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Feature Request: Better Range Projections using Logs & Statistics

Discussion in 'Model S: User Interface' started by Alexander, Feb 14, 2013.

  1. Alexander

    Alexander P# 8,878

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    Valencia, CA
    #1 Alexander, Feb 14, 2013
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2013
    I don't know if anyone has one of these, but I have one of those super cool Nest thermostats. If you've never heard of it (or don't know what it is), it's an amazing little thermostat that learns about your habits AND your home. Over time it will collect statistical information about your house, and use that information to provide meaningful feedback.

    For example, if you change the temperature from 70 degrees to 75, and it knows (via a WiFi connection) that the outside temperature is 50 degrees. It will use temperature logs that its collected about your home, and statistics about other homes, to calculate how long it will take YOUR heater, and YOUR home to raise the temperature by 5 degrees. It will then display something like this: "IN 7 MIN" ...meaning it will take precisely 7 minutes to raise the temperature (in your home) by 5 degrees. Not only is that damn cool, but its super accurate!

    It learns how well your home heats up, and then uses that information to help improve your homes efficiency... it will give you tips like "if you lower the temperature by 1 degree, you won't be able to tell the difference, and you will save energy." It uses past experiences to improve the next one! It's awesome!

    I would love to see something like this, but for the Model S. Instead of calculating how long it will take to heat up the cabin by 5 degrees. I would love to see precise estimates of how much energy you'll need to travel from point A to point B, AND use that information to give you tips on how to save even more energy.

    For example, I would like to see this: "If you lower your speed by 2 Mph, you will add an additional 10 miles of range between here and your destination" or "if you turn your heater down by 1 degree, you will add an additional 3 mile of range between here and your destination."

    Like the Nest, and how it collects past experiences. It won't be the first time a Model S has traveled on the same freeway you're traveling on. Nor will it be the first time its traveled in your particular weather conditions, or up that same mountainous road. Each driving experience can be logged, sent up to Tesla (with permission), compiled, and feed back to other Model S owners. Over time those experiences can be used to create statistics about your particular road trip. Statistics that can be used to feed meaningful information like projected range after driving over that mountain, and/or tips on how your personal driving habits are going to affect your range, and what you can do to improve it.

    Think about it. How many range anxiety articles have you read where in the end it turned out they had no reason to be worried at all. Someone who was driving up a mountain, and their range dropped from 230 miles to 180 miles, but by the time they made it to the other side they had 212 miles of range left.

    If statistics on just that one road trip had been collected, then that same information could of been feedback to other drivers on that same mountainous road. That way the range estimator could read "Other Model S owners made it over this mountain with 212 miles to spare." That's a much better (and far more accurate) message to relay then "you've lost 50 miles of range in the last 5 miles."

    It could also serve as an early warning system for drivers like Mr. John Broder. If you tell the car where you're going, then it can look at the weather conditions, pull statistics on other Model S' that traveled the same stretch of road, and use that information to tell you if you're going to make it or not. It could even plan the route for you. For example, "you will need to stop off at ______ charging station, and charge to 34% to make it with 15 miles to spare" or "you need an additional 12% charge to make it to your destination with 10 miles to spare."

    Now I'm a geek, I love doing the math, and I understand how these cars work. But for people that are not like me, who don't understand how these cars work, and don't want to do the math. Tips and/or reassurances that others made it, and made it with miles to spare, would only improve the driving experience. No training, just get in and get meaningful information displayed that eases range anxiety, and helps everyone be a better (more efficient) driver.

    Because of their 3G connections, these cars have the ability to draw on a vast amount of data sources that can make range estimates much MUCH more accurate. Data sources that can be compiled and used to give drivers meaningful information, and tips on how to improve their performance... not to mention idiot proofing the car to some degree *cough *cough Mr. Broder, *cough *cough :)

    On top of that, I would sign up to let Tesla take my logs in a heartbeat if I knew that every time I drove my Model S I was improving the driving experience for other owners.
     
  2. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    I'd just like a screen that shows accurately how much power is going to the main systems: drive train, HVAC, and "other". Then I can make various adjustments and see what impact I'm having on the power draw. In a matter of a minute I'd have things optimized to my satisfaction.
     
  3. ElSupreme

    ElSupreme Model S 03182

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    That would be nice but driving there are SO many variables it probably won't work well. The nest has one variable, the set temperature. Everything else in the system is static, maybe the outside temperature gets to be a variable also. Anyway it really only has 2 items to look at to control a third, inside temperature.

    I can think of 20-30 things off top of my head that will change range:

    • Speed
    • Number of stop/starts
    • Detours off of path
    • Stops on path
    • Wind direction
    • Temperature
    • Altitude (thinner air = more range)
    • Road surface
    • rain/snow/wet
    • traffic
    • elevation gain
    • elevation profile
    • heater use
    • AC use
    • Light use
    • Windows open
    • Sunroof open
    • Stupid GameDay window flags
    • tire air pressure
    • tires on the car
    • weight in the car
    • cruise control
    • variablitily of speed
    • power needed to get over a high point

    Trying to compensate for so many variables becomes really tough. And when two interact with one another it may make it much tougher. I don't think it is worth the effort when you will still have so much error and variability in the calculations.
     
  4. Alexander

    Alexander P# 8,878

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    #4 Alexander, Feb 14, 2013
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2013
    You see thats cool! I want that too, but most people are not like you and me. They want the car to do that for them, or at the very least explain (in plain English) what they can do to optimize their power consumption. My Nest does it, and I'm positive Tesla could do it too.

    - - - Updated - - -

    It's not going to be perfect that's for sure. But it doesn't have to be specific. If you get thousands of logged road trips on the exact same freeway, you're going to find a statistical median. There will be a small number of people who will get significantly less range because of X reason, and others that will get significantly more range for Y reason.

    I want the car to use that information to give me meaningful tips on how to avoid X and on how to attain Y on that particular stretch of road. The results I get are up to me at that point.

    It can also look at the worst outcome that has happened to someone, and use that information warn drivers of the possibilities if they don't charge enough. So if at one point a driver ran out of juice because he only had 58kWh in his battery before he started climbing that hill, then I want the car to tell me to stop and charge if I'm at, or below, 58kWh before I start climbing that same hill.

    Also, I'm not talking about statistics from my house to Grandma Jenny's just a few block away. I'm talking about road trips. There's only a handful of ways to get from LA to San Francisco, or New York to DC. Im talking about statistics on trips were you're going to be pushing the limits of your Model S' range. Thats were I want to see this feature kick in.
     

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