DT Daily: Self-driving semi truck, finger paint your own music, insane water slide testing

Today on DT Daily: Mercedes-Benz starts work on designing a self-driving semi, painting music with an app and the world’s tallest waterslide is finished – so…who’s going first?

Seems like everyone is working on self-driving cars, but Mercedes-Benz says they are already looking to take the next step with self-driving trucks. SEMI trucks.

And they’re farther along than you think. Their “Future Truck 2025” can already tool down a test track at over 50 mph on its own while the driver attends to some paperwork – or some Angry Birds. Multiple tech platforms are involved, most coming from the automaker’s car division. We applaud Mercedes on their effort to make trucks safer on the road because we could all use a lot less semi-crashing mayhem.

Do you love music but the only instrument you can play is the stereo? Well, if you can draw or paint, congratulations, you can now write music. How? By using the HarmonyWiz app, which was developed by Paul Rudness of the prog rock band Dream Theater. Just fingerpaint on the screen and HarmonyWiz interprets your doodle as music – and it really works. Then hit the HarmonyWiz button and the app automatically analyzes the melody and adds accompaniment.

What does it cost to turn you into the next Mozart? Ten bucks! You can also add five instrument expansion packs to the app for a buck each.

So is that crazy waterslide people are saying is an urban legend for real? You bet, and it’s as insane as its name – Verruckt – might suggest. Construction is about complete, so one of the last things left to do is test it out. So who’s first?

Well, they used dummies first and as some leaked footage illustrates, it didn’t go so well. So after some adjustments, they loaded up some actual humans, and down the slide they went. Thankfully their rafts stayed on the track and they survived, but the ride itself, with a 160 foot drop and 65 mph speed, looks completely terrifying, so it should be a huge success. You can cast your fate to the wind – and water – when the ride opens sometime later this year.

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