Risky Gadgets to the Rescue: Designing Personal Ubicomp Devices to Foster Safer Driving Behaviours in Young Males

Risky Gadgets to the Rescue

Young males are over-represented in road crashes. Part of the problem is their proneness to boredom, a hardwired personality factor that leads to risky driving. This research designed innovative technologies to make safe driving more pleasurable and stimulating for young males than risky driving.

Two ubicomp design concepts were evaluated in CARRS-Q’s Advanced Driving Simulator:

  1. Can the replacement of risky driving stimuli with alternative stimuli reduce risky driving?
  2. Can the simulation of risky driving reduce actual risky driving?


This research improved our understanding of driver boredom in general and informed the future design of personal ubicomp devices that reduce risky driving behaviours.

This study pioneered research exploring the following hypothesis, which had not been previously explored: providing safe, driving-related and pleasurable stimuli through in-car digital technologies can replace the urge for risky driving behaviours in young male drivers.


Fabius Steinberger shows how video games have inspired research to improve driver focus and safety on Scope TV.


Funding / Grants

  • ARC Discovery Early Career Researcher Award (2014 - 2016)