Sheep in the city

A new generation of robotic road-user is increasingly incapable of acting according to context, relying instead on traffic signals. The new breed of pedestrian is unable to cross the road diagonally through slow-moving traffic. They make everything stop. Like rooks on a chessboard, they move at right-angles, from one signal to the next. Traffic engineers like them because, like sheep, they use those railed-in “pens” (in the jargon), “justifying” further expenditure on increasingly costly systems such as Puffins, and now pedestrian countdown. Also, more and more drivers seem to drive straight at you without slowing down. If you stand your ground, they react, but look bewildered, or aggressive, because they are on auto-pilot obeying the light rather than the context. Of course it all goes back to the barbaric rule of priority, which instils greater respect for a traffic light than for human life.

About Martin Cassini

Campaign founder and video producer, pursuing traffic system reform to make roads safe, civilised and efficient
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