A Conversation for h2g2 On the Move - The Vision
The Cow Posted Aug 14, 2000
There was the story (urban myth?) about some gangster who was tracked and shot down 'cos of his mobile...
Couldn't a client-side solution work, where the phone stores a list of h2g2 enabled locations, and then the phone alerts the user that he's within half a mile of Middelfart. OK, we could still theoretically track him from the fact that he's interested in Middelfart, but hey - he could just be interested from an upstairs bedroom somewhere near Wrexham...
Storage wouldn't be a problem: I believe IBM have released a 350Mb hard disk (don't drop it!) that slots into the card slot of a laptop. In 5 years....
Adam C-R Posted Aug 15, 2000
According to Sniggly earlier in the conversation this was Pablo Escobar.
At the moment, client-side solutions aren't possible with the phones themselves since the manufacturers don't want any software developers screwing up their interfaces. Not that the interfaces could be screwed up any further in some cases, but anyway...
Things should open up a lot more when we start getting phones with Java VMs on them. These should be appearing in Japan later this year Whether the Java environment will have access to useful things like location is something we'll just have to wait and see (or lobby the manufacturers about )
I don't quite understand your example of a client-side solution though. Do you mean that the user chooses which places he wants to know about beforehand and then is notified when he gets close?
The Cow Posted Aug 15, 2000
Lets assume that we know the person is in a particular country (or state, if in the US) The phone downloads an index of all relevant guide entries, with locations. Then when the person goes somewhere, the phone rings when he's reasonably close to an activated site. I don't think much data would be required, just title, Axxx, and location, but as I said, memory shouldn't (hopefully) be a problem.
Looseliver, VanDetter & Prang Posted Oct 13, 2000
This idea is actually presently being done. About six companies here in the Atlanta area are using the cell networks of telecommunications companies to constantly deliver updated news and time, and these phones adjust time and date based on your location. Most Sprint phones have a wireless WAP web browsing technology, and this is just an alteration of what is being sent to the phones and repeatedly hitting a large database. This would be a better idea to throw at Wireless PDAs, but phones will work initially.
Delkarnu of House Drakonis Posted Oct 16, 2000
I will talk about two things, first the technology, and second the content.
Technology: A modification of the current Palm Pilot would work well for this. The newer ones have Internet(which will undoubtably be further improved in newer models). It has recognition of your writing, and a little practice gets you writing pretty quick. If you dont like that, it also has a graphical touch-sensitive keyboard. It could easily incorporate a GPS system, or you could provide your address in places the GPS doesn't work(or if the GPS is not incorporated). If small text ads scrolled across the top, it could easily be given as a free service. Battery life will get better, and if it can last for a day, an overnight charger is all you'd need.
Content: I am optimistic about getting content for the h2g2. Content is already being posted without the handheld device. When you turn on your device, it could simply get your location, look at your preferences and then search local events or activities and tell you whats going on(I've spent a few bored days, finding out later on that there was a music event a half hour away that my h2g2 could have told me about). That info could easily be searched by h2g2, in cities event calendars, which many cities would galdly do to attract tourist money. After that, users will add content(make it a condition of the service, that if you don't write any reviews after so long, the service wont work for you until you do). It would start out small, but so did the internet not too long ago.
The Cow Posted Oct 16, 2000
I don't think forced reviews are the way to go... maybe a star system:
1: a geographical entry
2: quite a few approved entries (even if minor)
3: Loadsa entries
4: seems to know everything..
Imagine the Kudos!
Adam C-R Posted Oct 19, 2000
Yes, providing h2g2 on PDAs is definitely in our plan for the future. We're also definitely going to add location-based services (search by location, add an entry and get it automatically tagged with where you are, etc.).
I beg to differ about small text ads paying for the service, however. Banner ad revenue is not that big We *are* looking into ways to provide these kinds of services - after all we've had our mobile site running since the end of January for phones in the US, Europe and Japan. In fact we're even getting accesses from places like Australia and New Zealand, the Philippines, Hungary and Slovenia!
I don't think that we'll ever say that the service won't work at all if you don't write reviews - that's just cutting our own throats when it comes to people accessing h2g2! We might provide _extra_ services if you write more entries but that's something slightly different.
I like the idea of city event calendars, attracting tourists and so benefiting both sides. I'll keep that in mind
More ideas are *always* welcome
The Cow Posted Oct 19, 2000
You'd probably be best getting friendly with the tourist offices... they generally know what's happening, and they're paid to promote the city...
PeZ 1001011011001011 Posted Oct 22, 2000
They would do if people had portable devices with them so they could easily add an entry while they were at the location.
The soup Dragon Posted Nov 5, 2000
Well surely this is just the web using Wap or some such similar technology, BTcellnet and Macdonald already offer something similar as if you dial 1501 into a btcellnet phone you will get told where you are and where the nearest macdonalds is . It is just some extension of this you would be kind of useful though
Key: Complain about this post
- 81: The Cow (Aug 14, 2000)
- 82: Adam C-R (Aug 15, 2000)
- 83: The Cow (Aug 15, 2000)
- 84: Looseliver, VanDetter & Prang (Oct 13, 2000)
- 85: Delkarnu of House Drakonis (Oct 16, 2000)
- 86: The Cow (Oct 16, 2000)
- 87: Adam C-R (Oct 19, 2000)
- 88: The Cow (Oct 19, 2000)
- 89: PeZ 1001011011001011 (Oct 22, 2000)
- 90: The soup Dragon (Nov 5, 2000)
- 91: The Cow (Nov 6, 2000)