Likes Likes:  62
Dislikes Dislikes:  0
ELITE ELITE:  0
Page 1 of 4 123 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 38

Thread: Reflective vests and infrared touchless faucets

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Posts
    2
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Reflective vests and infrared touchless faucets

    Since the days are getting shorter, I've had opportunities to put on my reflective vest again. When taking care of pre-commute business in the locker room at work, it always give me a laugh when my reflective vest turns on all the touchless faucets as I walk by them, far from normal hand washing distance. (Anyone else have this experience?) It makes me wonder if there could be an extension of this concept for bike commute safety... i.e., if cars had an Active Infrared sensor that could help alert drivers to cyclists on the road who chose to wear reflective gear, or perhaps had a bike light that also emitted infrared light?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    Springfield VA
    Posts
    201
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    I've developed IR sensors and have thought of something like this, but it's a lot harder to actually make it work in the real world, and at an affordable price. Making a bike light emit IR wouldn't be too hard, although it would have to be coded (pulsed in a certain pattern) to be able to pick it out, and it would be hard to make it work 360 degrees, again at an affordable price. These technical details are straightforward to overcome, but convincing car manufacturers to put in an IR sensor just to detect bikes would be impossible. One other technical limitation of this approach is that is generally does not provide range (distance), so I'm not sure how useful it would be to merely know that there is a cyclist somewhere in the field of view.

    BTW, contrary to what Wikipedia says, the sensor in the automatic faucet is not an active IR sensor, since "active" means that the sensor is emitting light. The sensors in faucets are very basic long-wave detectors with a simple algorithm to detect the presence of a warm object. It's purely a passive system.

  3. Likes Shep liked this post
  4. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Columbia Heights, DC
    Posts
    4,198
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    A good chunk of bike safety advocates, myself included, consider this to be pretty equivalent to victim blaming. Drivers running over cyclists riding legally is a driver problem, not a cyclist problem. Shifting responsibility onto cyclists, requiring us to wear special gear to survive, is just one more way we absolve drivers of all responsibility for their actions.

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    Springfield VA
    Posts
    201
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Yeah, when I typed my response that issue was sort of nagging me. Even I f I could build a sensor, and it was integrated into cars, then would cyclists be required to have the special light? And if a cyclist didnít have it, would they be presumed to be more culpable if they were hit by a car equipped with the sensor?


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  6. Likes jrenaut, huskerdont, Steve O liked this post
  7. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    4,287
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by jrenaut View Post
    A good chunk of bike safety advocates, myself included, consider this to be pretty equivalent to victim blaming. Drivers running over cyclists riding legally is a driver problem, not a cyclist problem. Shifting responsibility onto cyclists, requiring us to wear special gear to survive, is just one more way we absolve drivers of all responsibility for their actions.
    Bikes come with reflectors; if people decide they're too cool for the reflectors and rip them off...well, they've made their choice. Equipping cars with a strobe just outside the visual spectrum that would still reflect off those reflectors is within the realm of possibility, as is a sensor that looks for those reflections. In fact, I'd guess that existing LIDAR systems in autonomous vehicles already get a signal bloom when they hit a reflector. The question is what a car does with that data--there are a lot of reflective things that aren't bikes (starting with every single highway sign). My hypothesis is that cyclist reflectivity doesn't add much information above what can already be determined from a combination of RADAR & LIDAR, but maybe the AI system can classify a reflective moving object as less likely to be a blowing trash bag or somesuch? At any rate, until we only encounter RADAR equipped autonomous vehicles on the roads I'll continue to recommend reflectors--especially pedal reflectors and wheel or tire reflectors--just to be more visible to old-fashioned humans.

  8. Likes Shep liked this post
  9. #6
    Judd's Avatar
    Judd is offline I really need to log off the internet and go for a ride.
    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Location
    Arlington
    Posts
    3,705
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    The Lumberjack Skunkworks is currently working on the development of an electronic warfare bike.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  10. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2018
    Location
    S. Arlington
    Posts
    398
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Shep View Post
    I've had opportunities to put on my reflective vest again. When taking care of pre-commute business in the locker room at work, it always give me a laugh when my reflective vest turns on all the touchless faucets as I walk by them, far from normal hand washing distance. (Anyone else have this experience?)
    Yes indeed! -- I have that experience walking past the counter in our restrooms at work -- I'm not nearly close enough to actually use the sink or counter; I've triggered it from 5 or 6 feet away...
    Though what I tend to activate more often with my vest is the touchless soap dispenser rather than the touchless faucet right next to it!

  11. Likes Shep liked this post
  12. #8
    baiskeli's Avatar
    baiskeli is offline I really need to log off the internet and go for a ride.
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Posts
    2,562
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by jrenaut View Post
    A good chunk of bike safety advocates, myself included, consider this to be pretty equivalent to victim blaming. Drivers running over cyclists riding legally is a driver problem, not a cyclist problem. Shifting responsibility onto cyclists, requiring us to wear special gear to survive, is just one more way we absolve drivers of all responsibility for their actions.
    If a driver can't see you in time to stop running over you, it's not a driver problem. It doesn't absolve ALL responsibility, but sometimes a driver isn't responsible if they simply can't see you in time.

    Safety equipment to make one visible is standard for everyone - cars, bikes and pedestrians. How often do we complain about ninjas?

  13. #9
    Steve O's Avatar
    Steve O is offline I spend all day thinking about bikes and talking to people on the internet about them.
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Pentagon City in Arlington VA
    Posts
    4,845
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by baiskeli View Post
    If a driver can't see you in time to stop running over you, it's not a driver problem. It doesn't absolve ALL responsibility, but sometimes a driver isn't responsible if they simply can't see you in time.
    I cannot possibly disagree with this more. If the person walking or biking is in an expected and legal place, like a sidewalk, bike lane or crosswalk, then it is absolutely the driver's fault if they run that person over. A driver MUST be cognizant of the possibility of a vulnerable person being where they might be. If there is not enough time for the driver to react, then they are going too fast.

  14. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Columbia Heights, DC
    Posts
    4,198
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    There is a huge difference between riding around at night with no lights and being required to wear some special reflective gear to trigger some sensor we're now going to require in cars.

  15. Likes huskerdont, Sunyata liked this post

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •