GPS Enabled Radar Database

The page pretty much lacks every possible detail, but [Mattias] put together his own RADAR camera notification. It uses a published database of camera’s and a GPS receiver to notify the driver that they’re approaching one of the many permanent speed detection cameras in Sweden. Despite the lack of details, I can guess about the design. It shouldn’t be that difficult to construct something similar with a PIC or AVR with a decent amount of memory. Just compare the current location with the list, and notify the driver when it determines that it’s within a specified distance. Unfortunately all the RADAR detectors where I live are strapped to police cars.

30 thoughts on “GPS Enabled Radar Database

  1. In Seattle, one of the local newspapers combed through public records and made a database of the number of speeding tickets issued for every mile of highways. I’ve been thinking about building a device like this that uses the database which, combined with your current speed, gives you estimate of how likely you are to be pulled over.

  2. lmao that would be cool, you could make it work out if it’s worth it, i.e. if speeding means you’ll get there quicky but with the increased likelyhood of being pulled over including the time that would take would it still be fastest lol.

  3. Hmm…so sniff the 900mhz data transmissions to get the current GPS data from the squads, then compare your current location to the location of the cops, the speed limit, and your current speed. Is sniffing and cracking radio broadcasts illegal? :-P
    Of course, I think you *might* need a little bit more hardware…

  4. Everyday Practical Electronics (EPE Magazine) volume 34, number 1 (Jan 2005) has all the schematics and code and everything else you need for a project thats very similar. It doesn’t use a premade database of the locations, instead you push the record button when you see a camera or speed trap, and from then on it will warn you at various distances. I’m afraid to build one though, it might make me cocky and there’s no viable way for me to track the beat cops and their radar guns :b

  5. Would you steel from a shop ? Probably not. Speeding is against the law. And like every other law breaking it is illegal. One does not choose which laws to follow and which laws to break. Also like many other laws they are designed for the protection and safety for you and of others. There is a reason speeding is against the law!

  6. Would you hold slaves? Forcibly segregate? Throw people in jail for drinking alcohol? Give them tickets for driving sixty-five on the highway? Throw somebody in a detainment camp just because they were oriental? Those were all law too, at one point.

  7. kernel_geek:

    Back when I delivered pizza, I had a radar detector; not because I normally exceeded the speed limit, but to make sure I was paying attention. It went off regularly, and when I did, I would check my speed and adjust if necessary.

    I remember a quote by the transport minister about “drifting” over the speed limit is like “drifting” a knife into someone. Well, if I had a knife, I would like a device to beep at me if I was about to stab someone.

    (Hmm… an accelerometer, an ultrasonic rangefinder, that might not be too hard. I wonder if it could be made to distinguish between people and things that are not people?)

  8. //One does not choose which laws to follow and which laws to break.//
    On the contrary, that’s EXACTLY what one does. Civil Disobedience is a crime too, and so was being black, and crossing the Crown, etc, etc.
    Breaking the law then fighting it in court because its stupid is the American way. Unless you want people to be sheeple?

    //Also like many other laws they are designed for the protection and safety for you and of others. There is a reason speeding is against the law!//
    Again, like many other laws, speeding is there for revenue. That’s why there are artificial speed zones, like the GSP in NJ. A safe speed, according to old and new engineering data, is 70mph. NOT 55mph.

  9. @joey y:

    Surely the equivalent device would be a buzzer that went off whenever you exceeded the limit, whether or not there was a camera nearby?

    If one is worried about drifting over the limit, then one can always drive below it so that any drift will still leave you driving at a legal speed.

  10. My friend and I were thinking about a system like this, but whenever your radar dectector alerted, it also uploaded the position to a online database, through a cell phone GPRS connection, and then it alerted all other users of the system to the speed trap. But I’m sure that kinda thing is illegal anyway.

  11. to #16, I agree completely, btw, red light cameras are another good example, they’ve been statistically shown to increase the number of accidents, while increasing the yellow time from 3 to six seconds has been shown to decrease accidents. yet most yellow lights are still 3 seconds, and red light cameras are popping up faster and faster, why? because both are more profitable than their safer alternatives.

    On a separate note, since when are hackers concerned with with what is, and isn’t lawful? isn’t the whole hacker philosophy to do whats right, despite their government.

  12. @sventek:

    Your idea is brilliant. It is no more illegal than getting on the phone and telling your buddies where the speed trap is that you just saw, or after passing said speed trap, flashing your lights at oncoming motorists as a warning to slow down.

    As far as the police are concerned (publicly, anyway), all of these things accomplish the very same objective: getting drivers to slow down.

    And I’m sorry, but it takes about 5 minutes and full attention to change the speed warning in my car. I can’t set the speed warning for every street onto which I turn.

    A *useful* device that would alleviate the concerns that radar detectors are used to speed would be a proximity-type device that “read” a transponder on each street and updated the speed alarm within the car with the appropriate speed. Thus, whatever street you’re on, the speed alarm would be automatically, and correctly, calibrated.

    It would still be the driver’s choice, however, to turn it on…

  13. clearly some of you don’t have sufficient intelligence to under stand the concepts of the law. Yes at one point slavery was legal. But at the the time that was the law so it didn’t matter. yes speeding tickets are a form of revenue, but hardly a primary income. Speed limits are there so that you idiots don’t kill someone.

  14. First off: speed limits do not always make people safer. Driving at a reasonable speed with regards to the condition of the road is safe. Studies show that underrated speed limits (rated by engineers- underrated by legislators) actually have higher accident rates because some people drive the limit and others drive what is reasonable.

    Second: Speeding never killed anyone. Ever. Too fast for conditions isn’t speeding. Driving irresponsibly isn’t speeding. Doing either while speeding is dangerous. I can’t hurt anyone except myself when i speed on an empty road.


    Third: It would be easy to develop something like this. Carputer, wireless card, gps dongle, radar detector with a data out port. (I know the valentine 1 does it, i’m sure others do) code a database to put locations on a map based on the radar band and signal strength. There are already people working on it.

  15. clearly one of you doesn’t have sufficient intelligence to under stand the concepts of the law or the moral backbone to understand unethical behavior by elected officials masquerading as unquestionable overlords. You obviously can’t comprehend simple US History. If you did, you would know that the highest speed limit of 55 was nationally instated because of fuel efficiency during a period of high fuel costs and low supply, not “so you idiots don’t kill someone”. If that was the case, erase the fines and make it jail time. But then again, that would clog up the court system without paying for itself. So much for protecting innocent people.

  16. Is sniffing and cracking radio broadcasts illegal? :-P

    ;) Generally here in the US the rules are; that you are permitted to monitor radio transmissions if don’t divulge the content or use the content to break other laws. Who knows if the patriotact nullified such sensable rules? Nuff said on that.

  17. (Another off-topic comment)

    On the topic of ‘obeying the law’ — there was a study done a few years back in Boston (by MIT I think?). A crackdown on jaywalking caused some researchers to estimate what would happen if EVERYONE obeyed the rules and crossed at a crosswalk (and pressed the crosswalk button). The conclusion was that the city would actually come to a gridlock, and that jaywalking was the only way to prevent this from happening.

  18. On the topic of illegality, the West Yorkshire Police (in the UK) actually have a website which will tell you the location of perminant and temporary speed cameras.

    The logic is that the devices (dispised as they are) are simply a safety device and are mounted in locations which have previously had fatal accidents.

    So looking at this way, any GPS device which warns on speed cameras is a safety device.

    I general don’t speed that much, and believe that you should be in control of your car at all times, and be able to cope with the mistakes of other road users.

  19. @10

    Just add some thermal sensor, say an IR thermometer, and give it a range of say +- 3 degrees F off 98.6 degrees.

    Then unless you’re around someone who’s real sick and probably going to die without medical treatment…

    “to under stand the concepts of the law”

    I’m sure most of us under stand[sic] the concepts of the law.

    And in the United States, we have a long, glorious history of rebelling against the laws when they’re unjust. Take a read at “A Letter from a Birmingham Jail”.

    In other news, this is still a pretty cool hack.

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