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SignalGuru Helps Drivers Avoid Red Lights 436

Posted by timothy
from the green-is-so-much-more-beautiful dept.
cylonlover writes "Researchers at MIT and Princeton have now devised a system, dubbed SignalGuru (PDF), that gathers visual data from the cameras of a network of dashboard-mounted smartphones and tells drivers the optimal speed to drive at to avoid waiting at the next set of lights." In their testing, the system saved drivers about 20 percent in fuel.
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SignalGuru Helps Drivers Avoid Red Lights

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  • by aglider (2435074) on Monday August 29, 2011 @05:56AM (#37239662) Homepage

    Instead pf reverse engineering the traffic lights timing, the responsible offices could simply document them, also on road signals.
    All the stuff needed to reverse engineer the timings will produce more CO2 than simply say them.
    Nonetheless, that idea is really smart.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 29, 2011 @06:06AM (#37239698)

    Yes it could ... if drivers scrupulously respected the indications of the magic box on the dashboard.

  • by Joce640k (829181) on Monday August 29, 2011 @06:19AM (#37239730) Homepage

    This is bad for emission, however, because most engines at least till the late 90s probably till today give plenty of fuel to start the car. Also if you do a lot of stop and go you might even trigger a catalytic converter too slow to warm up code.

    Try thinking positive for a change...it works wonders.

    The Prius has a more powerful starter motor that was designed for more frequent use.

    You mean .... cars that have this feature are designed to do it?

    Wow!!! How is that possible???

  • by mapkinase (958129) on Monday August 29, 2011 @07:37AM (#37239960) Homepage Journal

    Roads are not for "saving" on fuel or brakes. Roads are for getting from A to B.

    You selfish "saving" on fuel leads to you occupying extra road time-space. You are basically hogging it, take it from other drivers, which leads to heavier traffic, in fact, very often it will lead to creation of extra traffic jams.

    Instead of that technology, they should invent technology that will get medieval on the asses of those local government official who intentionally program traffic light system to slow drivers.

  • by mwvdlee (775178) on Monday August 29, 2011 @07:48AM (#37240018) Homepage

    It's even worse if the car behind you has a different neutral speed (chance approx. 100%) and needs to either continuously brake or occasionally give some extra gas in order to not crash into you or slow down to the point where it stops too far before the traffic light.
    You might save your own fuel, but you're adding cost and being a pain in the arse for everybody else.
    Just drive normal; don't brake at the last moment and don't brake before you have to.

  • by Nimey (114278) on Monday August 29, 2011 @09:28AM (#37240702) Homepage Journal

    What really ensures smooth traffic flow is for everyone to be traveling at about the same speed, with no idiots getting right on someone's butt then hitting the brakes. When they do that, it sets up a standing wave where everyone behind the idiot has to slow down.

    I try to do my part by acting as a low-pass filter: when I see people up ahead of me slowing down, I let off the accelerator and slow down gently so that nobody behind me who's paying the least bit of attention has to hit their brakes, thus removing the standing wave.

    Obviously this can't help when you've got at-grade crossings when people will stop to wait for traffic so they can turn left, but it's a good general rule.

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