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Who will be the Chief Information Officer for your New Car?

Today, everybody in business knows the crucial role of a good CIO.  The CIO has to both understand technology, and think like a CEO.  Last year’s book, “The Practical CIO,” by Jose Eiras, provided multiple suggestions, including not just focusing on the tech products, but showing what those products can do.  And “spread out”:  employees at all levels should have a working knowledge of information technology, possible security risks, and how standards and policies reduce threats.

So for your home Wi-Fi network, who’s your CIO?  Who manages your home network, and trouble shoots the connection issues?  Is that CIO you, or your teenager?  A few years ago, we entered the age when each of our homes needed their own CIO.

We’re at the doorstep of another new age – Connected Vehicles.  The connectivity and software-based systems available in many new vehicles, and after-market devices, now require (only half-jokingly) the vehicle’s own CIO.

“Connected Vehicles” are an important current initiative of the U.S. DOT’s research, and combine technology, interfaces, and processes that will ensure safe, stable, interoperable, and reliable transportation system operations.  As the future CIO of your car or truck, you’ll be dealing with vehicle-to-vehicle and vehicle-to-infrastructure safety applications, and dynamic mobility applications while you’re making an environmentally-friendly trip.

In a Fortune magazine interview, automaker Bill Ford talked about how a network of cars connected by Wi-Fi technology will revolutionize the way we drive and even the way our cities are designed.  Ford noted that most of the technology is already in the vehicle, but what’s so costly is the infrastructure.

When that infrastructure is available, what will happen?  Traffic data will reach the vehicle, less-congested routes will be planned, you’ll avoid a crash 10 vehicles ahead, and your car will reserve a smart parking space and direct you to it.  As both driver and CIO, your car will be your mobile IT platform.


Posted 06-20-2011 8:42 PM by Schopp, Bruce


Rob Parkes wrote re: Who will be the Chief Information Officer for your New Car?
on 06-22-2011 7:32 AM

There is a lot of activity going on around the Connected Car right now. To progress to the stage where we have a centralised intelligence making recommendations or decisions about traffic is going to require a regulated approach and is a little way off, but there are exciting developments such as the Smart City of Masdar in Abu Dhabi where automated pods transport goods and people beneath the "streets". The google driverless car has completed 140k miles with little human intervention (see my blog and the Nissan Leaf electric vehicle will be launched with 5 years free connectivity included in the purchase price. In the short term we will see vehicles connected to a centralised point to deliver services such as infotainment, maintenance information and charging advice for electric vehickes. Beyond that, who knows but it is coming!

Rob Parkes


v2x wrote re: Who will be the Chief Information Officer for your New Car?
on 06-29-2011 4:28 PM

I am glad to see more coverage on this new technology. I was doing a blog about it, but couldn't find people interested enough in it, but a lot of people scared of haveing their cars communicating.

I am excited about it personally.

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