Car Pool Coordination

It’s already happening in a few cities. Lone drivers who want to use car pool lanes can stop at informal gathering spots to pick up passengers who need rides. But passengers aren’t always going to the same destinations as drivers-and some drivers prefer quiet passengers to talkative ones. So information science researchers Paul Resnick of the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor and Marc Smith at Microsoft are creating a computerized system that will make it easier for drivers and passengers in any city to find happy car pool matches. Called RideNow, the system starts with a Web interface where users can log in, specify their preferences, and enter their destinations and the approximate times at which they want to travel. Software matches up drivers and passengers, calls both parties’ cell phones, and patches the calls together so that the users can negotiate a meeting place. Resnick says tests of the system should start this fall in Ann Arbor. Later, Resnick hopes, startups might want to commercialize the service in cities without extensive public transportation, perhaps charging a subscription fee.

Uh oh–you've read all five of your free articles for this month.

Insider Premium

$179.95/yr US PRICE

More from undefined

Want more award-winning journalism? Subscribe to Insider Premium.

  • Insider Premium {! insider.prices.premium !}*

    {! insider.display.menuOptionsLabel !}

    Our award winning magazine, unlimited access to our story archive, special discounts to MIT Technology Review Events, and exclusive content.

    See details+

    What's Included

    Bimonthly home delivery and unlimited 24/7 access to MIT Technology Review’s website.

    The Download. Our daily newsletter of what's important in technology and innovation.

    Access to the Magazine archive. Over 24,000 articles going back to 1899 at your fingertips.

    Special Discounts to select partner offerings

    Discount to MIT Technology Review events

    Ad-free web experience

    First Look. Exclusive early access to stories.

    Insider Conversations. Join in and ask questions as our editors talk to innovators from around the world.

You've read of free articles this month.