Parking The Google Car

Cars on Freeway

It’s the year 2025. Just 10 years from today. Your son, daughter, grandchild, etc. — let’s go with your niece — Emma, wakes up, grabs a squeezable meal, and heads out the door. She gets into a Google Car (or Apple or whatever Smart Car you like) and heads to school.

Since the car needs no steering, no shifting…no anything, she is free to use the next 20 minutes studying for that big test. Since we’re pioneering “Wi-Fi Everywhere” options now, allowing for mobile wifi even when traveling at speeds of up to 80 mph, connecting to her study materials is easy. Since the car no longer needs a true “driver’s seat”, she swivels the chair facing sideways, pushes the travel desk out of the armrest, and grabs her devices.

Of course then she has to call her two best friends, also taking the test, to see how they can help. She instructs the car to make the call. Lexi is on a bus with full video conferencing available through her seat while Amelia is walking. So, while Emma and Lexi are both fully video available, Lexi is only an avatar as her glasses wouldn’t allow for a headshot anyway. But she has her friends up on the glasses display as she augments her world during the 3 mile walk to school.

Their study habits are a mix of old and new, social and task. They talk about boys while they cover the content. Their displays give them pointers about aspects they seem weak on while encouraging them all through points and badges with regard to concepts seemingly mastered.

Emma arrives at school and her car goes into the drop-off lane. She sees Lexi and Amelia waiting for her at the top of the stairs. She gets out, tells the car to park itself, and runs up to her friends, chatting and giggling.

The car drives away, waiting for Emma’s signal to come pick her up. Since it is communicating with other smart cars on the road, it knows right where to go for a close-by parking space.

It’s Digital Learning Day today. We are on the verge of anywhere, anytime learning in a way never before seen. Moving wifi – companies are already selling those solutions in South America and Brazil. Adaptive content – companies are creating taxonomies with triggers and cues to show students how they learn, what they’ve learned, and how to improve. Smart cars – Google estimates 25% of the cars on the road will be smart cars by 2025.

So grab your tablet, open a Math or English game app, and smile. Enjoy the feel of the device in your hands. Marvel at what we can do today that wasn’t even on the radar 100 years ago.  And then remember, in 10 years, you might not be buying a new device, but a pair of contacts that do all of the same things…

Good luck and good learning!

Dr. Jeff D Borden
Chief Innovation Officer


About the Author
Dr. Jeff Borden

Dr. Jeff Borden

Dr. Jeff Borden (@bordenj), Saint Leo University’s Chief Innovation Officer, is a consultant, speaker, professor, comedian, and trainer, all while creating an incubator of innovation learning at SLU. Having continuously taught for 20 years as well as consulted, trained, and presented ways by which to transform education at scale, Jeff has assisted faculty, administrators, executives, and even politicians in conceptualizing and designing eLearning programs globally. Jeff has testified before the U.S. Congress’ Education Committee, blogs for Innovations, provides global keynote addresses, publishes in both Education and Communication periodicals, and has been asked to transform teaching and learning, at scale, for Saint Leo.  Jeff is also a regular contributor to the Teaching & Learning blog.


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