App: M2M App Challenge with “Personal Parking Assistant” for Tesla

On June 7 to 9, 2013, I participated with Henry Yu in the Machine-to-Machine app challenge organized by Connected Devices magazine in Santa Clara, CA. We won the first prize sponsored by IoBridge and were featured in and on the cover of the August/September issue of Connected World Magazine

We created an application to help drivers park their car in tight garage space, more accurately and faster. Here is the idea behind it…

  • Problem
    • Most people have big cars and a small or cluttered garage
  • Solution
    • Actively assist the driver during the parking and exit phases using:
      • 4 ultrasound sensors on the sides controls the lateral position, while a front ultrasound sensor controls when the car should stop
      • local feedback is given with a needle showing the direction to take, and a green light to show when you reach the right position
      • using IoBridge, the sensor information is sent in real-time to a web page showing the exact shape of the garage and the car moving inside
      • the driver of the Tesla Model S sees the web page inside the car in real-time (flight time < 180 ms)
    • Send tweet to dedicated Twitter accounts when the car is parked. That way, your spouse/family/friend is informed and knows the car can be used
    • Access the official list of recalls and automatically inform you for recalls of your car model
  • Potential
    • Reduce self-inflicted scratches and insurance premiums
    • Reduce stress while parking
    • Potentially reduce the number of cars needed by sharing more
  • Benefits
    • No maintenance (availability)
    • Everyday use (stickiness)
    • Real-time feedback (friendliness)
    • Install-it-yourself kit for home, office, mall, etc. (monetization)
    • Twitter (socialization)
    • Most precise/fastest (gamization)

The services and tools used were:

  • Iota from IoBridge,
  • The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) recall information,
  • The NHTSA dataset provided by,
  • Microsoft Visual Studio,
  • Tweeter.

Some future improvements to the system could be:

  • Store a secure log in the cloud
  • Use the log data to automatically detect unusual patterns and send security alerts
  • Automatically close the garage door and arm the house security when all cars are out
  • Use direction lights in addition to the needle
  • Parking precision game for teen drivers / seniors

And finally, two images of the prototype presented:

WP_20130609_005  wp_ss_20130609_0001

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