Rule by tweet. That’s how Tesla CEO Elon Musk operates these days, for the most part. His latest declaration on the social-media platform? That the next software update that will be beamed wirelessly to Tesla’s Model S, X, and 3 cars might include a few retro video games playable via the vehicles’ touchscreens, as well as a “party and camper mode” that will use the battery to manage the cabin’s temperature and lighting such that you can live in your car for a short period of time.

First, the video game thing. It was first announced via this tweet:

Some of best classic @Atari games coming as Easter eggs in Tesla V9.0 release in about 4 weeks. Thanks @Atari!

– Elon Musk (@elonmusk) August 1, 2018

Later, in a reply Musk stated he hoped to include Pole Position, Tempest, and Missile Command in the V9.0 code. Regarding Pole Position, he stated that he hoped the racing game would be “linked to actual car steering wheel (while stationary tbc haha).”

While that sounds haha-awesome, Tesla will need to get some kind of relationship-financial or contractual-going with Atari before he places any games in his cars. This being the internet age, however, we suppose Tesla could just go for it and deal with any consequences later, although that opens the company up to a big liability. And another note: Pole Position isn’t originally an Atari title; it was developed by Namco-meaning permission would have to be granted by that company, not Atari. According to Steve Golson, a former game designer who worked with Atari: “Video-game rights are complex, especially for old games developed by companies that are no longer in business. Atari has changed hands many times since 1984, but Namco keeps going!” Are we down with the potential to play Pole Position using a Tesla’s steering wheel while the car is parked? Absolutely, but until we see it appear in a production vehicle, it’s only a tweeted idea. For what it’s worth, Tesla seems to be intent on creating its own games, too, with Musk tweeting a request for game developer applications:

If you’re into video game development, consider applying to Tesla. We want to make super fun games that integrate the center touch screen, phone & car irl.

– Elon Musk (@elonmusk) August 1, 2018

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More realistic and likely to face fewer hurdles is the “party & camper mode” Musk specifically mentions is coming (for sure) to Tesla’s V9.0 software release. Per the CEO:

We’re adding a “party & camper mode” soon to S/3/X, so your car can maintain air flow, temp, selective lights, music & power devices for 48 hours or more while parked. Big batteries rock …

– Elon Musk (@elonmusk) July 31, 2018

Wait, camping in a Tesla? It’s been done-one owner even put his be-bedded car on the housing rental site Airbnb-and this new functionality surely will make it a smoother experience. The other sure-thing improvements in the V9.0 software include improved Autopilot semi-autonomous functionality. Look for the release to make its debut in about a month, and keep your eyes peeled for those retro video games (if they make it to the final release).

Original Article


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