- General Motors' blockchain patent finally got published, after two years since its submission.
- Patent application is for a new, constantly-updating map system that utilizes car sensors and blockchain tech.
- With blockchain and updating, this could be the key to having self-driving cars that rely on accurate maps.
General Motors, a well-known car maker, recently got its patent application published. The filing reveals that the patent is for a continuously-updating navigation map system. However, the key detail is that the system would operate on blockchain technology. It will also collect data from vehicle sensors, and use it to create a highly-reliable map for future autonomous cars.
How will this work?
While the filing only saw publication recently, on April 2nd, the company originally filed it on October 1st, 2018. It claims that the current, existing maps are not good enough, by design, for autonomous vehicles. Simply put, they are “difficult to keep dynamic without incurring large costs.”
Most such maps are difficult to maintain, as this can only be done via specialized vehicles. These vehicles’ reach is also rather limited, and they can only cover a few sections of the entire world.
So, in order to tackle the issue, GM believes that all that needs doing is distributing the sensors to as many vehicles as possible. Then, through the use of blockchain technology, the firm can constantly collect and use the data for continuous updates. From the users’ perspective, they would simply have to drive around, as they would anyway.
Meanwhile, the system would compare the real-time data feed to existing maps, and notice any differences. If multiple vehicles’ sensors report the same change, the map would consider it verified, and implement it for all users to see.
Also, the cars would maintain the network themselves, in partnership with mining nodes in data centers.