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Tesla drivers can earn up to $1,000 by participating in a new MIT study

A member of the media test drives a Tesla Motors Inc. Model S car equipped with Autopilot in Palo Alto, California, U.S., on Wednesday, Oct. 14, 2015. Tesla Motors Inc. will begin rolling out the first version of its highly anticipated "autopilot" features to owners of its all-electric Model S sedan Thursday. Autopilot is a step toward the vision of autonomous or self-driving cars, and includes features like automatic lane changing and the ability of the Model S to parallel park for you. Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The MIT AgeLab, which is part of the Center for Transportation and Logistics at MIT, is looking for Tesla drivers to participate in a new research initiative that “analyzes advanced vehicle technology use in real-world scenarios.”

Tesla owners can earn up to $1,000 for participating in the study over a 12-month period, but it sounds like it is pretty intrusive.

The goal of the study is to make driving safe while using technology in a vehicle. The research group says that they are interested in “which technologies people use or do not use, how people learn and interact with each technology, and which technologies promote safe driving.”

Postdoctoral Associate at the MIT Agelab, Lex Fridman, shared bullet points of the research on his website:

  • Privacy is extremely important to us. All collected data is kept secure on MIT servers and can be removed on request.
  • All equipment we install is removable, has a small form-factor, and does not modify or damage the vehicle in any way.
  • We collect video from 3 webcams, audio, GPS, vehicle telemetry (steering wheel position, etc). Since some of this data may be sensitive, we offer the ability to permanently delete any of this data.

It looks like the focus will be on the driver with webcams monitoring the use of technology in the car while driving, or while using Autopilot since they are especially looking for Tesla drivers?

If you don’t mind MIT researchers watching you lip-sync to your favorite tunes while driving to work in the morning, you could get fairly compensated while potentially make driving safer in the future.

MIT AgeLab estimates that a Tesla driver could earn about $1,000 for participating in the study for a year:

  • $150 for the initial instrumentation.
  • $50 per month of participation.
  • $50 for every time we are permitted to access the vehicle.
  • $50 for completing experimental questionnaires and interviews.

You can find more info and sign up on MIT AgeLab’s website.

Featured Image: A member of the media test drives a Tesla Motors Inc. Model S car equipped with Autopilot in Palo Alto, California, U.S., on Wednesday, Oct. 14, 2015. Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg via Getty Images

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