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    Monday, December 1, 2008

    Finalist for Pace University Venture Capital Pitch Contest

    We made it! OpenOtto is a finalist in a competition for venture capital financing of a new product. I'm off to NYC for the Thursday night presentation. I've been busy working on the presentation, but here is the winning pitch that got OpenOtto into the finals:

    "You don’t have to be David Hasselhoff in Knight Rider to have your car talk to you. OpenOtto is a platform for developing vehicle aware products for the consumer and industrial markets. While it will not ask you how you’re doing this evening, most people don’t realize how much information your car’s computer can tell you. OpenOtto consists of a hardware interface to your car's OBD II connector as well as an extensible software platform for communicating with all networked electronic devices in the car. Designed for flexibility and scalability, it is easily expandable to future vehicle capabilities.

    OpenOtto consists of two products targeted to different markets. The first is a car computer that acts as an interface between your car's computer and a 4" x 8" touch screen display that attaches to your dashboard. The interface shows easy to understand graphical output from your car's computer including, but not limited to, standard OBD II output: coolant temperature, engine speed, oxygen sensor readings, and emission related trouble codes. Advanced features include outputting suspension control, anti-lock/traction control, and air bag status.

    Additional safety and security features include a remote start and kill feature for anti-theft or convenience, display warnings to users when the transmission begins to fail, individual wheel speed indicating wheel slippage, and real-time engine performance monitoring.

    The second product is priced lower for the general consumer. It includes the ability to attach any cell phone with GPS to OpenOtto. Once attached, the car's computer will text message someone (e.g., a parent) if the car exceeds a certain speed and GPS coordinates will be texted, and call 911 if airbags deploy (no proprietary subscription necessary).

    Safety and security is important and built into the computer engineering designs. Some features will be access controlled and transmission of all sensitive data transmitted by OpenOtto will be encrypted using industry standard best practices to ensure safety, security, and privacy of the user.

    The software and hardware designs will be released as free and open source designs to encourage adoption and adaptation of the features.

    For consumers, a complete dashboard mounted display with computer will cost between $300-$500.00. The closest product currently on the market costs between $1000.-$5000.000 and does not include open software and hardware platforms, graphical dash board mounted displays, or customizable features. The low cost consumer device will target a retail cost of $100-$200.

    Try getting KITT for that price."

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