[Tagging] Tagging road illumination quality

Greg Troxel gdt at ir.bbn.com
Thu Feb 12 16:38:35 UTC 2015

Peter Wendorff <wendorff at uni-paderborn.de> writes:

> Am 18.01.2015 um 07:14 schrieb John F. Eldredge:
>> You could use a light meter to measure how bright the light is. That
>> isn't the only factor in the suitability of the lighting, but it is
>> objective.
> ... provided that you measure on a dark night without moon and stars,
> without cars driving on the road and no house next to it enlightened?
> Even then:
> Where do you measure the brightness? directly below the street lamp or
> in the middle of two subsequent ones?
> If that's the case, what's "brightness" when you compare different light
> sources? which light temperature do you use as reference (which
> wavelengths to measure at?, as the visibility of some colors are quite
> different when looked at on yellow versus white street lamps (not to
> mention the more subtile differences within those broad color categories).

This is all well established in the professional lighting community.

You use a meter which reads in lux, which is the SI unit of
illuminance.   This is calibrated to human vision, so the various color
issue is taken care of.

The basic two things to measure are the maximum illuminance on the
roadway, and the minimum.

It's true that this is tricky with stray light.  However, the real
question is how much light is on the ground, not where it comes from.

So I would suggest that tagging be of min and max illuminance.  People
who don't have meters can self-calibrate and guess - it's not super hard
to learn.

Another approach is to define a few ranges in terms of lux, and have
people tag those.   Some tags will be wrong, but it takes us out of
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