A collaborative effort between the Personal Robots Group at the MIT Media Lab, MIT's SENSEable City Lab and the Volkswagen Group of America's Electronics Research Lab is set to yield the Affective Intelligent Driving Agent (AIDA)
AIDA is an in-car personal robot that is designed to alter the way drivers interact with their vehicles.
Professor Carlo Ratti, director of the SENSEable City Lab, commented, "In developing AIDA we asked ourselves how we could design a system that would offer the same kind of guidance as an informed and friendly companion."
Professor Cynthia Breazeal, director of the Personal Robots Group at the MIT Media Lab explained, "We are developing AIDA to read the driver's mood from facial expression and other cues and respond in a socially appropriate and informative way."
Over time, researchers believe that a symbiotic relationship will develop between the driver and AIDA, whereby both parties continually learn from one other and establish a strong bond.
According to an official statement:
To identify the set of goals the driver would like to achieve, AIDA analyzes the driver's mobility patterns, keeping track of common routes and destinations. AIDA draws on an understanding of the city beyond what can be seen through the windshield, incorporating real-time event information and knowledge of environmental conditions, as well as commercial activity, tourist attractions, and residential areas.
"When it merges knowledge about the city with an understanding of the driver's priorities and needs, AIDA can make important inferences," said Assaf Biderman, associate director of the SENSEable City Lab. "Within a week AIDA will have figured out your home and work location. Soon afterwards the system will be able to direct you to your preferred grocery store, suggesting a route that avoids a street fair-induced traffic jam. On the way AIDA might recommend a stop to fill up your tank, upon noticing that you are getting low on gas," added Biderman. "AIDA can also give you feedback on your driving, helping you achieve more energy efficiency and safer behavior."