This week four people were accused of hacking at least 500 million Yahoo accounts, Spotify partnered with Waze and Intel bought computer vision company Mobileye. These are the top stories of the week, and you can also get this post as a weekly newsletter in your inbox, if you prefer. 1. The U.S. Department of Justice accused of two Russian FSB officers and two criminal hackers of… Read More
The life of a long-haul trucker can be tough, even when they’re not behind the wheel. When it’s time to get some shuteye in the truck’s cab, some of them have a scant 36″ behind the seats in which to stuff a twin mattress, and there’s barely enough room to turn around back there, let alone get dressed and undressed. And for the trucker who brings their spouse on the road—yes, husband-and-wife trucker teams exist—it’s simply not enough space for two people to live out of.
For those that can pony up for a larger cab, an Indiana-based company called ARI Legacy Sleepers specializes in tricking them out with custom packages suited to the customer’s tastes. Let’s take a look at some of their work.
First off, if you see a cab that’s this size, you can bet there’s more behind the rear seats than just a twin mattress.
And you’d be right. When you look back between the seats, here’s what you see:
And here’s the view looking fore:
Overhead is a small, subtle lighting trick that provides the illusion of more space: Using a mirror and one-way mirror to provide “infinity lighting,” making the LEDS look like they stretch off forever overhead.
Close the curtains to the “cockpit” and enjoy your flatscreen in peace.
There’s plenty of storage both above and below the kitchen counter, which features an electric stovetop and a sink.
When not in use, both have covers that conceal them, providing uninterrupted counter space. This photo below is not the exact same interior, but you get the idea.
Also note the mirror above the sink, so the driver can shave.
Opposite the counter is a sofa and a little nook to the right of it.
You’ll notice a cable management port at back right; one can place a computer, laptop or gaming system here.
To the right of that is a door, and the toilet paper holder on the inside of it has probably clued you in…
…yep, they’ve got a bathroom in here.
A wall-mounted dispenser obviates the need for shelving.
Moving back inside the cabin, we see the sofa, which of course has storage beneath it.
You might think, “Is that where the driver sleeps?” Not exactly; note the dual tracks in the wall. An elevator bed motors down at the touch of a button.
For cabs where there is no rear door, the sofa and bed arrangement can be placed across the rear wall. And as you can see here, the choice of lighting strongly impacts your perception of the space.
The lighting scheme in this one here reminds me of The Peach Pit from the original Beverly Hills 90210.
And this one below is like The Peach Pit but with hardwood floors.
With spaces this small, the materials choice also makes a profound visual impact. This one here is owned by a married couple who both go on the road together, and I imagine it must recall what their actual home looks like, aesthetically:
Another customer has opted to have his look like more of a bachelor pad:
And for drivers who plan to do some open-air sightseeing during downtime, there’s an option to haul your Harley. Yep, if you’ve got the space you can have a motorcycle “garage” with side-loading ramp installed:
Ford spokesperson Mike Levine confirmed that all the charges have been dropped against the drivers of the Ford GT prototypes pulled over for speeding.
In an effort to advance their design reputation, Renault has engaged in a bold design exercise in their Trezor concept car unveiled at the Paris Motor Show. The all-electric, autonomous-driving-capable two-seater is as wildly impractical as any concept car, though some of the styling cues are expected to pop up in their future production lineup.
There is one interesting aspect to the design that no one seems to be discussing, and we’d like to get your feedback on it. Take a look at the video and see what jumps out at you:
No, we’re not talking about the crazy canopy. What interests us is the bit about how the exterior lighting changes when the car is being used in autonomous mode, to signal to other drivers that there is no human at the wheel.
The feature is of interest because currently, the only design element of current cars that are intended to communicate with other drivers are the turn signals. So our first question is, why is Renault proposing the Autonomous lighting scheme? To signal to surrounding drivers that extra care ought be taken as the human driver is otherwise engaged?
The second question is how this design language will be worked out. What pattern of lighting would signify “Autonomous,” and how would other drivers understand that that’s what it stood for? Would there be an industry-wide standard and some type of awareness campaign to educate the masses?
Bottom line: How useful would you find such a feature?
If autonomous cars become statistically safer than human drivers, which all parties working on such technology believe, then it seems the lighting alert would be unnecessary. However, it has jarred an idea: What I’d like to see on current, non-autonomous cars is an easily-discernible exterior light that illuminates when the driver is texting or otherwise engaged with his phone. Then I would know to steer well clear.
Nissan Leaf owners in the UK could soon come home, sell the leftover electricity from their cars for a profit, and then recharge during cheap, off-peak hours.
Filed under: Autonomous
Google said Monday one of its self-driving cars bore at least some responsibility for an accident earlier this month that involved a bus in Mountain View, California. The collision represents the first time one of the company’s autonomous vehicles has been at least partially responsible for a crash.
Uber is experimenting with Bop It toys to keep inebriated passengers entertained, and less likely to assault their drivers, in Charlotte, NC.
Uber has released yet another product called “UberCommute,” which is specifically geared for drivers going to certain locations who want to split the cost of the trip.
Filed under: Emerging Technologies
Drunk drivers kill approximately 11,000 people every year in the United States, a level of carnage that remains stubbornly high despite enormous resources expended by law enforcement officers and safety advocates intent on stopping them. One possible solution now lies in the palms of their hands.