If you are situated somewhere like Washington D.C. – like many of the teammates here at OPUS – chances are you get honked at on the daily. In fact, it feels like you’ve somehow missed the memo if you get to work without having been aggressively scolded on the highway.

However, despite the fact that car horns are associated with antagonism, they are actually a vital communication tool.

According to Techwalla:

Car horns are an important part of driving. Alerting others around you of situations that require their attention is often essential to not getting into a car accident. 

Not all honks are meant to be aggressive. Imagine a world where you could politely honk your horn at someone if they need a casual reminder to start driving when the light turns green. Or if you need to give a pedestrian a little toot to shut the car door so you can fit into a parking spot.  

Mark Rober, popular YouTuber and former NASA engineer decided to make the concept of a non-aggressive car horn into a reality in one of his recent videos. In the video he states that his pitch is, “To make the road more pleasant by increasing the vocabulary of the standard horn.”

The Making of a Non-Aggressive Car Horn:

Entirely bypassing his main horn, Rober installed three different horn sounds into his car, each one with tone and audio level created for a specific scenario:

  • The polite honk – This is a cute double beep which is made for use on the road. It is created to communicate with fellow drivers, whether as a friendly correction or even a quick ‘thank you’.
  • The pedestrian honk – This sound created to communicate with people who are not in a car, such as someone in a parking lot, etc. Much quieter than the first one and only one beep, it is reminiscent of R2-D2.
  • Last but not least, there is the emergency horn. Much louder than the average car horn, this is reserved for serious emergencies, and is about the same level as a train horn. As Rober says, this is reserved for situations such as, “Two teenagers are taking their sweet time crossing the road in front of you while fidget spinning.”

Do you want one of these installed in your car? Watch Mark Rober’s video below and let us know what you think!