Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Vehicular Laser Proximity Indicators

Quick and Easy Reference to how close the cars around you are
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(+4, -5)
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Mounted under clear blisters on your car's roof would be either two or four of those pocket-pointer type lasers, on articulated swivels which would allow them to draw lines on their targets, like scanners at point-of-sale register scanners. These lasers would be mounted at an angle, and made to draw horizontal lines on the adjacent vehicles, such that as a car comes closer to you (or you draw closer to a car), a horizontal line appears, low at first, but rising higher to indicate how much closer you are to the car you are approaching. The angle mount would be such that the line would be about 3 feet off the road at approximately 6-10 feet from the perimeter of the vehicle upon which it was mounted, at a fairly flat angle (with respect to the ground) so that useful information could be gathered up to 60-100' away, but at a sharp enough angle that the line motion would still be noticeable as you drew closer to a nearby vehicle.

Only two are needed if you're only concerned about highway traffic, but four could be useful in urban driving.

also would help with placing one's car in exactly the right spot in the garage.

Sonic detection (those old Polaroid Land Camera focus sensors) could be used to turn the lasers off when nothing is in range to draw lines upon.

The downward angling should be adequate to address eye-safety issues.

Soterios, Mar 11 2005

anti-tailgating device anti-tailgating_20device
pretty much the same thing, except for maybe THE GUY BEHIND ME IS AN ARSEHOLE bit. [waugsqueke, Mar 12 2005]


       //The downward angling should be adequate to address eye-safety issues.//
Small child looking up : "Mummy, what are those red lights? Oh, never mind, they've gone now."
angel, Mar 11 2005

       //Quick and Easy Reference to how close the cars around you are//
Why can't you just glance over without the lasers?
brodie, Mar 11 2005

       For viewing from the sides of one's vehicle, really, you can just glance over. But there are a number of studies indicating that human eyes are placed closely enough together that we have trouble accurately judging distances from objects that are moving directly towards/away from us. I think my suggestion would help provide easy-to-see indicator which is moving perpendicularly to that direct line of motion, and thus make it easier to perceive that we are getting too close to the car in front of us.
Soterios, Mar 11 2005

       Methinks these are baked.   

       But nothing popped up on google.   

       So I remain neutral.
DesertFox, Mar 12 2005

       Baked in Canada.Nissan Murano has front mounted laser warning system for idiots who do'nt know they are following too close.
python, Mar 12 2005

       Sorry No. If you do not know how to adapt your driving and keep a safe distance then this good idea will not benefit you. The fact that you have posted this is laudable but the fact is that people need to be educated in driving skills after they have passed their test.
This is just another thing to ignore!
gnomethang, Mar 12 2005

       What about the laser being reflected off of the sideview mirrors of passing cars? Or being reflected off of puddles on the ground? Or for that matter, what happens when a laser hits some kind of reflector? or a really well polished deLorean
BPhilpotts, Mar 13 2005

       Baked as [python] said, also at the rear to help parking.
zeno, Mar 13 2005

       Wow, tough crowd.
Soterios, Mar 14 2005

       For close proximity detection you could use a laser (or light) passing through a diverging lens. As you get closer to an obstacle, the projected beam would get smaller and brighter. This would reduce the eye-safety issues.
xaviergisz, Mar 14 2005

       I DO like the idea, but yes, it's baked, so neutral I must remain. How about this - the rear sensor is tied in to a message display system so that when the person behind gets too close, it flashes an appropriate message such as "back off."
awesomest, Mar 14 2005

       Really, nobody had cryptocybers in mind back in 2005?
notexactly, May 28 2019


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