back to article Google Glassholes, GET OFF our ROADS, thunder lawmakers in seven US states

Seven US states are looking into banning wearable computers like Google Glass while driving, shortly after a high-profile court case in California where a Glasshole got off scot-free. Cecilia Abadie was stopped and cited for wearing her Google Glass but was later let off the ticket because of a lack of proof that the specs …

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  1. Keith 72

    HUD?

    However, if done properly, this could be a less distracting sat nav app as you don't have to look away from the road to look at or (god forbid) interact with a device on your dash board.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: HUD?

      HUDs don't usually have rich graphics or media content and certainly don't have cat videos.

      HUDs are ultra basic, the bare minimum information possible and (short of the card which show a small speedo discreetly on the windscreen screen) usually come with rather a lot of training.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: HUD?

      A sat nav device has voice guidance and is a single use device.

      It doesn't display your text messages, email or Youtube.

      When drafting laws it is a case of LCD, lowest common denominator. For every 99 sensible law abiding people there will be 1 who does something idiotic killing people. Most safety laws are aimed at these sort of pillocks.

      1. ratfox

        How about dashboard mounts for cell phones?

        Are those allowed? If anything, they'd be more distracting...

      2. This post has been deleted by its author

        1. Kevin Johnston

          Re: HUD? - modern satnavs

          There is at least one BMW motorcycle which comes with a SatNav which is integrated with the rest of the electronics and if you get a low fuel alert it pop-up the route to a petrol station......but does that count as a safety feature, a distraction or just useful info?

          1. Charles 9 Silver badge

            Re: HUD? - modern satnavs

            For the BMW that would be a safety measure since keeping a car with sufficient fuel is a legal responsibility for drivers in Germany. It's actually a traffic offense to get stranded on the Autobahn by, say, running out of gas.

            As for the idea of a HUD in general, consider the possibility of an AR driving HUD, projecting lane guidance or other things that blur the line between distraction and useful information.

            1. dssf

              Re: HUD? - modern satnavs Unttil some cracker breaks in

              And draws lanes heading into the sky, with the car's annunciator commanding, "Pull UP! Pull UP! Pull UPPPP!" to the background sound of "ngonk-ngonk-ngonk-ngonk.... Maybe some cars will start to get haptic feeback? (Especially useful to get the attention of sleeping or distracted motorists.)

              People have been steered into the woods, onto railroad tracks, off of piers, and off road edges. Haven't yet heard of Apache Longbow Virus hitting motorists yet, though...

              Reminds me of that Tayuxuz ayukssent in traynin mohd. "Nha, luuk intu the Eye-Hadds, and follow the payuth.... Pool ohn the kullektive and clymb to fhivv thasand feet..." Zoom up to 10,000 andd he then admonishes "Yoo gohn too fahrrr!" hahahaha. Best part, EVER, on Longbow... "Yoo gohn too fahrrr!"

              BTW, I grew up in Texas fer 10 years, and I think I have some lahteetood to cunvay this anekdoat...

              1. Fatman
                FAIL

                Re: HUD? - modern satnavs Unttil some cracker breaks in

                People have been steered into the woods, onto railroad tracks, off of piers, and off road edges.

                You forgot airport runways.

                http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-24246646

            2. Eeep !

              Re: HUD? - modern satnavs

              Sorry, the fuel gauge isn't enough to know how much fuel is in your car? Christ-on-a-bike, rolling out justifications for idiots to blame others for them running out of fuel is just stupid.

              Unless the car is also fitted with a fuel gauge that tells the car that it MUST stop at the next possible fuel stop which would be sensible if being law abiding is important to you.

              And so then it is probably best to give Google control of the car for best fuel efficiency on your route, as it can take into account which petrol stations on the route will be cheapest.

              Which might lead to a world where poor/speedy drivers are at fault because they didn't have the GoogleShauff (because the US probably won't accept the "eur" - even considering their history/heritage) enabled when accidents occur and those in GoogleShauff controlled cars arrive safely and optimally speedily after spending time working or relaxing depending upon the reason for the journey.

              Seriously, is that not a better world?

        2. DiViDeD

          Re: HUD? - modern satnavs

          "..my driving in London has become much safer with the satnav.."

          I wish I could say the same about driving in Sydney. My phone navigator is fine, but the one in the car has an awful tendency, in the inner suburbs, to assume it's on the road parallel to the one it's actually in.

          "At the traffic lights, turn right" becomes "WHAT traffic lights? Those? But that's a pedestrian crossing! There's no turn! And I'm here in the right hand lane with my blinker going! Should I turn into that school?", all while the GPS is yelling "Turn Right! Turn Right! In 500 metres perform a U turn" at me.

          Not sure whether it's not enough satellites or too many streets.

        3. Andrew Taylor 1

          Re: HUD? - modern satnavs

          The law is clear on this, as verified in a recent case where a driver ran a junction because it was not on his satnav and killed cyclist. The judge ruled that satnav are an aid therefore full responsibility lies with the driver to be aware of his surrondings

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: HUD?

      In theory great, in practice idiots will use them to watch videos while walking or driving or cycling..

      I would love a HUD for when I drive, but really I would not wear google glass as it looks like crap, when they get to the style of expensive sunglasses then I'll buy them...

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: HUD?

        "I would love a HUD for when I drive, but really I would not wear google glass as it looks like crap, when they get to the style of expensive sunglasses then I'll buy them..."

        Lame!

        You'd still be wearing expensive crap!

      2. Number6

        Re: HUD?

        It's a few years ago now, but I think Jaguar had a proper HUD system for use in fog that used radar (or lidar) at a frequency unaffected by the fog and projected an image onto the inside of the windscreen to show what was outside. I'm not sure if it was on 1st April though. Having said that, GM is working on such a system based on this Wired article from 2010

        http://www.wired.com/autopia/2010/03/gm-next-gen-heads-up-display/

      3. Queasy Rider

        Re: HUD?

        Son: "Mom, are you watching your speed with your Google Glasses?"

        Mom: "Oh son, you're such a tech head. I don't need all that silly driving stuff when I'm only driving you to football practice. I'm watching a new cat video, and you should see the cute boy on a bicycle in it."

        Son: "Mom, that's a real boy and you're about to... nooooo!"

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Ban

      Banning the use of mobile phones did not stop the use of them in cars.

      Banning Google glass while driving will not stop them being worn.

      Just a matter of time before someone is convicted of death by dangerous driving wearing them, common sense tells us it is a distraction which also can cause focus problems in one eye. It amazes me how many people are in Denial of this.

      Banning them is one thing, enforcement is another.

      1. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

        Re: Ban

        Banning Google glass while driving will not stop them being worn.

        No, but it turns them into a new progressive tax regime, targeting the rich and stupid. I'm OK with that.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Where's the Google Lobbying

    otherwise known as 'Campaign Contributions' to these senators?

    Or could this just be a ploy by them to get a few $$$ from the Chocolate Factory?

    cynical moi? You bet.

    1. Ian Michael Gumby

      Re: Where's the Google Lobbying

      Did you notice that Google is now starting to get involved w the Republican party?

      Its the Democrats who want a nanny state. They are the ones who are banning these devices.

      But you may be right...

  3. GettinSadda

    So does this ban smart-watches?

    Smart watches are wearable computers... and they are visible to the driver while driving.

    Hmm....

    1. Def Silver badge

      Re: So does this ban smart-watches?

      Presumably the ban will only apply to wearable computers that obstruct your vision, reduce your hearing, impede your movement, or reduce your ability to shout obscenities at other drivers.

      So computers stuffed up your nose will also be okay. :)

      1. AMBxx Silver badge

        Re: So does this ban smart-watches?

        In the UK, the law specifies mobile phones, but there's also the catch-all of driving without due care and attention. Not sure if we'd need a specific law or not.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: So does this ban smart-watches?

          The reason that the law for mobiles was brought in was due to the amount of people trying to prove that they weren't "driving without due care and attention" taking up far too much court time and never winning. So, for wearable computers, such as GG, I'd suspect a specific law, or modification to the mobiles law would be required.

        2. Flip

          Re: So does this ban smart-watches?

          We have the same "without due care and attention" law in Canada, but the police complain that it is too hard to prove in the courts. It now appears that police want laws that are specific and easier to prove if broken, such as "using a cell phone while driving".

          1. photobod

            Re: So does this ban smart-watches?

            I'd have thought it's easy enough to prove 'driving without due care and attention' - it just takes an observation by the police officer of the accused doing something unsafe. The specific reason why the unsafe behaviour occurred is surely less important for safety than the behaviour itself, which I guess is part of the reason for the catch-all law in the first place.

            In short, if there's no evidence of unsafe behaviour, there's no need to take action for safety reasons.

            1. Tom 35

              Re: So does this ban smart-watches?

              "In short, if there's no evidence of unsafe behaviour, there's no need to take action for safety reasons."

              But what is "unsafe behaviour" You can text while driving most of the time, it's not until a driver ahead slows down, or a light turns red that you get in trouble. But just because you can get away with it most of the time is no excuse. You ban texting while driving to improve safety, 'driving without due care and attention' is a punishment after something bad has already happened.

            2. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              @photobod

              You must implicitly trust the police to be OK with a catch all law like that which is totally up to the officer's judgement. If the cop doesn't like you, they can claim you were driving without undue care and issue you a ticket.

              Unless you're swerving all over the road, the proof that you were driving without undue care and attention typically consists of the fact someone in front of you rear ending the car in front of you.

              The other thing making a law that specifically bans a certain activity while driving is that it makes it easier for the victim to sue the guy who injured him. If wearing Glasses at all is illegal, it is easy to prove. If you have to prove they were actually in use at the time, the bar is a lot higher.

          2. Queasy Rider

            Re: So does this ban smart-watches?

            I am not a hunter myself, but I seem to recall a Canadian hunting law which stated that if you were caught in the woods (or where ever) with a gun outside of hunting season, that gun was considered sufficient proof that you were hunting illegally, resulting in the confiscation of all your hunting gear, including your vehicle and all its contents. As if that weren't disincentive enough, you still had to stand before a judge and accept any additional punishment he meted out to you. All in all, pretty harsh.

            Now I'm not proposing that they take your car,(although they love doing that with alleged drug offenders, and just try to get your car back after being acquitted, a subject well covered by national tv documentaries filmed in Louisiana, revealing how local parishes make a career out of siezing poor peoples cars and selling them),but common sense tells me that if the law allows the public to get away with claiming that, yes, they were wearing Google Glasses, prescription or not, but no they weren't turned on, then the law is an ass, pardon my french.

            If I'm an arresting officer, don't tell me you need a fifteen hundred dollar pair of prescription glasses with internet video feed (actually even more with the prescription option) to drive when I know that virtually every prescription wearer out there,(especially drivers), has multiple spares lying around somewhere. By the way, where are the prescriptions you had before you became a Glasshole? Keep a spare in your glove box, or your cup holder, or locking console between the seats, or in one of those eyeglass holders that they sell to stick on your dash to hold your sunglasses. Keep a pair in every vehicle you drive, if you can afford prescription Google Glasses, then you can afford a spare pair of glasses for your vehicle. That goes doubly so if you can afford to drive more than one vehicle. grrrr

            Long story short, you are caught driving wearing Google Glasses, that is sufficient proof that they were turned on. Let the law err on the side of public safety, supposed or not.

            Now i feel better. I had to get that off my chest, ahhhhh

            ps. I wish I had a pair of Google Glasses to play around with, just not to drive with.

        3. Code Monkey

          Re: So does this ban smart-watches?

          Whether we need a law or not, we'll probably get one. Blair started banning things that were already banned and the current lot continue to do so.

          Somehting to do with being seen to do someting.

          1. MrXavia
            Big Brother

            Re: So does this ban smart-watches?

            The Tories seem to be going the same way, if we don't understand it, lets ban it...

            1984 is coming just a little later than planned

      2. Rukario

        Re: So does this ban smart-watches?

        > So computers stuffed up your nose will also be okay. :)

        But do people (Golgafrinchans) want computers that can be fitted nasally?

  4. Micky 1

    "Too often the law is years behind technology and we have to catch up"

    What? By banning it without even so much as a sniff of an investigation into whether it affects driver safety? That doesn't sound like catching up with technology to me, more like running away from it as fast as you can.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Or - making something which is of seriously questionable safety illigal until such a time as it's proven to be safe.

      I'd rather that approach than yours.

      1. bigtimehustler

        Right, so you never would have legalized cars in the first place then?

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          You mean the cars which were required to have a red flag carried in front of them for some time, before they were shown to be safe?

          Yep, I would have approved of them, once they had been shown to be safe.

          1. Micky 1

            "Or - making something which is of seriously questionable safety illigal until such a time as it's proven to be safe.

            I'd rather that approach than yours."

            That's a total assumption based on no facts what so ever. Have you ever worn a pair of Google Glasses? do you know how well you can see through the information? If people followed your lead we would all be sat in our caves freezing and starving to death cause no one had yet proven that lighting a fire was safe.

            "ou mean the cars which were required to have a red flag carried in front of them for some time, before they were shown to be safe?

            Yep, I would have approved of them, once they had been shown to be safe."

            So you think that all cars built after 1896 are safe? Christ, I think I need to start buying shares in Virgin Galatic to get away from nutters like you. Happy to believe what ever the government tells them is the truth without even looking into the facts.

            Cars with an ICE came to England in 1896, the same year the Locomotive Acts was changed. The Red Flag rule was used for the steam cars, which were basically small trains on the road, and have about as much in common with cars as we know them as the orient express.

      2. Old Handle

        @ AC 13:11

        That's the excuse used for pretty much every bad law ever made.

        Now that's what I call seriously questionable, so how about we outlaw lawmaking until that is proven safe.

  5. Michael H.F. Wilkinson

    Hmm,

    I could imagine making computerized goggles (google-goggles? (sorry)) which include night-vision, and which might assist the driver in paying better attention to dangers. It would be a shame to oust those. A HUD could be used for this as well, of course.

    Banning ALL wearable computers sound a bit knee-jerk to me.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Hmm,

      Until such time that there is a radio signal sent out to such devices from your car preventing them from running anything other than navigational apps then they have to be banned.

      Of course, such restrictions will always be "cracked" by some idiot who finds driving boring and wants to watch Breaking Bad resulting in Braking Bad.

      1. Michael H.F. Wilkinson

        Re: Hmm,

        Fair enough, there should be strong safeguards.

    2. DrXym Silver badge

      Re: Hmm,

      Ordinarily your eyes are focussed on a point outside of the vehicle, perhaps looking 30 or more feet away. Having a mini cinema inches away from your eyeball not only requires you alter your focus, but also obscures what you are seeing for real outside.

      I don't see it being at all safe or practical because it would completely screw with your visual perception and reaction times.

      Aircraft HUDs attempt to solve this by using collimated rays of light which are essentially parallel so the pilot can see the image regardless of their focus. Perhaps something like that is possible but certainly not any time soon.

      1. Michael H.F. Wilkinson

        Re: Hmm,

        This depends on the optics used. HUD and similar systems can produce images at infinity. HUD are considered safer than using the dashboard in Mach 2 fighters, it should be safer on the road, in principle. The Google glass display is well inside the 20-25cm near focus of most people, so it must use a similar "focus at infinity" optical solution as well.

      2. David Barrett

        Re: Hmm,

        Anyone who thinks glass can be worn safely while driving I set you this challenge, focus on the glass of your windscreen (not out side it- the actual glass) next time your driving...

        now imagine the person behind you on the motorway, driving a little to close, is doing the same thing.. Feel safe?

    3. Munchausen's proxy
      Pint

      Re: Hmm,

      " I could imagine making computerized goggles (google-goggles? (sorry)) which include night-vision, and which might assist the driver in paying better attention to dangers. It would be a shame to oust those. A HUD could be used for this as well, of course.

      Banning ALL wearable computers sound a bit knee-jerk to me."

      I'm pretty sure an FLIR-type thing is (or was) available on high-end Cadillacs. The commercials for them seemed to imply that the image was projected to the windshield (or maybe a combining glass) in a way to superpose it on the driver's eyeball view of the (initially not visible) object or pedestrian. Something like that, to me would be a fantastic application for something like Google Glass plus an eyeball tracker in the car. I can also see something that, for instance, puts a colored dot or arrow into the driver's view of the correct exit in a complicated upcoming interchange. (Think American football TV yard-marker technology) Stuff like that goes beyond simple HUD capabilities, I would think, and sort of requires both head-mounted display, and some on-the-fly computation capabilities.

      I don't want idiots watching cat videos while they drive, but I don't want legislatures to cut off very promising innovative routes to more safety, either. I hope they are very careful about the laws they are crafting. (but, sadly, I don't have much confidence in them).

    4. dssf

      Re: Hmm, Heist Edition...

      Then, as in Caprica, there will be hacked/modded versions to facilate perverted entertainment or illegally enhance an ability to commit and get away with crimes.

      Imagine a Heisst Edition of wearbable computers and glasses. And, now, considering talk of "bullet proof clipboards and backpacks" for students, imagine a robber knowing at all times the positions of bang guards, key holders, tellers, and more by clandestinely scanning the interior a few minutes and adding that to earlier, pre-rehearsal exercises.

      Of course, google glass tech might help some surgeons, mechanics, and others who need to fall back into an "instruction" mode to avert mishaps or breakages during complex procedures.

      Maybe there'll be a "Bifocal/Trifocal" edition? How long before we see GGO -- Google Global Optical as a ticker symbol?

    5. Eddy Ito

      Re: Hmm,

      No offense but, speaking of knee-jerk...

      Neither of the two latest bills, from Wyoming (PDF) and Missouri, ban ALL wearable computers and it's likely that each State is making a mess of incompatible rules some of which will be fuzzy and have loopholes large enough to drive a train through.

      The Wyoming bill is actually pointless since it states:

      No person shall operate a motor vehicle on a public street or highway while using a wearable computer with head mounted display...

      so it leaves it open to interpretation as to what "using" means since wearing isn't necessarily using and a judge in Wyoming may disagree with the California judge on whether "using" requires proof the device was either on or off. Indeed, one could be wearing such a device where the display is positioned behind the head for the rear seat passenger to use. Missouri is a more concise while not mentioning computers at all presumably because one could be using an old school film projector:

      No person shall operate or wear a head-mounted display while operating a moving motor vehicle upon the highways of this state. For the purposes of this section, “head-mounted display” means a display device worn on the head or as part of a helmet that has a small display optic in front of one or each eye.

      1. Pookietoo

        Re: Hmm,

        So in Missouri the law will affect wearers of bifocal prescription spectacles, because the small display optic at the bottom of the lens displays the dashboard?

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    When driving, the road is in the center of your vision

    the info in glass is not, therefore if you pay attention to glass info, you are not paying attention to the road.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: When driving, the road is in the center of your vision

      Doesn't the same apply to the speedometer? What about rearview mirrors? Or looking over shoulder before pullng out?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: When driving, the road is in the center of your vision

        You glance at those periodically, with an email your attention could be on that message for up to 10 seconds.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: When driving, the road is in the center of your vision

      There's an interesting point there which has recently crossed my mind, because I'm replacing my car.

      On the Prius the built in satnav screen is not far below the line of vision and requires very little eye movement. I've noticed with a number of other cars that it is low down (replacement for the radio, which is below it on the Prius). The Range Rover is particularly bad in this respect. You have to take your eye a long way off the road to view the satnav.

      [edit - as for the Mini, look at the idiot positioning of the speedometer. This is a case where it's safer to read your speed from a window - mounted satnav than from the official speedometer].

      Question: Have the manufacturers looked into this and found it to be safe, or have they just stuck the screen in the existing hole?

      I'm now going for a standalone satnav because I can place it closer to my line of vision (without blocking it) which to me seems safer.

      A Glass satnav looks to me to be relatively safe because you don't need to move your head to look at it, whereas on (say) the Range Rover I find I would need to.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: When driving, the road is in the center of your vision

        I would much rather have all my displays as a HUD, so much safer, these middle of the dash screens are so much worse to use.

        In regards to the range rover, I am pretty sure they also have a display next to the speedo which will update with nav info so you can pre-set everything before leaving and then just use that display when driving, its simple and un-obtrusive, just telling you which way to go, not as good as a HUD though of course...

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: When driving, the road is in the center of your vision

          Yes, I too would rather have HUD than any standalone display, but unfortunately the Prius can't tow and has to be changed. I shall miss it. A lot.

          I looked at the Garmin HUD unit, but it had so many gotchas that I think it has to be regarded as being a proof of concept only. One gotcha is that it really needs to be permanently mounted on the dash (so as to be in the right place for the reflective film on the glass) but that I think it would last about 5 mins in South London or Bristol before there was a tinkle of glass breaking and an addict would be off to get £5 for it at a pub.

      2. Nick Ryan Silver badge

        Re: When driving, the road is in the center of your vision

        The worst car that have I ever had the misfortune to drive, a Renault Twingo (I'd be hesitant to recommend it to people I hate, let alone never to friends) had a sodding rev-meter where behind the steering wheel where the speedo is normally in cars. The speedo itself was mounted so far across the dash it was nearer the near-side rear-view mirror than the direction of travel so it was actually very dangerous to look at as it required a full shift of direction of vision and focus before being able to read it and then to look back and re-focus at what you were about to drive into.

        Mind you, this speedo was less of an issue because at any speed above 40mph the god-awful suspension set the car bouncing at every smallest blip of imperfect road surface so badly that it induced travel sickness. I have never suffered from travel sickness while actually driving a car before...

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: When driving, the road is in the center of your vision

          I have been almost the entire way round the Péripherique in a Twingo and you have my deepest sympathy. Ever since I have avoided all Renaults, just because.

      3. Queasy Rider

        Re: When driving, the road is in the center of your vision

        But is it the center of your attention?

        I don't care how useful or handy GG might be. If it can be used as a distraction, it will be used as a distraction. And from the tone of many of El Reg's commentards, I suspect that they will be some of the worst offenders. I believe if home bomb making kits were legal, there would be a handful of you breadboarding one on your commute to work. I know how you guys love your toys and can barely keep your hands (and minds) off them.

        I'm somebody who is sitting here disabled for the next few months because another driver pulled out in front of me in the dark because he didn't notice me coming at 55 mph. Believe me, when you're doing highway speed on a motorcycle and you slam into the side of an SUV, it really hurts. And at 62 years of age I'll probably hurt for the rest of my life.

        As a rider I found my own instrument cluster a distraction because I had to lower my eyes for a brief instant, knowing that during that instant another driver could make me dead meat because they were distracted too. As a fellow rider commented to me once. "The scariest thing you can see while driving at night is an oncoming driver's face, because you know it is being illuminated by the smart phone screen they are looking at." I'm seeing too many drivers now with their heads down like they're staring at their crotches, and you know damned well they are texting while driving. I just read about a former fashion model who was horribly disfigured in a car crash because she was distracted by texting. And here's the real kicker. She said she should have known better because she had already been in two previous accidents because she had been texting. There's the perfect candidate for a Darwin Award. And there are millions of us like that out there, and I count myself among them when it comes to certain specific situations.

        I would be far less opposed to allowing GG while driving if they were only capable of displaying useful safer driving info, but one person's useful is another's distraction. In their present configuration they are no better than having your speedometer displaying cat videos or your oil gauge showing the latest stock quotes, or your temp gauge feeding you Fox TV, or your tach showing emails, or a HUD on your window showing that Game of Thrones episode you missed; you get my point.

        Again, when comes to new and disruptive technology for cars, public safety should always come first, down votes be damned.

  7. ProperDave
    Boffin

    Logging?

    Surely the devices keep an operational log? Bit of computer forensics could assist law enforcement in verifying if the device was on at the time of the offence...

    ... besides, with the other stories about the lurid use of Google Glass ( http://www.theregister.co.uk/2013/05/28/first_adult_app_for_google_glass/ ), there's likely to be the occasional crime committed by a Google Glass wearer, where device logging might help as evidence?

  8. Miek
    Linux

    I don't see the problem. You are allowed to use a "hands-free" mobile phone kit, but, not Google glass ? There are plenty of other distractions in cars like stereos, and passengers. I have even seen people doing their make up on their way to work.

    Banning "wearable" computers would also mean banning bluetooth earpieces.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "I don't see the problem..."

      Moronic comment.

      If your eyes are not looking at the road, you will crash.

      If your ears and mouth are using bluetooth, then your eyes still look at the road.

      Yes, you may well be at an increased level of risk when you make handsfree phone calls, but you are at an incredibly high level of risk if you are looking at a screen.

      As well you seasoned drivers know: the brain, eyes, arms and feet can work pretty well at driving whilst part of your brain is thinking of other things, like coding problems, life problems, etc...

      My feeling is that Bluetooth receivers should be mandatory in all new cars - simply to reduce the impluse to hold (or otherwise balance) the phone when driving.

      1. Tom 38

        Re: "I don't see the problem..."

        If your eyes are not looking at the road, you will crash.

        Utter, utter bollocks. You should be constantly checking various bits of information when driving, your eyes should go from road to mirrors to dash to road regularly.

        In short, you should be always aware of all information that is pertinent to you being aware of what is coming up ahead and behind you, where you are and what speed you are going.

        If some of that information was moved from a physical dash to a heads-up dash, looking at the heads-up dash would not be negligent, it would be good driving.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: "I don't see the problem..."

          Your eyes go from thinks for fractions of a second, for email it can be seconds, for video minutes.

          You can't discount the possibility of stupidity in some people. A lady killed a cyclist while messing with her sat nav recently, her eyes were off the road for some 18 seconds!

          http://www.thetimes.co.uk/tto/public/cyclesafety/article3823515.ece

          1. JP19

            Re: "I don't see the problem..."

            "You can't discount the possibility of stupidity in some people."

            Yes and equally you can't legislate stupidity out of people.

            A fool holding a phone is still a fool when you take it away.

            So yes I do see the problem. I don't see simple banning legislation as a good solution to that problem.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: "I don't see the problem..."

          If your eyes are not looking at the road, you will crash.

          Utter, utter bollocks.

          Oh, so you can safely drive with your eyes shut, for example - bollocks to you!

        3. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: "I don't see the problem..."

          We you the plonker in the Audi that ran into the back of me the other day?

          You know the one who took their eyes off the road despite them driving 2 tonnes of metal towards a number of vehicles waiting patiently for the lights to change?

          The one who denied blatantly that it was even Mondayto the Police Officer who was driving the vehicle that I was pushed into bu your lump of black metal hitting mine? This was 08:10 last monday morning.

          By the way I was not in a car but on my BMW K100 MOTORCYCLE that looks very much like a Police Bike.

          I hope it was because the cops are going to throw the book at you.

          I would noke like to be responsible for my actions if I'd found that you were wearing something like Google Glass. You'd probably need a good deal of hospital attention.

          angry? you bet. The bike that I've owned since new is now a write-off. I found out today that you were uninsured. Now I'm going to sue the balls off you for everything you have got and more besides.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: "I don't see the problem..."

        I agreed, til:

        "As well you seasoned drivers know: the brain, eyes, arms and feet can work pretty well at driving whilst part of your brain is thinking of other things, like coding problems, life problems, etc..."

        Don't assume the risk has lessened any! Your brain is driving the car receiving inputs from the periphery listed. Thinking about tea, did you leave the iron on, is the wife cheating etc.... distracts from your ability and increases risk.

      3. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

        Re: "I don't see the problem..."

        the brain, eyes, arms and feet can work pretty well at driving whilst part of your brain is thinking of other things,

        Not the case. I took some "ice driving' courses a few years ago, being taught by an ex-rally driver how to drive on snow. One of the exercises was to come down a snowy hill and avoid a trafic cone placed in the middle of the road. Without exception, everyone hit it the first time. We were told that this was because we were all looking at it, and so our brain wasn't getting the necessary info to be able to avoid it. After being told do do the exercise again, but this time to look at our exit path and not the cone, we all avoided it easily, because our brains had the required info as input.

        You may think your brain can drive "in the background', but it can't do it well if it is not getting the input it needs to evaluate the surroundings.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: "I don't see the problem..."

          Tosh, tosh...

          When the road conditions are bad, the brain engages more cpu power and stops unneccessary functions. That means it stops talking to the missus when the brake lights come on suddenly in the fast lane.

          And road conditions generally aren't like ice-driving courses...

          Your brain can drive you in the background - around roundabouts, through green lights, round bends... And driving comes back into the foreground process when it needs to - i.e. sees red lights or sees someone crossing the road.

          You never have to think about stamping on the brakes when the inevitable head-on is about to happen - it's an automatic reaction.

          The brain learns... it's a wonderful thing. And it does somethimes get it wrong.

          1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

            Re: "I don't see the problem..."

            And road conditions generally aren't like ice-driving courses...

            True, but in that brief terrifying moment when they become like an ice-driving course, and the world all starts to run in slow motion, I don't want to have to wait while my brain takes a page fault and swaps out the video viewer to make room for the "oh FUCK!" handler.

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: "I don't see the problem..."

            Just one example (for now): Before things get obviously critical, you do things like driving too close to the vehicle in front. At that point it doesn't matter if your brain switches to concentrate on the road 'in a timely manner' (debatable) because when the vehicle in front jams it's brakes on it is already too late to avoid the crash.

            This much I know: someone who doesn't see the problem, hasn't been driving for decades, and hasn't been in the passenger seat when the car they were in slammed into the back of the one in front when it jammed on its brakes.

            'The brain learns'. Indeed. Hence 'learning from one's mistakes'. Hell of a lot of people don't get a second chance though; which is sad, but not as sad as them taking the unfortunates they were near with them.

        2. Vic

          Re: "I don't see the problem..."

          One of the exercises was to come down a snowy hill and avoid a trafic cone placed in the middle of the road. Without exception, everyone hit it the first time.

          I did some skidpan training. Our instructor had a natty piece of advice - "Don't go looking for problems. You've already got enough of those. Look for solutions".

          The slightly-less flippant point he was making was that if you look at a particular piece of scenery, you're likely to put the car there. If you're looking at an obstruction / crash / other monumentally dangerous situation, you're likely to hit it. If you're looking at the only gap through the field of destruction, you've got a good chance of making it...

          Vic.

      4. Charles 9 Silver badge

        Re: "I don't see the problem..."

        Yes, you may well be at an increased level of risk when you make handsfree phone calls, but you are at an incredibly high level of risk if you are looking at a screen.

        Actually, the growing trend is to disallow any conversation while driving, even if handsfree. Research has shown that the conversation itself is the distracting factor, not the act of holding the phone.

        I have to agree to some extent with the lawmakers. The apps as they are now are too easy of a distraction for drivers. If we wish to use Glass apps while driving, they need to be specifically designed for the task and only for the purpose of assisting a driver. So that would limit apps to things like Augmented Reality driving guidance that keeps a speedometer and direction guidance in a less-distracting way.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: "I don't see the problem..."

          If you can't drive while holding a conversation, how the hell are you able to drive at all?

          I would say a driver who cannot talk and drive without issue is going to be a danger to all around them.

          I would say holding a phone is more distracting than actually talking, because your hand is off the wheel. and common sense means you stop talking if you need to do something and focus on that task.

          1. Charles 9 Silver badge

            Re: "I don't see the problem..."

            If you can't drive while holding a conversation, how the hell are you able to drive at all?

            Simple. You don't let conversations distract you. At least in-car passengers have environmental context and can adjust their own conversations to wait for less-dangerous situations.

            I would say holding a phone is more distracting than actually talking, because your hand is off the wheel. and common sense means you stop talking if you need to do something and focus on that task.

            Try telling that to the other side of the conversation, who doesn't have the context and may keep talking or insist on continuing even when you need to put it down. Plus there's the matter of sensory compartmentalization regarding a conversation, especially with someone not physically present with you. Our brains just don't multitask well; it's already been shown. It's not like one can pay attention to a movie while writing a non-pertinent letter at the same time. Driving while having a non-pertinent conversation (one that isn't about the actual driving) poses the same problem.

            Basically put, handsfree is no panacea. Here's one from the Telegraph last year of a fatal accident with a handsfree device in use.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: "I don't see the problem..."

              Agreed, it's no panacea, but it's better than not having it.

              And not having a radio, or phones, or companions in the car will reduce distractions and make it much safer - but at what cost. And let's limit the speed of cars to 30mph while we're about it - that'll make it much safer for everyone.

              We need to live in the real world - when on the move: we like the radio on, we like to be able to have phone conversations, we like to have conversations with passengers. It's just a bit silly to have something that can seriously and easily distract your vision for rather too many seconds.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Video playback, emails, messages?

      The above all takes your attention off the road for considerable time.

  9. blofse

    I'm awaiting the first person to get pulled over wearing normal funky glasses as opposed to actually wearing google glasses.

    How can a policeman tell from a small distance away?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      How can a policeman tell from a small distance away?

      Put a red LED on them...

      'cos no one ever puts tape over them.

      1. Simon Harris

        Re: How can a policeman tell from a small distance away?

        Tape on Google glass?

        That'll be the retro NHS specs look then!

    2. S4qFBxkFFg

      Exactly - this is all going to go away once Google Glass looks like a normal pair of glasses (which is probably not that many versions away).

      1. blofse

        Thinking about it, you will probably be wearing your google glasses while being driven in your google driven car, on the way to work for google while searching on google about google.

        G+/-, all hail!

        (In other words, you wont be driving your car anyway, so you can be distracted).

  10. phil dude
    Meh

    nothing to see here...

    politicians "to be seen doing something".....

    Seriously, people are exposed to all sorts of distractions when driving, self made or not.

    Yet another reason I want a computer to drive mine, especially during the mundane miles...

    P.

  11. T. F. M. Reader Silver badge

    What do they say in Michigan?

    If memory serves, the Michigan State Legislature was awarded the Ig Nobel prize for Visionary technology for making it legal to WATCH THE TELLY while driving. http://www.improbable.com/ig/winners/#ig1993, Michigan House Bill 4530,

    Public Act #55, signed into law by the Governor on June 6, 1991 (I don't know if the Bill is available on the Interwebs or if it has been amended/repealed since then).

  12. DrXym Silver badge

    Prescription lenses are no excuse

    If someone needs prescription lenses in their Google Glass then they certainly one and probably more pairs of regular glasses lying around. There is no excuse for not wearing them in a vehicle, or on other occasions where cameras or head mounted displays are prohibited.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Prescription lenses are no excuse

      You know how expensive some of those prescription lenses can be? Some may not be able to afford more than one set.

      1. Queasy Rider

        Re: Prescription lenses are no excuse

        Anonymous Coward

        Reply Icon

        Re: Prescription lenses are no excuse

        "You know how expensive some of those prescription lenses can be? Some may not be able to afford more than one set."

        I hope you are being sarcastic here, because anybody able to splash almost two grand for a pair of prescription Google Glasses can certainly afford a pair of prescription back-ups. By the way, where are your original glasses? Aren't they now back-ups? Oh wait, stupid me, you had to be kidding. Sorry.

  13. bigtimehustler

    I always think its a sad day when yet more stuff is banned just because it introduces more risk. I wonder if the car was to be invented today, these states would ever let anyone drive in them, or it would be banned because of the risk to pedestrians, passengers and drivers of death if you crash. People really need to wake up and smell the roses, risk exists in life, in the blink of an eye bad things can happen, but it never used to be a reason to ban things. The world would be without much of what it relies on if it did in the past.

    1. Jason Bloomberg

      risk exists in life ... but it never used to be a reason to ban things

      Your right to take risks with my life does not trump my right to not have you take risks with my life.

      Perhaps it wasn't always that way. Maybe society has changed and we recognise there is more to rights than self-serving rights.

      You are correct, cars would likely never be allowed if they were invented today. Not unless they emerged as they are now, with all the safety features they have. How many needlessly died to make them as safe as they are now? Has it been worth the cost? I don't know.

      Don't think I am in anyway anti-car; I'm not, but rights have to be balanced, and if some will not voluntarily facilitate that then the state must step in on behalf of those who face having their rights infringed. Society provides the state the power to do that and expects them to do so when necessary.

  14. HkraM

    Wearable computer

    A smartwatch is wearable computer, so will these be banned too?

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Anything that can distract your attention is a danger. But I would suspect risk increases with any obstruction to vision, even tho Glass is designed to be in your filed of vision. Humans are not good at processing different streams of information (Audio/Visual/Spacial) and comprehend them all all at the same time.

    Safety and lives must come before any technology. After all, no one else cares less about your meeting/appointment/tweet/post/etc.

    We see idiots driving using the phone, and idiots walking with no sense of what surrounds them, lost in their twatter/fakebook world. No consideration for themselves or others.

    On the whole humans are not very clever, we need to reduce the risk of idiots causing any harm to others. I don't care about any harm to themselves if their choices have increased their risks.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      > Safety and lives must come before any technology.

      But *absolute* safety and *all* technology?

      The problem with debates of this nature is trying to paint it as black and white.

      Issues of public safety are about assessments of risk and they are most certainly not absolute. If you were to take that view, then we would not drive cars at all.

      People are fallible and have limited computation capacity. However, opting for the extreme absolute in debates like this will never end us up with a workable, publicly acceptable and implementable policy.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    HUD is used in far more extreme environments than driving. If its good enough for the fighter pilot, it's good enough for me.

    1. frank ly

      Of course

      A highly trained specialist uses complicated equipment, thousands of feet up in the air, while being under continous monitoring by ground systems and personnel. So, that will work ok when used by drivers of cars on public roads ........hmmmmm.

    2. Charles 9 Silver badge

      And you notice how minimal the fighter HUD is. Pilots have to be TRAINED to understand the sparse information in order to make it useful. A car HUD would have to be at least as easy to use as the current spate of gauges and dials so that the average driver can interpret them correctly. But that can prevent the HUD from being minimalist enough to not interfere with normal forward viewing.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Glass only allows calls and the cars HUD when it knows its moving at speed!

    Solved. After all your speedo in front of you, whilst still being able to see the road, is better than having to look away from it,even momentarily.

    1. Keith 72

      Quick - patent that my friend! It's obviously obvious, but a sensible solution. And that's the sort of stuff that gets patented these days, right?! ;-)

  18. Mr. A

    Simple

    Enforced driving mode switches the thing off when you're travelling over 10 mph. Exactly the same thing happened with dashboard in-car TV and the like...

    1. M Gale

      Re: Simple

      On a train? Sitting in the passenger seat? Bus to work?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Simple

        "On a train? Sitting in the passenger seat? Bus to work?"

        Train/Passenger - The device can tell you are no driving because it is not detecting the steering of the wheel or gear changes.

        Bus to work, like any bus I've been on gets fast enough? But essentially the same thing.

        Didn't think of that?

        1. Charles 9 Silver badge

          Re: Simple

          Steering wheel may not be visible from the driver's POV so that's no guarantee? And gear shift? Automatic transmission anyone? It'll be identical for driver and passenger. And position is no guarantee since driver sides depend on the country.

  19. Greg D
    Stop

    A lot of bad drivers here.

    Anyone who says you need 100% concentration on the road ahead is talking out of their arse.

    Peripheral vision is highly valuable (with racing/rally driving you practically never look at whats directly in front of you unless you want to crash). Rear-view and wing mirrors are indispensable and a requirement to pass your test. Checking your speed, engine temps, dash information - all essential to driving.

    So; to say a pair of glasses that can provide a graphical HUD to display this information in one place WILL cause you to crash is utter bollocks.

    Obviously they would need to implement some way of preventing the user from reading their emails/text. But IMO, those users who want to read their emails while driving will just go straight for their mobile phone and do it anyway! So whats the point?

    Why penalise those of us who would like to see practical uses applied to this technology to spite those that would flaunt this privilege?

    1. MrXavia

      Re: A lot of bad drivers here.

      Completely agree, if you need 100% concentration to drive, I am worried, I think BMW drivers fit into that category... the last 3 times i was nearly killed by another drive its been a BMW. I am just glad most other drivers give plenty of space so my emergency braking at 70 didn't cause me to be rear ended!

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: A lot of bad drivers here.

        It used to be Volvo drivers. Because of all the safety features and because they were built like tanks. The point would be that you have to be a little bit scared for your own safety to pay sufficient attention. If you feel invulnerable you're lulled into a false sense of security.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: A lot of bad drivers here.

      "Why penalise those of us who would like to see practical uses applied to this technology to spite those that would flaunt this privilege?"

      Most adults haven't left school yet! School rules apply: 1 can ruin it for everyone.

  20. M Gale

    Typical response.

    Let's ban it! It... is technological!

    Yep. Definitely got to ban it.

    Of course, a little whiff of jealousy and sneering from the Peanut Gallery helps to get such acts passed. They're only Glassholes, after all.

  21. GrumpyOldMan

    Personally I think they should be banned outright. They have the potential for far more intrusion into your personal life and that of pretty much anyone who appears in frame than Android already does - after all they are linked to your phone, and facial recognition is already hooked into Fartbook and probably more - the modern 8-core pocket servers already unlock when the right person looks at them, and we already know the NSA just leeerrrrvs Droid phones. So imagine what they'll do with Glass? They must be wetting themselves with excitement. And they'll KNOW what you've been looking at whilst driving... and not just the pretty ladies! You cause an accident? "Can we see your mobile browsing history, sir?"

  22. MissingSecurity
    Trollface

    What about ...

    Are thier pacemakes going to be banned? It's pretty wearable tech to me.

  23. redxine

    Issues aside

    There's research into smart devices being adapted to notice when you're not paying attention while driving, potentially preventing all distracted driving accidents:

    http://myweb.csuchico.edu/~haldarwish/

    1. M Gale

      Re: Issues aside

      Certainly easy enough to use a gyro or combination of accelerometers to detect head orientation and throw a loud *BEEP* into the headphones if it detects you nodding off. Possibly not foolproof, but without actually looking at the eye and scanning for the visibility of an iris/pupils, a possibly useful helper.

      But hey, let's ban it instead.

  24. Mark 85 Silver badge

    Once upon a time....

    There were no seat belts or air bags in cars. People drove with doors unlocked and there were no crush zone to protect the occupants. People who did stupid things usually didn't get a second chance. Darwin's law seemed to work.

    Today we have stupid people fiddling with mobes and walking into trains, walking off piers, walking into traffic. Maybe they get a second chance, maybe they don't. But there's no 'protection'. It's them against solid objects.

    So.... sure, use your Glass, or whatever. But have the car detect that it's on and disable the airbags, unlock the driver's door and seatbelt. Do something stupid and you'll pay for it. Let Darwin decide.

    I'm sure to be downvoted from those who either want me to "think of the children" or repeal Darwin's law. But people need to take responsibility for their own actions. Passing laws hasn't done it yet.

    1. M Gale

      Re: Once upon a time....

      People drove with doors unlocked

      Silly question but, unless you're driving in a really bad part of town or travelling with young children (who should be in the back anyway), why would you lock the doors? In a crash, I would rather have a small chance of the doors being jammed, than an almost certainty.

      As for the rest of the post, this belongs in the "all cars should have no seat belts and a nine inch iron spike in the middle of the steering wheel" field of fuckwittery that seems to infect some people. Fine. You first.

      1. DiViDeD

        Re: Once upon a time....

        "...why would you lock the doors?"

        My thoughts exactly. But not, unfortunately, the thoughts of the people who designed my car. Once it reaches ~10kph, all the doors lock. And they stay locked, even when stopped, until you either take out the key (which you can't do until the car is in Park with the handbrake on), or press the 'lock/unlock' switch on the driver's armrest (which is not much use for resting your arm anyway, as there are so many control switches on it)

        Many of the innovations in my car I like (electric seat adjustment, auto phone linking, steering wheel controls for practically everything), but the door locking thing I really don't understand. I mean, it has child locks on the rear doors, should I ever be foolish enough to transport a child, so why lock me in evrytime I drive?

        1. Charles 9 Silver badge

          Re: Once upon a time....

          The locked door debate is a tradeoff. The thought behind it is that a locked door makes the door part of the car frame in the event of a crash, making the side sturdier and better able to absorb impact: meaning the passenger compartment is less likely to crumple and trap the passengers. Also, a locked door has the risk of coming open during the accident, and in the event of no seat belt or a failure of the belt, someone can get thrown out of the vehicle then: statistically much more likely to result in a fatality.

          OTOH, I can spot the other side of the coin. Some people want the door to loosen and tend to open out in an accident since there's the risk otherwise of the door physically jamming into the frame and making it impossible to open: itself a fatality risk in the event of a fire or sinking.

          1. Vic

            Re: Once upon a time....

            a locked door makes the door part of the car frame in the event of a crash, making the side sturdier and better able to absorb impact:

            This is not true.

            The *door catch* does all the above, and is essential for bodyshell stability for the reasons you have outlined.

            The *lock* merely prevents the handle from opening the door. It thus makes the frame no stronger in an impact, but does prevent rescuers from getting to casualties.

            Vic.

            1. Charles 9 Silver badge

              Re: Once upon a time....

              The *lock* merely prevents the handle from opening the door. It thus makes the frame no stronger in an impact, but does prevent rescuers from getting to casualties.

              Which can engage in the twisted metal of an accident. See my point? Plenty of people have had their unlocked doors open and then get thrown out and killed as a result.

              1. Vic

                Re: Once upon a time....

                > Which can engage in the twisted metal of an accident.

                *What* ?

                > See my point?

                No. You appear to be claiming magical properties for a door lock that it simply does not have. It's a lock - no more, no less.

                You've not worked in the car industry, have you?

                > Plenty of people have had their unlocked doors open and then get thrown out and killed as a result.

                [ Citation needed ]

                If the catch fails - leading to the door opening in a collision - the lock would have done precisely *nothing* to have prevented that failure. It is the catch that holds the door closed, not the lock.

                Vic.

                1. Charles 9 Silver badge

                  Re: Once upon a time....

                  The lock disengages the catch from the door handle's wire. If the handle wire gets pulled during the accident (distinct possibility if the door gets bent and it goes taut), it could engage the catch and open the door Here, it isn't just me. NHTSA follows this philosophy. In addition, it wants to prevent doors opening while rolling. Read up:

                  http://www.nhtsa.gov/cars/rules/rulings/DoorLocks/DoorLocks_NPRM.html

                  1. Vic

                    Re: Once upon a time....

                    > If the handle wire gets pulled during the accident (distinct possibility

                    Like I said, you've never worked in the automotive industry, have you?

                    > http://www.nhtsa.gov/cars/rules/rulings/DoorLocks/DoorLocks_NPRM.html

                    This basically disagrees with your premise. For example, from the (small) section on Door Locks :-

                    "We are proposing to retain the existing requirements for door locks largely as is"

                    "All exterior door locks must be capable of being unlocked from the interior of the vehicle"

                    If you go through the article, you'll notice that it pertains to specifications for the "door latch". This si what I previously referred to as a "door catch" - feel free to substitute the US term for mine fi you like.

                    What you should note, however, is that the proposal is to ensure the correct operation of door latches/catches - *not* door locks. Your "supporting" material is arguing with you...

                    Vic.

                    1. Charles 9 Silver badge

                      Re: Once upon a time....

                      And now you're contradicting yourself, because we're BOTH arguing about the handle wire. I have already acknowledged that the lock basically disconnects the handle wire from the latch. I'm saying you WANT this in an accident because you want to reduce the odds of the door opening DURING the accident (raising the risk of you being thrown out as it opens; a distinct possibility with older cars that had the belt affixed to the door instead of the post; basically put, you're better off IN the car during the accident, and let the frame absorb the energy). The reason being that if the accident involves the door deforming in some way (for example, a side collision), this deformity can cause the door handle wire to go taut, (much like something flying into a balloon string) and potentially engage the latch if it's still engaged because the door is unlocked.

                      Under the scenario your describe, it wouldn't matter if the door was locked or not. After the accident, one should be able to unlock the door, thus re-engaging the handle wire to the lock, and then try to open the door, unless (as you say) the door is physically wedged in place, meaning you're stuck either way. And if the accident is such that the latch itself physically fails, then as you say the state of the lock is irrelevant and the whole argument is moot: whatever happens happens regardless of the lock state.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Once upon a time....

      I am not going to donvote you because I don't think "I disagree" should be a downvote, but please remember that in the late 60s nearly 8000 people a year were killed on British roads and now, with more traffic, more people and much, much faster cars, it's more like 2500.

      Both are excessively large numbers, but a threefold improvement isn't bad.

  25. mmeier

    Laws must be enforcable

    And this, like the "no mobile while driving" is very hard to enforce, actually even harder. The object in question is small and difficult to see (and on the off-window side in continental european cars)

    So this becomes another one of those "rarely enforced" laws that get people in the wrong mindset of "all traffic laws are useless / can be ignored easily" and the result is the 2.2m wide car on the 2m wide lane (restricted space due to repair work) because "No police so who cares..."

  26. Herby

    "Must wear corrective lenses"

    Is on my drivers license. It got there a few years ago when I couldn't read the silly charts at the DMV that were poorly lit and too far away. Of course, I don't very much, but we now have a problem. I could become a glasshole and have them with nice "CORR LENS" which my license says, but wearing them would be illegal. Damned if you do, and damned if you don't.

    As for "wearable computers": Many modern pacemakers (I worked on one about 15 years ago) have computers in them, and they are indeed implanted inside your body. Talk about "wearable". Would the law prohibit these as well? I note that the description of the Wyoming law (in the comments above me) might not, but one must always deal with the unintended consequences. I'm sure there will be many before this all gets sorted out.

    "Nobody is safe while Congress is in session!"

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    One post touched on it, but that's all. It would be simplicity itself to test the extent of distraction of these in the lab. There have been dozens of experiments over the years of the required basic type; such as what images a baby responds to; or the effect of Corpus callosotomy (splitting the brain in a last-ditch to cure disabling epilepsy). And I expect most of us have had our peripheral vision tested at the opticians (I will tomorrow).

    It is astonishing - and a little bit devastating - how little control we really have. But until intelligent people learn that - from the abundant empirical evidence - they think they are very much in control. Where conscious control is concerned, common sense is largely a product of fallacy.

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    It's all good

    Anyone dumb enough to wear Google Glass isn't smart enough to operate a motorized vehicle safely. I'll bet the lawyers make these fools wish they had never heard of Google Glass when the judgments are in tens of millions for negligent homicide. If you're dumb enough to where google Glass when driving then you're dumb enough to spend the rest of your life in prison. You are definitely a Google Glasshole.

    1. M Gale

      Re: It's all good

      And when Google Glass manages to prevent an accident due to pertinent information being right there when needed...

      ...we'll never know about it. I'd like to say "because accidents not happening isn't news", but more likely because it will be impossible, because fuckwits from the Peanut Gallery are colluding however unintentionally with fuckwits in government to get it banned BECAUSE IT JUST NEEDS TO BE BANNED. Oh, and glassholes. The way that word is spat out here makes it sound like it begins with an N.

      I guess all Glassholes should get on the bus eh? The back of the bus?

  29. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    New Mazda 3 with Facebook in console any safer?

    How long is it before a pedestrian or cyclist gets hit by a driver watching his/her ex's holiday pics?

  30. Infernoz Bronze badge

    Dangerous, because you have to move your eyes upwards, and refocus.

    I also wonder how long until cancer cases or other incidental physical harm are reported for "Glass" use. Cancer links have already been reported for mobile phones kept close to the body for long periods; both head and breast cancers adjacent to the mobile location!

    1. Vic

      Re: Dangerous, because you have to move your eyes upwards, and refocus.

      > Cancer links have already been reported for mobile phones

      They haven't.

      *Claims* have been made. All they need is substantiation.

      Vic.

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