• Jun 5th 2008 at 12:08PM
  • 10
Click above for more pictures of the Vibering concept

Safety is obviously of paramount concern with automobiles, whether we are talking about big, bad performance vehicles or fuel-sipping hybrids. We are also concerned not only with the safety of those kept inside the vehicle, but also with pedestrians outside as well. As has been discussed on these very pages, there is an ongoing concern having to do with the safety of blind individuals and hybrid or electric vehicles which don't have a running internal combustion engine to warn people of their presence. Deaf people could also use a bit of a helping hand under certain circumstances.

Here is a novel idea, created by a team of designers named Kwang-Seok Jeong, Min-hee Kim and Hyun-joong Kim which would offer some help with the aforementioned situation. Rings worn by deaf persons would be able to sense hybrid or electric vehicles and would vibrate with varying intensity depending on where the vehicle is located and how far it is from the wearer. Besides helping locate vehicles, the rings could also be preprogrammed to listen for other designated sounds.

[Source: Yanko Design via Jalopnik]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 7 Years Ago
      Meme just brought the deaf vs blind discrepancy to my attention.
      I think we are the victim of poor writing here. Are the deaf more vulnerable to a Tesla than an H3? The whole debate about EVs has been over concern for the blind not hearing a silent motor.

      The EV will have to transpond a universal signal (short distance radio?) to the wrist receiver that will have to transduce that signal into tactile vibration. Perhaps a more elaborate device than a wristband will be necessary to fully detail direction and velocity of the EV?

      As for the deaf; they simply will always need to be 100% aware of everything in their visual range whether it be pedal-powered, EV, or ICE.
      • 7 Years Ago
      "Okay, in the pictures, the person is moving away from a honking car - how would it pick up the subtle vibrations of a hybrid and distinguish it from all the other white noise in the world?"

      Well, this is really designed for the deaf, not the blind. However, a filter for tire noise should be pretty straightforward -- no more complicated than, say, a voice masking filter.

      And yeah, I'd be willing to have a fee on top of an EV purchase price to provide anyone who feels they need help in detecting oncoming vehicles one of these.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Hey, how about training their dogs to stop for cars? I know that some cars idle so quietly I can't even hear them when I'm standing right next to them. How come they weren't outlawed? How many blind people cross the street when there are cars coming? Shouldn't they wait for a green light? I know there are a few blind people out there, but gees, the few out there are causing all this ruckus. It's just like when a kid gets hurt for not paying attention in the playground, so we have to change all the rules in case he doesn't pay attention a second time.
      • 7 Years Ago
      • 7 Years Ago
      Great idea.

      I would even advocate a fee added on to the purchase of an EV/hybrid to help pay for providing these to blind people. Or maybe EV/hybrid makers could simply make a donation every time someone buys an EV or hybrid.
      • 7 Years Ago
      A very interesting idea, and much better than the ridiculous demand that we add noisemakers to electric cars.

      By the way, speaking of electric drive, the Aptera shows up in a video on CNN.com today.
      • 7 Years Ago
      This is a far more rational approach than adding noisemakers to every EV/Hybrid/Quiet car on the road. I've always maintained that there are fewer people that truly need this type of warning than there are EV/Hybrids on the road (even more so as the next few years pass and production/sales explode). Noisemakers will be a punishment to all in the form of more noise pollution.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Okay, in the pictures, the person is moving away from a honking car - how would it pick up the subtle vibrations of a hybrid and distinguish it from all the other white noise in the world?

      • 7 Years Ago
      Thank you lord , atleast somebody had a brain and can enginner something simple yet effective rather than adding a stupid noise for blind or deaf people. I woudl never buy a car with a noise intentially activated just for 1 or 2 people that woudl inconvenience me.
      • 7 Years Ago
      This is a VERY good way of helping the blind without punishing EVERYONE by adding noise makers to electric vehicles.
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