New generation of car navigators

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Mapping Traffic Flow

According to an article published this week in Technology Review, new traffic software will allow drivers to find the fastest route to their destination.
Drivers are always looking for the fastest way. Now, Tele Atlas, a Boston-based company that offers digital maps and navigation content, has integrated new traffic software with its map database that allows drivers to find the best route in terms of speed, not according to the distance.

Developed by Kirkland, Washington-based startup Inrix, the software that provides real-time predictive traffic information determines the average speed of American highways based on two years of traffic information collected by vehicle fleets. commercial; uses real-time global positioning software and road sensors from the Ministry of Transport. These billions of data points are then processed through proprietary software to create a table of historical traffic patterns based on time and day of the week.

The table contains 168 attributes (24 hours for each of the seven days of the week) and each attribute has an average speed related to a road segment, identified by a traffic message code. This code is included in the Tele Atlas maps. When drivers enter their starting position and destination, the navigation device creates a route algorithm, triggers the traffic message codes, and then looks up these codes in the information table to identify the average speed of these roads. This speed is applied to the algorithm and the road segments can be seen on the device screen with a color code (green, yellow, red or black) depending on the results. Thus, green indicates a clear road, while black indicates that there is a caravan.

Currently, map databases calculate the travel time between two points based on the location of the roads and their set speed limit, but that can be extremely inaccurate as traffic varies based on the time of day and the day of the week we meet, something that this new software does take into account.

The only comparable product on the market today has been developed by LandSonar, a San Francisco company. This company has recently partnered with TrafficCast to launch an updated version with more data and content in real time, but its product is limited to about 725 km of road and three days a week.

Tele Atlas will offer a software update every four months or whenever it has a new map database.

Source: Technology Review

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