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US Agency Aims To Regulate Map Aids In Vehicles

samzenpus posted about a month ago | from the the-right-way-to-go dept.

Transportation 216

An anonymous reader writes in with news about proposed rules regarding mapping technology used in cars.Many are in favor of rules that prevent texting while driving, but in-car navigation is a murkier legal area — how do you minimize distractions without limiting the ability to get from point A to point B? Like it or not, the US government may settle that debate before long. The proposed Grow America Act would let the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) set rules for dash-mounted GPS units, smartphone mapping apps and anything else you'd use for driving directions. While it's not clear what the NHTSA would do with its power, the Department of Transportation's voluntary guidelines ask for limits on eye-catching visuals (think videos) and interaction times; don't be surprised if these enter the rulebooks.

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216 comments

We want driverless cars TODAY! (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47248313)

This will all be wasted time once Google perfects the self driving car.

Re:We want driverless cars TODAY! (4, Insightful)

darkain (749283) | about a month ago | (#47248333)

Much in the same way regulations for fuel efficiency are wasted because we have fully electric cars now....

Re:We want driverless cars TODAY! (3, Informative)

pr0fessor (1940368) | about a month ago | (#47248383)

We've had electric cars since the late 1800s they were even more popular than gas until cost outweighs the benefit.

Re:We want driverless cars TODAY! (1)

ArcadeMan (2766669) | about a month ago | (#47248427)

And the first diesel cars were run on vegetable oil and alcool.

Re: We want driverless cars TODAY! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47248443)

See woodgas

Re: We want driverless cars TODAY! (1)

FatdogHaiku (978357) | about a month ago | (#47248831)

See woodgas

I do not want to see, hear, or smell woodgas...
getting the image out of my head is bad enough!

Re:We want driverless cars TODAY! (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47248595)

We already have driverless cars today. Between women putting on make-up, men eating, and teens texting, quite a few cars on the roads today are driverless.

Re:We want driverless cars TODAY! (1)

Mordok-DestroyerOfWo (1000167) | about a month ago | (#47248915)

We already have driverless cars today. Between women putting on make-up, men eating, and teens texting, quite a few cars on the roads today are driverless.

And don't even get me started on goth teenagers with eating disorders!

Re:We want driverless cars TODAY! (1)

Mister Liberty (769145) | about a month ago | (#47248767)

You got some already -- though, granted, not enough.
They're called trains.

What The?!? (3, Insightful)

realperseus (594176) | about a month ago | (#47248353)

Our government has better things to do than waste MY tax dollars on such nonsense! Sigh..

Re:What The?!? (1)

micahraleigh (2600457) | about a month ago | (#47248367)

Washington DC, a train wreck, wants to prevent car wrecks.

Re:What The?!? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47248429)

Be happy that You don't have European parliament nearby.

Re:What The?!? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47248393)

Our government has better things to do than waste MY tax dollars on such nonsense! Sigh..

You personally fund the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration? What else?

Re:What The?!? (-1)

geekoid (135745) | about a month ago | (#47248445)

They are not your tax dollars. They are ARE tax dollars.
NHTSA has a pretty good track record.

Re:What The?!? (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47248519)

"ARE"? Really?

Re:What The?!? (4, Funny)

i kan reed (749298) | about a month ago | (#47248551)

There should be an exemption to disliking grammar nazis any time someone goes out of their way to emphasize a word, and uses it completely incorrectly.

(or if your failure at grammar introduces serious ambiguity problems)

Re:What The?!? (1)

Doug Otto (2821601) | about a month ago | (#47248589)

They are not your tax dollars. They are ARE tax dollars. NHTSA has a pretty good track record.

Our ewe shure?

Re:What The?!? (1)

mbeckman (645148) | about a month ago | (#47248617)

You must be a product of "are" education system, another good example of government spending money "ifishintly'

Re:What The?!? (1)

fisted (2295862) | about a month ago | (#47248665)

Dude, get off are lawn

Re:What The?!? (1)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | about a month ago | (#47248693)

They are ARE tax dollars.

It depends on what the word IS is. -- Bill Clinton

I think you meant to write:

Argh, matey! They are, argh, tax dollars. Thirty days at sea, and not a wench to be seen. Grease up the monkey!

Re:What The?!? (1)

Gothmolly (148874) | about a month ago | (#47248587)

No, they don't. Not anymore. Not since people swallowed the premise of the "Federal Family". Because 51 > 49, bread and circuses will always win. And because Commerce Clause.

Re:What The?!? (4, Insightful)

Ralph Wiggam (22354) | about a month ago | (#47248597)

The rate of US car fatalities has plummeted 75% over the past 45 years, largely due to government mandates and the NHTSA. The hundreds of thousands of people who are alive today because of those actions probably don't consider it "nonsense".

Re:What The?!? (1, Insightful)

Dishevel (1105119) | about a month ago | (#47248823)

Because if Honda were allowed to sell cars without seat belts and airbags you would buy them.

Regulations are rarely a good thing. Massive regulation is always a bad thing.

Re:What The?!? (2)

Ralph Wiggam (22354) | about a month ago | (#47248847)

It's weird how Libertarians never cite any data to support their statements.

Re: What The?!? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47248957)

100 percent of cars without map aids have never had their drivers cause a map aid related accident.

Libertarians are smart enough to know the government will try and regulate paper maps if they could.

Re: What The?!? (1)

Ralph Wiggam (22354) | about a month ago | (#47249051)

Was that supposed to make sense? Because it did not.

Re:What The?!? (1)

Dishevel (1105119) | about a month ago | (#47249039)

I am sorry. Was that a statement saying that you would or would not buy them?

I am unclear as to what your point was. What statistics were you looking for?

Maybe your problem was with my statements. How would you amend them?

Regulations are always a good thing. Massive regulation is even better.

or

Regulations are almost always a good thing. Massive regulation usually works.

or

Regulations are never a good thing.

or

Regulations are rarely a good thing, but massive regulation is how you fix things.

What exactly are you arguing about?

Re:What The?!? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47249043)

Because if Honda were allowed to sell cars without seat belts and airbags you would buy them.

History shows that consumers did exactly that, until regulation forced manufacturers to stop making grenade-like rolling sarcophagi, so there goes that argument from incredulity...

Re:What The?!? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47248923)

I suspect that most /.ers are too young to remember the days when there'd be reports of hundreds of people killed statewide on the roads during a single holiday weekend. Those numbers didn't go down since then because drivers magically became more skilled over the years. Government-mandated safety features -- along with pressure from the insurance industry -- were the main reason.

I'm wary of any optional (oh, excuse me... wrong term nowadays. I meant "available" [1]) toy that auto manufacturers sell as being a convenient thing to have in a car if it'll take my eyes off the road even for a bit [2].

[1] -- "Optional" means you don't really need it. "Available" means our marketing people will convince you that it's a gotta-have device that you didn't know you wanted.)

(2] -- Call me old-fashioned, but I plan my auto trips so I don't have to have live directions given to me in real-time by something in my dashboard. My solution: buy a f**king map. Need detailed turn information to your destination? Look up the directions on Google Maps (or similar), print them out, and refer to them while you're at a stop light/sign or have your significant other read them.

Re:What The?!? (2)

Shakrai (717556) | about a month ago | (#47249035)

My solution: buy a f**king map. Need detailed turn information to your destination? Look up the directions on Google Maps (or similar), print them out, and refer to them while you're at a stop light/sign or have your significant other read them.

Because taking my eyes off the road to refer to maps/printed directions is so much safer than listening to audio directions and occasionally glancing at a TomTom that's mounted right below my rear view mirror, in a position where my eyes don't leave the roadway?

1. Maps suck. Road atlases are only useful for the 20,000 foot view, i.e., which combination of interstates and/or state highways will get me to my destination city. Once I'm in that city I need a street level map if I'm going to find my destintion and I don't have the money to equip my car with street level maps for every city within driving distance of my house.
2. Printed directions are even worse. You've got to constantly take your eyes off the road to refer to them, and god help you if you miss a turn either by accident or because of detour. Those directions are predicated on the assumption that you can follow them perfectly and there are no road closures. Once you're off the path they're useless.

Re:What The?!? (1)

Shakrai (717556) | about a month ago | (#47248987)

The rate of US car fatalities has plummeted 75% over the past 45 years, largely due to government mandates and the NHTSA.

None of which argues in favor of NHTSA sticking its nose in the Google or Apple stores, imposing mandates on mapping apps, mandates that will invariably be shaped (see regulatory capture) to the benefit of incumbents at the expense of would-be upstarts.

Re:What The?!? (1)

x_t0ken_407 (2716535) | about a month ago | (#47248611)

Didn't you know? Even more regulation is all we need to a happier and more prosperous life.

Re:What The?!? (1)

Mordok-DestroyerOfWo (1000167) | about a month ago | (#47248969)

Didn't you know? Even more regulation is all we need to a happier and more prosperous life.

Didn't you know? All we need for a happier and more prosperous life is to go completely Thunder Dome!

Re:What The?!? (1)

CreatureComfort (741652) | about a month ago | (#47248631)

Look, those dollars are gone. It's over. You're never getting them back. Let them go.

Now, if the government is going to waste the dollars they take I wish they would spend MORE money on silly stuff like this rather than blowing craters in the sand or giving it for free to big banks. Yes, it would be great if this money went to NASA, or disease prevention and cures, or creating a more educated populace, but really, there are so many worse areas they could have spent this time and money, you should be grateful.

Re:What The?!? (2)

Dishevel (1105119) | about a month ago | (#47248853)

I like that argument. Let me break that one down.

The government SHOULD waste our money on a thing because you found a thing that is even a bigger waste of our money.

Perfect.

Re:What The?!? (2)

sjames (1099) | about a month ago | (#47248815)

So, when you're going down a crowded highway you're fine with it if the GPS app in the truck next to you goes to a commercial break featuring boobies?

For Republicans,... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47248977)

it's always about making government bigger and adding more control. It's just yet another power grab for the Republicans.

Perhaps.... (2)

pablo_max (626328) | about a month ago | (#47248363)

Maybe they should consider getting all of the various other areas they "oversee" under control before they start trying to expand their power even further.

Re: (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47248381)

Great....more intrusion from government

Overreach much? (4, Interesting)

russotto (537200) | about a month ago | (#47248387)

They want to regulate mapping apps on smartphones, including those not installed in vehicles? Seems like more than a bit of a stretch.

Re:Overreach much? (1)

geekoid (135745) | about a month ago | (#47248455)

Probably vehicle guidelines; which is a good thing.

Re:Overreach much? (2)

BasilBrush (643681) | about a month ago | (#47248487)

I can understand the motivation. People who are entering a new destination to their satnav whilst driving are paying very little attention to the road and are a big hazard.

But the only way to implement it on a handheld device is to restrict by speed. And I quite often like to monitor where I am with GPS when I'm on public transport. So I'd lose that. As would people who are navigating from the passenger seat of a car.

Tricky one.

Re:Overreach much? (3, Insightful)

mellon (7048) | about a month ago | (#47248513)

This latter bit is a real problem in our Prius: you can't enter a destination without stopping. It lets you do other things, just not that. Really annoying, because it's almost always the case that when we need to enter directions, we're driving somewhere together. It would be nice if the NHTSA rules allowed for passengers.

Re:Overreach much? (1)

pr0fessor (1940368) | about a month ago | (#47248609)

My 2006 buick detects if someone is not wearing a seatbelt and turns off the passenger side airbag if no one is in the passenger seat {it didn't come with GPS}. If the GPS is built into the car I see no reason why it couldn't do the same.

You need bricks to put in the car for traction? No, to trick the car into thinking there is someone in the passenger seat so the GPS works when it's not in park.

Re:Overreach much? (1)

Golddess (1361003) | about a month ago | (#47248769)

My 2006 buick detects if someone is not wearing a seatbelt and turns off the passenger side airbag if no one is in the passenger seat

.....WHY??? Sure, it might be unnecessary if no one is sitting there, but what possible benefit is conferred by disabling an airbag?

Re:Overreach much? (1)

pr0fessor (1940368) | about a month ago | (#47248879)

That way if you are in an accident you don't have to pay for it to be repacked/replaced if not needed? I have no idea I didn't design the car.

Re:Overreach much? (1)

NatasRevol (731260) | about a month ago | (#47248913)

Cost & not sending things flying at ~200mph

Re:Overreach much? (1)

flink (18449) | about a month ago | (#47248941)

My 2006 buick detects if someone is not wearing a seatbelt and turns off the passenger side airbag if no one is in the passenger seat

.....WHY??? Sure, it might be unnecessary if no one is sitting there, but what possible benefit is conferred by disabling an airbag?

It might be a child safety thing. An airbag can kill someone below a certain size, especially if they are not wearing a seat belt, so it's likely programmed to disable itself if there is less than e.g. 80 lbs in the passenger seat, or if the belt is not buckled. In those scenarios an airbag deploying would do more harm than good by turning an otherwise low risk slow speed crash into potentially fatal one.

Re: Overreach much? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47249001)

The environment is saved from a wasteful airbag deployment.

Re:Overreach much? (1)

richlv (778496) | about a month ago | (#47248605)

which is still way more safe than messing with a paper map, trying to find the correct page or unfold an elephant's sheet. i'd hate to see navigation features being deliberately made less usable

Re:Overreach much? (1)

BasilBrush (643681) | about a month ago | (#47249057)

And that's way more safe than wearing a blindfold whilst driving.

What's the matter with you? If you need to set a destination, do it before you start driving. If you need to change destination, pull over.

Re:Overreach much? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47248637)

Everyone who is entering a new destination will use some form of a map. If I can't have my GPS or phone verbally tell me where and when to turn, then I am back to the huge folded up maps that are bigger than my windshield when unfolded. Much safer.

Re:Overreach much? (4, Interesting)

tysonedwards (969693) | about a month ago | (#47248561)

They want to have the authority to regulate apps that after release have been linked to "safety related issues" that have an intended purpose of being used primarily while driving on a road. They're not asking to regulate all cell phones, or twitter, or Facebook use while in a car (yet), what they are asking for is the ability to bitch-slap developers after the fact who create apps that are designed for use while driving yet lead to distractions, ergo creating safety issues for those likely using said app while driving, presumably on a highway. To that end, is someone more likely to be using Navigon, Garmin, TomTom, or the multitude of other apps while going for a walk, or when driving somewhere?

And if they incorporated a "Thank you for using MotionX GPS Lite, before giving your your directions, please watch this YouTube video and answer this quick survey!", should NHTSB or anyone else for that matter have the authority to tell them that that is morally wrong, and potentially unsafe behavior, let alone compel them to take corrective action?

Their request for oversight over this area doesn't seem like a "major" stretch at this point, but it does set a quite unusual precedent that can be used to expand their powers in the future. And as we all have seen in the past, if Government has the potential to grow, it will do so.

Re:Overreach much? (1)

LookIntoTheFuture (3480731) | about a month ago | (#47248791)

what they are asking for is the ability to bitch-slap developers after the fact who create apps that are designed for use while driving yet lead to distractions

Like the ads that pop up on the MapQuest app during navigation. (Yes, yes, I know I'm the only one that uses it.)

Re:Overreach much? (1)

TubeSteak (669689) | about a month ago | (#47248677)

They want to regulate mapping apps on smartphones, including those not installed in vehicles? Seems like more than a bit of a stretch.

The FAA regulates the use of your (smart)phone on planes.
Is that also a stretch?

Re:Overreach much? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47248961)

FCC, actually.

Re: Overreach much? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47249023)

They don't if its YOUR plane.

Re:Overreach much? (1)

CrimsonAvenger (580665) | about a month ago | (#47248757)

They're going to regulate my cell's mapping app, eh?

Not to worry, I can still open the old Rand-McNally while driving if I really need to find a route.

see ya (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47248397)

So long speed trap alerts in Waze.

Can they start regulating back-seat driving, too? (5, Funny)

OSULugan (3529543) | about a month ago | (#47248407)

I'd love for them to limit the type and amount of distractions from my wife telling me where to go, too.

Re:Can they start regulating back-seat driving, to (3, Funny)

Enry (630) | about a month ago | (#47248437)

Wait, your GPS can give directions to Hell?

Re:Can they start regulating back-seat driving, to (1)

Megahard (1053072) | about a month ago | (#47248531)

Yes, it takes you on the Road to Perdition.

Re:Can they start regulating back-seat driving, to (1)

neminem (561346) | about a month ago | (#47248555)

Why wouldn't it be able to? Michigan isn't *that* confusing...

Re:Can they start regulating back-seat driving, to (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47248899)

Not to mention..if one needs a map in michigan, one only needs to use one's hand.....

Re:Can they start regulating back-seat driving, to (1)

houghi (78078) | about a month ago | (#47249013)

Sure it can [google.co.uk] Hell, MI 48169

FYI if you add &output=classic at the end of the URL, you get back the old Google Maps. Don't you love it how they change things around all the time?

Drive Up Trucking Costs Act (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47248449)

Re: Ministry of "Truth"

Except for the cops (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47248457)

Except for the cops, of course. They'll be able to anything they fuckin' want. Wheeeeeeee!

All about the symptoms (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47248475)

The relevant literature points to a sad fact: People who are a danger behind the wheel because they're not paying attention to the road will be as dangerous driving while phoning, driving while texting, driving while fumbling with the radio, driving while... you get the picture. Of course, much easier to make an explicit rule "while driving you cannot use $device!" moreso because with the advent of some other device you can have a jolly good debate showing off to your voters about the next device. When for safety's sake you need people to be paying attention to the road. Some people are responsible about this, others less so. How do you discern? You can't, and anyway, the debating is what the politicians do, so going Don Quichotte on symptoms it is.

Well, if that's the way it is I want a blanket ban on touchscreens. Need physical buttons with tactile discernability so you can fumble while you keep your eyes on the road.

always exceptions (2)

MooseTick (895855) | about a month ago | (#47248503)

There will likely always be an exception. The car doesn't know that you are the only person in the car, and there is no reason that a passenger can't input nav data while the vehicle is in motion.

This will make for some great action movies though. Imagive the hero doesn't know where he needs to be, but can't stop the vehicle for GPS to work because there is a carload of mafia terrorists chasing him.

Re:always exceptions (2)

Jason Levine (196982) | about a month ago | (#47248845)

Don't worry. The plucky geek sidekick will - via phone - talk him through reprogramming his entire GPS operating system by pushing five buttons in the right order. The sidekick will then try to help more by remotely hacking into and reprogramming the mafia terrorists' car to disable the steering. The hero will berate the sidekick after the car nearly crashes into a bus filled with sweet, innocent children. Thankfully, the hero was able to aim his gun (which only had one bullet left) behind him and hit the tire of the mafia terrorists' car causing it to explode and flip up and over the bus.

Physics? Reasonable technology? A movie craves not these things.

WTF (4, Insightful)

kwiecmmm (1527631) | about a month ago | (#47248505)

So what if someone else in the car is looking at the directions while you are driving? Will their ability to look at directions be significantly hampered?

It is a good thing that these Congress people don't have any important things to worry about so they can focus on this ridiculous crap.

In the mean time my car might just drive on an interstate with failing bridges, or into a tunnel with ceiling tiles that could fall at any moment, but focusing on this is obviously the best thing for Congress to do.

Re:WTF (1)

NatasRevol (731260) | about a month ago | (#47248989)

To be fair, the tunnel with ceiling tiles is a local corruption issue of Boston.

Open Source my car dashboard (1)

jlv (5619) | about a month ago | (#47248529)

I really want the code running in my dash board to be open source, so that I can *replace* the crud the auto maker put in there with something with dumb limits and restrictions.

Driving distractions. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47248541)

Talking on Cell Phone
Texting
Radio

Silly people!

None come close to a having a 4 year old in the car... Are they going to ban driving with a child in the car?

stupid (2, Interesting)

Charliemopps (1157495) | about a month ago | (#47248563)

As stupid as this is, it will save more lives than any firearms regulation ever will.
Keep in mind how you feel about this regulation, then re-evaluate your stance on gun control. You don't have to change your mind, just think about it long and hard. Cars kill far far more people every year than guns ever could. Why allow people to have cars? There's no constitutional right to drive... Banning them would significantly reduce global warming pollutants... Ban cars, force public transport and foot traffic.

He's Right (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47248591)

We have enormous amount of regulation on this subject from the FAA already, and it has been demonstrated to save lives. Done adequately, this regulation will save more lives than are lost to guns in the US each year.

Re:stupid (2)

jratcliffe (208809) | about a month ago | (#47248691)

Sigh. Assessing a regulation requires you to look at the benefits AND costs. Banning cars would certainly save a lot of lives, but at huge societal costs. Requiring registration of firearms, and tracking transfers, to allow the sources of illegally used firearms to be determined, would have very modest financial cost, and place minimal burdens on the vast majority of law-abiding firearm owners, while making significant progress toward keeping guns out of the hands of people (criminals and the mentally ill) who _shouldn't_ have them.

Re:stupid (1, Insightful)

wiggles (30088) | about a month ago | (#47248795)

> minimal burdens on the vast majority of law-abiding firearm owners

In your eyes perhaps, but not in the eyes of the gun holding public.

Mapping users with aids in cars is great.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47248565)

Stop the disease lol.

Dear federal government: GTFO (1)

nurb432 (527695) | about a month ago | (#47248579)

Of my life. Leave me the hell alone.

Re:Dear federal government: GTFO (2)

Walter White (1573805) | about a month ago | (#47248935)

Your point would be better taken if you (and I mean the generic you, not you specifically) did not risk others lives by the actions that you take. I'd be perfectly happy to let you do whatever you wish in your vehicle but when a mistake on your part can kill me, then I'm happy to have the government interfere with your ability to do so.

Just what we need! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47248583)

The federal government will have its grubby fat fingers in even more pies? Fan-friggin-tastic.

My Ford does it fine (3, Informative)

kannibal_klown (531544) | about a month ago | (#47248599)

I may have issues with my Ford, but I think they got it right in terms of Navigation. I have little-to-no reason to have to look at my media center. Everything is done by voice (including asking for an address) and the next-step-direction-guide is on my speedometer where I have to glance on occasion anyway.

The only improvement I can think of is a really small projection on the windshield saying "Turn right in 0.7 miles onto Main st"

All voice controlled, so I don't have to even try typing while driving (if I were so inclined). Click my tumb-button on the steering wheel and say "Destination Address" and then state the address when prompted.

The system's voice prompts me on where to turn, and when. Including the street names and exit number.

And instead of having to look too far down at my media player (which I COULD), instead there is a mini direction-reminder on my speedometer. Just saying the name of the next turn's street, distance, and a left-arrow / right-arrow / etc. Since I tend to have to glance down at that every couple of minutes anyway it's no big deal.

No fuss, no typing, no looking too far away from the windshield.

Re:My Ford does it fine (2)

MildlyTangy (3408549) | about a month ago | (#47248905)

unless you miss hearing the last instruction due to external factors or voice text to speech mispronounciation....no nav unit ive seen allows you to just say "say it again" or something, and have the last voice instruction repeated without having to look at and physically interact with the nav unit while driving.

Can this apply to billboards too? (3, Interesting)

MobyDisk (75490) | about a month ago | (#47248613)

Can we also get rid of animating billboards? Those slideshow transitions are distracting when driving since the brain pays attention to movement.

Re:Can this apply to billboards too? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47248659)

Or radio ads with horns/sirens.

Cue Mr. Heston (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47248635)

'You can have my map aid/gps when you can pry it from my cold dead fingers, Mr. President...'

Re:Cue Mr. Heston (2)

aix tom (902140) | about a month ago | (#47248921)

Ah, but Mr. Heston could shoot people trying to take his gun. You could only throw your map aid/gps at them. ;-> (OK, Or possibly run them over with your car)

First ever car video game (3, Interesting)

MobyDisk (75490) | about a month ago | (#47248661)

The NHTSA has finally caught up with me.

Around 2001 or so I rigged a pair of laptops with GPS and Wifi (high tech!) so they relayed coordinates to each other and ran a star-trek esque battle game. The passenger would hold the laptop which showed the opponents position and shields as well as weapons fire. They would feed information to the driver who would dodge virtual torpedoes.

A few friends of mine tested this out, but I abandoned the project because this surely would have killed people.

I don't have problem with this... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47248669)

Probably a good idea to set standards like this. I do, however, realize the libertarians will be positively howling over this and the tea partiers will think it's part of some secret Obama plot to force eveyone to convert to Islam or something.

Need law against contrived, misleading law titles (1)

mbeckman (645148) | about a month ago | (#47248695)

The "Grow America Act"? Sheesh! That worse than the Patriot Act. I propose a bill entitled "Stop The Idiotically Forced Law Embellishments".

Re:Need law against contrived, misleading law titl (1)

orion205 (1130561) | about a month ago | (#47248825)

The "Grow America Act"? Sheesh! That worse than the Patriot Act. I propose a bill entitled "Stop The Idiotically Forced Law Embellishments".

Come on, you know that STIFLE would never make it out of committee...

Easy (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47248703)

Just disable the screen but keep the voice instruction on while the car is on drive. That would be a reasonable measure.

Google's Turn-by-Turn Voice Instructions (1)

yayoubetcha (893774) | about a month ago | (#47248739)

I program my phone with my destination, and I let Google's audio voice turn-by-turn aid me. No visual distractions (phone) while driving.

Just what we need. (0)

X-Ray Artist (1784416) | about a month ago | (#47248777)

We are going to allow ourselves to be regulated into oblivion.

More big brother (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47248789)

To best evaluate the issues with these apps, "anonymized" location data shall be collected. The government database will anonymize, the developer can send the raw user info....

Interaction Times (2)

MildlyTangy (3408549) | about a month ago | (#47248877)

Please dont do stupid things like regulate that these devices must disable user interaction when the vehicle is travelling over a speed limit.

Unless the device can accurately detect if there is a passenger or not. This "safety feature" of my cars factory nav/media unit drives me up the wall...the passengers! the passengers! why wont *somebody* please think of the passengers!

Welcome to the new USA (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47248903)

Land of the insufficiently regulated, and home of knee-jerk reflexive.

I'm curious: to those of you who think this is a good idea, which car manufacturer is it that you think is trying to kill its customers by poor map design? If there is none, why is such a law necessary? If it's not car manufacturers, which GPS manufacturers are these murderers? Not them either? Then cellphones... is there going to be some kind of federally mandated "driving mode", or is the age of being free to be able to code whatever you want onto your phone dead forever because you weenies think that it MIGHT save some jackass who's trying his best to win a Darwin Award - and consequences for everyone be damned [and the death of portal/wearable computing be damned too]?
America, what have you become? And why are you not ashamed of yourselves?

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