Mi­crosoft and Toy­ota join forces in FIA World Rally Cham­pi­onship

Ex­pand­ing part­ner­ship in ‘ever-bet­ter cars’

Kuwait Times - - SPORTS -

Toy­ota re­cently an­nounced that it has reached an agree­ment with Mi­crosoft to col­lab­o­rate in the 2017 FIA World Rally Cham­pi­onship (WRC) series. As part of the agree­ment, Mi­crosoft will serve as a ‘tech­nol­ogy part­ner’ for the TOY­OTA GAZOO Racing WRC rally team.

Mo­tor­sports of­fer an im­por­tant way to con­vey the ex­cite­ment of driv­ing, and are at the heart of Toy­ota’s ef­forts to fos­ter a greater fol­low­ing of car fans and en­thu­si­asts. Con­duct­ing these ac­tiv­i­ties un­der the um­brella of TOY­OTA GAZOO Racing al­lows Toy­ota to de­velop its peo­ple and im­prove its prod­ucts, thereby con­tribut­ing to the cre­ation of ‘ever­bet­ter cars’. Un­der the lead­er­ship of Team Prin­ci­pal Tommi Moki­nen, Toy­ota is de­vel­op­ing a rally ve­hi­cle sched­uled to be­gin com­pet­ing in 2017.

Us­ing Mi­crosoft tech­nol­ogy, Toy­ota wants to max­i­mize its com­pet­i­tive­ness in WRC, whilst en­sur­ing that learn­ings from the race course can be used to achieve the com­pany’s vi­sion of de­sign­ing and man­u­fac­tur­ing ‘ever-bet­ter cars’.

* Devel­op­ment of a data anal­y­sis plat­form to gather, vi­su­al­ize and an­a­lyse var­i­ous data re­lated to driv­ing which will be uti­lized in race ac­tiv­i­ties.

* Cre­ation of a team in­for­ma­tion-shar­ing sys­tem to al­low team mem­bers to col­lab­o­rate and share var­i­ous ma­te­ri­als such as im­ages and videos ef­fi­ciently and ef­fec­tively us­ing a cloud ser­vice.

* En­hance­ment of com­mu­ni­ca­tion with fans through pro­vid­ing ser­vices uti­liz­ing the cloud and us­ing Mi­crosoft’s dis­play de­vices to pro­vide them with a front-row mo­tor­sports ex­pe­ri­ence.

The an­nounce­ment builds on the ex­ist­ing part­ner­ship be­tween Toy­ota and Mi­crosoft. Most re­cently, the two com­pa­nies col­lab­o­rated on the es­tab­lish­ment of Toy­ota Con­nected, a new user ex­pe­ri­ence and prod­uct-devel­op­ment com­pany aimed at ex­pand­ing, col­lect­ing and an­a­lyz­ing large amounts of ve­hi­cle data to help fur­ther im­prove qual­ity, safety and the driv­ing and own­er­ship ex­pe­ri­ence for Toy­ota cus­tomers. Takayuki Yoshit­sugu, Chief Rep­re­sen­ta­tive, Mid­dle East and North Africa Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Of­fice, Toy­ota Mo­tor Cor­po­ra­tion, said: “Toy­ota has a long-term com­mit­ment to mo­tor racing and we are con­stantly seek­ing new ways to make mo­tor­sport more ex­cit­ing and build a larger fol­low­ing of car fans and en­thu­si­asts. The part­ner­ship with Mi­crosoft will al­low Toy­ota to more deeply ex­ploit the pos­si­bil­i­ties of in­for­ma­tion tech­nol­ogy to ad­vance our vi­sion of build­ing and pro­mot­ing ‘ever-bet­ter cars’. We are thank­ful to our cus­tomers for their un­wa­ver­ing sup­port, which mo­ti­vates us to con­stantly ex­per­i­ment and push the bound­aries of ex­cel­lence.”

Toy­ota un­der­stands the im­por­tant role that in­for­ma­tion tech­nol­ogy must play in or­der to fur­ther ac­cel­er­ate the devel­op­ment of the au­to­mo­tive in­dus­try. Gath­er­ing valu­able data will help lay the foun­da­tion for the fu­ture of sus­tain­able mo­bil­ity. This, in turn, will help cre­ate a so­ci­ety in which ev­ery­one can live at ease, safely and freely. An­other im­por­tant con­trib­u­tor to a safer au­to­mo­tive fu­ture is the Toy­ota Re­search In­sti­tute1 (TRI), which is fo­cused on ar­ti­fi­cial in­tel­li­gence for au­to­mo­biles, ro­bot­ics and sci­en­tific dis­cov­ery. TRI is bring­ing to life Toy­ota’s vi­sion of au­ton­o­mous driv­ing, which fol­lows a dou­ble ap­proach. The first type of ap­pli­ca­tion is ‘Chauf­feur Mode’, where the car is fully au­ton­o­mous. It has the po­ten­tial to of­fer mo­bil­ity to those who would not oth­er­wise have it, such as older peo­ple and those with spe­cial needs. In or­der to ac­com­plish this safely, it is es­ti­mated that some 14.2 bil­lion kilo­me­ters 2 of test­ing, in­clud­ing sim­u­la­tion, are re­quired. Mi­crosoft is an im­por­tant part­ner in the test-mile ac­cu­mu­la­tion, since a lot of the work can be done through multi-agent sim­u­la­tion.

The sec­ond ap­pli­ca­tion of au­ton­o­mous driv­ing that Toy­ota is pur­su­ing is the ‘Guardian Mode’ or high-level driver as­sist. This tech­nol­ogy is a fur­ther evo­lu­tion of cur­rent safety mech­a­nisms such as Toy­ota Safety Sense, and is de­signed to sup­port the driver as nec­es­sary, even tak­ing over the car in cer­tain cir­cum­stances. The knowl­edge that they have this safety net will en­able cus­tomers to en­joy their drive to the fullest. The Toy­ota Re­search In­sti­tute, Toy­ota Con­nected and Mi­crosoft are united in their ef­forts to use cut­ting-edge tech­nol­ogy to es­tab­lish safer, cleaner and more con­ve­nient mo­bil­ity.

CHICAGO: Luke Ro­mano, TJ Per­e­nara, Is­rael Dagg and Julian Savea of the New Zealand All Blacks pose with some Chicago Bulls cheer­lead­ers as they watch the Chicago Bulls play the In­di­ana Pac­ers at the United Cen­tre on Sun­day in Chicago, Illi­nois. The All Blacks will play Ire­land at Sol­dier Field next week­end. —AFP

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