Language barrier makes virtual reality more real

At Prague, Czech Republic, visitors experienced riding a new tram called T3 Coupe in virtual reality.

The T3 tram is an iconic component of the Prague city scape. In collaboration with Anna Marešová designers, the Prague Public Transit Co. has created a new pleasure tram concept based on the tradition of the Tatra T3 tram, putting this legendary vehicle in an entirely new context while respecting its authentic looks. By opening the rear of the tram and combining original elements with modern technologies, the project has given rise to an old-timer that demonstrates how even public transit can deliver real luxury. Because the tram has only one set of doors, it’s been dubbed the T3 Coupé. This special tram preserves the romance of the 1960s and is a tribute to the designer of the original Tatra T3 tram – František Kardaus (1908–1986). The new T3 Coupé tram hits the streets in autumn 2018.

 

 

They sit on the chairs, wore Samsung Gear VR headset, and watched a 360 degree video as passengers. A driver and other passengers appeared in the video.

 

 

Before having enjoyed the virtual tram, I asked a lady about what is T3 Coupe, where to sit, and how to start the device. Interestingly, this human interaction made my non-real experience more real. It was ironic that I was more immersed into the virtual world because of my experiencing language barrier; she could not explain to me about T3 Coupe in English and I could not understand any Czech written on the ticket.

 

 

Peak end rule is probably one of the most well established psychological heuristic. Kahneman and his colleagues (1993) found that people tend to judge an experience based on how they felt at its peak and at its end. However, people might consider its beginning as well when the experience is virtual. Virtual experience might need to be carefully wrapped up by its beginning, its peak, and its end.

Kahneman, D., Fredrickson, B. L., Schreiber, C. A., & Redelmeier, D. A. (1993). When More Pain Is Preferred to Less: Adding a Better End. Psychological Science, 4(6), 401–405.

Subjects were exposed to two aversive experiences: in the short trial, they immersed one hand in water at 14 °C for 60 s; in the long trial, they immersed the other hand at 14 °C for 60 s, then kept the hand in the water 30 s longer as the temperature of the water was gradually raised to 15 °C, still painful but distinctly less so for most subjects. Subjects were later given a choice of which trial to repeat. A significant majority chose to repeat the long trial, apparently preferring more pain over less. The results add to other evidence suggesting that duration plays a small role in retrospective evaluations of aversive experiences; such evaluations are often dominated by the discomfort at the worst and at the final moments of episodes.

 

 

How does Taipei MRT differ from Copenhagen metro?

Taipei Metro covers more stations than Copenhagen Metro. It covers 117 stations (vs. 22 stations). Like other Asian trains, it has seats designated for the people who are in need. A poster in the train asks us to “stand up for someone in need” in a gentle and polite way, that is, “也許他/她有需要,只是你看不到 (maybe she/he has the need, you just can’t see it).”

 

 

In contrast, Copenhagen trains have fewer folding seats (for bicycles and strollers) and have no seat for those who are in need. Interestingly, I have seen many seats are available because only few travelers sit down rather temporarily. Why do and how could many Danes stand up whereas many Taiwanese sit down in their trains?

 

 

 

A pink litter bin on the London Bridge

River Thames flows through London. People come to the London Bridge to see the Tower Bridge which allows ocean-going ships to pass beneath it.

 

 

Many visitors stopped in front of a pink public litter bin momentarily and threw litter away before crossing the bridge.

 

 

We knew adding human faces or adding controversial messages nudge our prosocial behaviors. Adding votes could be another effective intervention. I believe behavioral economics can play a critical role when public items are designed. Asking people to vote by splitting a litter bin into two sub bins looks more effective than designing a gigantic litter bin like a disposable coffee cup.