Michigan State Police Trooper Rene Gonzales talks to his car while patrolling Michigan’s freeways. And his car talks back. Gonzales is one of a handful of troopers who pilot patrol cars that respond to voice commands via a new high-tech software program called TACNET, says the Detroit News. Developed for police vehicles by Visteon Corp., TACNET has been tested in half a dozen Michigan State Police vehicles. The department said it hopes to install it in 50 more in the next two years.
Gonzalez can control the functions in his car either by voice command, through a touch-screen computer or via a small pod down by the edge of my seat. The system allows him to tell the vehicle to activate any number of functions in the vehicle, including my radar, camera, radio, AM/FM radio, lights and siren. “It frees me up to concentrate on my driving,” he said. “I no longer have to type information into a bulky computer while I’m trying to keep my eyes on the road.”