This page contains a summary of the state of the art regarding dynamic carpooling. It is divided in three sections. In the first section there is a summary of previously published papers, in order of publication. Then we introduce a brief analysis of the deployed systems. In the last section we present the outcomes of the analysis of the whole state of the art and how we decided to move in order to provide a significant contribute in solving the problem of adopting dynamic ridesharing services.

Review of published papers

During the research phase different papers were analyzed in order to obtain the state of the art. In this section we present a brief summary of each paper.

This is contained in the Papers page.

Survey of deployed systems

After the theoretical research, also the existing systems were taken into consideration. The following list contains the existing dynamic carpooling applications and some static, web- based systems that are either innovative or well-known. All the reported websites were accessed on Sept. 5th2010. Each text enclosed in double quotes is cited verbatim from the website of the application.

This is contained in the Systems page.

Comparative Analysis of Dynamic Carpooling Issues

The analysis of the state of the art brought some issues related to adopting dynamic carpooling systems. We categorized the issues gathered from the state of the art and their proposals in the following categories:

The comparative analysis is in form of tables and can be downloaded here: File:Dycapo-issues.pdf

This is our contribution in rationalizing the many problematic issues involved in the creation and deployment of dynamic carpooling systems and in summarizing best practices and suggestions in how to deal with them.

Our rationalization of dynamic carpooling issues and possible solutions shows how dynamic carpooling systems still have many important open issues to be addressed and solved. This fact explains the current absence of any dynamic carpooling system deployed and used for real. We decided to address the overall challenge from a very core point of view and to focus on technical aspects. Among them, we observed that the source code of the projects and the prototypes produced was not freely accessible by the general public. There are no information regarding the servers, that are all proprietary and obscured. Another issue seems related to a missing standardization of the protocols used. Therefore, every project started from zero, "reinventing the wheel". While, in order to overcome the "reaching critical mass" issue, we believe that it is important that providers of dynamic carpooling services can exchange their data easily so that cross provider matching are possible.

Based on this analysis, we decided to create two basic technological building blocks:

We decided to release the protocol under Creative Commons License and to release the source code as open-source because our goal is to fill a void and provide a basic infrastructure that future providers of dynamic carpooling services can adopt, extend and in general build on.

Therefore, the Dycapo project was born.