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GENIVI: moving an industry to open source

GENIVI: moving an industry to open source

Posted Aug 9, 2012 14:31 UTC (Thu) by maxpolun (subscriber, #85717)
In reply to: GENIVI: moving an industry to open source by dskoll
Parent article: GENIVI: moving an industry to open source

The biggest distraction danger right now is not IVI systems, but people using phones while driving. I'd much rather have people using an interface designed to be used while driving than using their phones.

And you can make the same argument against radio/stereo systems that have been in cars for decades. Distraction is a real danger, but the only way to prevent it is to educate people about how dangerous it is. Taking out IVI systems will not help one whit.


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GENIVI: moving an industry to open source

Posted Aug 10, 2012 0:43 UTC (Fri) by dlang (subscriber, #313) [Link]

and cell phones are nowhere near as distracting to the driver as a couple of kids fighting in the back seat.

And once you outlaw all distractions, you will then have problems due to people falling asleep, zoneing out, etc behind the wheel, especially on long drives.

GENIVI: moving an industry to open source

Posted Aug 10, 2012 2:23 UTC (Fri) by Cyberax (✭ supporter ✭, #52523) [Link]

> and cell phones are nowhere near as distracting to the driver as a couple of kids fighting in the back seat.

Yep, cellphones are even MORE distracting. Seriously. They are as bad as driving drunk.

GENIVI: moving an industry to open source

Posted Aug 10, 2012 2:35 UTC (Fri) by dlang (subscriber, #313) [Link]

> Yep, cellphones are even MORE distracting. Seriously. They are as bad as driving drunk.

except you can hang up a phone quickly in response to changing road conditions, you can't sober up quickly.

and where is the study that says that talking on a cell phone is more distracting than trying to deal with a couple of kids fighting in the back seat?

the "cell phones are as bad as being drunk" is a catchy soundbite, but it's far from being the real story.

GENIVI: moving an industry to open source

Posted Aug 10, 2012 2:42 UTC (Fri) by dlang (subscriber, #313) [Link]

The lack of distractions can be a problem in and of itself

Long Haul trucking companies consider having a radio/CD player/etc in the truck to be a positive safety feature, the lack of any distraction for long, monotonous drives can result in drivers effectively being mesmerized by the constant scenery, causing them to be very slow to react to new events. Having the slight "distraction" of a radio can prevent this and reduce the chance of accidents.

GENIVI: moving an industry to open source

Posted Aug 10, 2012 7:09 UTC (Fri) by Cyberax (✭ supporter ✭, #52523) [Link]

Quite a few accidents happen if one doesn't notice something and/or distracted and doesn't react quickly enough.

GENIVI: moving an industry to open source

Posted Aug 10, 2012 15:03 UTC (Fri) by dlang (subscriber, #313) [Link]

> Quite a few accidents happen if one doesn't notice something and/or distracted and doesn't react quickly enough.

and who disputes this?

There is a big difference between this undisputed fact and equating distractions (especially cell phones) with drunk driving.

GENIVI: moving an industry to open source

Posted Aug 10, 2012 15:27 UTC (Fri) by dskoll (subscriber, #1630) [Link]

There is a big difference between this undisputed fact and equating distractions (especially cell phones) with drunk driving.

University of Utah study concluded "Three years after the preliminary results first were presented at a scientific meeting and drew wide attention, University of Utah psychologists have published a study showing that motorists who talk on handheld or hands-free cellular phones are as impaired as drunken drivers."

GENIVI: moving an industry to open source

Posted Aug 10, 2012 15:28 UTC (Fri) by dskoll (subscriber, #1630) [Link]

Oh, and from the same study:

The study reinforced earlier research by Strayer and Drews showing that hands-free cell phones are just as distracting as handheld cell phones because the conversation itself – not just manipulation of a handheld phone – distracts drivers from road conditions.

GENIVI: moving an industry to open source

Posted Aug 10, 2012 15:40 UTC (Fri) by dlang (subscriber, #313) [Link]

so we need to also ban conversations with other people in the car if it's the conversation that's so horribly distracting.

or we need to admit that there isn't really anything so special about cell phones.

GENIVI: moving an industry to open source

Posted Aug 10, 2012 16:50 UTC (Fri) by Cyberax (✭ supporter ✭, #52523) [Link]

Nope. Real face-to-face conversation in cars tend to be much less distracting. Again, it's confirmed by multiple studies.

GENIVI: moving an industry to open source

Posted Aug 10, 2012 18:50 UTC (Fri) by anselm (subscriber, #2796) [Link]

Real face-to-face conversation in cars tend to be much less distracting.

One would certainly hope that any conversation taking place in a car and involving the driver would not be a face-to-face conversation.

GENIVI: moving an industry to open source

Posted Aug 10, 2012 19:23 UTC (Fri) by dlang (subscriber, #313) [Link]

apparently so are conversations that involve push-to-talk hardware (various two way radio systems, CB, Ham, etc)

or so it would seem due to the fact that they have been explicitly exempted from the laws regulating cell phones.

I just don't see why phone conversations are so much worse than all of these other types of distraction. I think it all boils down to a nice sounding soundbite.

I also have a hard time with the fact that they are equating something that slows reaction time (distraction) with something that impairs judgment (drunk driving)

While you have accidents caused by both causes, they are really not equivalent.

If you can retain your judgment, you can reduce distractions when conditions get worse (heavier traffic, weather conditions, etc). If you don't have judgment you don't realize there is any need to change anything.

GENIVI: moving an industry to open source

Posted Aug 10, 2012 20:13 UTC (Fri) by dskoll (subscriber, #1630) [Link]

I just don't see why phone conversations are so much worse than all of these other types of distraction. I think it all boils down to a nice sounding soundbite.

Multiple studies have confirmed that indeed, there's something special about being on a cell phone that distracts us much more than other things. I've posted a link to one such study and you can easily find others with a few minutes of googling.

I'm not a psychologist so I don't know why it's the case, but I'm certainly convinced that it is the case.

GENIVI: moving an industry to open source

Posted Aug 10, 2012 20:15 UTC (Fri) by dskoll (subscriber, #1630) [Link]

If you don't have judgment you don't realize there is any need to change anything.

People who talk on cell phones while driving lack judgement. QED.

GENIVI: moving an industry to open source

Posted Aug 17, 2012 12:23 UTC (Fri) by man_ls (guest, #15091) [Link]

Check mate. Well played! And thanks for the laugh.

GENIVI: moving an industry to open source

Posted Aug 10, 2012 20:11 UTC (Fri) by dskoll (subscriber, #1630) [Link]

As another poster said, face-to-face conversations are much, much less distracting than phone conversations. Also, if you have other people in the car, they can see the traffic conditions and be aware when it's time to shut up or yell "Look out!". Someone on the other end of the phone lacks that info.

GENIVI: moving an industry to open source

Posted Aug 24, 2012 2:29 UTC (Fri) by dlang (subscriber, #313) [Link]

by the way, there are now starting to be studies coming out asking why, if using a phone is so bad, are the laws against cell phones (and the measured drop in cell phone usage) not showing any results in the accident or fatality rates.

a couple cases in point:

http://news.sciencemag.org/sciencenow/2012/08/why-cell-ph...

http://esciencenews.com/articles/2011/12/14/wayne.state.s...

GENIVI: moving an industry to open source

Posted Aug 27, 2012 16:59 UTC (Mon) by mathstuf (subscriber, #69389) [Link]

Without reading your links, some questions I would have are:

- How is the drop in usage measured? Self-reporting? If so, there might be bias there.
- Is age factored out? I would think teens are more likely to flaunt those laws and are at higher risk anyways.
- In-car navigation systems and the like seem to be rising in popularity as well. Maybe there is some cancellation there?

Really, a decrease in the percentage of the rates due to cell phones would be the interesting numbers.

GENIVI: moving an industry to open source

Posted Aug 27, 2012 22:12 UTC (Mon) by dlang (subscriber, #313) [Link]

These (and apparently other) studies were started to research the strange phenomenon that all these anti-cell phone laws have been passed on the justification that they would improve safety, but the accident and fatality rates have not changed as a result of the laws being passed.

so either

A) everyone is ignoring the law

or

B) cell phone use may not have been as much a factor as people thought.

In one of the links, they were reviewing the data from one of the early studies that showed that cell phone use was so horrible. They found that when the study was comparing "accident" days with "non-accident" days, they didn't account for the miles driven. If they changed the calculation to be by miles rather than by days, the rate of accidents with cell phone use was 1/5 the rate calculated in the original study, bringing it down to almost the accident rate for non-cell phone use.

In the other study, they did question people on their cell phone usage, and then had them drive the same route. They found that the people who reported high cell phone usage had many other driving habits that made them more likely to get into accidents (higher speeds +5mph, 2x more lane changes, etc), raising the question of if the cell phone use was the _cause_ of these people tending to have higher accident rates, or merely a _correlation_ with their other driving habits. This is just looking at the more extremes (use a phone frequently, and almost never use a phone), so it's hardly definitive either, but they are counterpoints to the "Cell phone usage is as bad as drunk driving" drumbeat that we ahve been hearing, so I thought I'd mention them.

GENIVI: moving an industry to open source

Posted Aug 27, 2012 22:33 UTC (Mon) by Cyberax (✭ supporter ✭, #52523) [Link]

Accidents decrease in the areas with _strict_ no-phone law enforcement. Unfortunately, they're hardly ever enforced - people just ignore them.

GENIVI: moving an industry to open source

Posted Aug 27, 2012 23:54 UTC (Mon) by dlang (subscriber, #313) [Link]

do you have something to show this?

Also, if they are cracking down on no-phone rules, are they cracking down on all other questionable driving habits as well? if so, is it possible that that part of the crackdown is the cause of any decrease in the accident rate?

GENIVI: moving an industry to open source

Posted Aug 28, 2012 0:15 UTC (Tue) by Cyberax (✭ supporter ✭, #52523) [Link]

Yes, I have a link to a police report about it. Only I can't find it right now.

Of course, it can be a result of the general crackdown. However, phones are clearly a contributing factor in a significant number of sever accidents.

GENIVI: moving an industry to open source

Posted Aug 28, 2012 1:11 UTC (Tue) by dlang (subscriber, #313) [Link]

the question is over how much of a contribution the phone is (especially compared to other distractions) and if it's really a "significiant" number of accidents.

I don't think that anyone disputes that some people drive significantly worse while talking on the phone, or that this results in some accidents.

The dispute comes when you assume that banning phones will significantly reduce accidents.

So far it appears that this isn't the case.

P.S. A law against something bad that everyone ignores is worse than not having a law against that same something, it encourages people to think of the law as something that doesn't really mean much, and it leads to people looking at cases where laws are enforced with the slant of "why were they really out to get that person"

Talking while driving

Posted Aug 28, 2012 1:20 UTC (Tue) by man_ls (guest, #15091) [Link]

"All else being equal" is a tricky proposition even on the best days. There may be multiple arguments to explain why the accident rate has not gone down after forbidding "talking while driving", besides the two you mention:
  • Talking while driving did not account for a large percentage of accidents.
  • Talking while driving was forbidden when cellphones were not so popular, so the amount of talking while driving has kept more or less stable (including people who disregard the law).
  • Any other combination of outside factors has increased accident rates compensating for any talking while driving laws.
  • My favorite is that people now use hands-free cellphones, which are just as dangerous as hands-on cellphones -- ergo the lack of effect.
I suppose that all the new studies are taking these factors into account, but best methodology would be to check similar countries with different laws and see how they fare. I don't know if that is possible.

Personally I think that the cellphone laws is not a good idea; one must exercise extreme caution when talking while driving, but also when talking hands-free, smoking (those who do), changing the music, talking to your spouse, seeing an accident nearby, and any other condition that diminishes your attention to the road. Since those other things are not going to be forbidden it makes little sense to fixate on cellphones.

I think that the worst habit is filming a movie while driving; those actors that look to the passengers for minutes on end drive me crazy.

GENIVI: moving an industry to open source

Posted Aug 10, 2012 15:26 UTC (Fri) by dskoll (subscriber, #1630) [Link]

and cell phones are nowhere near as distracting to the driver as a couple of kids fighting in the back seat.

Cell phones are far more distracting. There are many studies showing that the impairment from being on a cell phone while driving is as bad as the impairment from being legally drunk.

I won't even mention texting while driving which is in a whole other category of WTF.

GENIVI: moving an industry to open source

Posted Aug 10, 2012 15:49 UTC (Fri) by jwakely (guest, #60262) [Link]

I know someone who took part in a highly unscientific experiment involving some very experienced drivers, a test track, mobile phones and alchohol. Using a phone make your driving worse than alcohol does.

(N.B. this was on a test track, not public roads!)

GENIVI: moving an industry to open source

Posted Aug 17, 2012 12:30 UTC (Fri) by man_ls (guest, #15091) [Link]

I won't even mention texting while driving which is in a whole other category of WTF.
I have texted while driving on one of the old phones with a numeric keypad; it is not so hard once you learn all the key positions. Of course I did it while in a traffic jam to warn my wife; the vehicle was almost completely stopped. I will admit that it increases risk, but at that point risk was negligible.

There is a similar trick on the movie The Departed, but without driving -- too easy.

The problem with regulations is that they are always too generic or too specific; using a mobile is banned even when stopped or moving at 10 km/h. But if hundreds of lives are saved per year then it is well worth it.

GENIVI: moving an industry to open source

Posted Aug 10, 2012 15:30 UTC (Fri) by dskoll (subscriber, #1630) [Link]

And you can make the same argument against radio/stereo systems that have been in cars for decades.

Not really. You don't need to look at a radio to change stations (well, except in my Prius which replaced nice tactile radio buttons with a context-sensitive touchscreen... there's a real WTF.)

You also don't need to concentrate much to listen to the radio, unlike talking to someone on a cell phone.

GENIVI: moving an industry to open source

Posted Aug 10, 2012 15:46 UTC (Fri) by dlang (subscriber, #313) [Link]

> You also don't need to concentrate much to listen to the radio, unlike talking to someone on a cell phone.

that depends on what you are listening to.

listening to a talk radio host that has you yelling back at the radio is almost certainly as distracting as listening to a phone call :-)

listening to background music is not going to be that distracting, although listening to music that you like well enough to start singing along and moving to the music probably is far more distracting.

listening to books on tape could also range wildly, most of the time it's not going to eat that much of your attention, but when you get to the cliffhanger section of a thriller, It can eat a lot of your attention.

The effect of all of these distractions vary greatly from person to person.


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