an automaker's press conference or reading a science fiction novel.
Consider this: The Evos is built around the idea that the car uses cloud computing to become part of a customer's digital world.
I'm fine with the car's digital brain determining my music preferences and transferring the same digital radio station I was listening to at home into the car. Or even arranging my favorite music according to my driving style, say Baroque classical music when I quietly cruise on the highway or Led Zeppelin's hard rock when I climb a twisty mountain road.
But I begin to get a little concerned when the car, after checking traffic news and weather forecasts, decides what time it will set my wake-up call to get me to my first business appointment.
I start to be seriously scared when the car begins informing me which of my friends is in the area by accessing my social network data.
I don't fight innovation, but I do wonder if we really need our cars to start managing our daily lives.
To be honest, I rather prefer Google's idea of a self-driving car, which would permit me to read a newspaper or play on the computer while being driven to my next destination.
You can reach Luca Ciferri at firstname.lastname@example.org.