Earlier this year, Toyota was hit by an epic disaster in the United States. The automaker's cars were accused of defects that caused vehicles to accelerate uncontrollably. The alleged fault was blamed for numerous accidents, including one where a rental Lexus went out of control and crashed at over 100 miles per hour, killing four passengers inside.
The problem is still unexplained despite investigation by numerous organizations because no one has found a way to consistently reproduce the issue. One proposed solution is the introduction of a black box that, much like the equipment found on an airline, records data about a car's operation. That information could be used after an accident to determine the driver's actions and the vehicle's response.
Intel believes that this technology is inevitable, and is creating a product that could be sold to auto manufacturers. The project, which doesn't seem to have an official name, is a hardware and software solution capable of monitoring telemetry, road conditions and the use of safety equipment such as seat belts and traction control.
The introduction of an electronic watchdog is probably not how most tech enthusiasts dreamed Intel would step into the automotive market, but it is likely that this technology will be available at least as an option – if not standard – on future automobiles.