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Visualizing Risk: How Data Visualization
Can Help Fight Distracted Driving
Nicholas Arcolano, Ph.D.
Senior Data Scientist,...
● Boston-based startup
founded in 2012
● Working to make driving
safer and more affordable
● Partnering with auto
insurers...
Driving is one of the most
dangerous things people do daily
We use signal processing and
machine learning to characterize
driver behavior and accident risk
● How much you drive: annu...
Distracted driving dramatically
elevates your risk of an accident
Drivers who admit to texting while driving1
36%
Drivers ...
If distracted driving is so dangerous,
then why do we do it?
Let’s take a short detour...
Behavioral economics
● Why do people make
irrational / sub-optimal
decisions?
● Biases: information we
use to make decisio...
Biases and heuristics
Optimistic bias / overconfidence
● We often think we have more control over events than we
really do...
TrueMotion’s goal: to get people to
think differently about the risks of
distracted driving
Data visualization helps counteract
our cognitive biases by allowing us to
explore complex causes and effects
Data visualization can help us to...
● Show drivers how individual choices aggregate
into long-term behavior
● Help driver...
TrueMotion distraction insights
and context
What about understanding
long-term accident risk?
Years You Have Left to Live, Probably
http://flowingdata.com/2015/09/23/years-you-have-left-to-live-probably/
How You Will Die
http://flowingdata.com/2016/01/19/how-you-will-die/
How Other People Die
http://flowingdata.com/2016/01/05/causes-of-death/
TrueMotion GradeMyDrive
● Visualization project with Matt Beaulieu (WPI)
● Combines predictive risk modeling with accident...
Ongoing work
● Real-time feedback of driving risk (based on
behavior, traffic, road conditions)
● Modeling and visualizati...
THANK YOU!
Visualizing Risk (2016 Boston Data Visualization Summit)
Visualizing Risk (2016 Boston Data Visualization Summit)
Visualizing Risk (2016 Boston Data Visualization Summit)
Visualizing Risk (2016 Boston Data Visualization Summit)
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Visualizing Risk (2016 Boston Data Visualization Summit)

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Slides from my talk "Visualizing Risk: How Data Visualization Can Help Fight Distracted Driving" from the 2016 Boston Data Visualization Summit.

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Visualizing Risk (2016 Boston Data Visualization Summit)

  1. 1. Visualizing Risk: How Data Visualization Can Help Fight Distracted Driving Nicholas Arcolano, Ph.D. Senior Data Scientist, TrueMotion @arcolano
  2. 2. ● Boston-based startup founded in 2012 ● Working to make driving safer and more affordable ● Partnering with auto insurers to provide discounts for safe driving ● Focusing on understanding distracted driving and encouraging behavior change About TrueMotion
  3. 3. Driving is one of the most dangerous things people do daily
  4. 4. We use signal processing and machine learning to characterize driver behavior and accident risk ● How much you drive: annual mileage ● When and where you drive: city vs. highway, road conditions, time of day ● How you behave behind the wheel: speeding, acceleration, braking, cornering, and especially distracted driving habits
  5. 5. Distracted driving dramatically elevates your risk of an accident Drivers who admit to texting while driving1 36% Drivers who actually text while driving2 70% Increase in baseline driving risk due to texting while driving36x 1. State Farm Distracted Driving Survey 2015 2. TrueMotion 2015 field test of 360 drivers / 17,000 trips 3. Dingus et al (2016), Driver crash risk factors and prevalence evaluation using naturalistic driving data
  6. 6. If distracted driving is so dangerous, then why do we do it?
  7. 7. Let’s take a short detour...
  8. 8. Behavioral economics ● Why do people make irrational / sub-optimal decisions? ● Biases: information we use to make decisions is often not representative ● Heuristics: we often approximate hard decisions with simpler ones
  9. 9. Biases and heuristics Optimistic bias / overconfidence ● We often think we have more control over events than we really do (“illusion of control”) ● Thinking we have too much control while driving can lead us to make poor decisions while behind the wheel Availability heuristic ● We estimate true probabilities using the frequencies of our real-world experiences ● By driving without getting into an accident, we believe driving is less risky than it actually is
  10. 10. TrueMotion’s goal: to get people to think differently about the risks of distracted driving
  11. 11. Data visualization helps counteract our cognitive biases by allowing us to explore complex causes and effects
  12. 12. Data visualization can help us to... ● Show drivers how individual choices aggregate into long-term behavior ● Help drivers understand how their actions affect their risk of an accident ● Illustrate how changes in risk equate to real-world consequences
  13. 13. TrueMotion distraction insights and context
  14. 14. What about understanding long-term accident risk?
  15. 15. Years You Have Left to Live, Probably http://flowingdata.com/2015/09/23/years-you-have-left-to-live-probably/
  16. 16. How You Will Die http://flowingdata.com/2016/01/19/how-you-will-die/
  17. 17. How Other People Die http://flowingdata.com/2016/01/05/causes-of-death/
  18. 18. TrueMotion GradeMyDrive ● Visualization project with Matt Beaulieu (WPI) ● Combines predictive risk modeling with accident data to help people understand the impact of their driving behaviors ● Allows drivers to experiment with behavior to understand how choices can change outcomes
  19. 19. Ongoing work ● Real-time feedback of driving risk (based on behavior, traffic, road conditions) ● Modeling and visualization of risk habits: understanding when, where, and why you take your biggest risks ● Relative risk: modeling and visualizing how your choices and risk compare to drivers like you
  20. 20. THANK YOU!

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