Smart mirror reminds cyclists to turn on their lights.
In bicycle parking ‘De Pomp’ in Nieuwegein, Utrecht (NL), a smart mirror has been active for a number of weeks now. This mirror reminds cyclists to turn on their bicycle lights when leaving the bicycle parking. The first results of the pilot with this mirror show that the smart mirror positively influences the behaviour of the passing cyclist. About 46% of the cyclists who approached the smart mirror without bicycle lights turned it on after seeing the message on the mirror.
Most people know that it is not wise to cycle in the dark without lights. Yet people sometimes forget to turn on their bicycle lights when they leave, while they do have good bicycle lights. To draw people's attention to this, a smart mirror offers a solution. With good bicycle lights on, the risk of a cyclist being involved in an accident in the dark decreases by 20%. That is why province of Utrecht funded a pilot with the smart mirror.
Operation of the mirror
At the exit of bicycle parking ‘De Pomp’ hangs the first smart mirror. Behind the mirror are a camera and a screen hidden. The camera has an extremely low resolution, which means that recognition of specific people is not possible. This makes the setup GDPR-proof. As soon as someone leaves the bicycle parking, the camera detects whether this person is approaching the exit with or without a bicycle and whether the bicycle lights are on. Based on the result read and linked to the time of day, the mirror shows an appropriate message: ‘Be seen! It saves you €60' for cyclists without working lights; or "You're being seen! That's safe!", for cyclists with working bicycle lights.
Innovative idea of technasium students
The idea behind this smart mirror comes from three students from Cals College in Nieuwegein. Cals College offers a technasium program to havo and atheneum students (Upper secondary education) with an interest in the world of science and technology. The three technasium students came up with the smart mirror. Subsequently, the road safety and smart mobility clusters of the province of Utrecht, in collaboration with a company from Nijmegen (Bluenotion.nl), developed the product as a pilot, after which the first smart mirror was installed.
A baseline measurement conducted prior to the pilot with the smart mirror showed that about 40% of cyclists did not have bicycle lights on when leaving the bicycle parking. A second measurement showed that about 46% of the cyclists who approached the smart mirror without bicycle lights turned on, turned them on after seeing the message on the mirror. This shows that the smart mirror is a successful tool to remind people to turn on their bicycle lights.
The results of the first pilot have shown that the smart mirror can positively influence people's behaviour. The province of Utrecht is currently investigating whether the smart mirror can be installed in other places.
The original article is available here.