解説!1日5分ビジネス英語
2015/11/19

Car simulator to assess drivers 運転手を評価する自動車シミュレーター

今回の記事は「運転手を評価する自動車シミュレーター」という内容です。さていったいどういう内容なのでしょうか。

音声

今回の記事の音声です。まずは音声を聴いてみて下さい。

本日のSentence

Simultaneously, the simulator records the driver’s reactions in these varying conditions to ascertain whether the driver is fit to drive.

同時にシミュレーターは、このような変化する状況での運転手の反応を記録し、運転手が運転できる能力を持っているかを確認する。


ascertain=【他動】〔調査によって〕~を突き止める、確認する certain(確信しているという形容詞)が隠れていますね

vary=【自動】変わる、変化する,ここからvaryingは様々なという意味になります。

negotiate=【自動】一般には「交渉する」「協議する」という意味が強いですが、この他にも「乗り越える」「~を上手に切り抜ける」という意味もあります。

fit=【自動】合う、適合する,または「適切である」という意味があります。

simulator=【名】シミュレーター、模擬実験,実験装置


本日の記事は、詳細部分が面白いので、原文を掲載しておきます。Challengerの皆さんは、トライしてみてください。感想などはFacebookページから【メッセージ】もしくは【コメント】をお寄せ下さい。https://www.facebook.com/5MinBusinessEnglish/



For many, driving is a passion nurtured through years of experience on all kinds of terrain and in different driving conditions. However, as the years catch on, the skills of driving fall prey to age. Someone who was once very adept at handling tricky driving conditions might be developing weak eyesight, which naturally impedes driving prowess. Someone else might be suffering from a debilitating age-related disease, which lowers awareness, which is very critical for safe driving. Yet, being forced to give up driving is often an equivalent of losing one’s life companion. It is an emotionally stressful period that could lead to loss of confidence in many other arenas of daily activity. Armed with a driving license, many elderly people continue to drive on the roads, endangering both their own safety as well as that of others. There is nothing in the law that identifies such drivers.

Enter the car-driving simulator, which not only gauges the driving skills of a person, but it can also ascertain medical conditions that might inhibit driving capabilities, or even measure the distractions caused by practices such as using the cell phone or listening to music while driving. Although such apparatuses are yet to be a part of official driving tests, they have immense potential for the future. Researchers at the Toronto Rehabilitation Institute (TRI) in Canada have developed one such simulator called DriverLab to assess drivers under all kinds of conditions. Another high-fidelity driving simulator is already being used by the UNMC Department of Neurological Sciences to diagnose medical conditions of drivers. A similar simulator developed by Florida State University is being used to study the distractions caused by cell phones while driving. In fact, there can be numerous applications of a car-driving simulator with few modifications in the equipment used.

The business potency of using a car-driving simulator for issuing driving licenses in the future is immense. Currently, driving licenses are generally issued based on tests that fail to determine conditions that are specific to each driver. For instance, the tests are unable to assess whether a driver is fit enough to handle different driving conditions, such as driving during the day or night, or maintaining concentration throughout a long road trip. This could be a problem for road safety because as people get older, their eyesight and driving capabilities weaken. Instead of summarily discounting all elderly people as inept drivers, a test on the simulator can help identify those among them who are truly unfit to drive.

TRI’s DriverLab, an experiment being conducted with Geoffrey Fernie as the lead researcher, consists of the body of an Audi A3, which is surrounded by a projection screen and its rear-view mirrors are actually monitor screens. The car itself is mounted on a turntable that can revolve 360 degrees, which simulates the motion of a car. In the simulation, the driver sees images that are projected on the main screen by 12 overhead projectors. The driver virtually travels through various terrains such as busy streets and mountain roads, in varying light conditions such as daylight, nightfall, dusk, and so forth, and in all kinds of weather conditions such as rainstorms, fog, and sunny weather. The simulator makes the conditions realistic in a virtual 5D environment where the driver can feel the rain sprays on the windshield, see the fog, and sense the hot sun. Simultaneously, the simulator records the driver’s reactions in these varying conditions to ascertain whether the driver is fit to drive. For example, the system notes the smoothness of applying the brakes and the accelerator, the distance maintained from the car (simulated) in front, etc. The driver is also presented with surprise challenges, such as the sudden appearance of a pedestrian, to record how well the driver handles the situation.

After assessing the driver’s pros and cons in negotiating different driving situations, DriverLab and similar apparatuses in the future could help the authorities to issue customized driving licenses. For instance, someone who is able to concentrate for short road trips, but finds it difficult to remain focused on long drives, could be issued a license for driving in the locality over short runs (say, to the supermarket or the grocery store in town). Someone who is okay with driving in the day hours but cannot handle night driving could have a license to drive only during the day. And so on.

The driving simulator at UNMC, on the other hand, can measure and diagnose neurological diseases such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson's, and Multiple Sclerosis. Its four cameras record activities like foot and hand movement, eye coordination, and general composure. These indications are often giveaways of an underlying neurological condition.

The police are already taking recourse to car-driving simulators to build awareness about driving hazards. Among them, the Brockville police have employed simulators purchased by car dealer Riverside Ford to interact with the public about the dangers of texting, using the cell phone, or consuming alcohol while driving. Similarly, the Ohio State Police Department has received driving simulators as donations from the Maria Tiberi Foundation. Each simulator costs about $14,000. The Ohio police are using the simulators to demonstrate the effect of distracted driving.

When car-driving simulators like DriverLab are employed officially to issue licenses, many drivers are likely to be taken off the roads, including many senior citizens. On the other hand, lest we generalize the elderly as inept drivers, many septuagenarians could extend their driving years by successfully demonstrating that they are still as adept in handling the roads as in their younger days.
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ボキャブラリー

  • negotiate : [verb] 交渉する。(障害または難しい道)を切り抜ける方法を見つけること
  • surround : [verb] 囲む。すべての側面を覆うこと、取り囲む
  • projection : [noun] 映写、投写。表面に画像を映すこと
  • dusk : [noun] 夕暮れ、たそがれ。日暮れ時の暗い段階
  • issue : [verb] 発行する。(何か)を誰かに公な方法で与えること

日本語訳

一般的に、運転免許は、運転手が日中や夜間のあらゆる状況で運転する能力があるかどうかを評価することができない試験に基づいて発行されている。これは交通安全にとって問題になる可能性がある。人は年を重ねると視力や運転能力が衰えるからだ。この問題を避けるために、カナダのトロント・リハビリテーション・インスチチュートの研究者は、DriverLabという運転シミュレーターを開発した。

このシミュレーターは、映写幕で囲まれたアウディの車体で構成されている。リアビューカメラは、実際にはモニター画面だ。シミュレーションでは、運転手は、さまざまな種類の道路や、日中、夜、夕暮れなど、変化する光条件の中を運転する。同時にシミュレーターは、このような変化する状況での運転手の反応を記録し、運転手が運転できる能力を持っているかを確認する。

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