Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Nose Camera

Twin nose mounted cameras, to see around obstacles
  (+21, -2)(+21, -2)
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Mount a couple of cheap CCD cameras on the front of the car, one aimed left, the other right, coupled to an internal screen. Then, instead of the entire bonnet/hood of the car having to be driven onto the road before the driver can see past parked obstacles, only a tiny fraction needs to be poked out.
drew, Feb 12 2002

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       Nice. You could get roughly the same effect with less tech by having a "hood ornament" that consists of two mirros, mounted in a "V" configuration with the pointy end towards the driver.
jutta, Feb 12 2002
  

       Unfortunately, the "hood ornament" mirror version would have to be the size of two (exterior) rearview mirrors to offer adequate field of view. That would tend to impair forward vision in some cars under some driving conditions. Cameras could be mounted lower and out of the line of sight, so forward vision need not be affected.   

       <not-really-serious>
Or we could just mount the driver's seat on the front bumper and steer with a joystick mounted between the legs. Full omnidirectional view at all times, plus it would tend to reduce tailgating .
</not-really-serious>
BigBrother, Feb 12 2002
  

       I've heard of this being done, but cannot find a link. I believe it was a feature incorporated into a prototype vehicle.
waugsqueke, Feb 12 2002
  

       [BigBrother] Not at all, just make the two mirrors curved. It'd distort the image some but we don't need resolution, we just need to see motion.
phoenix, Feb 12 2002
  

       Personal experience can lead me to do nothing other that shower drew with croissants.
st3f, Feb 12 2002
  

       All gratefully accepted.....   

       It's personal experience that leads me to want one of these devices (not enough to actually take the time to build one, you understand) - vehicles parked near my house cause me to want one every day...   

       Now [waugsqueke] mentions it, I also vaguely remember some concept car having some sort of similar system.
drew, Feb 12 2002
  

       I was thinking this was going to be some sort of computer assisted nose hair trimmer.
Helium, Feb 12 2002
  

       I'd buy this. The monitor should be a heads up display reflected off the inside of the windshield.   

       There should also be cameras in the rear, a camera on a fast remote controlled car for local reconnaisance, and a remote controlled airplane mounted one (launched through the sun roof) for looking at traffic up ahead.   

       The mirror on the front would have to be big to see anything. How about a mirrored sphere on the front? Or a large mirrored propeller, giving a translucent image to the sides so it doesn't block the view?
tolly3, Feb 12 2002
  

       I, too saw the car that both waugs and drew vaguely recall. The cameras were mounted low in each side of the front bumper. I'm thinking "Honda."
bristolz, Feb 13 2002
  

       [tolly3] I now have this image in my head of that hideous car Liberace used to drive - fitted with a mirror ball slowly rotating above the radiator. Most disturbing.
drew, Feb 13 2002
  

       The problem with using mirrors is being blinded by headlights...with monitors, it would just show as white, wouldn't be as painful.   

       A good idea...
StarChaser, Feb 15 2002
  

       Drew, if this happens at the same location all the time (outside your house fer example), why not mount a large convex mirror (like the kind they use to keep track of shoplifters at the 7-11, or to keep forklifts from running into each other in crowded warehouses) on a pole accross the street. I've seen this used by people who have high hedges, or who have driveways that enter the road near blind curves. Of course, you'll have to get the permission of the people who live accross the way, but tell them you'll also mount a mirror on a pole in your yard for them to use. Everybody wins. :)
timservo, Feb 16 2002
  
      
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