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Self-Driving “Olli” Gives IMTS Attendees a Free Ride

Self-Driving “Olli” Gives IMTS Attendees a Free Ride

The IMTS Ride Experience offers show visitors a ride in Olli, a self-driving vehicle from Local Motors featuring IBM Watson, which enables riders to ask the vehicle questions in a normal human voice.

The “IMTS Ride Experience” will give show attendees a glimpse into the future of autonomous mobility in Olli, which interacts with riders through IBM Watson.

The International Manufacturing Technology Show (IMTS) has partnered with Local Motors to offer the IMTS Ride Experience featuring the breakthrough technology in “Olli,” the first self-driving electric vehicle equipped with IBM Watson Internet of Things (IoT) technology.

Built by Local Motors, Olli can carry up to 12 riders and will navigate a track in the C Hall of the North Building at IMTS at McCormick Place in Chicago this week. Limited to about 5 mph for show purposes (but capable of 25 mph), Olli uses the cloud-based cognitive computing capability of IBM Watson to analyze and learn from high-volume data produced by more than 30 sensors embedded in the vehicle, including cameras, GPS, and LIDAR (Light Imaging, Detection, And Ranging).

Olli was designed from the ground up by Local Motors, the company that shook up the manufacturing industry when it 3D-printed and assembled a car, the now-famous Strati, live in less than two days at IMTS in 2014.

Designed for travel in dense, urban areas and college and corporate campuses, riders can “hail” Olli via an app or a kiosk. While cloud analytics and live data enable Olli to react faster than any human, a remote operator provides human supervision.

To enhance the autonomous vehicle travel experience, Olli uses Watson’s capabilities to enable riders to ask complex questions in “natural language” voice. In its real-life testing locations (currently National Harbor, Md., and Las Vegas and Miami later this year), Olli takes route instructions and explains what is happening during the trip.

In addition to Olli, Local Motors will have other 3D-printed vehicles (including the Strati) on display at its booth, NC-780, which is immediately next to the IMTS Ride Experience. Siemens PLM Software, a longtime partner, will also showcase its Solid Edge software at the booth, as Local Motors uses Solid Edge in the design and build of all its vehicles. 

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