Have you ever fallen asleep while driving? I don’t drive as much at night as I used to, so lately this hasn’t been a problem for me; however, when I was in my 20s, it was a completely different story.
I used to drive every Friday night from Savannah to Charleston, which took many hours, and I always did it in the middle of the night. I remember sometimes closing one eye and driving. Every now and then I would pull over in a parking lot just to sleep for an hour.
It always freaks me out when I read stories about people who fall asleep while driving because I know how dangerous it can truly be. It’s an innocent mistake that anyone can make. Now there is a new technology which will help to make sure this doesn’t happen again. Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Digital Media Technology in Germany developed a system called Eyetracker.
Eyetracker does exactly what it says; it tracks your eye movement, specifically your pupil and line of vision. When Eyetracker notices that you are about to possibly fall asleep, it alerts you. Of course, all this takes place while you are driving. There have been other systems in the past that have tried to do this, but they have not been very successful. Since each person has different facial features, and eyes, it’s been a tricky little bugger to figure out.
Researchers are excited that this new technology may also be used in other areas like the medical field and the gaming industry. Since the whole system, including the camera, is about the size of a matchbox, it can be installed in just about any car.
[via Geeky Gadgets, Dvice]