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Traffic: Why We Drive the Way We Do (and What It Says about Us)

Traffic: Why We Drive the Way We Do (and What It Says about Us)

Paperback

By (author) Tom Vanderbilt

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Paperback $12.36
Hardback $23.98
  • Publisher: Vintage Books Canada
  • Format: Paperback | 416 pages
  • Dimensions: 132mm x 202mm x 24mm | 322g
  • Publication date: 11 August 2009
  • ISBN 10: 0307397734
  • ISBN 13: 9780307397737

Product description

Driving is a fact of life. We are all spending more and more time on the road, and traffic is an issue we face everyday. This book will make you think about it in a whole new light. We have always had a passion for cars and driving. Now Traffic offers us an exceptionally rich understanding of that passion. Vanderbilt explains why traffic jams form, outlines the unintended consequences of our attempts to engineer safety and even identifies the most common mistakes drivers make in parking lots. Based on exhaustive research and interviews with driving experts and traffic officials around the globe, Traffic gets under the hood of the quotidian activity of driving to uncover the surprisingly complex web of physical, psychological and technical factors that explain how traffic works. From the Hardcover edition.

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Author information

Tom Vanderbilt writes about design, technology, science and culture for Wired, Slate, The New York Times and other publications. He lives in Brooklyn and drives a 2001 Volvo V40. From the Hardcover edition.

Review quote

“If any of you have teenagers who are about to get their license — I urge you to urge them to read Vanderbilt.” — The Daily Telegraph “A terrific investigation into why we drive the way we do, and why many of our beliefs about driving are just wrong.” — The Globe and Mail “A surprising, enlightening look at the psychology of human beings behind the steering wheels. . . . Traffic is jammed with these delicious you’ve-got-to-be-kidding moments.” — The New York Times Book Review "Tom Vanderbilt is one of our best and most interesting writers, with an extraordinary knack for looking at everyday life and explaining, in wonderful and entertaining detail, how it really works. That's never been more true than with Traffic, where he takes a subject that we all deal with (and worry about), and lets us see it through new eyes. In the process, he helps us understand better not just the highway, but the world. It doesn't matter whether you drive or take the bus--you're going to want to read this book." — James Surowiecki, author of The Wisdom of Crowds "A great, deep, multidisciplinary investigation of the dynamics and the psychology of traffic jams. It is fun to read. Anyone who spends more than 19 minutes a day in traffic should read this book." — Nassim Nicholas Taleb, author The Black Swan "Fascinating, illuminating, and endlessly entertaining as well. Vanderbilt shows how a sophisticated understanding of human behavior can illuminate one of the modern world's most basic and most mysterious endeavors. You'll learn a lot; and the life you save may be your own." — Cass R. Sunstein, coauthor of Nudge: Improving Decisions About Health, Wealth, and Happiness "Everyone who drives--and many people who don't--should read this book. It is a psychology book, a popular science book, and a how-to-save-your-life manual, all rolled into one. I found it gripping and fascinating from the very beginning to the very end." — Tyler Cowen, author of Discover Your Inner Economist "Fresh and timely . . . Vanderbilt investigates how human nature has shaped traffic, and vice versa, finally answering drivers' most familiar and frustrating questions." — Publishers Weekly "Fluently written and oddly entertaining, full of points to ponder while stuck at the on-ramp meter or an endless red light." — Kirkus "This may be the most insightful and comprehensive study ever done of driving behavior and how it reveals truths about the types of people we are." — Booklist "Tom Vanderbilt uncovers a raft of counterintuitive facts about what happens when we get behind the wheel, and why." — BusinessWeek "Fascinating . . . Could not come at a better time." — Library Journal From the Hardcover edition.