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Pedestrian crossing lights

Pedestrian crossing lights with finger print recognition
  (+1, -5)
(+1, -5)
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The button you press to indicate that there is a person waiting to cross the road will also record your fingerprint. The more different fingerprints the button logs, the quicker the traffic will be stopped. Obviously, the machine would need to be calibrated depending upon location. One advantage is that this would stop people arriving at a pedestrian crossing and waiting, only to find that none of the people who had arrived before them had bothered to press the button.
Milkyteaboy, Mar 14 2002


       I can almost see Big Brother sitting there at his control panel rubbing his hands together in glee at all the fingerprints pouring into his files. Doesn't the green man come up quicker if you repeatedly pummel the button as hard as you can though?
stupop, Mar 14 2002

       Not all are placebos. I've mentioned before that, in my locale, there are no ped crossing lights at all unless you push the button. When you do, traffic in all directions is stopped, allowing for four-way and diagonal crossing.   

       Nonetheless, this is a silly idea. The implication is that the more people waiting, the quicker the light should change, which I don't think is a valid observation. It doesn't matter.   

       As well, those buttons get vandali(s)zed constantly. I don't see how it would accomplish the advantage mentioned in the last sentence.
waugsqueke, Mar 14 2002

       Fatal flaw. One person has 10 different prints, not counting the toes.
dag, Mar 14 2002

       well, if we're going to go down the whole big brother route, then it would recognize each person from which ever part of their body they decided to press against the button. You could even have a payment scheme whereby subscribers can get the lights to change quicker. Perfect for those with busy lives. Or is someone with a registered disability uses it, the lights stay green for long enough for them to cross. the reason i suggested this idea is that sometimes there are loads of people queued up at the lights waiting for ages, whereas one person can waltz up and the lights immediately change and stay green for farlonger than is necessary for one able bodied person to cross the road. surely this is bad flow management.
Milkyteaboy, Mar 14 2002

       Its freezing most of the time in Scotland. A large portion of the people pressing this device would be wearing gloves.
mcscotland, Mar 14 2002

       Retinal scans?
Milkyteaboy, Mar 14 2002

       Drive instead of walking...obviously the light's green, if the pedestrian's waiting.
Grog, Sep 17 2002

       I am looking for a device for the following situation:   

       On a busy highway - single lane - there is a 270 degree corner. This is in a rural setting but there are many people who cross right on the corner. It is possible to cross with clear visibility in one direction but none the other way - and only a few seconds befor the car is on you. Question: Is there any devise that would sense a car/truck approaching in the blind direction and turn on a light warning the person attempting to cross? Thanks Tim   

t clement, Sep 20 2003

       //freezing // ... //gloves// ... //retinal scans// How will you be able to cross when your eyeball is frozen to the button?
spidermother, Jun 12 2011

       Do you think Mr. Clement thought about one of those funny reflective thingies... real high-tech gizmos - er... I think they're called mirrors or something. I suppose it wouldn't turn on his light though.   

       [edit] Just realised this would only for a 90 degree corner in the other direction to that he's measuring - but his road must be pretty funky to have a 270 degree bend with a clear view anywhere.
TomP, Jun 12 2011

       I think we're operating under a critically flawed assumption here: that pushing the button actually does anything. I've always figured it was a just a spring inside a box, put there as a psychological ploy to prevent people from getting impatient and crossing against the signals.   

       In my hometown, where thankfully I no longer reside, there was a crosswalk signal that, because of the timing pattern of the traffic signals at a 5-way intersection, literally _never_ read 'walk,' yet there was a button on the pole that you could push until your finger fell off if you so desired.
Alterother, Jun 14 2011

       Your right! On some stoplights the walk button isn't connected.   

       It is just there to give people the illusion they are in control.
popbottle, Sep 03 2014

       Just like voting, then. Figures.
8th of 7, Sep 03 2014

       //Fatal flaw. One person has 10 different prints, not counting the toes   

       Due to heat dermatitis I have 3 fingerprints and 7 longitudinal stripes fingerprints in summer, so god knows what it would make of me.
not_morrison_rm, Sep 03 2014

       Most likely, when you press the button, instead of bleeping, a tremendous basso subterranean voice booms "Cthulhu Fhtagn !" …
8th of 7, Sep 04 2014


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