4 Coolest Mobility Trends of 2017 – Page 3

3. Open Source

canstockphoto1996028In the fintech world, opening up core software to the developer community is not news. For the transportation space, however, open source collaboration is a (very) recent trend, said Josh Hartung, chief executive of PolySync.

“In the web world, for example, companies recognize that the value is not in owning stock, but bringing that value to end users, and making experiences happen,” Hartung said. “The automotive world is very different, it’s very proprietary and very closed, where companies tend to try and innovate quickly, deploy the tech to customers, and gain temporary competitive advantage.” As a result, innovation moves slower, he explained. But in the past year, thanks to companies like PolySync – which develops next-generation software for autonomous cars – more and more industry players recognize the value of open source data.

Last month, the company announced the launch of Open Source Car Control (OSCC) project – an open-source kit for autonomous vehicle development, containing all the necessary software tools for developing a self-driving car. The project’s mission is to lower the barrier of entry for startups that focus on self-driving cars, Hartung explained. Local Motors based the entire design of its Olli shuttles on a network of contributors, which allowed the company to 3D-print the vehicle in less than a week.

Major OEMs also followed suit: at the Consumer Telematics Show earlier this month, Ford Motor Co. and Toyota Motor Co. announced the formation of SmartDeviceLink Consortium (SDL), open source code for connecting apps to in-vehicle platforms that launched. The move lifts a significant barrier of entry for startups working on in-car technology.

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