Robot bus drivers? Dubai will use AI to improve public transportation
Dubai is leaning into its Smart City Initiative, and will be using artificially-intelligent robots to improve many of its public transportation routes – namely, its busses.
According to the Road Transport Authority, artificially intelligence is being used to churn through thousands of hours of data, collected over 150 routes across the city. The clever AI then feeds all that data back to their human counterparts.
The measure should help transportation officials better track which routes should be modified or cancelled, as well as improve overall commuting speeds (for example, if stops are rarely used between certain hours they can be temporarily paused letting your bus go from A to B quicker).
Right now, that data analysis has been retrospective – data has been fed into an AI algorithm. But next, the RTA says it wants to develop more than 2,100 buses with that machine learning AI built-in.
Effectively, it will give human drivers an artificially intelligent co-pilot.
So far the RTA has tested the technology across 10 routes over the past 30 days. And the results look good.
“During a trial period, the RTA experimented on 10 routes where card data was employed to figure out all-day busy bus stops, stops used during peak hours, and rarely used stops," said Ahmed Mahboub, executive director of smart services at RTA.
"The trial phase, which was carried out for 30 days, resulted in saving time that would be wasted on bus routes by 13.3 per cent.”
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