The UK Department of Transports has banned Google Glass from driving since it could divert drivers’ attention from the road. I guess it is better to use your hands to dial a number or text someone instead of telling your glasses to do so without getting your hands off the wheel, but whatever. Anyway, they have not banned something that does not distract drivers, they have banned a product that could dramatically increase safety on the road. I can think of two ways it would, but I am sure there are plenty more. Here my two ideas for Google Glass while driving:
- Know how skilled the drivers around you are. Every driver would have a score based on their past actions. If they did not give way when they should have, their score would go down; if they passed with a red light, their score would go down… Every potentially harmful action they do is tracked down and recorded in some big database. While you are driving, Google Glass would then scan the license plates of the cars around and tell the driver how good the people around them are. Of course you cannot really rely on a good score to be sure some driver will not commit any mistakes, but at least you will keep away from the acknowledged bad ones, which would immediately result in fewer accidents.
Of course there a lot of details left out here, such as the difference between a car and the driver: a car can be driven by different people and it would not be fair to penalize someone because of someone else’s actions, so a way to distinguish between drivers would be needed. Moreover, we need to punish those who do not stick to the highway code, but with time they should also be able to get a higher ranking if they do not make any more mistakes. I am sure the UK government would come up with a solution for both issues, if it used its time usefully instead of banning something they do not know. If the did not ban, like, progress.
- Know what awaits you behind a turn. This would need some work by the governments, but it would be something very appreciated by drivers, I am sure, especially by moto riders. Cameras, instead of mirrors, would be placed at turns, and Google Glass would show in your eye what the nearest camera can see, so that drivers would know what there is beside a turn. It would be impossible to have an accident just because there is a queue behind the turn, because you would know it beforehand.
Now, I get this takes money and work, I am just imagining. That is what you are supposed to do: you get a new technology, and you wonder: “What awesome stuff could we do with this new thing?” and you start thinking even about things which are not likely to be done because are expensive and time-consuming, but how else do you thing progress will come? Surely not by banning a new technology because you are afraid people may use it to browse their socials…