This is a general post about cars that I think is helpful.

Traffic. Can’t live with it, can’t live without it. What can we do about that?

When smartphones came out, it was only a matter of time before there was a crowd-sourced traffic reporting and GPS navigation app. Waze. Why aren’t you using this already? Before you hit the road, check the app for any accidents or slowdowns. There’s reporting of police speed traps, red light cameras (read on), and it tells you how fast people are driving through certain areas. You can easily report things like cars pulled over on the road, construction areas. Do it for yourself, but most importantly, do it for me.

City traffic cameras. Watch what’s going on around the city. Here’s City of Edmonton’s. Here’s Calgary’s. City of Calgary also has a road conditions app (iTunes, Play, App World).

Red light and speeding cameras in one? Say what? Here are Edmonton’s intersection safety cameras (ISC), and here are Calgary’s.

Traffic jams. Closed lane(s), and everyone merging selfishly. You don’t want anyone passing you, so you creep up to the very end and make them merge at the last minute behind you. How do you fix it? Zipper merge. By giving two to three car spaces of room ahead of you, there is less stop-and-go, making the whole line move forward faster. The left animation is the normal situation, and the right is what glorious wonder driving could be if we applied some scientific reasoning.

These ideas and gifs come courtesy of Traffic Waves. It’s a serious read, and if traffic is a large part of your life, I recommend it.

The ultimate hack to traffic? Move closer to work. Obviously, it doesn’t work out for everyone, but living within 5 km of work is seriously the best. Insurance is cheaper, I can bike and feel better than everyone else, and I can pop over for lunch if I want. I rarely do these days, but I can if I want.

Gas cap side indicator arrow points towards which side the gas cap is on.

Need to air out the car quickly? Crack both windows on the left for a gentle breeze, both on the right for a stronger one. Rolling down just the driver window gets too much air into my ear.

Leave post-it notes and a pen in your car to leave friendly notes for other drivers. 🙂

Here’s how you parallel park.


Christian. Audio. Technology. Go-Getter. Concise.

Posted in Changed My Life, Hacks

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