Heuristics and third-party apps

Heuristics and third-party apps

At the Model S launch, Elon Musk spoke about how the car will learn your routine and have the interior set at a comfortable temperature by the time you're ready to get in and drive away (i.e. leaving for or from work).

Has anyone heard anything (or have any thoughts) about the Model S gathering this kind of information from third-party apps? I travel a lot, and TripIt ( is an indispensable travel tool for me. (It's a website and smartphone app that keeps your travel itinerary in one place—no more hunting down emails to find a confirmation number!) Since TripIt knows my flight schedule, it would be awesome if (A) there were a TripIt app for the Model S, and (B) if the car could use my flight itinerary and its own location (to know that I'm parked near my departure airport) to set the car in the appropriate mode for a few days of inactivity. On my return day, the car can check the status of my flight to make sure it's on time and have the interior set to a comfortable temperature by the time I arrive at it.

BYT | March 24, 2012

@paul, I would think you can control this with the iPhone/Android app that would be available to connect to your Model S. Once you land and the electronics devices light goes out, call a loved one to tell them you are home safe and then run the app to tell your Model S your coming for her baby, warm that cabin up to a nice 72 degrees!

Leofingal | March 24, 2012

@BYT I think that what Paul wants is for that to happen on its own instead of having to interact directly to make it so. Should be doable as a 3rd party as long as the Tesla apps will play nice with other apps.

Manta | March 24, 2012

@BYT - True
@Leofingal - Yes, that's what I had in mind.

While it's cool that I'll be able to set the car's climate from my phone, it's even cooler if it does it itself. Plus it would be nice to check on my flight and even get status updates while I'm on my way to the airport (without having to look at my phone).

CIAOPEC | March 24, 2012

We installed NEST thermostats in our house. They "learn" your habits and adjust the temp accordingly. happy so far with their functionality ( they have an iphone and android app for remote control and scheduling) .Perhaps this company would come up with similar functionality ( NEST Auto? or NEST Drive?) ) for the Model S?

Jason S | March 24, 2012

Since NEST is in Palo Alto, very near Tesla, I'd lay even odds that there may be some OEM work involved or a partnership.

Or possibly patent negotiations... =P

The NEST app maps very nicely with the kind of thing I'd like the car to learn, so I hope it does eventually become available.

Vawlkus | March 26, 2012

I THINK the Model S can be given a timer cue to start conditioning the cabin. It shouldn't be hard to link that to a phone app to do that based on a given schedule.

Ohms.Law | March 26, 2012

Another vote for the Nest thermostats here. We've installed two and they talk to each other to see if anyone is nearby, what they have each learned (the thermostats), etc. They are elegant in their simplicity, just like our new Teslas.

jbunn | March 26, 2012

An interior themostat that can see people in the house is different than a car sitting in an airport lot practicing my monday-friday routine in 25 degree weather when i'm in Hawaii. I would be concerned

Brian H | March 27, 2012

An "expected return" special function for non-routine days/weeks wouldn't be that hard to design and implement.

foto | March 27, 2012

A rep at the Houston office told me yesterday that you could control the thermostat remotely from your phone and thus heat or cool the car as your plane lands. It usually takes longer than 10 mins from landing to get to your car, plus the fact that the cooling in Tesla is instantaneous. NEST feature might not be necessary.

foto | March 27, 2012

Off topics.
Can someone guide me to a previous discussion on the hard disk capacity for music on the entertainment system? I remember reading it somewhere. The options and spec pages claim 500 songs, what does that really mean? I can relate more to gigabytes.

By the way, we need to ask Tesla to seriously consider making this forum searchable and editable. Its a pain in the rear when you're trying not to start a new thread for something that might already be existing.

Volker.Berlin | March 27, 2012

bfadewole, there has been a discussion on hard disk (more likely: flash RAM/SSD) capacity for music, but IMO that is worthless from today's perspective. When the Options & Pricing page was first launched, there was a number given in gigabytes, which was ridiculously low. Obviously, Tesla realized the same and replaced that number with some fuzzy "500 songs" (which isn't much, either).

I'd assume that Tesla simply procrastinates the decision to the last minute -- it probably doesn't matter to the system as such which precise chip they end up using. Let's hope they'll use a chip/SSD with serious capacity. If this is important to you, you should definitely contact your rep about it, to ensure that Tesla is aware that size does matter to us.

Brian H | March 27, 2012

Slightly fussier, but include the string in a standard search engine query and it will display what you want.

BYT | March 27, 2012

I hope we can swap out the HD ourselves, no proprietary format on it like in the latest iMac's. I think they originally quoted it as 16GB which yes, is teeny-tiny considering I wouldn't even buy an iPhone with less then 32GB and my last one was 64GB and I have almost filled that up as well!

flar | March 27, 2012

@jbunn, the Nest thermostat will automatically detect when you are away, but you can override that prediction schedule either at the thermostat or from an Android/iOS app or from the web site. When you tell it you are away manually, it honors that and disregards all predictive scheduling until you manually tell it otherwise.

It appears that there will be an app (and web portal?) for the Tesla cars as well so you could override any prediction in the car from anywhere...

brianman | March 27, 2012

Text message log from this week:

Tue 7PM, From: Tessie
Jim, I had the car all warmed up for you today but I guess it was a federal holiday. Please update my calendar information so that in the future I can adjust appropriately.

Wed 7PM, From: Tessie
Jim, are you okay? I've sent a mail to your sister to make sure you're ok.

Thu 9AM, From: Tessie
Well, I hope you're ok. I'm turning off the cabin climate control schedule as your sister replied that you're on vacation visiting them. BTW, why does she keep calling me Christine?

MandL | March 27, 2012

@brianman - ROTFL!

stephen.pace | March 27, 2012

+1 for the Stephen King reference. Also, if you try to accelerate beyond 125 miles per hour, it uses a HAL voice to apologize.

Vawlkus | March 28, 2012

You gotta know someone's gonna make that a reality just for the laughs :D

AndyM | March 28, 2012

@brianman, best post all week! Thanks for the chuckle!