A group of four Jefferson students, who go by the team name TXT U L8R, have recently invented a new gadget called AutoSense. AutoSense is a device that tracks driver head motion in 3-D space to detect whether or not a driver is distracted. The team – which consists of Director of Research and Development (DRD) sophomore Valerie Chen; Chief Technology Officer (CTO) sophomore Matthew Sun; Chief Operating Officer (COO) sophomore Raghav Ramraj; and Chief Business Officer (CBO) sophomore Jasper Treakle – is actively searching for a solution to the safe driving conundrum.
The team describes how dangerous driving can be by using a moving commercial that describes the fatal accidents that some of their family members and friends have suffered. By refocusing drivers, Autosense will be the future of driving technology.
“Other solutions to distracted driving really just haven’t worked,” Sun said. “Minor improvements to driver’s education curriculum are being made, but there is still a large portion of the population that does not have access to this education or is already driving, which is why we decided to invent this device.”
The device was created to stop drivers from participating in distracting activities, including texting, applying makeup, eating and succumbing to fatigue. By measuring head movements in space, AutoSense programmatically determines whether the driver is participating in such activities and will provide an auditory stimulator to refocus the driver.
“We are planning on implementing the idea by gaining government support and speaking with various car manufacturers to market our product as a safety feature in cars,” Chen said. “We plan to add more functionality so that it will provide an enjoyable experience to drivers, not just be some annoying safety gimmick.”
If their plan to implement this device into cars works, then future driving will be much safer as less distractions will take place behind the wheel. Even though they are seeing success as a prospect in this project, the team is still uncertain if another invention awaits them once this one is complete. At the moment, it seems that their focus is purely on reducing risk while driving.
“We hope to refocus distracted drivers and intelligently train the next generation of drivers to always keep their eyes on the road and stay focused on what’s going on around them,” Ramraj said. “We believe this is the first step in that process.”
Be sure to check out their promotional video: http://www.conradawards.org/videos/7829/521/auto-sense-by-txt-u-l8r