The Edge of the Road Podcast
All about the Gadget on Wheels formerly known as your car.
 

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EOR 26 Back in Denver

After driving a low-tech borrowed Volvo for a month back in Cambridge, I return to our 2012 Ford Focus named Henry with a sense that I drive more safely when I'm not glancing at a screen inside the car. I have thought that familiarity with MyFord Touch would lessen the distraction of the system, and I still think that will help. But there is a basic issue here which I'm pondering. I'm also eager for the update to MyFord Touch, and I can't wait for AppLink to be available on the Focus. So there's no turning back!

I see complaints about the audio quality on pnone calls from MyFord Touch cars, as mentioned at the SyncMyRide web site. Darlene has complained about how I sound when I call her from the car, so this seems to be an issue. 

If you have comments or questions, please leave them here or email me at PodChronicles AT gmail dot com. 

Direct download: EOR_26_Len_Catchup.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:59pm EDT

EOR 25 Gene Izsak

For this episode I visited with a real-llife car shopper in Toledo, Ohio. Gene Izsac is an emergency room pediatrician at a hospital in Toledo. His daily commute to work is 2.8 miles, but that is enough for him to have developed a habit of listening to podcasts, audiobooks and non-radio music in his car. He's currently driving a 2009 Nissan Altima with an auxiliary audio in port, and he uses a cradle for his iPhone that plugs into the car's power outlet. I spoke with Gene by phone and Skype on Monday, December 12th. I plan to keep in touch with him as he concludes his search for a new car with appropriate, reliable consumer electronics capability.

Click here for the CNET video interview which Gene brought to my attention. It's with Julius Marchwicki, a Ford product manager involved in the SYNC technology platform.

Direct download: EOR_25_Gene_Izsak.mp3
Category:Interviews -- posted at: 8:58pm EDT

EOR 24 Ford's Gary Jablonski

I spoke today (November 30) with Gary Jablonski, Ford's product development manager for infotainment systems, including SYNC. He provided details of the major MyFord Touch update coming early next year, emphasizing that it will be included in 2013 model cars and available to existing MyFord Touch vehicles like my 2012 Ford Focus. This is great news, and I can't wait to get my hands on the USB stick drive that Ford will be sending me with the update.

Click here for a Ford video showing how the screens will be improved on MyFord Touch and here for a 2008 interview with Gary Jablonski which provides good background on the entire SYNC project.

UPDATE on 12/1/11: Today I received this message from C.J. Macklin, who coordinated my interview with Gary Jablonski: "We wanted to clarify one thing from our interview yesterday. Ford’s application processor is in the A8 family of ARM processors, not A9. More specifically, we wanted to provide you with the following from our site:

Processor, Memory, and Storage

Freescale i.MX51 SOC

Core CPU: ARM Cortex A8 @ 600 mHz

2D/3D graphics controller

512MB RAM

2GB NAND flash memory

Direct download: EOR_24_Gary_Jablonski.mp3
Category:Interviews -- posted at: 7:51pm EDT