KITT Replica with functional abilities

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JJohnson
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KITT Replica with functional abilities

Post by JJohnson » Wed Sep 25, 2013 4:21 am

I see quite a few replicas of KITT being built. My question is, what kinds of functionality are those who have the replicas putting into them? And how do they get regular auto functions (cruise control, windshield wipers, washer fluid spray, air conditioning / heat, defrost, radio reception, radio/tape/cd) to work in the car with the new modified dash?

If I were to get a replica, so far, my ideas for real-world functionality:

-voicebox that displays when voicing GPS directions, audio from podcasts (not music), audio from Bluetooth phone calls or Skype calls
-use GPS voices and sound clips in voice response system if possible.
-1-TV dash with 8" touchscreen for GPS while driving, rear camera in reverse, video games via built-in computer while in park
-USB ports under dash to connect video game controllers with Win7 on SSD as one of 3 options for input. Also SD multi-reader for input.
-audio system using radio am/fm/cb (since KITT had a display for CB), CD, Bluetooth, aux inputs (for MP3 players) with voice response system
-garage-door opener built-in
-Skype calling through computer via 1-button skype calls with voice response
-audio system has my mp3s on an SSD in the dash so I can listen to any music I want at any time, including playlists, which synch with Skydrive when I get home, in range of my wifi
-compass displays actual compass coordinates
-pull out keyboard from under the dash, something similar to the old Pocket PCs like the Jornada for typing out things for the computer
-'surveillence mode' would turn on the security cameras inside the car to record what goes on around the car, a form of security system in case anyone tried to steal it
-remote start engine with key fob and remote unlock, possibly with voice?

Those are some of my ideas. Do any of those work, or do you know of any features that would be useful for the car to have? What functions could I put on the function pods behind the wheel? And where does cruise control, windshield wipers, turn signals, A/C, and light controls for the dimming of interior lights and turning on/off headlights/brights go?

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Re: KITT Replica with functional abilities

Post by 2knight » Wed Sep 25, 2013 9:23 am

When I was working on my KI2T replica, I always wanted to add gadgets and functionality and not just have the car look like KI2T. I spent more of my time and money trying to get the car looking the way I wanted (and later dealing with maintenance issues), but I did have a camera installed in the back window that displayed on my dash monitor. I also hooked the scanner into the alarm system so it came on when the alarm did (also when arming and disarming the alarm). I eventually had to take the car off the road due to major engine problems and plan to get back to him eventually. I expect the first thing he'll say to me is something about putting him in mothballs for nearly a decade and then selling off his parts like he's inventory from Manny, Moe, and Jack.

I've since inherited a 2005 Mustang so I've been putting my efforts into a KI3T replica. I have car computer with Ultrahal AI and GPS. I plan to eventually add something called a Fusion Brain so that the computer can control some car functions like turning on lights, locking and unlocking the doors, etc. I'm in the process of adding cameras and a DVR for surveillance mode and ultrasonic backup sensors all around the car to serve as KI3T's Collision Avoidance system (I'll wire these sensors into the backup lights and turn signals so they are only activated when needed). I also plan to add a few lasers and other gadgets (just for show and only available in Attack Mode or when the ignition is off)

Some other ideas I had for how some of the show functions could be added more realistically to a replica:

* Pyroclastic Lamination - put silver reflective insulation in all of KITT's body panels, black cars get hot, and I want to keep the electronics form overheating (not really a lamination, but would serve a similar purpose)

* High Traction Drop Downs - from the original KI2T, add air adjustable shocks

* Run Flat tires - not invulnerable or deflatable, but still something

* Alpha Circuit - the Fusion Brain microprocessor I already mentioned

* Silent Mode -- Look online for something called Varex mufflers - they are electronically controlled

* Collision Avoidance System - Ultrasonic sensors, and maybe more stuff will start becoming available from the research into self-driving cars.

* Surveillance Mode - at least front and rear cameras with DVR, ideally wired into the car's alarm system

* Artificial Intelligence - look into Zabaware's Ultrahal and something called Guile3d

* Windshield Projection (on KI3T) - I'm thinking more about having LCD screens on the dash that reflect off the windshield

* Voice Activated controls -- look into something called E-speaking, if it could be tied in with the Fusion Brain that would provide voice control of vehicle functions

* Homing Device - maybe a Lojack or Zoombak

* GPS and mapping - easy enough to do these days with a computer or standalone GPS unit

* Internet access - easy enough with mobile internet

* Smoke screen (for show only) - look into a company called Autoloc

* Induction coil -- maybe a high powered power invertor

* Lasers (for show only) - modified laser pointers?

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Re: KITT Replica with functional abilities

Post by 2knight » Wed Sep 25, 2013 9:26 am

Also look into software called Centrafuse for integrating GPS, Phone, Bluetooth, and music functions on a car computer.

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Re: KITT Replica with functional abilities

Post by JJohnson » Wed Sep 25, 2013 12:29 pm

Fusion Brain, Zabaware, and Centrafuse - great ideas!

The Fusion Brain has collision detection posts in their forum...that would definitely be something to add onto a KITT - have the TV while driving indicate if someone's in the car's blind spot via sensor so as to try to avoid collisions.

Has anyone done any actual AI work on their replicas, apart from using just clips from the show? As in, are there replicas where a voice command can open windows, change mp3s, create playlists, play movies or videogames, turn on a backup camera, that sort of thing?

Onto KITT, I would personally try for a season 3/4 dash, and use the start-up sequence from I think "Ice Bandits" (tach/rpm first, then the four-step sequencers, then the side 5 lights and switchpods). I kind of liked the stepped start-up there.

How do you handle air conditioning vents in a replica? I definitely don't want to sweat it out in the summer just to have a KITT. Does anyone have a KITT-styled AC controller? (lol to that)

And where have you put the radio antenna, GPS antenna, et al? Are we able to buy a custom in-glass antenna for the hatchback?

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Re: KITT Replica with functional abilities

Post by JJohnson » Fri Sep 27, 2013 11:04 pm

After seeing Knight by a Nose, it would be nice to see about a little money dispenser slot and if possible a fire extinguisher nozzle. The first seems much more doable than the second, but I'm not very auto-mechanical. Would it be possible to rig a fire extinguisher up to the front that spreads out with a range of about 15 feet?

The homing device might be another one that would work if I get an RFID tag or some GPS unit and figure out a way to tie it into the car so I can use the GPS to track it, but if it's mobile, can a GPS track it?

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Re: KITT Replica with functional abilities

Post by KITTfan » Sat Sep 28, 2013 6:50 am

Some car DVR / dash cameras have GPS unit in them so it records the video and GPS data and shows the recorded route on the map along with the video when viewed with special software from the memorycard.
Not sure if there's a way to view the GPS data remotely and live but perhaps some electronics genius might find a way to modify these things for KITT's homing device?

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Re: KITT Replica with functional abilities

Post by JJohnson » Sat Sep 28, 2013 6:54 pm

That's a pretty good idea, I'll look into that one. I was re-watching Knight of the Phoenix, and it looked like the two TVs were acting like dash cameras, so that would make sense to have that. I do definitely want a back-up camera that will activate when I put the car in reverse.

When getting switchpods on there, I do have to ask - where do the windshield wiper and turn signal sticks go? I've seen some people keep them a bit hidden behind their switchpods, but could those be rewired elsewhere or in a more comfortable location? And what about cruise control, or even adaptive cruise control?

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Re: KITT Replica with functional abilities

Post by jup » Sun Sep 29, 2013 2:54 am

Original series GPS was some kind of 'camera gliding over physical maps' approach. To my knowledge, no GPS can reproduce that. However, with GoogleMaps doing those satellite snapshot views, perhaps some kind of cleaver tie-in with that could sort of reproduce the original's trick.

As for a fire extinguisher...surely, nobody is going to try and extinguish a real fire with their replica KITT. Why not a Hollywood trick with a fog machine and some kind of high pressure delivery system for the look of it, instead?

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Re: KITT Replica with functional abilities

Post by JJohnson » Sun Sep 29, 2013 10:56 pm

The original series GPS was weird to me...it always looked like the same maps, over and over (probably was). In my eventual KITT, I'd opt for a regular GPS-style, but hopefully have the voice readout through the voicebox and car speakers if possible.

Fire extinguisher, probably not doable as shown in the show. The oil slick and smoke don't seem difficult, though having those on a functional car might not be totally street-legal. Has anyone tried the grappling hook?

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Re: KITT Replica with functional abilities

Post by 2knight » Mon Sep 30, 2013 8:46 am

Several years ago I saw a fire extinguisher with a remote cable to activate in a boating store. Perhaps that could be attached to a solenoid to activate the fire extinguisher. Autoloc makes a smoke screen kit for cars. Oil slick would be an oil changer pump, a small oil reservoir, and some pipes or hoses going out from under the back bumper. A grappling hook would probably use a CO2 cartridge to propel it and then the winch would pull it in. I vaguely remember seeing something online once - it was a personal grappling hook, not something made for cars. I'd be concerned about accidentally firing the grappling hook and hurting someone though, and I doubt any of these are street-legal. They'd be pretty cool for off-road / show use though.

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Re: KITT Replica with functional abilities

Post by JJohnson » Mon Sep 30, 2013 11:17 am

Yeah, I would be a bit worried on accidentally firing such a grappling hook and having it implant itself into some SUV nearby. It would look cool for show though.

The currency dispenser might be doable. I would just have to remember to load it with cash. The printer, possibly less likely given the high interior temperatures in a car during summer. Would the O2 vent be useful/doable?

And has anyone done an interior/exterior temperature gauge in their KITTs? Auto light functions (my 2006 car automatically turns on the lights when it gets dark outside, or when I'm in a parking garage / tunnel)?

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Re: KITT Replica with functional abilities

Post by JJohnson » Mon Sep 30, 2013 3:28 pm

I read someone putting up the backup sensors in the car, and a backup camera, I forget who, but I thought that would be a great idea to have indicators when someone's in my blind spot on either side.

I don't know if someone has already created something for it, but while driving, have an on-screen indicator showing the sensors, and which ones indicate an obstacle, so I can see "there's a car to my right in the blind spot," or "there's something behind 2 of my back-up sensors," and show with the back-up camera what's behind me. I'm sure that shouldn't be too difficult to rig up though.

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Re: KITT Replica with functional abilities

Post by JJohnson » Mon Oct 07, 2013 7:56 pm

Speaking of functional abilities, the Audi S6 has enough cameras to make backup and turns easier than KITT had it. Has anyone seen this?

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