There is nothing more frustrating than hopping in your car, heading out on your morning commute, and getting stuck in an enormous traffic jam only to have it inexplicably clear up in a few miles. No accident, no road work, just soul-crushing traffic. Traffic alone is enough to bring out the road rage monster in all of us, and it is even worse when the jam seems to be around for no other reason than to ruin your commute.
Now you can take a bit of control back with this new traffic simulator. As Popular Science reports, the simulator was launched by Martin Treiber will let you create your own traffic jam. Currently there’s only one simulation available, a ring formation that will show you shockwave slowdowns and highlight how differently traffic flows based on the number of vehicles on the road, and even how adding several larger vehicles like trucks can slow things down on the road. While the plan is to eventually add more simulations in the future that add in other factors like on-ramps, speed changes, lane closings, and hills, you can still lose a solid chunk of your day creating cramped conditions for the simulated cars trapped on the Ring Road from Simulation Hell.
While you and I can have a lot of fun playing around in the sim, it was actually created for a scientific purpose. Treiber and his team at Dresden University of Technology in Germany plan to use the simulator to learn what happens when traffic patterns shift, and hopefully predict and prevent areas that would create significant slowdowns. So let’s all sit and dream about a world with fewer traffic jams…
Have you tried the traffic simulator? Were you surprised at ways you could create shockwave slowdowns? Tell us about your experience with it in the comments!