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Posts Tagged ‘Transportation’

Do Gesture-Based Mobile Apps Represent a New “Attention Risk”?

May 31st, 2010 No comments

This quick post is about a question from a project design meeting for a new mobile application. The application will have a gesture-based graphical interface, initially targeted for iPhone and later on for Android and other platforms. At issue is the question of whether use of screen gestures while driving represent a new driver attention risk.

My first thought was “Anything that takes concentration off of the road is an attention risk, similar to texting or holding a phone instead of using a hands-free system.”

A compelling counter-argument in the discussion was that the device would be mounted within easy reach of the operator, in a fixed location, and these are “large gestures” that do not require any screen attention or reading. Doing a gesture on a touch screen device like this is no different in terms of attention for the driver than reaching to turn on windshield wipers or to adjust a radio on the dashboard.

In thinking about this while driving this afternoon, I’ve shifted to agree with the counter-argument, and think that gesture interfaces, as long as they don’t take careful examination or reading of a screen shouldn’t be a new risk.

What do you think about this question? Under what circumstances would using gesture-based commands with a mobile app represent a new driver concentration risk, and under what circumstances are this sort of interaction benign?

Would adding mobile Wi-Fi to the city transit system increase ridership?

November 14th, 2009 1 comment

City BusToday at the MassDOT Developer Conference we got to talking about the goal of changing the image of buses and other mass transit to be the solution of choice for a wider spectrum of people.  Lost time is sometimes the reason that people will drive instead of taking public transportation.  It often takes longer to get to your goal using mass transit, and while en-route, you often can’t get much done, other than people watching or reading.

Then this little idea appeared…

Read more…

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