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2005年NPR美国国家公共电台七月-High-Tech Perks, Not Horsepower, Tops wit

时间:2007-07-17 08:13来源:互联网 提供网友:atm009e   字体: [ ]
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It was a great leap forward when cars got radios in 1929, then 8-track tapes then cassettes and finally CD players. But those seem downright quaint1 when compared with the entertainment amenities2 American drivers want today. And no wonder——the average American now spends about 100 hours a year just commuting3 to work.

Detroit Public Radio's Celeste Headlee attended the 2005 North American International Auto4 Show this week where she was one of the first to see the Ford5 Motor Company's concept car, the SYNus.

The outside looks like polished steel. The interior is creamy white with softly glowing orange accents. It has a 45- inch LCD flat screen TV built into the backdoor. And even the driver seat can turn around to allow everyone to watch a movie, listening to it, on an advanced surround sound system. This car will probably never get made, but it's a good example of a much more prevalent trend: cars designed to be little homes on wheels.

MR is an interior design engineer for Ford .He's sitting inside a new Mustang and he gestures to the center console.

"I'm from England. And when I came to America, I didn't think about cup-holders at all. But coming here, you realize you need to have cup-holders. You have to have amenities for families that are in the cars for longer, you know, the extracurricular activities that go on outside of school, outside of the normal working day, you spend a lot more time socially in cars.

Car interiors have gone a lot further than cup-holders. One idea for a Ford minivan integrates a microwave and a Maytag (商标名)refrigerator. Many high-end vehicles have not one but two video screens built into the back of the front seats. R says cars are no longer just a means of getting from point A to point B. They are a form of therapy.

It's why it's becoming more like your living room, you know. Interiors should be more calming. They should put you at ease more. They should entertain you and should give you something to do as well.

Automakers are spending millions developing more comfortable interiors with sophisticated technology built-ins.

Acura hired Grammy Award-winning record producer Eliot Shiner to design its custom sound system. Shiner says most people have a better audio system in their car than they have in their homes.

"It is a perfect arena6 to listen to surround sound. The speakers are predetermined and the seating positions are predetermined."

Shiner says Acura spared no expense to create an ideal listening environment.

"They went through incredible trouble to make the interior fairly dead so that the surround sound sounds great there.
The handles above the doors were wrapped in leather. They treated the windshield acoustically7 to keep noise from getting in and noise from getting out.

The Acura system is so good, Shiner says, the rock band the Foo Fighters listened to their mixes in their TL(Acura TL, 车名) while producing their new album. He says it was difficult to get vocalist David G out of the borrowed vehicle when it came time to return it. PN isn't surprised to hear that story, he is a director of infotainment at General Motors.

We sometimes think that the cars are just used to hang our electronics on it .

Nadow and group manager Bob Isaac are leading a tour of GM's Infotainment Department. Isaac gestures toward a sleek8 audio panel with a colorful touch screen used in current GM vehicles.

Somebody's driving the vehicle, they could be listening to the radio station in the front; somebody could have a set of headphones on with a * audio in the back listening to the music they want to hear. And then a third person could have the wireless9 headphones on watching the DVD.

A short time ago, these kinds of options were available only in luxury models. Isaac says he thinks they'll soon become standard in many cars.


And Paul Eisenstein says it's not going to end there. Eisenstein is the editor of the carconnection.com. He says drivers will soon see cars with hard drives that they can take into their homes, load with movies and music, and then take to the car and plug into the dashboard. And automakers are already working on taking this idea to the next level.

You can park your car in the driveway, and the car will have a receiver, and it will be able to download all sorts of things like MP3s, videos, eh, see,you don't have to take any of your audio or video out of the car, you simply transfer wirelessly10.

Eisenstine says car entertainment systems are family savers on long trips, but they might be changing the way people travel. Families now make fewer stops at scenic11 vistas12 or historic sites so kids can stretch their legs. no more quick trips to see the world's largest ball of string . Eisenstine says you put the right movie in, and you can keep kids occupied and comfortable from Michigan to Florida, and he says some drivers seem to be more concerned with entertainment than with safety.

There's been an interesting trend. There is a lot of after-market equipment. People are taking out the driver-side airbag and mounting a TV monitor in the center of their steering13 wheel, so that they can watch TV while they are driving.

Some experts believe it's not just a craving14 for comfort that's transforming cars into well-equipped family rooms. Andy Ogdon is the chair of graduate studies in industrial design at Art Center College of Design in Carlifornia.

Feeling a sense of security and control in a post-911 world where now you can sort of keep everything with you just in case. I think having the car be a sort of Swiss army knife, that has every possible choice you might need just in case you feel like doing something, is part of the mentality15 we have towards all kinds of products.

The Ford SYNus concept car certainly fits that description. When the vehicle is parked, protective shutters16 come down over the wind shield and side glass; small windows on the flanks and roof are non-opening and bullet-resistent; the rear hatch has no window at all and looks like a bank vault17; the door opens with a combination lock. Of course concept cars are simply ideas. Very, very few of them ever make it to the assembly line, but it seems clear that brand name and engine power are becoming increasingly overshadowed in the US by electronics and amenities. In the future, living out of your car may not be such a bad thing. In fact, some may even prefer it to their homes.

For NPR News, I'm CH in Detroit.



点击收听单词发音收听单词发音  

1 quaint 7tqy2     
adj.古雅的,离奇有趣的,奇怪的
参考例句:
  • There were many small lanes in the quaint village.在这古香古色的村庄里,有很多小巷。
  • They still keep some quaint old customs.他们仍然保留着一些稀奇古怪的旧风俗。
2 amenities Bz5zCt     
n.令人愉快的事物;礼仪;礼节;便利设施;礼仪( amenity的名词复数 );便利设施;(环境等的)舒适;(性情等的)愉快
参考例句:
  • The campsite is close to all local amenities. 营地紧靠当地所有的便利设施。
  • Parks and a theatre are just some of the town's local amenities. 公园和戏院只是市镇娱乐设施的一部分。 来自《简明英汉词典》
3 commuting d2c3874ec246fb1858841223ffe4992e     
交换(的)
参考例句:
  • I used the commuting time to read and answer my mail. 我利用上下班在汽车中的时间来阅读和答复给我的函电。
  • Noncommuting objects are as real to the mathematicians as commuting objects. 对于数学家来说,不可交换的对象与可交换的对象是一样真实的。
4 auto ZOnyW     
n.(=automobile)(口语)汽车
参考例句:
  • Don't park your auto here.别把你的汽车停在这儿。
  • The auto industry has brought many people to Detroit.汽车工业把许多人吸引到了底特律。
5 Ford KiIxx     
n.浅滩,水浅可涉处;v.涉水,涉过
参考例句:
  • They were guarding the bridge,so we forded the river.他们驻守在那座桥上,所以我们只能涉水过河。
  • If you decide to ford a stream,be extremely careful.如果已决定要涉过小溪,必须极度小心。
6 arena Yv4zd     
n.竞技场,运动场所;竞争场所,舞台
参考例句:
  • She entered the political arena at the age of 25. 她25岁进入政界。
  • He had not an adequate arena for the exercise of his talents.他没有充分发挥其才能的场所。
7 acoustically d3c3ecf10c1a8a3b14a02e3b86bcebe7     
听觉上,声学上
参考例句:
  • The hall is excellent acoustically. 这个大厅在传音方面极好。
  • Moos Acoustically speaking, what happens before and after mating is most interesting. 默丝从象的叫声判断,交配前后发生的事情最有意思。
8 sleek zESzJ     
adj.光滑的,井然有序的;v.使光滑,梳拢
参考例句:
  • Women preferred sleek,shiny hair with little decoration.女士们更喜欢略加修饰的光滑闪亮型秀发。
  • The horse's coat was sleek and glossy.这匹马全身润泽有光。
9 wireless Rfwww     
adj.无线的;n.无线电
参考例句:
  • There are a lot of wireless links in a radio.收音机里有许多无线电线路。
  • Wireless messages tell us that the ship was sinking.无线电报告知我们那艘船正在下沉。
10 wirelessly 9cf7b6b54adbdbcf4be7f6db9924bae9     
不用电线的,用无线电波传送的
参考例句:
  • I heard it on the wireless. 我是从无线电收音机里听到的。
  • There are a lot of wireless links in a radio. 收音机里有许多无线电线路。
11 scenic aDbyP     
adj.自然景色的,景色优美的
参考例句:
  • The scenic beauty of the place entranced the visitors.这里的美丽风光把游客们迷住了。
  • The scenic spot is on northwestern outskirts of Beijing.这个风景区位于北京的西北远郊。
12 vistas cec5d496e70afb756a935bba3530d3e8     
长条形景色( vista的名词复数 ); 回顾; 展望; (未来可能发生的)一系列情景
参考例句:
  • This new job could open up whole new vistas for her. 这项新工作可能给她开辟全新的前景。
  • The picture is small but It'shows broad vistas. 画幅虽然不大,所表现的天地却十分广阔。
13 steering 3hRzbi     
n.操舵装置
参考例句:
  • He beat his hands on the steering wheel in frustration. 他沮丧地用手打了几下方向盘。
  • Steering according to the wind, he also framed his words more amicably. 他真会看风使舵,口吻也马上变得温和了。
14 craving zvlz3e     
n.渴望,热望
参考例句:
  • a craving for chocolate 非常想吃巧克力
  • She skipped normal meals to satisfy her craving for chocolate and crisps. 她不吃正餐,以便满足自己吃巧克力和炸薯片的渴望。
15 mentality PoIzHP     
n.心理,思想,脑力
参考例句:
  • He has many years'experience of the criminal mentality.他研究犯罪心理有多年经验。
  • Running a business requires a very different mentality from being a salaried employee.经营企业所要求具备的心态和上班族的心态截然不同。
16 shutters 74d48a88b636ca064333022eb3458e1f     
百叶窗( shutter的名词复数 ); (照相机的)快门
参考例句:
  • The shop-front is fitted with rolling shutters. 那商店的店门装有卷门。
  • The shutters thumped the wall in the wind. 在风中百叶窗砰砰地碰在墙上。
17 vault 3K3zW     
n.拱形圆顶,地窖,地下室
参考例句:
  • The vault of this cathedral is very high.这座天主教堂的拱顶非常高。
  • The old patrician was buried in the family vault.这位老贵族埋在家族的墓地里。
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TAG标签:   npr  公共电台  perk  horsepower
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