Riding a bike
“Everything you do on a motorcycle is based on what you see.”
“Steer with your eyes; your motorcycle will always go the way you are looking!”
We motorcycle riders hear these phrases constantly. Using your vision correctly while riding a motorcycle is critical for our survival on the road. There is no doubt: The rider’s eyes are the most important element in controlling the direction in which the motorcycle goes.
From a motorcycle rider’s point of view, “vision” is a process that dynamically combines scanning with your eyes, aiming your sight, tracking objects and focusing on them. On top of that, this process also involves analyzing what you’re seeing and changing the way you’re riding the motorcycle accordingly. This vision can be divided into 2 distinct types: fixed vision and peripheral vision.
Fixed and peripheral vision
A rider is using fixed vision when his or her eyes move continuously among various objects, focusing on each and every one, and analyzing their potential danger. A rider will also use this vision to assess how these objects may interact with the motorcycle’s movements and path. With this type of vision, the eyes must move quickly among the various objects while simultaneously scanning for surface hazards.
While fixed vision involves focusing on specific objects to obtain the most information about them, peripheral vision lets you see objects, movement, and general surroundings that are not within your direct line of sight. With this type of vision, specifically focusing on every single aspect of your environment is unnecessary.
Peripheral vision’s role is to spot the potential dangers that lie around us, such as cars, trucks, or other riders, and is essential for survival on the road. The speed of a rider’s reactions increases when using it correctly, allowing him or her to avoid obstacles, to speed up by opening the throttle, or to slow down by using the breaks.
How to use fixed and peripheral visions to ride a bike
A good rider keeps his head up, looks well ahead, matches their vision distance to their travel speed, and keeps their vision wide. As critical as these techniques are, though, there may still be times when the rider simply stops doing the right thing. There are many factors that can cause this, including high travel speeds, a lack of awareness, mental fatigue and others.
Some of these mistakes are due to “target fixation,” in which the rider stops processing the entire image and focuses only on one object that is perceived as potentially dangerous, such as a car in their immediate path. Even though focusing on a hazard is generally a good thing, with target fixation the rider loses their ability to see anything other than that one specific object and thus inadvertently points the bike in that exact direction, which can cause an accident.
Another mistake called “tunnel vision,” in which the rider almost entirely loses their peripheral vision, may also occur. The rider becomes less and less aware of the motorcycle’s general surroundings due to this phenomenon, which in turn may cause additional stress and mental fatigue in addition to impacting his or her ability to ride safely and avoid dangers on the road.
Lastly, although most riders usually don’t look far enough ahead, some look too far ahead. This tendency causes them to lose connection with their immediate surroundings, thereby exposing them to hazards that lie close to them and their bike.
Ride Vision System
Here, into the gap between a rider’s fallible vision and the level at which it must be for maximum safety, enters a system developed by Ride Vision.
Ride Vision’s system utilizes standard wide angle cameras with a fusion of computer vision & deep learning algorithms on the edge to predict and alert on upcoming collisions, without disturbing riders’ focus. Ride Vision’s system effectively helps riders to combine both the fixed and the peripheral visions, by tracking almost 360° around a motorcycle.
Consider the following situation, where and accident almost happened, captured by Ride Vision’s prototype. A rider observes the blue car with its fixed vision. At some time, the blue car activates the braking lights gently, but continues to drive without actually braking – a normal day-to-day scenario which we all see. At that point, the rider’s fixed vision swapped to look at a different vehicle, but then the blue car abruptly stopped at a crosswalk for a pedestrian.
Ride Vision’s system allows the rider to gain the focus back to the immediate danger by acting as an assistant peripheral vision. It alerted the rider when the blue car abruptly stopped, and allowed the rider to swap back to a fixed vision.
By doing this, the system enabled the rider to react in time and avoid the collision.
Did the rider make it? Of course! Ride Vision’s Pre-Emptive Vision keeps you safe!