The task of getting a driver's license in India has long been a tedious (often subjective) process that revolves around the opinion of a single person- your evaluator.
However, Microsoft wants to change that; it has developed an artificial intelligence-based system that uses a smartphone to give an automated and fair analysis of your driving skills.
Here's all about it.
Currently, manual evaluators judge your driving
Irrespective of your state, it is mandatory to take a test for getting a driver's license.
In India, you have to perform a series of maneuvers that are monitored by a evaluator sitting next to you.
Then, based on their assessment of your performance, the evaluator assigns a score confirming whether you passed or failed.
Microsoft wants to automate assessment with HAMS project
As individual opinion can be subjective, sometimes even biased, Microsoft has introduced an AI engine to judge your driver's license test.
The system, dubbed Harnessing AutoMobiles for Safety or HAMS, employs windshield-mounted smartphone's sensors, including cameras and accelerometer, and sophisticated algorithms to simultaneously monitor a driver and how they are driving the vehicle according to the conditions on the road.
Initially, this system was designed for driver training
Notably, Microsoft had originally designed this system as an automated way to monitor a driver's performance and provide actionable feedback for road safety.
The monitoring aspect of the system extended naturally into the test evaluation category.
The company just had to make a few customizations, like introducing the ability to track vehicle's trajectory according to different maneuvers, to make the system evaluation ready.
Dehradun Regional Transport Office already using the system
Now, the HAMS system makes an excellent solution to automatically monitor a driver and give a fair assessment of their skills.
In fact, the technology is reasonably good, and the Dehradun Regional Transport Office in Uttarakhand has already started using it for their driver's license test.
Microsoft notes that it is ready to spread into other cities as well.
Plus, unbiased AI only allows qualified drivers to pass
"Over 50 candidates take the HAMS-enabled automated license test every day at the Dehradun RTO," Akshay Nambi from Microsoft India said. "Due to the comprehensive nature of testing, just about 50% candidates pass the test, ensuring that only qualified drivers are given a driver's license."