Re: Next hype to go for

From: Karl Anderson (
Date: Fri Apr 13 2001 - 16:19:50 PDT

"Stephen D. Williams" <> writes:

> Lisa Dusseault wrote:
> >
> > That's not enough, unfortunately. Cognitive research shows that activities
> > which require attention and motor skills suffer when the person is engaged
> > in pure-cognitive activities simultaneously.
> >
> > I know I'm somewhat of a worse driver when I'm talking to a passenger. And
> > passengers are more forgiving than the person on the other end of the
> > cell-phone line who can't tell if you're trying to merge at this moment.
> >
> > lisa
> I have a big problem with these kinds of laws. The risk increase varies
> tremendously, from non-existent to major. Are they going to legislate
> talking? What about revoking the license of anyone who doesn't score in
> the top 60% on reflexes, attention, and integration of multiple sensory
> inputs? Top 30%?

Um, doesn't every state revoke the license of everyone found to be in
the bottom X% of these qualities when they take their drivers tests?

> I manage risk every day while driving, walking through a parking lot,
> sometimes skating in downtown DC in traffic, etc. Invasive laws that
> don't Always make sense are really annoying. Seat-belt laws in,
> cellphone bans out. Least common denominator laws that assume some
> minimal level of ability are insulting and bound to be ignored. Speed
> limit laws, on a highway, fall into this category in many circumstances.

And drunk driving laws, too.

I think that someone should have a certain modicum of ability before
they point their car at my unprotected flesh. I think that I should
be able to enforce this myself, but I'll settle for the licensing and

> I do however multitask quite a bit while driving; probably enough to
> shock a number of people. I'm far more likely to fall asleep driving
> than to screwup while multitasking. I pay More attention when doing so
> in fact.

The question is the quality of that attention. I agree that we need
a more plausible demonstration about the effect of phones on drivers.

My drivers' ed teacher told me that Canada came up with .08% by having
peds step in front of test drivers - .08 was when the driver either
swerved or braked, never both.

I've Krypto'd the windows or mirrors of a few criminially distracted
drivers on phones, and I'm pretty sure that the phone was a factor,
but then again plenty of drivers should be shot who don't use phones.

Karl Anderson 

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