Kids today may be more familiar with the sound of a rushing highway than a rushing river. But imagine that the internal combustion engine could be set aside and we could design the soundscape of our future. What aural environment would you choose for traffic?
如今的孩子可能更熟悉马路上喧嚣的声音，而不是潺潺的流水声 。不过想象一下把内燃机搁置一旁，我们来设计未来的声音风景 。你会为交通选择什么样的背景音乐呢？
For the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the answer is that new cars should sound like old cars.
Hybrid and electric vehicles can be so quiet that people outside the vehicle can't hear them. So these too-quiet cars will be required to sound something like this [sound three].
混合动力汽车可以很安静，以至于车外的人根本听不见它们 。所以要求所有这些太安静的汽车发出这样的声音 。
The Obama administration wants a million electric vehicles on the road by 2015. Slow sales of cars like the Chevy Volt and Tesla Model S may keep that number from being reached. But there are still hundreds of thousands of EVs and hybrids on the road today. It's hoped that the new rule will help prevent thousands of pedestrian and cyclist deaths.
奥巴马政府希望到2015年有100万辆电动汽车 。像雪佛兰伏特和特斯拉型号S这样销售缓慢的轿车可能会阻碍这个目标的实现 。但今天仍有成百上千的电动车和混合动力车在路上行驶 。有望新的法案会帮助减少上千起行人和自行车手死亡事件 。
But the rule also hews to a possibly outdated tradition, like people who set their cellphone ringtone to sound like an old rotary phone. And it's wasting a chance to reimagine what our cars, roads and even cities could sound like.
但是法案还谈到一个可能过时的传统，比如有些人将手机铃声设置成听起来像摇式电话 。而且如果重新设想我们的汽车、道路甚至是城市的背景音乐，那就是在浪费一次机会 。