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(Boston.com)   Massachusetts may spend nearly a billion dollars on equipment to stop trains before they crash into each other, because hiring drivers who stay awake is too hard   (boston.com) divider line 78
    More: Stupid, stop the train, MBTA, Massachusetts, automated system, United States Secretary of Transportation  
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3467 clicks; posted to Main » on 24 Dec 2012 at 1:19 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-12-24 09:24:56 AM
Subby is a twatwaffle.
 
2012-12-24 09:37:33 AM

Bontesla: Subby is a twatwaffle.


Has to be a troll/joke/whatever.
 
2012-12-24 09:41:23 AM

St_Francis_P: Has to be a troll/joke/whatever.


On Fark? Absurd.
 
2012-12-24 09:42:39 AM

itsdan: St_Francis_P: Has to be a troll/joke/whatever.

On Fark? Absurd.


There's a first time for everything. This thread might be a landmark in Fark history.
 
2012-12-24 09:57:03 AM
 
2012-12-24 10:17:05 AM
I like how a thoughtful article on how to best allocate limited resources turns into a stupid-as-sh*t troll headline. Oh Fark, you rascal!
 
2012-12-24 10:18:57 AM
The T estimates it would cost $645 million to $721 million and require nine years to design, install, and test a modern collision avoidance-system for the Green Line.

I'd be more concerned with the bolded item. Wow. Portland tunneled through several miles of solid rock and built the entire west side line in less time than that.
 
2012-12-24 10:21:57 AM

SnarfVader: The T estimates it would cost $645 million to $721 million and require nine years to design, install, and test a modern collision avoidance-system for the Green Line.

I'd be more concerned with the bolded item. Wow. Portland tunneled through several miles of solid rock and built the entire west side line in less time than that.


YKHIK you don't witness Massachusetts state government?
 
2012-12-24 10:22:27 AM

ThatGuyFromTheInternet: SnarfVader: The T estimates it would cost $645 million to $721 million and require nine years to design, install, and test a modern collision avoidance-system for the Green Line.

I'd be more concerned with the bolded item. Wow. Portland tunneled through several miles of solid rock and built the entire west side line in less time than that.

YKHIK you don't witness Massachusetts state government?


You got me there.
 
2012-12-24 10:25:27 AM
Wow, a bunch of idiots to start this thread. This technology will allow drivers to text their families during the holiday season.
 
2012-12-24 10:38:28 AM

jaylectricity: Wow, a bunch of idiots to start this thread. This technology will allow drivers to text their families during the holiday season.


How will they do that if they're asleep?
 
2012-12-24 10:51:07 AM
Considering that this is Mass. I'm going to substitute "stay awake" with "remain sober".
 
2012-12-24 10:55:11 AM

NewportBarGuy: Considering that this is Mass. I'm going to substitute "stay awake" with "remain sober".


Pretty much true anywhere.
 
2012-12-24 10:58:01 AM
I suppose some politician's nephew runs a train equipment business.
 
2012-12-24 10:59:13 AM
It has occurred to me that, even if you're on the Green Line, which (for the not-from-here types) is the line that is mostly *above* ground going down the middle of streets, driving T trains must be a really boring job.  I mean, your entire job is replicating the scene from National Lampoon's European Vacationover and over again, just in a place you're completely used to and probably not in the least interested in.  Plus, it's on rail, so you're doing even less work to keep it going straight.  Just speed up, slow down, wait for the drunk college kids who have one foot in the doorway yelling at their friends who are still drinking at the bar.
 
2012-12-24 11:33:04 AM
www.nbvillage.com
 
2012-12-24 11:41:21 AM

St_Francis_P: NewportBarGuy: Considering that this is Mass. I'm going to substitute "stay awake" with "remain sober".

Pretty much true anywhere.


Well, at least in NYC they have the sense to take a swig off the sterno, hit off the crack pipe, slap another mark on the side of the train and run right over those bums on the track.

They mix a depressant with a stimulant. Those are true professionals.
 
2012-12-24 11:46:10 AM

NewportBarGuy: St_Francis_P: NewportBarGuy: Considering that this is Mass. I'm going to substitute "stay awake" with "remain sober".

Pretty much true anywhere.

Well, at least in NYC they have the sense to take a swig off the sterno, hit off the crack pipe, slap another mark on the side of the train and run right over those bums on the track.

They mix a depressant with a stimulant. Those are true professionals.


Sir, I...my hat is off to them.
 
2012-12-24 12:29:36 PM

kxs401: I like how a thoughtful article on how to best allocate limited resources turns into a stupid-as-sh*t troll headline. Oh Fark, you rascal!


I've yet to see an interesting article that wasn't tainted with a hot, moist turd of a headline.
 
2012-12-24 01:03:34 PM
easier to spend $1B than to create new union rules
 
2012-12-24 01:29:57 PM

BSABSVR: kxs401: I like how a thoughtful article on how to best allocate limited resources turns into a stupid-as-sh*t troll headline. Oh Fark, you rascal!

I've yet to see an interesting article that wasn't tainted with a hot, moist turd of a headline.


Welcome to Fark
 
2012-12-24 01:34:23 PM
www.robertstrains.com

/DOH!
 
2012-12-24 01:40:13 PM
The T estimates it would cost $645 million to $721 million and require nine years to design, install, and test a modern collision avoidance-system for the Green Line.

And with the accuracy that they estimated the time and cost of the "Big Big" I'm gonna guess it will actually take closer to 20 years and cost around $5 Billion.
 
2012-12-24 01:41:23 PM
Google has developed self-driving vehicles that can operate on the open streets. Operating a train in the controlled environment of a rail system ought to be even easier. How about we eliminate the human element entirely and not just avoid collisions, but have computers control the whole damn train from beginning of journey to end? If we simply can't bear to do without a human, we can prop up some union drunk in the cabin with a single control button available: STOP. At least he wouldn't be able to crash the train like today.
 
2012-12-24 01:45:32 PM
I applied to a railroad a few years ago, and the old engineer i talked to told me, and showed me a few things. Kinda went like this.


Me "Ya, I'm here to apply to the Acme railroad"

Old union RR worker "Hmmmm...boy, you need to see a few things"

He walked me over to a wall that had dozens of cool pictures in black and white of groups of union railroad workers doing their jobs, by the trains, on the trains, in various group and single poses. With dates. Was very cool to see. There was pictures of dozens of guys working right outside the very building i was standing in.

Me "Ya....THATS what I'm talking about...that..that is what i want to be a part of!!" Grins happily.

Old union guy smiles sadly "come..look out back"

He walked me through the building, and i only saw a few old guys there. No young blood. We walked out the back door to the rail /switching yard, and he pointed out the area, and said "Look around son, what do you see?"

I stood by this old union RR worker, who looked as if his face had been carved by the wind and untold seasons of harsh winter and sun, and looked out over the yard. I saw....a few trains sitting still, empty cars, and no workers. None. Not one. i was about to ask...where are the workers? The engineers, the guys who ride in the cabooses and wave those old cool lanterns? Where are the guys that link up the trains? Or the guys who unlock and change the direction of the tracks? Then i saw, that there were little mechanical boxes on each switch, and that they had taken the place of a worker who would manually switch the direction of the oncoming train. There were no cabooses. Not one.

I looked over at the old guy, and i could swear that there was a tear in his eye. This is what he said to me, and i will never forget it.

"Young man, it's not like it used to be here. Past days, long since gone, there were hundreds of guys here, working, being friends, doing mans work for a honest wage and a good life for their families. Now, there are very few of us left. The new management has seen to it that most things are automated, and most of us have been replaced by computers, and sensors." He gave a short sigh at that point ,and pulled out a old rag from his pocket and wiped his eyes. Stuffing his rag back the back pocket of his old railroad outfit (yes. he was wearing an old rr cap too) he continued...

"I don't know what to tell you son, but that it seems to be winding down. The days of a strong union and company that cares, a sense of family here, and looking forward to coming to work and seeing all my friends, and doing a honest day's work. Now you have to have a degree in engineering to even look at a engine, and we haven't hired a man to work switches in years. i wish i could tell you i could sign you up, i do, but i wont lie to you, or blow sunshine up your ass. I have nothing for you son, and I can't imagine i ever will. I have had a good life with my job, and given a good life to my family, as any man wants to do, so i can't complain. But i guess it's not your time son, here. If it ever will be."

I actually felt more sad for the guy than i did myself, as he saw his way of life wind down, and the great place he worked at fall into disrepair, and his union membership decline to a sad fraction of what it was, only a few friends left at the station to remind him of how things used to be. I extended my hand out to him, and he gave me one of those old man shakes, not tying to crush my hand, but you could tell from the feel of it with all the callouses and strength, that he could have if he wanted to. He wished me luck, and i went on to the next place, but i'll never forget him, it was one of those touching moments in life that sneak up on you and smack your heart around a bit. Anyway, done now. And i know..csb.
 
2012-12-24 01:48:25 PM
Did they ever make it so the BC/BU stops actually had to pay a fare?
 
2012-12-24 01:50:37 PM
I have an idea. Instead of just getting rid of the driver how about we get rid of the commuters also? I mean we could fire you all and just hire telecommuters from India. That way there would be no need to run trains at all.
 
2012-12-24 01:53:31 PM

SnarfVader: The T estimates it would cost $645 million to $721 million and require nine years to design, install, and test a modern collision avoidance-system for the Green Line.

I'd be more concerned with the bolded item. Wow. Portland tunneled through several miles of solid rock and built the entire west side line in less time than that.


In Boston? I'm sure this will be
pinkunderbelly.files.wordpress.com
early, under budget, and
www1.whdh.com
triple reinforced.
 
2012-12-24 01:55:27 PM
Shiat! I coulda made a fortune.

/retired, MBTA Signal Department.
 
2012-12-24 01:57:20 PM
ATS/ATC systems have been a fact of life in many places in the world for decades. Why exactly can't boston buy/implement an OTS one from, say, Japan, at less than 1/20th of the price?

Oh ya, NIH the broken windows theory of job creation. I forgot.
 
2012-12-24 01:59:02 PM
how is this headline a troll?  the MBTA will be spending nearly a billion on designing and implementing safety features over ten years because of a recent set of accidents which were mainly caused by bad driving.

I'd rather have that money applied to more trains on the green line -- having seen for 20 years how absolutely messy this line is during rush hours.
(and that doesn't include game days which are RIDICULOUS)

then I'd like to see them add location information to the damn green line so I can predict my travel time.

AND I'd like them to stop requiring people get out at the front of the damn train on outdoor stops -- it's farking ludicrous how much time is wasted with this procedure.

and, yeah -- i'd like them to extend the train schedule to 3am so there are less drunks on the road

and that doesn't even get in to extending the damn line in ways other than the butt-fark they gave to dorchester with "the silver line" -- yeah, those minorities won't know the difference between a train and farking silver bus.

/not subby
//the mbta is a piece of shiat
 
2012-12-24 01:59:36 PM
Massachusetts may spend nearly a billion dollars on equipment to stop trains before they crash into each other, because hiring drivers who stay awake is too hard.

Not to mention having drivers who don't have medical problems.
 
2012-12-24 02:03:51 PM

russlar: Did they ever make it so the BC/BU stops actually had to pay a fare?


The B and C lines (for as long as I have seen) have had people pay.

The D line did not require payment from Fenway outward (but all stops going inward must pay).  that ended a few years ago when they installed the new charlie system
 
2012-12-24 02:09:37 PM

FriarReb98: It has occurred to me that, even if you're on the Green Line, which (for the not-from-here types) is the line that is mostly *above* ground going down the middle of streets, driving T trains must be a really boring job.  I mean, your entire job is replicating the scene from National Lampoon's European Vacationover and over again, just in a place you're completely used to and probably not in the least interested in.  Plus, it's on rail, so you're doing even less work to keep it going straight.  Just speed up, slow down, wait for the drunk college kids who have one foot in the doorway yelling at their friends who are still drinking at the bar.


From a T operator friend of mine.  Driving a route once is fine -- if you do it three times (outward and inward) in a day you are ready to fall asleep by the end of the ride.

The T recently reduced the number of drivers they have -- THAT is the problem.
 
2012-12-24 02:12:57 PM
The system, called Saf T Train, has a series of loudspeakers that says "STOP THE CAH! STOP THE CAH!" at 175 decibels until the offending trains slow down.
 
2012-12-24 02:14:19 PM
The T will never recover. The Big Dig debt they have will never be paid off and will always cripple any new project the T comes up with. The other big problem with the T is their work force. I have never met a T worker who liked their job or did anything to make service better. Upper management just tends to be useless although some have tried to fix things. But man, for a group of workers who get paid pretty nicely they will gladly whine and complain for more money and time off while not even doing their job that well and with few penalties for messing up.
 
2012-12-24 02:15:58 PM
Trains should need operators like elevators need operators.

Trains = horizontal elevators.

You want a human official on board to provide safety? No problem with that -- an operator in a control booth won't be as effective as an officer that can patrol.
 
2012-12-24 02:21:40 PM

StopLurkListen: Trains should need operators like elevators need operators.

Trains = horizontal elevators.

You want a human official on board to provide safety? No problem with that -- an operator in a control booth won't be as effective as an officer that can patrol.


well, except that an elevator shaft never has cross traffic nor a fallen tree
 
2012-12-24 02:27:25 PM
Positive Idiot Control.
 
2012-12-24 02:28:10 PM

keithgabryelski: how is this headline a troll?  the MBTA will be spending nearly a billion on designing and implementing safety features over ten years because of a recent set of accidents which were mainly caused by bad driving.


Because every major subway system in America already has this technology in place already.

This isn't any new technology. It should come under the heading of basic maintenance and improvement.
 
2012-12-24 02:29:21 PM
Why all the restrictions, when clearly more guns would solve the problem?
 
2012-12-24 02:30:36 PM

topcon: The system, called Saf T Train, has a series of loudspeakers that says "STOP THE CAH! STOP THE CAH!" at 175 decibels until the offending trains slow down.


SAF-T-Rider! (Obligatory)
 
2012-12-24 02:31:13 PM

Skarekrough: keithgabryelski: how is this headline a troll?  the MBTA will be spending nearly a billion on designing and implementing safety features over ten years because of a recent set of accidents which were mainly caused by bad driving.

Because every major subway system in America already has this technology in place already.

This isn't any new technology. It should come under the heading of basic maintenance and improvement.


Sure, I agree it is a long time coming (as are many changes to this, the oldest subway system in america).
 
2012-12-24 02:34:14 PM

SnarfVader: The T estimates it would cost $645 million to $721 million and require nine years to design, install, and test a modern collision avoidance-system for the Green Line.


The Empire State Building was done in 14 months.

Nine years? Come on Boston, even you are not THAT retarded.
 
2012-12-24 02:35:19 PM
I thought positive train control was already supposed to be mandatory by 2016?
 
2012-12-24 02:38:00 PM
Forgot one detail:

The Empire State Building, although completed in 14 months instead of 19 years, was NOT equipped with a modern collision avoidance system.

Otherwise that careless building would not have collided into this poor innocent B-25.
 
2012-12-24 02:41:17 PM
The T estimates it would cost $645 million to $721 million and require nine years to design, install, and test a modern collision avoidance-system for the Green Line.

I bet they're bidding to build their own system, like CalTrain wants to do with CBOSS. There are a lot of good arguments to use off-the-shelf systems like ERTMS.
 
2012-12-24 02:46:42 PM

jjorsett: Google has developed self-driving vehicles that can operate on the open streets. Operating a train in the controlled environment of a rail system ought to be even easier. How about we eliminate the human element entirely and not just avoid collisions, but have computers control the whole damn train from beginning of journey to end? If we simply can't bear to do without a human, we can prop up some union drunk in the cabin with a single control button available: STOP. At least he wouldn't be able to crash the train like today.


THIS.

At this point if computers and sensors can do it better, then automate it.

Anyone who wants to argue otherwise, feel free to respond on a computer with a handmade CPU.
 
2012-12-24 02:48:06 PM
I was kind of puzzled by this little comment:

or miss track signals that look like traffic lights.

Wouldn't it be cheaper and easier to make train signals that look less like traffic lights?
 
2012-12-24 02:51:54 PM
If trains had guns, this never woul...

Sorry. Force of habit.
 
2012-12-24 03:13:27 PM
I like girls that pull a train.

/just saying.
 
2012-12-24 03:16:28 PM

keithgabryelski: StopLurkListen: Trains should need operators like elevators need operators.

Trains = horizontal elevators.

You want a human official on board to provide safety? No problem with that -- an operator in a control booth won't be as effective as an officer that can patrol.

well, except that an elevator shaft never has cross traffic nor a fallen tree


Fallen trees In an underground tube? Also, rail systems all use some sort of blocking signalling (or better) so that two vehicles are never on the same segment at the same time. (Not sure if 'cross traffic' ever happens in rail systems, or maybe I'm misunderstanding your meaning)

And in any case, operators can only react to what they can see, and the faster the train is going the shorter the necessary reaction time will be, and this is even further reducednight/weather/etc so very often it's impossible for a human operator to react early enough even under the best of circumstances, while computer systems can use many other sensors to safely operate the train, theoretically far better than one operated by a human.
 
2012-12-24 03:17:33 PM
Link Driver had a stroke that paralyzed him.
 
2012-12-24 03:27:02 PM

StopLurkListen: keithgabryelski: StopLurkListen: Trains should need operators like elevators need operators.

Trains = horizontal elevators.

You want a human official on board to provide safety? No problem with that -- an operator in a control booth won't be as effective as an officer that can patrol.

well, except that an elevator shaft never has cross traffic nor a fallen tree

Fallen trees In an underground tube? Also, rail systems all use some sort of blocking signalling (or better) so that two vehicles are never on the same segment at the same time. (Not sure if 'cross traffic' ever happens in rail systems, or maybe I'm misunderstanding your meaning)


The green line (in boston) is mostly outdoor with cross traffic and does have tree falling incidents
 
2012-12-24 03:34:45 PM

jjorsett: Google has developed self-driving vehicles that can operate on the open streets. Operating a train in the controlled environment of a rail system ought to be even easier. How about we eliminate the human element entirely and not just avoid collisions, but have computers control the whole damn train from beginning of journey to end? If we simply can't bear to do without a human, we can prop up some union drunk in the cabin with a single control button available: STOP. At least he wouldn't be able to crash the train like today.


It would be easy as fark to do. First, program a bunch of rules into the system. Sensors and actuators in TWO independent systems (for redundancy). Then, set up another system that learns from the human controllers by observing what they do in terms of controlling the train. Now you're 90% of the way to having a computer controlled train system. Hell, it doesn't even have to be 100% computer controlled...it could still have a human 'directing' and the computers doing everything else.
 
2012-12-24 03:44:53 PM

keithgabryelski: StopLurkListen: keithgabryelski: StopLurkListen: Trains should need operators like elevators need operators.

Trains = horizontal elevators.

You want a human official on board to provide safety? No problem with that -- an operator in a control booth won't be as effective as an officer that can patrol.

well, except that an elevator shaft never has cross traffic nor a fallen tree

Fallen trees In an underground tube? Also, rail systems all use some sort of blocking signalling (or better) so that two vehicles are never on the same segment at the same time. (Not sure if 'cross traffic' ever happens in rail systems, or maybe I'm misunderstanding your meaning)

The green line (in boston) is mostly outdoor with cross traffic and does have tree falling incidents


And don't forget cars getting stuck on the track because their GPS tells them to drive down them.

The green line is a fairly complicated line consisting of four lines from the western part of the city and suburbs with totally different above ground rail and usage patterns that all converge underneath the city into one line. It's a fine design if you want to use rail cars from less dense parts of the city to populate a more densely populated portion of the city with rail cars. But all those areas are densely populated. It wasn't until reading that article that it dawned on me they couldn't add more morning D line trains because it would affect the other three lines and underneath the city it's already pretty densely packed with cars.
 
2012-12-24 03:53:37 PM

thatboyoverthere: Link Driver had a stroke that paralyzed him.


Not according to your link.
 
2012-12-24 03:56:13 PM

cman: why haven't we learned from history, yet?


Bears repeating, no?

/granted, some of those weren't entirely driver error...
 
2012-12-24 04:00:00 PM

Hrist: jjorsett: Google has developed self-driving vehicles that can operate on the open streets. Operating a train in the controlled environment of a rail system ought to be even easier. How about we eliminate the human element entirely and not just avoid collisions, but have computers control the whole damn train from beginning of journey to end? If we simply can't bear to do without a human, we can prop up some union drunk in the cabin with a single control button available: STOP. At least he wouldn't be able to crash the train like today.

It would be easy as fark to do. First, program a bunch of rules into the system. Sensors and actuators in TWO independent systems (for redundancy). Then, set up another system that learns from the human controllers by observing what they do in terms of controlling the train. Now you're 90% of the way to having a computer controlled train system. Hell, it doesn't even have to be 100% computer controlled...it could still have a human 'directing' and the computers doing everything else.


Go bid the contract or some other contract then.
 
2012-12-24 04:03:26 PM
Why not put the otto-pilot in the cockpit and have a female passenger make sure it's all up and running.
Be cheaper.
And don't need a movie.
 
2012-12-24 04:12:50 PM

Ed Finnerty: If trains had guns, this never woul...

Sorry. Force of habit.


upload.wikimedia.org
 
2012-12-24 04:18:53 PM

Invisible Dynamite Monkey: It wasn't until reading that article that it dawned on me they couldn't add more morning D line trains because it would affect the other three lines and underneath the city it's already pretty densely packed with cars.


They can add three car trains to the D line -- which they said they would do two winters ago, but as I understand it they screwed up a train purchase and had to eat the cost (the trains purchased did not fit on Boston's tracks).

They have no ability to add extra lines, which is a shame -- that would probably cure most of the ills.
Even if the new lines (half the trains, maybe?) were run underneath the current lines and skipped all the town stops until park street that would be an improvement.

It's just painful using the green line.
 
2012-12-24 05:01:24 PM
Somebody better holla for R.T., he ain't never seen no wreck like that before.
 
2012-12-24 05:05:57 PM
WTF are they gonna do bout the Green Line?
 
2012-12-24 05:11:02 PM
And yall keep voting Democrat...
 
2012-12-24 05:39:57 PM

clane: And yall keep voting Democrat...


you have no idea what you are talking about
 
2012-12-24 05:46:56 PM
The problem with Positive Train Control is that its a highly technical rail safety system that was designed by Congress.

This isn't just an MTBA problem; its heavy rail everywhere. Its a collosal clusterfark.

ATS systems are simple and reasonably effective, but they won't help in loss of shunt incidents.
 
2012-12-24 06:02:09 PM
yeah i have to agree with subby, a billion dollars is far too much for the expected number of lives saved. resources would be better allocated in any number of other ways.
 
2012-12-24 06:11:08 PM
Well hell. It's not like they can convince more people to learn how to be a driver. Most of the sleeping ones are probably pulling doubles every day.
 
2012-12-24 06:17:32 PM
This could be implemented more cheaply on the other three lines.

The Green Line is a clusterfark that can only be fixed by blowing it up and starting from scratch with infinite $$$ to grab the necessary land rights through eminent domain.  

They're also planning to extend it into Somerville and Medford.   That was supposed to be finished a few years ago - now scheduled for 2020 and they've JUST started even though they've already delayed long enough to lose Federal funding (the project was required back in the 90's as part of the Big Dig to relieve pollution along I-93).   The rumors leaked from people within the MBTA is that what is probably going to happen is that they'll get started, then say they can't do it because of a lack of funding and that in the 20 years the project has been in "development", low-emission buses can meet the environmental needs at a fraction of the cost and will be the only way to make the 2020 deadlines.   It's also expected that this will be the first push to eliminating the Green Line trolleys entirely (at least in the city) giving them over to low-emission buses using the tunnels to get around Boston traffic in the 2025/2030 time frame.   (Basically, they'll convert the Green Line to another branch of the Silver Line.)
 
2012-12-24 06:41:57 PM
Where's Team Bullet Train when you need them?

tfwiki.net

Rapid Run, Railspike, and Midnight Express would never allow this to happen.
 
2012-12-24 07:52:03 PM

Skarekrough: keithgabryelski: how is this headline a troll?  the MBTA will be spending nearly a billion on designing and implementing safety features over ten years because of a recent set of accidents which were mainly caused by bad driving.

Because every major subway system in America already has this technology in place already.

This isn't any new technology. It should come under the heading of basic maintenance and improvement.


Keep talking out of your ass. The MTA has nothing resembling Automatic Train Control. Hell, their wayside signalling system is almost 100 years old.
 
2012-12-24 10:09:16 PM

keithgabryelski: StopLurkListen: keithgabryelski: StopLurkListen: Trains should need operators like elevators need operators.

Trains = horizontal elevators.

You want a human official on board to provide safety? No problem with that -- an operator in a control booth won't be as effective as an officer that can patrol.

well, except that an elevator shaft never has cross traffic nor a fallen tree

Fallen trees In an underground tube? Also, rail systems all use some sort of blocking signalling (or better) so that two vehicles are never on the same segment at the same time. (Not sure if 'cross traffic' ever happens in rail systems, or maybe I'm misunderstanding your meaning)

The green line (in boston) is mostly outdoor with cross traffic and does have tree falling incidents


Ah, OK, thanks!
 
2012-12-25 12:11:41 AM

Ed Finnerty: If trains had guns, this never woul...

Sorry. Force of habit.


You know who else put guns on trains?

books.gigaimg.com
 
2012-12-25 04:14:22 AM

jjorsett: Google has developed self-driving vehicles that can operate on the open streets. Operating a train in the controlled environment of a rail system ought to be even easier. How about we eliminate the human element entirely and not just avoid collisions, but have computers control the whole damn train from beginning of journey to end? If we simply can't bear to do without a human, we can prop up some union drunk in the cabin with a single control button available: STOP. At least he wouldn't be able to crash the train like today.


Singapore already uses driver-less trains on several of their MRT (Mass Rapid Transit) lines. Their trains are incredibly reliable, and safe, with additional platform safety features such as platform screens (walls with doors that separate the platform and the track). ATO systems are nothing new, but seem to be slow to be implemented in many places. There are too many potential human failures to justify not moving to an ATO system.

That said, I do find it surprising that this line's rolling stock does not even have a dead man's switch to ensure the driver is awake and attentive.
 
2012-12-25 05:11:10 AM
On the other hand, I trust technology a lot more than I trust human beings.

MACHINES GOOD - PEOPLE BAD
 
2012-12-25 10:54:14 AM
What? They can't weld iPhones to the engines, install a track me app and and program them to NEVER CONVERGE? I will accept a consulting fee for this obvious and $900 million cheaper idea.
 
2012-12-26 12:39:16 AM

StephNET: jjorsett: Google has developed self-driving vehicles that can operate on the open streets. Operating a train in the controlled environment of a rail system ought to be even easier. How about we eliminate the human element entirely and not just avoid collisions, but have computers control the whole damn train from beginning of journey to end? If we simply can't bear to do without a human, we can prop up some union drunk in the cabin with a single control button available: STOP. At least he wouldn't be able to crash the train like today.

Singapore already uses driver-less trains on several of their MRT (Mass Rapid Transit) lines. Their trains are incredibly reliable, and safe, with additional platform safety features such as platform screens (walls with doors that separate the platform and the track). ATO systems are nothing new, but seem to be slow to be implemented in many places. There are too many potential human failures to justify not moving to an ATO system.

That said, I do find it surprising that this line's rolling stock does not even have a dead man's switch to ensure the driver is awake and attentive.


This is America. If it's too expensive to put power lines underground, then it's way too expensive to implement robot smart trains. Plus fixing the results of unpreparedness and human error is an honored pastime.
 
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