Record Details

Catalog Search

Traffic : why we drive the way we do (and what it says about us)  Cover Image Book Book

Traffic : why we drive the way we do (and what it says about us) / Tom Vanderbilt.

Vanderbilt, Tom. (Author).


Based on exhaustive research and interviews with driving experts and traffic officials around the globe, Traffic gets under the hood of the everyday activity of driving to uncover the surprisingly complex web of physical, psychological, and technical factors that explain how traffic works, why we drive the way we do, and what our driving says about us. Vanderbilt examines the perceptual limits and cognitive underpinnings that make us worse drivers than we think we are. He demonstrates why plans to protect pedestrians from cars often lead to more accidents. He shows how roundabouts, which can feel dangerous and chaotic, actually make roads safer--and reduce traffic in the bargain. He uncovers who is more likely to honk at whom, and why. He explains why traffic jams form, outlines the unintended consequences of our quest for safety, and even identifies the most common mistake drivers make in parking lots.--From publisher description.

Record details

  • ISBN: 9780307264787
  • ISBN: 0307264785
  • Physical Description: viii, 402 p. ; 25 cm.
  • Edition: 1st ed.
  • Publisher: New York : Alfred A. Knopf, 2008.

Content descriptions

Bibliography, etc. Note:
Includes bibliographical references (p. [293]-383) and index.
Formatted Contents Note:
Why I became a late merger (and why you should too) -- Why does the other lane always seem faster? How traffic messes with our heads -- Shut up, I can't hear you: anonymity, aggression, and the problems of communicating while driving -- Are you lookin' at me? Eye contact, stereotypes, and social interaction on the road -- Waiting in line, waiting in traffic: why the other lane always moves faster -- Postscript: and now, the secrets of late merging revealed -- Why you're not as good a driver as you think you are -- If driving is so easy, why is it so hard for a robot? What teaching machines to drive teaches us about driving -- How's my driving? How the hell should I know? Why lack of feedback fails us on the road -- How our eyes and minds betray us on the road -- Keep your mind on the road: why it's so hard to pay attention in traffic -- Objects in traffic are more complicated than they appear: how our driving eyes deceive us -- Why ants don't get into traffic jams (and humans do): cooperation as a cure for congestion -- Meet the world's best commuter: what we can learn from ants, locusts, and crickets -- Playing God in Los Angeles -- When slower is faster, or, How the few defeat the many: traffic flow and human nature -- Why women cause more congestion than men (and other secrets of traffic) -- Who are all these people? The psychology of commuting -- The parking problem: why we are inefficient parkers and how this causes congestion -- Why more roads lead to more traffic (and what to do about it) -- The selfish commuter -- A few Mickey Mouse solutions to the traffic problem -- When dangerous roads are safer -- The highway conundrum: how drivers adapt to the road they see -- The trouble with traffic signs--and how getting rid of them would be better for everyone -- Forgiving roads or permissive roads? The fatal flaws of traffic engineering -- How traffic explains the world: on driving with a local accent -- "Good brakes, good horn, good luck!": plunging into the maelstrom of Delhi traffic -- Why New Yorkers jaywalk (and why they don't in Copenhagen): traffic as culture -- Danger: corruption ahead--the secret indicator of crazy traffic -- Why you shouldn't drive with a beer-drinking divorced doctor named Fred on Super Bowl Sunday in a pickup truck in rural Montana: what's risky on the road and why -- Semiconscious fear: how we misunderstand the risks of the road -- Should I stay or should I go? Why risk on the road is so complicated -- The risks of safety -- Driving lessons.
Subject: Automobile driving > Psychological aspects.
Traffic congestion.

Available copies

  • 1 of 1 copy available at Kirtland Community College.


  • 0 current holds with 1 total copy.
Show Only Available Copies
Location Call Number / Copy Notes Barcode Shelving Location Status Due Date
Kirtland Community College Library TL 152.5 .V36 2008 30536477 General Collection Available -

Additional Resources