Yes, the story on EE Times Europe says "To detect an approaching pedestrian, the driver needs to be warned or the emergency brake has to be triggered even before the pedestrian steps onto the roadway. At the same time, the likelihood of an unnecessary full braking must be kept extremely low to allow car drivers to find the system reliable enough to use it." A good test would be tagging deer with transponders and seeing if the system is fast enough to brake the car before a deer collides with it, without causing problems for the car and other cars around it. The only thing -- isn't it better defensive driving to just hit the deer than try to brake at the last second? (Not an option with pedestrians, but they hopefully aren't moving as fast as a deer might be.) The system is probably completely useless when the car goes beyond a certain speed.
My concern would be in a bussling city where people approach the street at a rapid pace and then stop suddenly at the curb or some even step onto the roadway because there is a bicycle lane with no bikes so they take that one extra step and your false teath (not yours of course) leave you in the rapid breaking or the brakes get applied intermittently due to pedestrians every few metres doing the same thing. I think a driver warning is good, but I fear the error rate applying brakes would render it useless.
The picture shown is an obvious jaywalking situation. The pedestrians are at fault. Of course, if we can increase safety by adding functionality to the vehicles, we can save these law breaking pedestrians. It's a good idea, but the pedestrians should pay for the upgrade instead of the driver.
My experience with Germany -- albeit from decades ago -- is that everyone is law-abiding and there would be no jaywalking. Indeed, babylon.com translates "jaywalking" as unachtsamer Fußgang (careless walking), as something done by the heedless Hans Guck-in-die-Luft (Johnny Head-in-Air) from Der Struwwelpeter.
It is gauche to be a pedestrian in Italy. It is in bad taste: a pedestrian is a Person of No Consequence -- The Italian pedestrian feels ashamed and does everything he can do to avoid acting like a pedestrian. To cross the street on the crosswalk, for instance, would be to admit he is a pedestrian. To cross the street, he crosses in the middle of the block, strolling slowly through the traffic. He is trying to make it clear that he is not a pedestrian at all, but a driver who has momentarily alighted from his car. If you treat him like a pedestrian, thus drawing attention to his shame, he will be furious...
You're right Daleste. If the government mandates it, then we will all have to pay for it. I suppose if the technology turns out to be as effective as seat-belts, airbags or head rests, then the government will make it law.
Speaking of airbags and head rests. Does anyone know whether the government mandated car manufacturers to install them in all cars or did the manufacturers see the inclusion of these safety add-ons as no-brainers.
I know seat belts are required by law - but I'm not sure about airbags and head rests.
What you're suggesting is an excellent idea. There are already fines for jaywalking, we now only need to have the police do what they're paid to do (uphold the law) but somehow I'm not so sure they would be bothered.
The concept seems to be simply. Yet, to detect predestian ahead and apply the brake properly is a challenging problem. Among all, like _hm said, when if someone doesn't have a transponder. On the other hands, if brake is applied to avoid hitting a predestian and yet causing a collision to the rear-end of the car, who's fault.
To me, jaywalker or not is another issue. I will definitely feel bad of hitting a person even though it is his/ her fault. The idea is great; yet, it requires more study, a lot of alpha tests and beta tests.
Careful law abiding adults who carry the transponder are the wrong audience ... they won't dart out in front of cars anyhow. The "at risk" demographic is children chasing their ball (or dog) as it rolls out into traffic. Unfortunately, the demographic most in need of such a device is the very one least likely to utilize it.