Friday, April 25, 2014

Stupid 'talking' buses

"PEDESTRIANS," says her younger, bossier friend. "BUS IS TURNING."
Hear them once, and you'll understand why people who live along pilot routes are pulling out their hair. Hear them twice, and you'll be terrified that TriMet might adopt this technology systemwide.
Still, it's hard to fathom how a "talking bus" system could make the streets safer. In fact, a fleet of talking buses might actually endanger pedestrians in three new ways. For starters, people walking in downtown Portland and other high-transit, sharp-turn areas would learn to tune out the clamor of overlapping warnings: "PEDESTRIANS BUS IS TURNING is turning PEDESTRIANS Caution BUS IS turning TURNING Caution TURNING." 
Susan Nielsen: 'Distracted walking' is a problem, but could that talking TriMet bus please shut up? |

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