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Sunday, October 26, 2014

Meet the startups trying to stop pedestrian deaths

Distracted walking is a new safety concern. Today's post is shared from
As phones get more powerful and screens get bigger, it gets harder and harder to pull our attention away from them, even when it puts us at risk. One place where that unavoidably happens is in the intersections of city streets, where pedestrians, bikers, and drivers meet — sometimes violently.
To try to tackle this problem, AT&T partnered with the NYU Rudin Center for Transportation, the NYC Department of Transportation, educational co-op General Assembly, and software competition site ChallengePost to create Connected Intersections, a four-month developer challenge with the goal of inspiring technologies that can make city streets safer for distracted humans buried in their phones and the people around them.
"Traffic lights can only do so much."
"Pedestrians and cars are kind of at an impasse right now, and it’s getting to a point where real action needs to be taken," Sarah Kaufman of the Rudin Center said at one of the challenge’s developer open houses back in July. "Every two hours a New Yorker is hurt or badly injured, and every 30 hours one is killed in a car crash. So it’s at a point where we have a big opportunity to start using smart technologies to put the power in the people’s hands. Why not put safety in people’s hands? Traffic lights can only do so much."
Connected Intersections ended up collecting 45 ideas from teams in 13 different countries and 26 different states. Eight teams were awarded...
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