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Sat Feb 22, 2020, 08:21 AM

Mathematicians have solved traffic jams, and they're begging cities to listen

From https://www.fastcompany.com/90455739/mathematicians-have-solved-traffic-jams-and-theyre-begging-cities-to-listen

Mathematicians have solved traffic jams, and they’re begging cities to listen

BY ARIANNE COHEN
1 MINUTE READ

Most traffic jams are unnecessary, and this deeply irks mathematicians who specialize in traffic flow. They reserve particular vitriol for local transport engineers. “They do not have competencies in the field of system-related increases in traffic performance,” says Alexander Krylatov, a mathematics professor at St. Petersburg University. “If engineers manage to achieve local improvements, after a while the flows rearrange and the same traffic jams appear in other places.” Burn!

Krylatov would like to solve urban traffic jams forever, so much so that he has coauthored a book of new math approaches to traffic and ways to implement them. (Translation: Engineers, Let Us Handle This.) Four takeaways:

• All drivers need to be on the same navigation system. Cars can only be efficiently rerouted if instructions come from one center hub. One navigation system rerouting some drivers does not solve traffic jams.

• Parking bans. Many urban roads are too narrow and cannot be physically widened. Traffic-flow models can indicate where parking spots should be turned into lanes.


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Reply Mathematicians have solved traffic jams, and they're begging cities to listen (Original post)
sl8 Feb 22 OP
we can do it Feb 22 #1
apcalc Feb 22 #2
we can do it Feb 22 #3
Lucky Luciano Feb 22 #4
we can do it Feb 22 #5
apcalc Feb 22 #6
Igel Feb 23 #7
pacheen Feb 23 #8

Response to sl8 (Original post)

Sat Feb 22, 2020, 08:26 AM

1. Navigation systems are for idiots.

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Response to we can do it (Reply #1)

Sat Feb 22, 2020, 08:31 AM

2. Why do you say that?

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Response to apcalc (Reply #2)

Sat Feb 22, 2020, 08:36 AM

3. People don't know where they are. Constantly veering across multiple lanes without looking.

Your daily commute is just that.

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Response to we can do it (Reply #3)

Sat Feb 22, 2020, 10:00 AM

4. Navigation systems know where the traffic is.

That helps to reroute if necessary. If it can’t reroute effectively, it can still estimate your traffic adjusted time of arrival. It also tells you where cops might be.

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Response to Lucky Luciano (Reply #4)

Sat Feb 22, 2020, 10:27 AM

5. ok

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Response to we can do it (Reply #3)

Sat Feb 22, 2020, 10:53 AM

6. So, a navigation system would make them less well behaved? They are trying to get ahead

Without information. Information would make it worse? Makes no sense to me....

A navigation system would tell them where to go, what lane to be in, how to avoid jams....

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Response to apcalc (Reply #6)

Sun Feb 23, 2020, 12:51 AM

7. The point in the OP isn't "information is bad."

It's that if one navigation system says to do something and another says something else, the traffic won't be efficiently routed. Or there'll be two navigation systems, independently saying to do something, and it'll just funnel the congestion a different way instead of dispersing it.

I see this on the freeway sometimes in a non-tech form. Everybody has access to the same information--up ahead it's congested, lots of red taillights, but it's hard to see over the next overpass. The frontage road, however, is fairly empty where the exit is, so everybody heads for the exit. The result is a huge backup at the stop light under the next overpass, and the freeway moves faster than the surface traffic. So exiting isn't the wise move.

If a single, all-wise navigation system had access to all the drivers' information, it would route some off the freeway and keep others on the freeway, so they were moving at the same pace. It would produce equality.

Thing is about equality--nobody wants to be inferior, but being "just like everybody else" is considered oppressive. We all want to arrive first.

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Response to sl8 (Original post)

Sun Feb 23, 2020, 12:59 AM

8. No getting around traffic

Both Waze and Google Maps route me through the worst neighborhoods in Chicago to save me a whopping 5 minutes commute time.

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