Tracking Inauguration Traffic in 4-D

In an effort to help officials and tourists in Washington D.C. deal with inauguration crowds, researchers at the University of Maryland have created a "four-dimensional" map that tracks traffic and road conditions in real time.
January 19, 2009, 2pm PST | Nate Berg
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"With more than 2 million people expected to flood into Washington this Tuesday, the software is a gift to the Washington, D.C., Maryland and Virginia departments of transportation."

"At the university's Center for Advanced Transportation Technology, several large flat-screen TVs are hooked up to what looks like your average PlayStation 3 joystick. Taking hold of the controls, you can fly around 3-D images of the Capitol grounds, Georgetown and virtually every other part of the city."

"The difference from above is what you see below. Models of cars and trucks bustle down Wisconsin Avenue, and on U.S. Route 50 near the Baltimore-Washington Parkway a car is off the road owing to a traffic accident. A few moments later, cars start to slow as rain and sleet falls from the sky. "All of this occurs in real time, hence the fourth dimension," says Pack."

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Published on Saturday, January 17, 2009 in NPR
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