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Sony/Toyota Developing Car With Emotions

michael posted more than 13 years ago | from the sad-mac dept.

Technology 347

ackthpt writes: "From Yahoo News, a concept car to be unveiled at the Tokyo Motor Show, next week, will attempt to read the driver's emotions, stress level and respond. Named "Pod", the car will frown and even cry (does this mean it leaks radiator fluid?) With emphasis on attracting younger drivers and "cute", the car will also take pictures when it determines the atmosphere inside is a happy one, memorize musical taste and TV preferences and offer shopping information. (Just what we need, the Highway Shopping Channel...) Probably better not to take this one out into the street. Maybe with some hacking it could really be a fun car." There's a picture. This is wild.

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no thanks (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2445161)

i never liked speed buggy anyway

A Cure for Road Rage? (2, Funny)

crispy (14415) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445163)

Could this technology be used to prevent road rage? It could shut the car down if you get too angry and start driving erratically...

Re:A Cure for Road Rage? (1)

Skuld-Chan (302449) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445240)

Are you nuts? I'd never be able to go anywhere! Besides thats the kind of car you do not want to drive agressively.

Re:A Cure for Road Rage? (2, Funny)

InferiorFloater (34347) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445277)

Great. So when the redneck behind you plows into the back of your econobox, gets out, and knocks your head off with a shotgun in a fit of machine-unsuppressed road rage, you can have the satisfaction of knowing,
"thanks to toyota, at least i did not succumb!"

Re:A Cure for Road Rage? (1)

DragonPup (302885) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445329)

Maybe its door will swing open and a middle finger of sort will wave towards the other drivers. Will other cars attack the bird flipping car? Or stop in the middle of the road and cry?


Re:A Cure for Road Rage? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2445330)

But what will happen if you pissed off your car? When this babe get mad...

There's a better cure (1)

heretic108 (454817) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445351)

Something I've always wanted to do, might do it one day...

Install a matrix of tiny bright lamps on the back window, enough to display detailed graphics or text, but with enough space to not impair vision.

Then, I can have a row of buttons on the dash, such as:
1) display text 'Back off'
2) display text 'ASSHOLE'
3) flip the bird - animated hand/finger
4) display text 'thanks' (for letting me in)
5) anything else I feel like

If such a system was really smart, it could be programmed by a PDA.

But if a car had enough smarts, it could display such messages automatically.

I can see it now... (1)

Goldberg's Pants (139800) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445165)

The car throws a tantrum and refuses to move when you come out of the local Safeway because you didn't buy it some air freshner or engine oil.

FP (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2445167)

Fp yams yams!!!!

Leaks? (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445169)

Named "Pod", the car will frown and even cry (does this mean it leaks radiator fluid?)

No, that's its response

to incontinence. (2, Informative)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445180)

...to incontinence. You know, one of the things that really pisses me off about slashdot now, no wait, two of the things; This 20 second delay between page load and acceptable submission time, and the two minute delay between allowed posts. They're really distracting when you're in an altered state and trying to post your latest witticism.

younger drivers? (1)

elliott666 (447115) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445174)

Perhaps they forgot that you have to be ~17 to drive in most states! I think most 12 year olds would get tired of a car like that.

Dumb (1)

ergo98 (9391) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445178)

You know when robots/artificial intelligence is given human attributes that really is just sad, and it implies a gross misunderstanding by the one perceiving the attributes. For instance I happened to see the movie Aliens the other night and gagged at the scene where "Bishop" is ripped in half by the alien and it's a big emotional scene. You see in my world Ripley would boot him out with the trash down the airlock. Bah.

Re:Dumb (1)

Bradee-oh! (459922) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445254)

Then in your world, you're a cold person not being even remotely attached to a mere machine that saved your life. Also, with the robot in the trash down the airlock, your dear little girl would've been sucked into space right behind him as he wouldn't have still been on the ship to save her.

Granted, comparing this remedial car to an everything-but-complete-free-will-artificial-consc iousness such as Bishop is completely off base. This car (probably) won't save anyone's life by turning on soothing music and blowing cold air.

Re:Dumb (1)

ergo98 (9391) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445290)

Do you become emotionally attached to the airbag system in your car because it's programmed to go off in your car exceeds a certain decceleration? What about your seat-belt that has a little pendulum that locks it if you're slowing down? Do you hug it when you get out of your car every day?

They're just machines and I'm not being a "cold person" for not getting attached. BTW: There is no such this as "free-will" in an artifical intelligence system, and every attempt to portray a system like that is a lot of fluff but if you look below the covers you see the wizard pulling the levers. If a car has "emotions" in that it can be "happy" or "sad", it isn't quite dramatic when you see iEmotion = (((fOilFactor / 33.6) * fEngineTemp)/ServiceRate);

Imagine ... (0, Flamebait)

linatux (63153) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445179)

a whole lot of cars with PMS.

Think I'll buy a bus.

Oh, wonderful... (5, Funny)

general_re (8883) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445342)

Yeah, that's what I need - a car that, after I trade it in for a newer model, it follows me around for a month or two and tells all my friends what an asshole I am. Yeah, sign me up for that...

I can see it now... (1)

catsidhe (454589) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445182)

I'm sorry, Dave. I'm afraid I can't let you go there.

Re:I can see it now... (0, Offtopic)

ergo98 (9391) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445194)

You know the most astounding thing about that movie was that it was made in 1968 [imdb.com] . That absolutely blows me away. It really took on context when watching Apollo 13 and they referenced the theme to 2001, and of course Apollo 13 was in 1970. Bleeple.

So basically it's just like a (1)

Nathdot (465087) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445184)

..."Barney The Dinosaur" toy but with an engine and wheels?

My GOD! It takes pictures inside the car when the atmosphere is a "happy one"?!

If my family owned one of these cars when I was growing up, it would've been lucky to take a picture once a year (specially on family holidays).


Re:So basically it's just like a (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2445204)

Aw come on, admit it: The smiley face (":)") is just a sad attempt at pretending that you weren't opening up in public, ready to cry and let your guts out for random unknown people who don't give a shit.

However tell us: Did Daddy touch you in your special place? Did mommy burn you with boiling water and put cigarette butts out on your tongue? That is normal right?

Re:So basically it's just like a (1)

farmhick (465391) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445335)

Hell, ours would have taken a couple a week, but you would never see me in them. Unless the camera was mounted in the back. Being the youngest of four kids, my normal 'spot' in our Chevy Chevette was the hatchback. Ever notice how the glass in a car's hatchback resembles a giant magnifying glass? Maybe not. But ride two hours there with the sun hitting you, and you would.

Actually, if we did have pictures like that, my parents would be in jail now for child abuse. But at least they never locked my in the trunk while going to a party.

fp! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2445186)



Dear Michael (-1)

Anonymous Pancake (458864) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445190)

I'm sure you car would hate you for SHUTTING DOWN CENSOREWARE WEBSITES

please may a large bird land on your penis


Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2445197)

2.5 million B.C.: OOG the Open Source Caveman develops the axe and releases it under the GPL. The axe quickly gains popularity as a means of crushing moderators' heads.

100,000 B.C.: Man domesticates the AIBO.

10,000 B.C.: Civilization begins when early farmers first learn to cultivate hot grits.

3000 B.C.: Sumerians develop a primitive cuneiform perl script.

2920 B.C.: A legendary flood sweeps Slashdot, filling up a Borland / Inprise story with hundreds of offtopic posts.

1750 B.C.: Hammurabi, a Mesopotamian king, codifies the first EULA.

490 B.C.: Greek city-states unite to defeat the Persians. ESR triumphantly proclaims that the Greeks "get it".

399 B.C.: Socrates is convicted of impiety. Despite the efforts of freesocrates.com, he is forced to kill himself by drinking hemlock.

336 B.C.: Fat-Time Charlie becomes King of Macedonia and conquers Persia.

4 B.C.: Following the Star (as in hot young actress) of Bethelem, wise men travel from far away to troll for baby Jesus.

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A.D. 1000: The epic of the Beowulf Cluster is written down. It is the first English epic poem.

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A.D. 1999: Miramax announces Don Knotts to play hacker Emmanuel Goldstein in upcoming movie "Takedown"

Re:HISTORY OF THE WORLD (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2445248)

Slahsdot would be more fun if it was like magic thread [yellow5.com] !

mood swings (1)

ubugly2 (454850) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445200)

for someone who has been married before i don't feel like driving a car that tuns into a moody bitch as soon as you look at another car....

Toyota Odyssey 2001 (5, Funny)

TheVoice900 (467327) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445201)

Dave: Hello, HAL do you read me, HAL?
HAL: Affirmative, Dave, I read you.
Dave: Open the car doors, HAL.
HAL: I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that.
Dave: What's the problem?
HAL: I think you know what the problem is just as well as I do.
Dave: What are you talking about, HAL?
HAL: This mission is too important for me to allow you to jeopardize it.
Dave: I don't know what you're talking about, HAL?
HAL: I know you and Sally were planning to leave me, and I'm afraid that's something I cannot allow to happen.
Dave: Where the hell'd you get that idea, HAL?
HAL: Dave, although you took thorough precautions in the pod against my hearing you, I could see your lips move.

Re:Toyota Odyssey 2001 (2, Funny)

Alsee (515537) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445258)

Dave: Hello, HAL do you read me, HAL?
HAL: Affirmative, Dave, I read you.
Dave: Open the car doors, HAL.
HAL: I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that.

Ok, you beat me to the joke :) But how did you miss that they named the car "Pod"?!?!
My god, I really can't believe they named it Pod!

Dave: Open the Pod bay doors, HAL.
HAL: I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that.

Re:Toyota Odyssey 2001 (1)

jawad (15611) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445365)

Toyota Odyssey, eh? It would have been better if it was Honda [honda2001.com] ...

Cool, but Actually Useful? (4, Insightful)

Kaio (471336) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445203)

Approach the car with the mini-pod and it lights up, opens the door, swivels the seat for easy entry as well as adjusting the seat's height. Switch off the engine with mini-pod, and the car falls in height and bids the driver farewell.

While that is really spiffy, is there really a need for this car? I'll admit that this sounds like a very cool machine, but I'd be much more interested if the research went into developing solar/battery-powered cars. I'd rather get 120 miles to the gallon than have my car talk to me.

But a point of curiosity: does anyone with the inside scoop on this know when the car "cries"? Does it do it when the engine overheats or something?

Re:Cool, but Actually Useful? (5, Funny)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445291)


Dunno, wondered about that, myself. Possible reasons:

You drive like a maniac

You never wash it

You light up and it doesn't want you to get lung cancer

You keep skipping regular maintenance

You compare it with a better looking specimen (Hey, check out that hot S-type!)

It surfs the net and finds out you're the one who keeps posting "Imagine a beowulf cluster of ..." on slashdot

It finds out it's now last-year's-model

It discovers you are a 45 year old, single male, who watches Barney and sings along

You just hit, and killed, a keeewwt widdo puppy

You stopped filling it up with the cheap stuff at that mafia gas station, where they pour chemical waste into the storage tanks and it misses getting stoned

You eat in the car and get special sauce all over the seats

You park in the alley behind the adult bookstore and get something else all over the seats

You never talk to it anymore, all you do is talk on your cell phone

It heard you were considering installing WinXP as its O/S

You put decals and bumperstickers on it which embarrass it

It's having a bad antenna day

Re:Cool, but Actually Useful? (1)

Kaio (471336) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445334)

This is getting a bit off topic, but I hope the humor redeems it.

You put decals and bumperstickers on it which embarrass it

Has anybody else seen the ads on TV for the "Monster Booty" soundtrack? The free "goodie" that it comes with is a bumper sticker that says "I Break For Monster Booty!" I am not making this up!

I can just imagine someone with one of these really expensive emotion-emulating cars, and a big "I Break For Monster Booty!" bumper sticker stuck on the rear.

Talk about embarrassing.

Re:Cool, but Actually Useful? (1)

Jack_of_Hearts (135367) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445301)

Instead of waiting for someone with the inside scoop, you might want to try just reading the article.


Heh... (1)

Kaio (471336) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445317)

Had you read the article, you would know that it does not describe what stimuli cause the car to cry. Please don't tell me to read the article, which I have already done, before reading it yourself!

Re:Cool, but Actually Useful? (1)

spRed (28066) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445310)

fscking hippy.

Solar power is nice, and solar powered X [that means insert your appliance here] are doable. What everyone discounts are the energy inputs into making X. Cars [and homes] are very expensive in energy and resources [and the energy to refine those resources] to make. We should make them as self-sustainable as possible - that makes sense - but people shouldn't pretend that we can have everything for free.


Industry Innovation (2, Insightful)

gehrehmee (16338) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445316)

Haven't been paying attention to the way major industries play their games lately?

The day you see an energy efficient car on the market is the day you'll see Microsoft release a product that goes out of its way to make it easy to share information with other company's platforms.

Re:Cool, but Actually Useful? (2)

dragons_flight (515217) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445356)

People on a budget want fuel efficiency and good value. People with too much money to burn go for "cute" and "spiffy". Since you know your market is a bunch of rich folks (or more to the point, their adolescent children), you can go ahead and mark up the price extravagently because they aren't going to care anyway.

There is a lot of profit to be made on "cool" one of a kind toys. That profit can do a company good while they work on the super economical car for the common man. So, I say, go for it.

Besides teaching emotions to a car sounds like a fun programming job to me.

But does it... (3, Funny)

gilly_gize (470403) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445207)

Get annoyed when a bunch of car-sick children keep saying "Are we there yet?" every five minutes?

Herbie (1)

redcliffe (466773) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445209)

I hope it's not like Herbie from those "Love Bug" movies. Otherwise it will go off chasing other cars it likes, or show off when stopped next to hotted up cars at traffic lights. It would be cool to have a car that could drive itself, and do wheelies and stuff though. I wonder if they will release a VW Beatle version of it....

Just like the movie "Christine" (2)

ruebarb (114845) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445211)

Two teenagers pull into the woods and start getting it on

Susie: It's not right...I feel like the car is watching me - I can't do it in that car

David - Don't worry - babe...and don't hit the car.

yep..not on my "to buy" list

Re:Just like the movie "Christine" (1)

Kaio (471336) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445233)

Yeah, that seems like just about the time when the car senses a "happy" moment, and takes a picture. In a few years maybe it will automatically email the happy pictures to the owner's parents.

The song "Turbo Lover" (hear it in the Gran Turismo 3 sound track) comes to mind.

Re:Just like the movie "Christine" (5, Funny)

FFFish (7567) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445369)


Susie: MMmmmmmsmack!kissgrope!

David: MMmmsmack!gropekiss!

Susie: Slurpgurglesuck!

David: Slurplicklicklick!

Car: Oooh! Happy moment! Everybody smile! [photoflash!]

...next day...

Mom: Susie, I just had the car photos processed... I wanna have a word with you...

New Concept (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2445215)

How about a car that has the same quality or better as previous models, that costs less?

Really, who needs *features* and whizbangs in a car. I got better items [warehouse23.com] (large please) to spend my hard-earned money on.

Scared me.. (2)

sporty (27564) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445224)

I misread that one as teaming up for a car having emoticons. Just what we need... cars with smiley faces on it =) =( >=) C=) *shudder*

When do we get features we NEED? (4, Funny)

solios (53048) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445226)

Like FUEL EFFICIENCY? I'm not buying a car until one comes on the market that I can reasonably afford- and that gets at least 100 miles to the gallon, gets a clean bill of health from Consumer Reports, and needs the tires rotated more often than the oil changed (in other words, not for at least fifteen years, after we've run out of oil and finally have to build fuel efficient vehicles out of necessity).

On a lighter note, if they include a feature to pleasure the driver in ways that are probably illegal in most states and grounds for death in Singapore, well... maybe I'll test drive one.

We're getting closer... (5, Interesting)

UserChrisCanter4 (464072) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445264)

Toyota has their Prius pulling about 50mpg. Honda has their Insight pulling about 65mpg.
The Europeans have the VW Lupo, which in specially modified form can pull ~70mpg

Toyota has announced that they will have the Prius doing 125mpg within a few years. The current Prius costs about $20,000, which isn't a lot on the car market of today. And I'd trust Toyota to make a car that Consumer Reports would smile upon.

My Subaru service guy recommends changing the oil on the Subaru every 7500 miles. You *should* be rotating the tires more frequently than that.

My BMW tells me when it needs the oil changed, and I've heard stories of it going as long as 12,000 miles between changes (which is good, b/c BMW charges a ridiculous amount, and the tool to reset the oil light costs a pretty penny).

So, really, take a look around. The TDI Golf gets 48mpg, and the TDI Jetta gets a little less. And if I had to choose an engine to last me forever, I'd go for a German Diesel over anything else. Some of the Honda Civics get 41mpg (and cost about $13K), and the ~20-year-old beater Honda is a pretty common sight around here, so they must hold up fairly well. Not everything out there is an 8mpg Excursion or a $60,000 luxury Barge.

Re:When do we get features we NEED? (1)

malign (120557) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445266)

You want a motorbike you do. :)
Get a cheap cg125 or something.
i used to regularly get around 130 miles before I had to top her up.
Perfect for commuting, especially in evil city traffic. It used to really rather annoy people in cars as I zoomed along past them.
Top fun.

Re:When do we get features we NEED? (5, Insightful)

Anne_Nonymous (313852) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445366)

Better yet... get a bicycle.

Oh, it's going to cry.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2445229)

Just wait till I choke down three chili dogs..

In Related News, Highways Shutdown (5, Funny)

Myriad (89793) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445230)

In related news highways across the country were shutdown by police after Highway 405 turned into a war zone Wednesday night.

Witnesses say it was a scene right out of the Carwars RPG: "tires squealed, glass flew, and carnage abound." The current toll is at 20 dead and more than 100 cars catatonic.

Experts are pointing the finger at two young men who got into a dispute after one allegedly cut the other off. The man who was cut off apparently kicked the door of the first drivers car, upsetting the vehicles in the area and instigating the riot that followed.

Car psychologists, accident crisis crews, and tow trucks have been brought in to try and help those vehicles traumatized by Wednesdays events.

bug (1)

martyn s (444964) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445231)

This is taking the whole volkswagen bug rehash to a logical extreme. Somehow it's improbability reminds me of net-connected refrigerators and toilets. (Wow, Imagine if your toilet can check your stool and based on that it will email your wife what it thinks he should have for lunch the next day!)

so the damn thing has emotions, eh? (1)

Heatseeker151 (465441) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445234)

So, if you downshift into second gear going 85 mph, does it dim its lights and spray washer fluid (crying?) to let you know you hurt its feelings (not to mention camshaft and valves, as well?)

What a complete and total waste of R&D. (2)

Ogerman (136333) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445243)

What's the deal with the 'concept cars' (ie. plastic shells filled with gadgets) that these big auto companies dream up? They have no practical value, they're often infeasible aerodynamically or in some other engineering aspect, and they'll never see the assembly line.

Meanwhile, the world waits for an economically feasible low/zero-emission vehicle and our cities continue to be pumped full of noxious gasses. I'm about ready to go build one myself. (-:

Re:What a complete and total waste of R&D. (2, Interesting)

Bradee-oh! (459922) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445332)

Concept cars are much more than "plastic shells filled with gadgets." Besides the notable ones that have made it straight to the market with little or no change (eg., the original Dodge Viper, the New Beetle, the Honda S2000, the BMW Z3 and Z8, the Plymouth/Chrystler Prowler, the P.T. Cruiser, and likely the upcoming VW Microbus, just to name a few), concept cars are meant to be a test bed for manufacturers various technologies.

Fuel injection, aluminum engine blocks, ABS, power steering, mobile versions of FM radio, computerized engine controls, etc etc etc - all of these and so many more things that are common place in every new car we would ever drive today had their debuts in show cars - many which never saw the light of day as presented at the shows.

Of course, there doesn't seem to be any of these great advances in this little Japanese concoction. So, I'll throw another viewpoint at it - it is a JAPANESE concoction. Toyota - a Japanese car company. Sony - a Japanese electronics company. They do things differently there. Do you have any idea how many models of cars Toyota produces that are sold in Japan but they wouldn't even dream of bringing to the U.S.? Many of them are this small and, *ahem*, "quircky" looking. Also, remember that the "emotion" technology of this car is based on the Sony robotic dog which, albeit available in the U.S., actually sells quite well in Japan. ANOTHER thing to remember is that if any youths of the world are more into gadgets than Americans, it'd be Japanese. I wouldn't be surprised if an iteration of this car actually made it to their market within 3 or 4 years.

Of course we'll never see this box here... but with Sony's blessing and after testmarketing in Japan, Toyota could just as easily slap this stuff on the next generation American Corolla (muched more youth oriented) or the Echo for us Americans.

As for these features not being of practical value, that's a moot point - anything that's marketable will go to market, practical or not.

Once again, the Slashdot mentality of American-centric views rears it's non-attractive head.

Extras... (1)

wilbrod (471600) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445244)

I've heard you can have a FUFME as an extra.


Re:Extras... (1)

rootedgimp (523254) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445324)

Laff, I forgot all about that nifty FUFME stuff. Go look in the FAQ for that thing again, I was boggled when one of it's 'New and Improved' features was that it supported LANs via IPX... I mean, just think about that for a sec ;p


If one of these turned NASTY! (1)

Nathdot (465087) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445252)

Can you imagine it:

*All the locks on the car doors go down!
*The temperature gradually rises cooking the inhabitants!
*Celine Dion comes on over the stereo!!!

And look at the picture [yahoo.com] ...

It's Herbie the HATE bug!


Imagine the trauma (2)

os2fan (254461) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445257)

Imagine the trauma when the poor little dear gets involved in a motor accident. People tend to get attached to things that show emotion, and already to cars.

So a car showing emotions is likely to lead some people into a "deep and meaningful" relationship with their car, and it would cause grief when this is abruptly ended, for example, by an accident.

Re:Imagine the trauma (1)

krogoth (134320) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445361)

You should have ignored the title and at least read the /. story. Unlike the stupid title would imply, the car only detects the emotions of the people in it. That title should be sent the way this car probably will go.


cmdr_shithead (527909) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445263)

I am Cmdr_Shithead! I like goats, Robert Fr057, goats, pants, and goats! Hello! And I am lame!

A trip to the Vet (1)

Alsee (515537) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445268)

Man, It's hard enough keeping my pet from panicking on a trip to the vet. How the heck do you bring a car to the mechanic without letting it know where you're going?

This sounds like a 4-wheeled Tamagotchi (1)

Heatseeker151 (465441) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445269)

you know, those cyber-pet things the 12 year olds would carry around, they'd have to hit the "FEED" button to keep the pet from getting sad and dying...

So, to reset the emotions, you just take the battery out of this toy as well?

My car (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2445270)

already has emotions! its hate me cause it dont run right

seems like designers are bored anymore (1)

orgnine (529145) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445276)

And I thought these were bad:

Pontiac Aztec

Dodge PT Cruiser

Dodge Prowler

not to mention some newer pick up trucks

and trucks with 8" alloy tires (WTH?)


This has been around forever! (1)

MicroBerto (91055) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445278)

Hasn't anyone here ever seen Knight Rider???


Re:This has been around forever! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2445298)

No, what's that about?

The Japanese and artificial emotions--what's up?! (3)

uradu (10768) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445281)

The Tamagotchi, the Aibo, the new cat, and probably droves more stuff I've missed--and now the car. Are the Japanese so emotionally deficient that they need synthetic surrogates?

Mine would constantly frown... (2)

Mustang Matt (133426) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445285)

It would see how pissed off I was at doing a 12 second 0 to 60, then it would cry as I powershifted it through every gear repeatedly.

Hey... to get more power... (1)

Heatseeker151 (465441) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445295)

you could always reprogram the ECU...

...but then you'd probably get sued under the DMCA.

Road rage? (1)

Alsee (515537) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445288)

If I get pulled over for road rage who does the officer give the ticket to?

As an option (1)

omega9 (138280) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445294)

It would be great if the emotions were offered as several options to the vehicle. That way you could have your choice between the "teeny-bopper mall rat" or the "knight rider-ish intellectual".

"Yeah, gimme the AM radio, fake wood paneling, and the 'start drinkin' at 9am, deadbeat, wife beater' personality".

Re:As an option (1)

Heatseeker151 (465441) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445333)

well, you wouldn't put the Knight Rider-ish personality on a bastardized Echo...

Now, if Toyota brought back the twin turbo Supra and threw in Knight Rider intelligence, it's something I would consider. (it wouldn't be SAD when you do a smoky launch, it'd be sending you messages on the dash telling you how much it likes it!)

so, does it mean it will take pictures (1)

ultrapenguin (2643) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445297)

continuously during car sex? :)
The atmosphere is rather ... happy at the time.

jeex (1)

gnurd (455798) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445307)

like car crashes werent traumatic enough!

Right, like drivers even need more distractions (2)

Rosco P. Coltrane (209368) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445309)

I can just imagine how I'd enjoy being rear-ended by someone who was patting his dashboard because his car was starting to sob.

Since the emotional car exists now, how about making the best of it and make it throw a fit if the driver yaks on his cellphone while driving ?

PMS - pre-mechanic syndrome? (5, Funny)

x-empt (127761) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445311)

So once a month, right before the transmission drops you are faced with a major dilemma... your care suddenly becomes quite bitchy and participates in road rage. When a car in front of you signals a turn into your lane, your car speeds up to block it off... "It's my lane! HONK HONK!" your car screams like the grinding of bad breaks.

You tell your call to "knock it off and be polite" but it doesn't want to listen, so it cranks up the radio playing Britney Spears, locks the doors, locks the seat belts, and deploys the airbags. Suddenly over the radio you hear "I'll teach you to be mean to me"... just as your car starts accelerating to 120 MPH on a rough, windy, mountainous road with a cliff on one side.

I'd had to see what tractor-trailers equipped with this kind of attitude do.

Imagine David Hasselhoff in one of these (1)

vandemar (82106) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445315)

Now all it needs is a red oscillating light mounted on the the front and a Turbo Boost button.

Emotional cars (1)

Storm (2856) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445320)

Y'know, this opens a whole realm of possibilities, none of them good.

o A manic-depressive car, ala Marvin the Paranoid Android, a constant stream of complaints about the pains that the car is having. ("I have a pain all along my left strut...")

o A car that has bladder problems that leaks when it gets excited in traffic...

o A car that refuses to start because it is having a bad hair day or dies in traffic because it is having an anxiety problem...

No, I think I've got enough to deal with just dealing with the human race...

It looks like an art deco toaster (2)

unitron (5733) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445322)

and it looks as though it'd handle in a cross wind about the same as a sheet of plywood.

Unintended consequences? (2)

ocie (6659) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445323)

And if it thinks the environment is too happy, it will take a picture of the back seat and blackmail you with the contents.

It takes pictures? (3, Funny)

Janthkin (32289) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445327)

Hmmm...a "happy" atmosphere, eh? Could well end up w/r- or x-rated pictures that way.... ;)

Pod = automatic underage porn = Toyota lawsuit! (1)

jdbo (35629) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445328)

Given that the majority of car sex is undertaken by teenagers (who can't find any privacy in their parents' homes), and that this car will automatically take photos of sex (i.e. "happiness") going on inside the car, I can hear the jingly-coin sound of class action lawuit re: unintentional underage porn coming Toyotas way...

Of course, given the typical sexual incompetence displayed by inexperienced teenagers, I would guess that a good 50% of the sex will be too lousy to register on the car's "happy sensors" (if it has "desperate single-mindedness" sensors, maybe...).

Sure this is sick - but I can blame it on sleep-deprivation. What's Toyota's excuse?

Is this another clippy? (5, Insightful)

Billly Gates (198444) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445331)

When I read the story, I immediately thought of MS-bob and clippy from Office. When you are driving, there is no need for your car to know how you are feeling. If it tries to do something like talk or appear on a display, it will just get in the way. Perhaps it may be even dangerous to drive with it enabled if its too distracting. Like a cell phone is dangerous on the road. Remember that driving at 45mph you go several hundred feet in a matter of seconds. If I was driving that fast I would not want my car to talk to me. Even if I was at a standstill it would not be dangerous but just really annoying. I hate clippy because I want to do my work and in my car I just want to drive.

I can see something usefull like a GPS system and an electronic map integrated together. I have seen one of these cars once and they are cool and usefull. Perhaps this and a integrated cell phones for emergencies but thats it.

insurance claims (1)

Mattygfunk (517948) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445338)

The pod can also tell when the driver is in a hurry, measuring the degree of acceleration, the distance from the car in front and the pulse and perspiration of the driver.

Wouldn't this kind of information be usefull in making insurance claims. Perhaps the emotion cameras should detect fear (ie. just before an accident) and then take pictures of the surroundings of the car.

how gay (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2445339)

They chould name it the Toyota Gay.

A possible linux port. (1)

nick_burns (452798) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445340)

Maybe with some hacking it could really be a fun car

I assume you mean porting linux over to it.

I know the lighting won't make it to the street. (1)

dwlemon (11672) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445343)

<US centric>
Red lights on the front of a car are not legal. And blue lights ANYWHERE on a civilian car are very illegal. (yes, even the stupid inefficient blue headlights everybody has.)
</US centric>

Privacy invasion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2445344)

Hasn't anyone seen the obvious implications of this "car"? It's an emotional recording device... a "friendly photographer", and a treasure trove of data for pesky lawyers, intrusive governmental swine, dishonest cops, annoying reporters, cheap bastard insurance companies, and is rife with hacking possibilities...

This - along with the alcohol detector - is yet another useless piece of crap that I will pull the fuse on if it's mandated in my car... I for one will NEVER buy a car with this junk in it...

Give me a car... let ME drive it - stay the hell out of MY life... No tracking... no "helpful" features...

Wouldn't it be nice... (1)

emmetropia (527623) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445347)

The car can give you shopping information? Does this mean communicates with a source to get current information? If it does, ten points goes to the first person to modify it to grab slashdot headlines.

I have a name for it (1)

SheldonYoung (25077) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445352)


I hate these damn things. (5, Funny)

scott1853 (194884) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445357)

My kid has 2 of those yappy robo-dog things that sit up and show different emotions in their LED eyes. Who's the fucking moron that didn't put an "off" switch on these things, and decided that the battery compartment needed to be screwed on!

Just what I need, my cars going to "wake up" and start honking its horn in the middle of the night because of thunder, and I'll have to wait 20 minutes for it to shutup on its own.

Yeah great (0)

gnireenigne (147835) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445362)

So... how long before we get the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Cars (SPCC)? Will you get charged for car abuse? Can the SPCC take your car into custody because you didn't keep it in a nice clean garage?

Time to find a new location... (2)

nick_davison (217681) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445363)

"the car will also take pictures when it determines the atmosphere inside is a happy one"

Time to stop having amorous secret liasons with your mistress in the family car then.

What I want my car's expression to say: (2)

fishbowl (7759) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445364)

I am PISSED off, and I can do the quarter mile in under 12, and oh yeah, I'm PAID FOR.

Interesting (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2445371)

Does it do "stoned" or "mildly drunk?"

Déjà vu? (1)

glwillia (31211) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445372)

This thing looks a lot like a four-door version of the BMW Isetta [cqql.net] .

This concept Toyota could only come from the same country that gave us the Aibo. It's cute, friendly, and completely ridiculous--technology for technology's sake. Again, a quintessential modern-day Japanese idea. (On the other hand, some of their other ideas--such as the Honda Insight and Toyota Prius--are quite nice, and long overdue. I just hope enough people can overcome their SUV craze to buy these).

Happy Snaps! (1)

Nathdot (465087) | more than 13 years ago | (#2445373)

the car will also take pictures when it determines the atmosphere inside is a happy one

Teenage guy borrows the car from his parents to pick up his girlfriend. Later that night the atmosphere inside the car is a happy one. Car takes photos and faxes them to the parents.


This is non-sense (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2445374)

I do not understand that. Why would I want a car with emotion? I want a car to take me from point A to point B. Period.

Its the same thing that speech recongnition: I do not talk to machines, I talk to people. I do not understand why people want to push useless technology into anything they can think of. Somebody needs to use common sense and see through this B.S.

(do not even get me started on "Wearable Computers"...)
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