A Conversation for h2g2 On the Move - The Vision
Delkarnu of House Drakonis Started conversation Oct 16, 2000
I started this line of conversation to get people's ideas of not only how their description of the service is envisioned, but what you would like to see. I'll start off with a few of my own.
The Map service: While a GPS is possible, it would also add to price and battery drain. A general location for area events could be goten simply by knowing where your service is coming from(working on the current model of Cell Phone Towers). For directions, a user could simply enter his location and get directions(a possible link to public transportation info could be useful, street directions are good, but if I'm in Boston I want to know to take the Red line, transfer to the Orange line, and get off at this station)
The Device: While a cell phone with Web as a basic model would have the benefit of being a cell phone as well, entering info would be difficult(and the displays aren't large enough for my tastes). I think the Palm Pilot would be a better base design to start with. It has a larger display, and handwriting recognition. The use of an ear peace(like the one Motorola makes for the Startac) could be plugged in to add phone use or speech recognition to make reports.
Cost of Service: Wireless access is currently expensive, but this should decline in coming years. I would support scolling ads along the top or bottom of the screen(say a 1/4 inch if we're using a Palm-sized screen) With enough users, this could provide enough revenue to cover service. Or a monthly service fee+ ads, with cost reduction based on submissions and use(the more you use it, the more ads you'll see)
Getting Content: If incentives are provided to those who submit(lower prices to those who sent in content) or if it is a condition of use(on a free service, if you don't write reviews, the service won't work until you do), user generated content could grow quickly. To start off, h2g2 could search community event calendars and cities lists of things to do in the city(most places would gladly do this to get tourist money)
Idea's for the service: allow people to list thier home locations, so if I'm in a random place, I can not only look at what's already posted, but also find local users who might have Ideas.
Personal profiles that can be kept private, but used by the h2g2 to alert you of events you might be interested in
Thats all from me for now. I'll post more if I have any ideas.
Adam C-R Posted Oct 19, 2000
Just seen this post after replying to your other one...
We definitely need to make some of our plans available so that people can discuss them - at the moment I can say, "Great! We've thought of some of those already" which isn't very helpful...
Palm Pilots - yes, and we're kind of waiting on the technology. Q1 next year should see it becoming available in the US and Europe (see Handspring and Palm's new PDA phones). I have a Handspring Visor and I *want* the GSM Springboard with a hands-free mike/earphone. Current price point about $299 (just for the Springboard, not including the network costs) - a bit too much for my pocket!
Generalised speech recognition over mobile phones is not really possible at the moment - the voice quality isn't good enough - but again this will improve in a year or two.
Cost of service - even on the web very very few sites actually make any money just by selling ad space. At the moment a subscription fee plus ad revenue looks likely.
I like your ideas for the service - listing home locations so that you can find local experts. We need to start implementing a security policy and perhaps move our database out of the UK (have you heard of RIP - a new bill in the UK that allows the government to arbitrarily search company data? Scary).
Please continue to think of new ideas and I'll try and make our ideas as available as possible.
Delkarnu of House Drakonis Posted Nov 20, 2000
I think an extension of GuideML syntax to include location tags would be a good idea. ,,, and tags would make it easy in the future for the direction and map features. It could also help if you are searching for activities, restaurants, and other cool things in your vicinity.
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