At 12:42 AM 10/4/1999 EDT, Glen Finney wrote:
>Hmmm, maybe if we could add a basic pattern recognition program to the video
>cameras at the stop signals that could recognize a motorcycle and hook it to
>the light so it would trigger a change of the signal light, then we might
>change what is currently an adverse technology for motorcyclists into an
>asset for them. Of course, they could instead try and adjust the detectors
>for lighter loads, but it might be cheaper and easier to use the video
>instead of tearing up the intersections.
Years ago, in Chicago they used ultrasonic 'radar' - a pair of transducers mounted on the signal standard that produced an audible click when the pulse was sent, to sense vehicles on the expressway on ramps and off ramps. I always though this made more sense than buried loops that are prone to damage from traffic and weather, but all of these systems disappeared in the later '70's.
Cameras at stoplights are becoming more common to catch light runners and record accidents anyway, so the infrastructure is already there in some cases. A further addition to the algorithm could measure the line of cars waiting at the turn lane so the signal time could be more intellignetly tailored to reduce tieups. This could also prevent that one moron who refuses to drive all the way to the white line (and sensor) from preventing the signals from cycling...