Universities to explore Internet with…cars

Internet2 will provide electric vehicles to universities experimenting with the Internet of Things

electriccarresizedThe nonprofit computer networking consortium Internet2 will provide electric vehicles to four colleges and universities to be used in research of the Internet of Things.

The type of vehicle, unveiled this week at the Internet2 Global Summit in Denver, was created by Innova Inc. Based on European micro-car technology, the small car is called the Innova Dash and can move up to 35 mph. It can go about 100 miles before needing recharged.

“Our goals are for campuses to use this electric vehicle to enhance sustainability research involving data collection and data transfer across campus networks, and to adopt advanced identity management technologies,” said Steve Wolff, Internet2 chief technology officer. “At the same time, the vehicles will demonstrate a low-carbon-footprint campus transportation alternative.”

A mobile app will let users know when a vehicle is available. The vehicles can be accessed by using campus identification to log in, reserve, and activate them.

Inside the vehicle, drivers will find tablet-sized computers that can control the vehicle’s electronics. The vehicle can connect to campus wifi networks, allowing it to communicate with a university’s computer network.

It’s that communication that allows the cars to be used in Internet of Things research.

(Next page: What is the Internet of Things?)

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