Researchers introduce gaming to Autonomous vehicle

Latest study led by a team of researchers from the University of Waterloo have designed games for autonomous vehicles. Sources suggest these are multiplayer games created for level three and higher semi-autonomous vehicles. These are meant for multiplayer games occupants allowing them to play the games with other players from nearby self-driving cars.

Experts suggest level three and other higher semi-autonomous vehicles are the ones which have minimum environmental detection capabilities. These further enable the cars to make informed decisions for themselves.

According to Matthew Lakier, PhD student of Waterloo’s School of Computer Science, and a member of Waterloo’s Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) Lab. Lakier determines autonomous vehicles are beginning to replace conventional vehicles, as a result of which occupants will have more time than earlier.

This is attributed to be one of the main reasons for introducing the concept of games in autonomous cars with players from nearby vehicles. This feature will be active when the car is driving itself and the games will be placed on top of the actual world. Drivers will therefore not require to take their eyes off the road.

Introducing intelligent technologies for self-driving cars is common. These technologies help to make the cars safe. In the future, vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) communication and heads-up displays (HUDs) will become a regular feature. The V2V feature enables the cars to identify similar cars from the vicinity. The HUDs on the windshield informs drivers about the car’s speed, in addition to notifying about the road conditions.

An elaborate literature review was undertaken by researchers to recognize shortcomings in the previous research with regards to autonomous vehicles. The study revealed greater importance was not given to cross-car games.

With the help of a virtual reality (VR) driving stimulator, the car cabin, roadway with artificially controlled cars and intelligent computer controlled players could be rendered. The stimulator also worked as a framework for rapid prototyping of in-car games. This will further foster enhanced technologies such as full windows HUDs, V2V, different input methods and head tracking.

Reports suggest, the three cross-car games were tested by twelve participants. The game was played with occasional take-over tasks and was completed with the Player Experience Inventory questionnaire. This ultimately also calculated player experience.

“Overall, the participants rated the games highly in immersion, there was a positive response to the incorporation of HUDs in the games, and the different game styles did not significantly impact the take-over task completion time. All games were popular for different reasons,” commented Lakier.

“People were happy to play with strangers. So, for example, they said they could form impromptu relationships with other people on the road.”