One day when your grandchildren need a ride to the mall, just sit back and relax. The iPad will drive 'em there.
Sounds far-fetched. And perhaps it is. But it's a reality that Oxford University researchers are working toward with a surprising degree of success.
The researchers are touting a new robotic technology that enables the Apple iPad to take control of a vehicle's navigation. The system developed is capable of recognizing its surroundings using small cameras and lasers built into the body of the adapted electric car. All components of the system are connected to a computer in the boot.
The work is a milestone on the way to creating everyday vehicles that can offer 'auto drive' for some parts of a journey, taking the strain off drivers during a busy commute or school run.
Newman envisions a time when such an option is both affordable and easy to come by on automobiles everywhere.
"Instead of imagining some cars driving themselves all of the time we should imagine a time when all cars can drive themselves some of the time," he added. "The sort of very low cost, low footprint autonomy we are developing is what’s needed for everyday use."