Silicon Valley technology could be key to connect cars for safer driving

While Google’s (GOOG) self-driving car is getting heaps of attention, a lesser-known effort that would employ Silicon Valley technologies to make regular automobiles safer is fast gaining traction.

Under the “connected vehicle” program being developed by federal and state officials, cars, trucks and buses bristling with gadgets would wirelessly communicate with each other as well as with traffic signals, pavement-embedded sensors and other road equipment.