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Tesla Out-Invented by BMW

Man Bites Dog

So, we don’t see this too often, namely that BMW has invented something for autos that Tesla hasn’t. That would be its  car that changes color. Yep. You heard that right. In fact, it uses e-ink to do it, that’s the stuff that Amazon uses in its Kindle. So, it’s not really color, not at this stage anyway, since its black and white all over and can switch between black and grays. But then again, not too shabby.

Now you might think this isn’t really all that much and BMW is just a one-trick pony in the innovation department. After all, once you’ve changed once, the magic would seem to be over. But let’s think about all of this to see where its going. For starters true color can’t be too far off, since there’s also e-ink tech that produces colors too. Whare does that take us, once might ask.

Ever heard of octopuses? Well, they have the same trick too, right? So, they can merge in with their surroundings. That’s worth having, say in the military. That’s good and not just for starters.

But no, there’s even more. What if it changes ink colors and patterns on the fly? It might send some info about me to others, or at least other cars. Octopuses seem to change color as a communications tool. Now things start go get interesting.

Say I can change the color of my car to one (maybe bright orange with flashing blue starts) that tells people that the occupants of this car are looking for a romantic interest? You get the idea.

Pastel Omms

And what if other cars have a color receiver that can read this message and respond to it knows of someone, maybe even in their very car? A new TV series is born.

And of course, we’re not just talking about romance. Where’s the nearest Indian restaurant? Does anyone know where the nearest hospital is? What’s the best holiday destination for 70-year-olds? And so on. Whatever you wanted to ask, find out. Or, for that matter, what is the misinformation du jour I’ve gotta know about.

So, when we consider all this, it ain’t chopped liver. Color-changing cars (or anything that changes its colors at will, like a pocketbook, a suit, or a pair of shoes. This opens up a huge new frontier for human communication. That includes art but goes way beyond it.

Until now color expressed aesthetic frontiers but was generally just limited to that, expansive as it might have been. Now colors are a new form of medium. Linked in with AI, anything colored can exchange communications with anything else it chooses to communicate with.

Social Media For Wheels?

Is this a new form of social media? Where views, emotions, thoughts, ideas can all be exchanged by AIs without human “masters” having to be involved? Or, if you like to be involved, deeply, immersively, but unconscious-to-unconscious, a different level of communication that we’ve never formally had before except in the constrained limits of art?

What new forms of communication will it lead to? Is this a new form of intelligence, which will take humans to higher levels of thoughts, ideas and insights?

And this is coming from BMW no less, a rather nice little (kind of) automaker that makes good cars but is losing its former cool. Does the color-changing car change the equation? Yep, but only if it’s able to meet the challenge of innovating with these new forms of communication. Otherwise, it’s a flash in the plan, and Elon Musk will be able to rest easy for a while yet.

In the meantime, he’s been outfoxed. Let’s see what happens now.

Full disclosure: I have performed paid consulting work for BMW in the past.








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