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Plus: Notes On Ferraris At Auction, Jeff Gordon And The Mercedes C-Class Coupe

We curate the week's events with a focus on Ford's investment in a Silicon Valley research center. Plus, other news and notes from around the automotive world.

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Disney Research Zurich and the ETH Zurich Autonomous Systems Lab create the Beachbot, a programmable computer on wheels dragging a rake that can create drawings in the sand.

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If ever there was a case of a car that looks better in pictures, the Mercedes-Benz F 015 Luxury in Motion is it.

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Nissan and NASA have announced a collaboration on autonomous drive systems, human-machine interfaces, network-enabled applications, and software analysis and verification. Nissan wants to offer such features by 2016, and fully autonomous cars by 2020.

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Audi brings its Prologue concept to CES with a fresh coat of paint, a refreshed interior, autonomous driving technology and hybrid assist for the 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 to drive itself and its output up to 605 hp and 701 lb-ft of torque.

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A report in Autoweek says public adoption of autonomous technology in vehicles will continue with the next-generation A8, which will be able to navigate on its own up to 37 mph, make its way through traffic, find a parking spot and park itself.

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BMW X4 reviewed; Lexus GS F shows its face; Mercedes' self-driving F 015 concept breaks cover. All that, and more, in the automotive news headlines on Tuesday, January 6, 2015.

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Google announced today that the cute, entirely autonomous car prototype they released in May has been realized as a fully-functional auto ready to hit the roads of Northern California in the new year.

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It has become an annual tradition for Swiss automaker Rinspeed to release details of its latest inventive concept just ahead of the Geneva Motor Show. Not your customary custom shop, Rinspeed considers themselves an "automotive think tank and mobility lab." Perhaps it's no surprise, then, that this year's concept pairs two emerging automotive industry trends: electric vehicles and autonomous driving technology.

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Newly awarded patent could mean Google ads that provide transportation options to local businesses

Every year, businesses spend billions of dollars on advertising, often with the goal of getting consumers to their locations to purchase goods or services. While ads can certainly be an effective means of getting people out of their chairs and into their cars, wouldn't it just be easier if the business picked you up?

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We head back to CES in Las Vegas to check on the progress of autonomous vehicles in 2014. We go hands-free on the highway with Audi, narrowly avoid a collision with Ford and hear all about BMW's drifting driverless car. But first we take a ride on Induct's self-driving Navia shuttle.

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Amazon dominates the online retail space by offering a massive selection, competitive prices and fast, affordable shipping--not to mention personalized ads that seem to know what you want before you even realize it. But one thing Amazon can't compete with is the immediacy of a brick and mortar location. After all, what could be faster than hopping in your car and driving to the store?

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Bomb squads are commonly depicted as operating with surgical precision as they cautiously clip the correct-colored wire to disarm a threat. While this may sometimes be the case in reality, there are certain situations that call for a more direct approach.

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Bradley takes a ride in the BatCat, a remote controlled telehandler robot used by the Los Angeles Police Department in emergency situations. Equipped with cameras and sensors for navigation via a remote operator, the LAPD's BatCat can lift vehicles and tear down walls with its massive telescopic claw.

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‚ÄčThe idea of vehicle-to-vehicle communication, commonly known as V2V, isn't a new concept. Ford has already demonstrated how V2V can be a powerful tool in collision avoidance, but the automaker seeks to advance the technology further through an interstellar collaboration.

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Autonomous automobiles are looking more like an inevitability, rather than a mere possibility. Benefits of self-driving cars include safe high-speed travel, optimized fuel economy, relaxed commuting, and self-parking features.

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Autonomous car programs from the likes of Audi, Toyota and Google have been a popular topic lately. While the technology currently exists for self-driving cars, we are likely years away from seeing them publicly available, due to a complex combination of safety, legal and infrastructure concerns.

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Who would have ever guessed that an insect could drive a car? Well, sort of.

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Volkswagen Group of America announced a $1.7 million investment in its automotive research partnership with Stanford University on Friday. The automaker said that the contribution will help to power next-generation research in the areas of virtual intelligence, material research, data security and vehicle dynamics.

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Tesla is considering adding an 'autopilot' feature to future vehicles and is apparently discussing the potential for such technologies with Google, according to a report by Bloomberg. Tesla CEO Elon Musk told Bloomberg in an email, "I think Tesla will most likely develop its own autopilot system for the car...However, it is also possible that we do something jointly with Google." Tesla is considering adding an 'autopilot' feature to future vehicles and is discussing the potential for such techn

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Here at TRANSLOGIC we don't normally post about ads, but the new Star Trek inspired campaign from Audi has everyone around here talking...and laughing. Titled "The Challenge", it features Zachary Quinto and Leonard Nimoy (new and old Spock, respectively) battling to see who can get to the golf course first, with the loser buying lunch. Hilarity, and a number of Star Trek and other geeky jokes, ensue.

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