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April 10, 2013 / paulio10

Traffic Camera Heads Up

I want to see the traffic up ahead on the freeway while I’m driving, for many miles ahead; much further than I can currently see with my eye.  I want to see around the turns, down into the valleys when I’m climbing a hill, and into the distance as far as I feel like seeing.

I want this because I’d like to know if there are any traffic jams up ahead, so I can get off the freeway if my time is critical during my drive. I need time to plan ahead.  A quick look at a camera can tell you an amazing amount of information about the condition of the road ahead. Construction related lane restrictions? Accidents? Objects in the road that people are avoiding?  Detours?

This Can Be Done Today

I believe this can be done today – someone just needs to write the software. 

Most freeways in the United States now have cameras set up to view the traffic in a given direction, every few miles (or every quarter mile), which are publically available on the Internet – you can go to certain web pages to see what the view from the cameras look like at the moment. These cameras are at fixed, known locations.

Your car or your cell phone probably has a GPS receiver in it to know where you are (accurate to about 10 feet).  If not, you can pick one up pretty easily these days.

If you put these technologies together, you can probably have something close to what I am thinking.

Do you remember in the movie Inception, when the dream-world starts bending, the streets and buildings start rising up in the distance, until they’re literally overhead?  When they’re just lifted up enough for you to see all the buildings and streets and people up ahead, maybe at a 45 degree angle — that would be perfect.  I want that.  I want to see up ahead just like that.

Someone needs to write this software.



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