If, one day, we really are all going to be carted around in driverless cars from the likes of Google and others, then we may as well have some apps on board to keep us occupied. Today, the Linux Foundation announced that it was throwing its hat into the car-apps ring, with the creation of the Automotive Grade Linux Workgroup. Early sign-ups among car companies include Jaguar Land Rover, Nissan and Toyota. Tech companies include Harman, Intel, NEC, NVIDIA, Samsung, and Texas Instruments, along with Tizen, the Linux-based platform backed by Samsung and Intel.
The Linux Foundation is not exactly an early mover here. We’ve already seen “car of the future” odes from the likes of Ford and Honda – not to mention Google — even some suggestions that Apple is working on concepts, too. The point with the Linux news, it seems, is to try to keep it relevant in that wider picture of development, and to try impart some standards in the process.
Members of the group will work together on Linux-based standards for devices and subsequent services to run on them, with some early emphasis on apps for in-vehicle infotainment and “instrumentation cluster” (the technical term for all the different gauges you use to monitor speed, distance, water levels and more; car diagnostics).