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In-dash system helps you hit all green lights
  [vote for,

I have a long commute. Since I don't spend my time texting, reading the paper, or talking on a cell phone like the other drivers, I tend to notice subtle differences in the way various lights are timed and controlled. I hit a disproportionate number of them as they're turning yellow. I've experimented and found that some assume the pack of cars are doing the speed limit, and some assume the driver is going 10 over. It took me years to log enough anecdotes mentally to figure this out. Surely there has to be a better way. Proposed is an in-dash messaging system to let you know how fast to drive to hit the next light green. It would combine GPS and municipal computer systems. It would serve as a bridge technology to eventually automating highways altogether.
kevinthenerd, Sep 28 2012

bidding for greens bidding_20for_20greens
An old idea, with some of the same motivation as this idea [hippo, Oct 01 2012]


       Didn't we do this before? There would be a system that shows a display on your dashboard to speed up or slow down in order to make the next light. I think a couple variations of that have been posted.   

       It's something that definitely should exist because we would probably save millions of barrels of oil if intersections flowed more smoothly. If all of the traffic lights were computerized they could be coordinated to communicate with cars. Imagine how easy it would be to drive if you could coast through green lights at most of the intersections you came to.
DIYMatt, Sep 29 2012

       It's a nifty idea, to be sure, but in some regions sensor- controlled signals are making the notion obsolete.
Alterother, Sep 29 2012

       // Over time people would learn to follow the strange behaving cars. //   

       I already do, but not because I'm trying to make the light. I'd just rather stay behind a drunk driver than try to pass one.   

       It would take a while for the police to catch on. Erratic driving, even within the law, draws traffic cops like ravens to roadkill. Not that I'm trying to directly contradict you, but I feel this is a parallel discussion to that taking place across the hall in Car Navigation For Humans; more people relying on an electronic device to tell them how to drive does not seem likely to improve traffic conditions, at the very least not at first.   

       // ILS type approach cones //   

       That brought to mind some amusing images; rush-hour traffic directed into holding patterns while drivers rely solely on dashboard information to navigate, never even glancing out of the window for visual verification.
Alterother, Sep 30 2012

       ...and "bidding for greens" (link) solves the problem by allowing you to accelerate towards the next traffic light and 'buy' a green light timed for when you arrive there.
hippo, Oct 01 2012


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