The beautiful new world: artificial intelligence in traffic

The industry association Bitkom claims that most Germans see very big chances for artificial intelligence (AI) in vehicles.

As soon as routes need to be optimized or tours are to be better planned, there is no way around telematics with corresponding systems. The technology ensures that data gets from the vehicle to the control centers and vice versa. That has been the case for almost two decades. So far, users in the industry were more likely to stay among themselves. This is changing.

AI lives off data

The times in which a navigation system only got an update every three months, which then already carried partly outdated data, are at least almost over. Many systems in cars and trucks can now be updated in real time. This also benefits planning and analysis software. The advent of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in these systems makes it possible to plan routes better and in case of congestion and accidents to determine an alternative route in time. But AI lives off data. It is therefore not enough to know that there has recently been an accident on the motorway, the possible alternative routes must then report current statuses to really find the best route – and here still sufficient material is lacking.

Navigate better with AI

Nevertheless, according to a survey of Bitkom nine out of ten German citizens wish that AI systems are used in vehicles. They should find the optimal route, avoid traffic jams and warn in case of accident hazards. A well justified wish, if then the data are available. This also applies to intelligent traffic control in cities. Here, too, according to the conviction of 86 percent of Germans, a traffic light circuit could be optimized or traffic lanes could be blocked or released if necessary. These so-called intelligent traffic systems (ITS) are increasingly establishing themselves in the cities. A few interesting examples will be presented this year at the ITS World Congress in Copenhagen, Denmark.

The Germans are a bit more reserved when asked whether they consider it useful to bring autonomous vehicles equipped with AI on the road. After all, with 58 percent of respondents more than half of the German citizens can imagine it.

Ralf Johanning

Ralf Johanning studied political science and works as a freelance journalist. For over ten years now he reports on the transportation and logistics industry. The priorities include topics such as telematics, software, and ICT. In 2006 the trained editor, Head, and Press Officer founded the editorial office Alte Schule with his partner Ann-Christin Wimber.

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