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Drachten bans seatbelts

Not really, of course. Although some people do seem to think that if you remove safety measures, people will be more careful and less accidents will happen.

More likely, Drachten removed all the confusing or unneeded signs and replaced them by a better signs. Or cues.
Friday, December 10, 2004
Aside: There have been some cases where seatbelts have actually trapped people in their cars, so they have been a bad thing. Obviously, they are a good thing in general. End of aside.
Nemesis [µISV] Send private email
Friday, December 10, 2004
"some people do seem to think that if you remove safety measures, people will be more careful and less accidents will happen."

If you want to reduce the accident rate to zero, put a sharp spike at the center of every steering wheel, aimed at the driver's chest.
NetFreak Send private email
Friday, December 10, 2004
" put a sharp spike "

I zink ve vill try zis in Transylvania.
Van Helsing Send private email
Saturday, December 11, 2004
I was in "the city" (as we call it) today and crossing the street. That whole roundabout with no signs thing popped in to my head. I was thinking about right of way. I can go, you can't go, you can go, I can't go.

The problem with signs & lights is that it gives someone ownership over right of way. "How dare you cross when you don't have the light." I actually make a point of crossing with the light, and not slowing down for turning cars - I have the right of way, it's raining out, why should I wait for you, you don't have the right of way, and you're dry.

People not only get careless when the sign says they can go, but they get indignant when someone challenges that right.

I was driving with my friend last week and saw this sign. It was something like (please disregard my lack of PC language, this is just my week later impression of an odd sign, it was probably much more mild):

"Elderly and handicapped pedestrians, use south side crosswalk for fewer traffic conflicts."

This is on Ocean Parkway just coming off of the Prospect Expressway. - A large six lane street, just coming off of a highway - the highway just ends at a traffic light.

What are Traffic Conflicts? Are they accidents, or do they occur when you're halfway across the street and the light changes?

Traffic in some cities (especially Boston) is a large, messy thing, and it requires a certain amount of genius to revise something like that and make it work. The sign-less roundabout is definately a step in the right direction. I agree that its likely they're getting rid of a lot of the "right of way" signs, but keeps or adds a lot of cues as to which direction you should be going in, or when you should be watching out for pedestrians or other drivers. Send private email
Saturday, December 11, 2004
The law, at least in this state (WI), doesn't actually give the right-of-way to anyone.  It only says who must yeild it.
Joel Coehoorn
Saturday, December 11, 2004
Would you people quit talking about the law and start talking about human behaviour? You can make it illegal to get into accidents, but that in-and-of itself won't stop it from happening. Send private email
Saturday, December 11, 2004
I googled this thread's title and the only hit was this thread. Unsurprising - as I should have realized the OPs spoof would make it unique - and perhaps it's just pure coincidence that Google spidered it so soon or is Joel now continuously monitored? Brrrr.

Anyway, it seems Drachten's in Friesland:,,12389-1225348,00.html 

But wow! To make it work there may have to be moves made on tinted windows and distractions like mobile phones but you can't argue with the results. I take it lines remain on highways ???
Saturday, December 11, 2004
And here's a thread baked earlier;

You may find going there first helps.
Saturday, December 11, 2004
Whenever it snows, or they're repaving the roads, the lines disappear, and I find myself drivin between lanes. I don't do it intentionally, but every once in a whlie I can glimpse the lines through the snow, and I'm usually directly on top of them.

Maybe it's the snow, but more distance between cars feels safter. The lines, it seems to me, increase efficiency - you can fit more cars on the road if you dictate with exacting precision where each one can be at any given moment. Send private email
Saturday, December 11, 2004
mark, you drive in NYC occasionally? it's a strange universe but not too different from philadelphia.

in philadelphia, driving (and even more, pedestrian/car interaction) is done via 'negotiation'. about 10 years ago they removed large swathes of traffic lights. according to a city planner, at least people slow down for stopsigns.

in boston, the same, except there's far moreroundabouts, and instead of negotiation it's intimidation.

in seattle, people used to obey the little colored baubles. peds would stop for red lights, and go at green lights, regardless of the actual traffic conditions. same with cars--ask any east-coaster and they'll tell you that at first they thought the drivers were trying to kill them at a crosswalk. (if you catch someone's eye, and it's obvious who should go where, the driver should keep going so the ped can pass straight behind them. a driver slowing down = they want you in front of them before they speed up. except it really means they plan to stop on the west coast.)
as there's lots more outlanders here now it's become a bit more mixed.

as for roundabouts, you can drive either direction when turning left at the small ones here. i saw ones in california once where each tiny rotary was marked with what direction to drive around it for a left turn.
mb Send private email
Monday, December 13, 2004
oh one more thing: has no one here driven in, say, southeast asia?
mb Send private email
Monday, December 13, 2004
"put a sharp spike"

Dangerous is the new safe.

There's a traffic circle right near my apartment.  No lights, just yield signs for people entering.  There is broken glass and car detritus there constantly.  Just last night there were 2 police cars and a tow truck on the scene of an accident.

LA drivers suck, but at least they drive fast.
Brian Send private email
Tuesday, December 14, 2004
I drive in NYC on a regular basis. More often, though, I'm a pedestrian. (as are most new yorkers).

I've come up with a simple rule of thumb for all automotive interactions.

"The more predictable you are, and the better you can predict other people's activities, the less likely it is you'll be in an accident."

Plenty of activity is negotiated by pedestrian - automobile interaction. Crossing a busy interesection while several cars are waiting to turn, for example. Or the cab driving who wants to cut you off trying to make eye contact so he knows you know he's about to cut you off. Seriously, if you don't want a cab driver to cut you off, simply don't let him know you've seen him.

There are plenty of times, though, when the streets are relatively empty, and a car comes around a corner at 30mph, or down the street (and over a blind hill) at 50-60mph.

However I may sound, I really think the sign-less thing can work. I'm just sort of playing devil's advocate. Send private email
Wednesday, December 15, 2004
I think the "no seatbelt" thing would work for people who normally use them...and at high traffic intersections/highways where there are frequent accidents. I grew up in the country, which belive it or not, comprises most of the country. I remember flying through country crossroads without much thinking when I was younger. Visivility of oncoming traffic was totally blocked by cormfields by the way. I think I'd still do it today even though I'm older because....No traffic. The chances of you and another car meeting at the same moment at that intersection are almost nil. One in a million. But in closer proximity to an way.
Deborah Miller Send private email
Sunday, January 02, 2005
In closer proximity to a busy intersection I mean.
Deborah Miller Send private email
Sunday, January 02, 2005

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