MINNEAPOLIS - Soon parents can have something that can perhaps ease their minds a bit before they hand over the keys to their teenage driver.
DriveScribe is a smart phone app that can tell the driver of a car and the parents of that driver exactly what is going on behind the wheel in real time.
It is technology developed by researchers at the University of Minnesota's Intelligent Vehicles Lab that both alerts the driver and that driver's parents when he or she is speeding, driving erratically, or even running a stop sign.
DriveScribe alerts the driver via the smart phone in the car. The phone's ability to receive and make calls and receive and send text messages is also disabled while the teen is driving.
The parent can choose to let the program allow for emergency contacts and incoming calls from them at any time.
The app can be programmed to run with a specific vehicle. At the time of a driving infraction, the driver is alerted via a voice activation on the phone of the offense and a text is sent to the driver's parent telling them what the teen did and where.
"The key to it is real time coaching, we want to tell the teen as they are driving they are doing something wrong so we can correct the behavior, that is how we learn best," research developer Alec Gorjestani said.
The parent can also log into the application's website to see the driver's weekly report card that tells the parent in detail every single miss-step their child made in that car.
"Include the parent a little bit so that the parent and teen can discuss the driving and facilitate hopefully a useful conversation," Gorjestani said.
Once the app is launched it is promised to be user friendly, to be available at app stores for smart phones at a subscription price of $10 a month.
To learn more check out the DriveScribe website.
(Copyright 2012 by KARE. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)