The IBM computer company and  Local Motors, the leading vehicle technology integrator and creator of the world’s first 3D-printed cars, introduced  last Thursday, (June 16th, 2016), in National Harbor (Washington), the first self-driving vehicle to integrate the advanced cognitive computing capabilities of IBM.

This minibus, called “Olli” is able to accommodate up to 12 seats and drives each person to the desired location with a simple voice exchange with Watson, a supercomputer manufactured by Local Motors. This is the first initiative of IBM in the sector of autonomous vehicles.
Olli is a robot directed by Artificial Intelligence Watson created by IBM. While IBM has not worked directly in the construction of the bus, the company has made available its artificial intelligence installed in the cloud so the bus becomes intelligent, sensitive and able to understand the language interactions. So you can ask him to drive you to a specific place, or even harass the bus with your impatience by asking for your arrival. It will run.

Printed in ten hours and assembled in an hour

Olli was designed as an on-demand transportation solution that passengers can summon with a mobile app, like Uber rides. And it can be “printed” in “micro factories” in a matter of hours.
“Olli offers intelligent and sustainable transport solution that is long overdue,” said John Rogers, the founder and CEO of Local Motors, a company based in Arizona (southwest).
“We are now ready to accelerate the development of this technology and apply it to almost any vehicle in our range,” he added in an interview with AFP.
According to him, Local Motors has a competitive advantage as the company builds its vehicles entirely by 3D printing. “This vehicle can be printed in ten hours and assembled in an hour,” he said, referring to a future with hundreds of “micro-factories” in the world to do so.
According to Harriet Green, a manager of Watson super intelligent computer program, the minibus is based on thirty sensors and a connection with virtual computer servers (cloud).

Not allowed to ride

Without driver, Olli is not yet available to the public. The first tests were made in Washington.
However, John Roger, co-founder of Local Motors, hopes the regulations change rapidly in order to put its smart bus available to the general public on the American and European routes, he is currently negotiating for the bus to circulate in Las Vegas and Miami in the United States but also in several cities around the world as Berlin (Germany), Copenhagen (Denmark) and Canberra in Australia.

Étudiant en Master 2 Commerce Électronique

Université de Strasbourg

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