The Newest BMW 3 Takes the Worry Out of What’s in Your Rear View

Reverse assistant gets you right back where you started from

2 min read
Photo: BMW
Where you’ve been: The display screen shows where the car’s going while the Reversing Assistant backs up along the previously traveled path.
Photo: BMW

This Year’s
Winning Autos

BMW’s franchise model, its 3-Series sport sedan, has been slipping in sales and reputation. It’s been hammered lately by the Alfa Romeo Giulia, among other sporty chariots. But an all-new 3-Series has armored itself for the battle with loads of new tech. First things first: The new 3-Series is fun to drive, in the way BMW fans demand. I learn this firsthand in Portugal while romping an M340i on the devilish Portimao circuit.

The car’s 285 kilowatts (382 horsepower) are a nearly 20 percent jump from last year, even though the car has a similar 3.0-liter in-line 6 at its core. The upgrades focus on the turbocharger: Fuel-injection pressure is nearly doubled, and the twin-scroll unit is lighter and more efficient, inhaling exhaust gas at a toasty 1,000 °C.

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Monitoring Parkinson’s Patients at Home Could Improve Disease Management

Device uses low-power radio waves to assess walking speeds

3 min read
Illustration showing a device with an antenna on a wall, radiating a signal. A figure walks through a door and is seen in several phases of gait as they wall towards the device.

By continuously monitoring a Parkinson’s patient’s gait speed, an in-home wireless system can assess the condition’s severity between visits to the doctor’s office.

N. Fuller/SayoStudio

A radar device the size of a Wi-Fi router could help continuously monitor Parkinson’s disease in patients from afar as they go about their lives at home. By using radio waves to track the gait of Parkinson’s patients, the device should help doctors assess the effectiveness of medications, see how the disease is progressing, and create better treatment plans.

Parkinson’s disease is a chronic, progressive brain disorder that affects motor function, causing tremors, impaired balance, and the risk of falls and injuries. There is no cure for it and patients rely on medications to control symptoms.

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Taming the Climate Is Far Harder Than Getting People to the Moon

Decarbonization is a project with no clear beginning or end

3 min read
Chimneys and cooling towers from a coal fired power station releasing smoke and steam into the atmosphere.
Getty Images

In his 1949 book The Concept of Mind, Gilbert Ryle, an English philosopher, introduced the term “category mistake.” He gave the example of a visitor to the University of Oxford who sees colleges and a splendid library and then asks, “But where is the university?” The category mistake is obvious: A university is an institution, not a collection of buildings.

Today, no category mistake is perhaps more consequential than the all-too-common view of the global energy transition. The error is to think of the transition as the discrete, well-bounded task of replacing carbon fuels by noncarbon alternatives. The apparent urgency of the transition leads to calls for confronting the challenge just as the United States dealt with two earlier ones: winning the nuclear-arms race against Nazi Germany and the space race against the Soviet Union. The Manhattan Project produced an atomic bomb in three years, and Project Apollo put two U.S. citizens on the moon in July 1969, eight years after President Kennedy had announced the goal.

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Evolution of In-Vehicle Networks

Download this free poster to learn how developments in Advanced Driver-Assistance Systems (ADAS) are creating a new approach to In-Vehicle Network design

1 min read
Rohde & Schwarz

Developments in Advanced Driver-Assistance Systems (ADAS) are creating a new approach to In-Vehicle Network (IVN) architecture design. With today's vehicles containing at least a hundred ECUs, the current distributed network architecture has reached the limit of its capabilities. The automotive industry is now focusing on a domain or zonal controller architecture to simplify network design, reduce weight & cost and maximize performance.

Download this free poster now!

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