Why drivers don't see cyclists?

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Mike Sales
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Why drivers don't see cyclists?

Postby Mike Sales » 21 Sep 2020, 10:51am

I am not sure which forum this should go in.

I have just read the obituary of a neuroscientist in The Guardian

The account of his work seems to give an insight into how we can be invisible to drivers.

Neuroscientist who explored the principles of how the brain enables us to see


He is best known for demanding answers to the question of how such a complex system could work most efficiently. He was influenced by early computer scientists, and was a pioneer in seeing visual signals as information to be processed. His concept of “efficient coding” predicted that of all the information presented to the eye, the brain would transmit the minimum necessary, wasting no energy on redundant signals.

His ideas about reducing redundancy incorporated statistical approaches to probability, showing how the brain can fill in the blanks in the information it receives by estimating the likelihood of something happening in the real world. The concept of redundancy reduction, modified over time as it became apparent that some redundancy is itself useful as the brain learns, has been hugely influential.

“Instead of thinking of neural representations as transformations of stimulus energies,” wrote Barlow in a typically elegant summary after decades of work, “we should regard them as approximate estimates of the probable truths of hypotheses about the current environment.”


https://www.theguardian.com/science/2020/aug/23/horace-barlow-obituary

freeflow
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Re: Why drivers don't see cyclists?

Postby freeflow » 21 Sep 2020, 11:04am

To reiterate I link I posted recently. Smidsy is a real phenomena as explained by the link.

https://www.londoncyclist.co.uk/raf-pil ... -cyclists/

Mike Sales
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Re: Why drivers don't see cyclists?

Postby Mike Sales » 21 Sep 2020, 11:17am

freeflow wrote:To reiterate I link I posted recently. Smidsy is a real phenomena as explained by the link.

https://www.londoncyclist.co.uk/raf-pil ... -cyclists/


SMIDSY is all too real, as we know from experience.
Peripheral vision is a somewhat different explanation. Probably both are relevant.

mercalia
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Re: Why drivers don't see cyclists?

Postby mercalia » 21 Sep 2020, 1:11pm

simpler explanation. Cyclists are scum.

mumbojumbo
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Re: Why drivers don't see cyclists?

Postby mumbojumbo » 21 Sep 2020, 6:06pm

In Brirtain there is no safety culture in motoring other than enhancing driver protection.I would remove safety features for motorists and ban using seatbagts,airbags etc.I would also limit capacity to accelerate and ban cars from certain roads -the sort that are not classified.

Jdsk
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Re: Why drivers don't see cyclists?

Postby Jdsk » 21 Sep 2020, 6:11pm

Mike Sales wrote:I am not sure which forum this should go in.

Is there one for serious discussion of how advances in cognitive science can explain and reduce "accidents"?

Good try, though.

Jonathan

PS: There are already several for polarising rants and absolutist proposals that aren't going to happen.

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mjr
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Re: Why drivers don't see cyclists?

Postby mjr » 21 Sep 2020, 6:19pm

Jdsk wrote:
Mike Sales wrote:I am not sure which forum this should go in.

Is there one for serious discussion of how advances in cognitive science can explain and reduce "accidents"?

I think the "Campaigning & Public Policy" board would be better than the one that's a talking shop for the Tea Party.
MJR, mostly pedalling 3-speed roadsters. KL+West Norfolk BUG incl social easy rides http://www.klwnbug.co.uk
All the above is CC-By-SA and no other implied copyright license to Cycle magazine.

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[XAP]Bob
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Re: Why drivers don't see cyclists?

Postby [XAP]Bob » 21 Sep 2020, 10:53pm

Mostly because they aren’t paying sufficient attention to the rather challenging job at hand. That of ensuring that you *can* see clear road, and can see sufficient of the surroundings to rely on it remaining so.

Yes saccades play a part - but mostly because people think a glance is sufficient
A shortcut has to be a challenge, otherwise it would just be the way. No situation is so dire that panic cannot make it worse.
There are two kinds of people in this world: those can extrapolate from incomplete data.

peetee
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Re: Why drivers don't see cyclists?

Postby peetee » 22 Sep 2020, 5:38am

[XAP]Bob wrote:Mostly because they aren’t paying sufficient attention to the rather challenging job at hand. That of ensuring that you *can* see clear road, and can see sufficient of the surroundings to rely on it remaining so.

Yes saccades play a part - but mostly because people think a glance is sufficient


+1
Current status report:
Back on two wheels in deepest Pastyland and loving every minute. Mission: to enjoy big, bad hills again.

rmurphy195
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Re: Why drivers don't see cyclists?

Postby rmurphy195 » 9 Oct 2020, 11:47pm

I usually see cyclist when I'm driving, except the ones that

a) have a searchlight on the front shining straight into my eyes (or my mirror if behind), or
b) Wear stealth clothing in the dark, with a faint glimmer of a lamp thats all but invisible. Lots of those about!
Brompton, Condor Heritage, creaky joints and thinning white (formerly grey) hair
""You know you're getting old when it's easier to ride a bike than to get on and off it" - quote from observant jogger !

Pebble
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Re: Why drivers don't see cyclists?

Postby Pebble » 10 Oct 2020, 12:41am

rmurphy195 wrote:I usually see cyclist when I'm driving, except the ones that

a) have a searchlight on the front shining straight into my eyes (or my mirror if behind), or
b) Wear stealth clothing in the dark, with a faint glimmer of a lamp thats all but invisible. Lots of those about!

does your car not have headlights so as to illuminate the road in front of you?

I live quite rural and use lights so as I can see fallen bits of tree, sheep, potholes etc. so I can't imagine not being able to see a ninja type cyclist. Of course they may well of been those that I never seen :shock:

As a cyclist I light myself up like a xmas tree + highly reflective clothing in a bid to be seen by drivers without lights and those with defective vision or those playing with a mobile phone.

tim-b
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Re: Why drivers don't see cyclists?

Postby tim-b » 10 Oct 2020, 6:23am

Hi
Why drivers don't see cyclists?
Because...lots of reasons. I saw this one cycling without either lights or reflectors, dark clothing, against a hedge...
SmStealth.png

Here he is two seconds later...
SmStealth2.png

Not ideal weather; dawn, streetlights, drizzle, intermittment wipers and dipped headlamps, but ideal in that I wasn't distracted either by other road users, their lights, my gadgets or passengers. He was straight ahead of me while I was feeling well and wearing my specs looking through a demisted screen. Change an element, or an angle so that modern fat windscreen pillars and heavier rain obscured him and it would have been a lot later. Add in the psychological element and who knows
Regards
tim-b
~~~~¯\(ツ)/¯~~~~

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[XAP]Bob
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Re: Why drivers don't see cyclists?

Postby [XAP]Bob » 11 Oct 2020, 2:04pm

Amazing how many people report seeing “invisible” cyclists... I think full camp is probably more effective than high vis.

Of course neither really make any difference - the determining factor is the attention of the person operating lethal machinery.
A shortcut has to be a challenge, otherwise it would just be the way. No situation is so dire that panic cannot make it worse.
There are two kinds of people in this world: those can extrapolate from incomplete data.

alanesq
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Re: Why drivers don't see cyclists?

Postby alanesq » 11 Oct 2020, 2:47pm

I wonder how often an "accident" occurs from the driver taking stupid risks/passing too close etc.and then just giving the excuse that they had not seen the cyclist...

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Mick F
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Re: Why drivers don't see cyclists?

Postby Mick F » 11 Oct 2020, 3:13pm

Today ....................

Descending Gunnislake Hill into the village to the traffic lights.
30mph limit for motor vehicles.

I'm freewheeling having turned out from Delaware Road further up.
Car speeding down the hill behind me and catching me up.
I'm having to brake to go round the adverse camber doing maybe 35mph.
https://www.google.co.uk/maps/@50.51608 ... 312!8i6656

Down the hill and going faster, and the car behind is on my tail and I'm doing over 40mph down here.
https://www.google.co.uk/maps/@50.51865 ... 312!8i6656

................ and then he hurtles past me at maybe 50mph over on the other side of the road because I'm well in primary.

The traffic lights are on red with a queue of traffic waiting. Caught him up within seconds.
https://www.google.co.uk/maps/@50.52352 ... 312!8i6656

I pull up along side the car very closely as he's stopped, and give him a "glare" :lol:
He was a little shocked ........ to say the least. :lol:
Mick F. Cornwall