Talking to Machines

When you need to communicate to another human being it’s pretty straight forward.

Talking to Machines

Trying to communicate with a machine is more difficult.

Talking to Machines

I know there’s a human being behind the machine. But can’t always see them and their vocabulary is pretty limited. So when I get honked at I’m left to guess what they’re trying to express.

Talking to Machines

While I know most people are decent, I’m too afraid to turn around and engage just in case the last driver is the one behind the wheel.

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41 Responses to “Talking to Machines”

  • fred_dot_u

    Vocus Dwabe, I am a cyclist and an electric vehicle owner. The vehicles are not silent when underway at any appreciable speed, although they are much quieter. When my wife returns from work, I can distinguish her vehicle from others, because I hear only tire noise as she stops and starts at the intersection out of sight from me. We have installed the equivalent of trolley bells in our EVs in order to alert pedestrians of our approach, in a more acceptable manner than sounding the horn.

    As a cyclist, I am on the alert myself, for drivers who are not, of course, but also on alert for suggestions that remove responsibility from the driver to operate safely. Placing mandatory sounding devices in any vehicle reduces the responsibility of the driver to maintain due care near cyclists. There are too many official efforts to require such devices without the recognition that the driver and the cyclist share the responsibility to use the road safely.

    Noise makers for EVs are not the only project or program that resembles this responsibility-removal or responsibility-reduction, but it’s valid in the context of your post.

    For drivers who are not sufficiently observant, I have an AirZound installed, as well as a pleasant bell for pedestrians.

    Bring on the autonomous automobile!

  • Mr Butts

    Love this. Totally how I feel. Hard to hold back that middle finger when I hear a honk.

    Honks are one of the worst thing. They can turn a nice happy day into a bad day.

    The worst of honks degrade a place. Just as trash in the park can make it a bad place to be. The angry noises of cars can make a place worse.

    I have flipped off buddies honking to say hello on the street. I still think they deserve it.

    I think cars should either be converted to

    1) have horns as loud inside the car as outside it.
    2) Horns can only play jingles from Mexican hat dance.

  • Shawn

    In DuPage County (suburban area quite distant from Chicago where the only through routes are arterial roads), some drivers think NO BIKE belongs on the street. I bike near the curb (because it’s safer), and the motorists roar by at about 30-40 mph while yelling something at me. I have no idea what they scream because, as I said, they’re speeding by me. I call it ‘doppler speak’ because the pitch of the sound varies as they speed away. It’s funny because they actually think I can hear them.

    • Ross Lindgren

      When I get the chance, I tell them: “I can hear your engine just fine. I don’t need your horn. Thank you.”

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