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Posts Tagged: "General Motors"

Judge Allows Copyright Claim by Mural Artist to Proceed Against General Motors

U.S. District Judge Stephen V. Wilson of the Central District of California recently issued an order granting-in-part and denying-in-part a motion for summary judgment made by Detroit, MI-based automaker General Motors in a copyright case brought by a Swedish artist who painted a street mural which GM used in its marketing materials. Although Judge Wilson granted summary judgment in favor of GM on the plaintiff’s Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) and punitive damages claims, the artist’s claim for copyright infringement has been allowed to proceed to trial.

Ford Developing Autonomous Systems for Police Cars, Other Emergency Vehicles

A statement published on the official website of Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F) indicates that the company expects to have a fully autonomous car in commercial operation by 2021. Ford believes that it will be able, by that time, to produce a vehicle which meets Level 4 automation as standardized by the engineering association SAE International. Last October, Ford CEO Jim Hackett announced that Ford will bring autonomous vehicles to a test market this year. One of the strategies the company will pursue is partnering with other companies to help bring the technology into the market, such as autonomous Domino’s pizza delivery services in Miami where the company will test how consumers interact with autonomous delivery services. Ford is investing $ 1 billion into vehicle artificial intelligence firm Argo AI to develop systems that give Ford vehicles the ability to transverse an urban environment like Miami.

GM and Honda announce joint investment in fuel cell development, marrying two largest patent portfolios in the field

The official announcement released by both GM and Honda notes that both companies enjoy patent portfolios related to fuel cell battery technologies, which are among the world’s largest. A review of clean energy patents granted during 2015 by the Clean Energy Patent Growth Index (CEPGI) shows that GM and Honda rank first and second, respectively, among companies that have been assigned U.S. patents directed at fuel cells between 2002 and 2015; the press release from the companies contradicts this slightly, claiming that Honda is third-place in this category. During the 14 years surveyed by the CEPGI, GM has earned 918 U.S. patents on fuel cells and related technologies while Honda has earned 757 U.S. patents.

Privacy and Security in the Age of the Driverless Car

The privacy implications of the driverless car are significant. The data that such a vehicle could collect and the potential uses of that data could be extraordinarily intrusive. Driverless cars could provide both historic and real-time, continuous geolocation data. Companies could utilize this data to determine not only your current location and destination but also every place that you have been. This data could lead to commercially valuable, but extremely sensitive and intimate information about individuals being discovered. Advertisers may be able to discern the purchasing patterns of individuals by tracking what stores they frequent. Insurers may be able to determine what the lifestyle of individuals is like by following their daily activities (e.g., constant trips to the gym) and dining habits (e.g., persistent trips to fast food restaurants).

Automakers own most vehicle infotainment patents despite gains by Android Auto, Apple CarPlay

Autonomous self-driving technologies may be grabbing headlines for vehicle manufacturers but it’s hardly the only direction in which carmakers are innovating. Infotainment systems bring a smartphone-like platform for software applications straight to the dashboard, providing everything from navigation assistance to streaming music services and even phone call capabilities. Knob-based radio and air conditioning controls are being replaced by touch-sensitive displays and voice-controlled services connecting drivers and passengers to Internet-based services. According to market research reports, the market for in-car infotainment systems is expected to rise from $14.4 billion in 2016 up to $35.2 billion in 2020.

Automakers Lead Silicon Valley in Self-Driving Car Development

The patent landscape for self-driving vehicles is also quickly expanding. As of 2013, patent applications related to this technology hit 2,500 per year. That rate is expected to increase. A lot of attention has been paid to the entry of major tech firms, including Google, thanks in part to eyebrow-raising technologies like their patent for an adhesive material for a car’s hood that is designed to “catch” a pedestrian who is inadvertently struck by an autonomous vehicle. But tech companies should expect plenty of competition. Despite reports that Silicon Valley tech giants are entering the autonomous vehicle race and risk upsetting the traditional market, a study from Thomson Reuters Intellectual Property and Science indicates that long-time automakers have taken the lead in autonomous vehicle development in terms of patents and patent applications.

How Autonomous Vehicles Work: The different shades of autonomy ranging up to a fully self-driving car

When considering what makes an autonomous vehicle truly autonomous, it’s important to note that there are different shades of autonomy leading up to the fully self-driving car. One of the organizations which maintains a rubric helping to define autonomous vehicles is the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), which recognizes five different levels of autonomy for vehicles, starting with Level 0, the most basic tier in which the driver controls all operations, as is the case for conventional vehicles today. Level 1 function-specific automation is reached when a single control function is automated, such as when electronic stability control systems help drivers maintain vehicle control, without completely replacing the need for driver vigilance. Level 2 combined function automation occurs when two primary control functions are designed to work together to relieve a driver…

Autonomous Cars – Patents and Perspectives

The recent Model 3 announcement by Tesla took the industry by storm and saw Tesla collecting a whopping $276 million in preorders in a matter of days. In focus in particular was the autopilot features on the new Tesla car – which meant that Autonomous Cars (a.k.a. driverless cars or self-driven cars) are finally breaching the line between concept and mainstream… Though efforts have escalated significantly in the last five years, autonomous cars are not a new concept. Initial research can be traced back all the way to the 1920s.

The Top 10 Patent Applications of 2015

Innovation in the automotive sector was a huge story, both for the types of technologies being developed and the companies pursuing the R&D in that field. Drones and robotics also played a role in other top patent applications which we’re profiling today. Rounding out our list of top 2015 innovations includes an emotion analysis system for financial security, wireless charging schemes, low-power communications for wearable devices and a greenhouse window that can generate electricity while improving crop yield.

Looking back on 2015, autonomous and electric vehicles dominate car tech headlines

In many ways, 2015 has been the year of the automobile, especially in the tech world. Throughout the course of the year we’ve noted a great deal of business and technological developments that have been reshaping the entire vehicle manufacturing sector. Gone are the days that the market is completely dominated by names such as General Motors Company, Ford Motor Company or Toyota Motor Corp. As 2015 draws to a close, these traditional automaker behemoths are seeing encroachment on their position from some unusual names, especially those residing in Silicon Valley.

Tech News Roundup: Bezos and Musk Square Off, LED ‘Li-Fi’ Internet and VTech Data Breach

Our latest Tech Round-Up here on IPWatchdog takes a brief glance at many of the stories which have caught our attention in recent days. As he often does, Elon Musk takes center-stage in a couple of news items regarding challenges he’ll be facing in the realms of space travel as well as electric vehicles. In Europe, the first successful installation of light-based wireless Internet could be the first step in a new age of Internet connectivity. Data breaches and genetically modified foods round out our discussion of recent events in the worlds of high-tech and science.

Tech Round-Up: Toyota Invests in AI, EU Safe Harbor Invalidated, New Android Chip Designs

American business interests could be adrift at sea after the European Court of Justice invalidated the U.S.-EU Safe Harbor agreement, which governs the transfer of data from European citizens to data centers outside of Europe. Meanwhile, the high tech world of Silicon Valley is getting a new, well-heeled neighbor when Japanese automaker Toyota Motors Corp. (NYSE:TM) realizes its plans of establishing a new five-year corporate venture focused on developing artificial intelligence (AI) technologies. Google is also undertaking the push to develop its own processing chips in an effort to stem fragmentation of Android device development.

FTC concerned over weak consumer provisions in automotive cybersecurity rules

At the end of October, the FTC again made a push on Capitol Hill for stronger data privacy standards, this time dealing specifically with the idea of connected cars. In prepared testimony for the hearing, entitled Examining Ways to Improve Vehicle and Roadway Safety, the commission brought up concerns it had with certain provisions of rules currently being drafted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), which will require auto manufacturers to outfit their cars with vehicle-to-vehicle communications units in an effort to improve safety on America’s roads. The testimony was presented by Maneesha Mithal, an associate director of the FTC’s Division of Privacy and Identity Protection, during an October 21st hearing of the House Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing and Trade.

In the global race for Electric Vehicle innovation, America tops Japan for first place

When looking specifically at patents that specifically mention “electric vehicles,” it looks as though there are reasons to feel good about America’s place in the world. Both Ford and General Motors Company are atop the leaderboard in this sector, placing first and second overall respectively. One Ford technology developed to allow electric vehicle owners to make sure that electricity drawn from a vehicle comes from renewable sources is outlined within U.S. Patent No. 9024571, entitled ‘Charging of Electric Vehicles Based on Historical Clean Energy Profiles.’ General Motors is hoping to change the perception that Electric Vehicles are capable of only short range use, as evident by recently issued U.S. Patent No. 9002552, titled “Compact Electric Range Extender for an Electric Vehicle.”

GM ahead of Ford in autonomous vehicle development, but Google trumps both

The development of robust vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) communication systems are needed for the incorporation of self-driving cars on our roads and GM has been working on its own V2V systems. With 25 U.S. patents, Ford has a much smaller autonomous driving patent portfolio than GM but we managed to find some interesting technologies. Fiat Chrysler is an Italian-American company with London headquarters so it seems sort of suspect to continue considering them as part of the Big Three. In any event, the most recent patent we could find for an autonomous navigation technology was issued to FCA in 2007, showing us that there’s not much autonomous vehicle development going on at the company anyway. It is, however, interesting to note that the first-place overall in the autonomous driving R&D sector is California-based Google, which holds 145 U.S. patents in this field.