The 15th World Congress on Intelligent Transport Systems had a convention last week (Nov. 16-20) at the Javits Center in New York City and they literally closed off a section of 11th Avenue to show off some of the technologies being developed to make the roads safer for everybody.

The cars shown in the video “talk” wirelessly with the road, traffic signals, and pedestrians around them and are smart enough to avoid a serious accident and even automatically stop the car if the driver fails to do so. The system makes use of dedicated short-range communications (DSRC) to find other objects around the vehicle, but I cannot help but think about how this sort of technology would affect a city like New York where vehicles purposely come within inches of hitting each other in order to keep moving. I do this sort of thing often and I would hate it if a computer in my car told me that I was going to hit a vehicle when I know I am able to squeeze by without even a scratch.

But of course, the life-saving capabilities of such technology overshadow the annoyance stated above, so for that, I’ll go with this and say that I think it’s pretty neat.