Location Is Everywhere
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Starwood Debuts New Travel App on iOS 7 - Hospitality Technology

Starwood Debuts New Travel App on iOS 7 - Hospitality Technology | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
Starwood Debuts New Travel App on iOS 7
Hospitality Technology
Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG®), the award-winning loyalty program from Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.
Luigi Cappel's insight:

We can always do with new and better travel apps

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Location Is Everywhere
Location is Everywhere, How is it Changing our Lives? It affects everything in our daily lives. How do we manage it to live, work and play smarter?
Curated by Luigi Cappel
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Cars Are Not Driving Away Any Time Soon

Cars Are Not Driving Away Any Time Soon | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
I've been reading a book called 'Traffic: Why We Drive the Way We Do' by Tom Vanderbilt, which resonates very well with me. Now I'm no petrol head, but I still like driving my car and it is still m...
Luigi Cappel's insight:

It only takes a little pain to have people hop in their cars. A wet day, having to stand on a bus, or having to stand on the side of the road and watch the bus go by. Driving is part of our culture. We are how we move. Even in cities where driving is impractical, like Tokyo, I have friends who still own a car, almost a status symbol because of the costs of even parking your car. They go driving in the weekend and enjoy the countryside.

The most popular and profitable radio time, even today when so many people are connected to their smartphones for entertainment, is drive-time. Of course this is also when we get our critical traffic reports.

We don't even want to get out of our cars. An estimated 22% of ALL restaurant meals in America are ordered through the window of a car.

I really like the footer, that a pedestrian is someone who has just parked their car.

Just last night I was reading in the news that sales of new passenger cars in New Zealand have gone up in the first months of this year by 3.6% breaking a 26 year record. Sales of commercial vehicles for the first four months in this country are up 14% on the same period last year.

Still think more people are ditching their cars?

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Brain-Reading Tech Can Keep You From Falling Asleep While Driving

Brain-Reading Tech Can Keep You From Falling Asleep While Driving | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
Distracted driving is driving while doing something else that takes your focus and attention away from your main task whic
Luigi Cappel's insight:
I love CES, you get to see so many new concepts, some of which are just around the corner and some which are a bit farther away.

As the story says, driver distraction such as being on the phone while you're driving is one of the most common causes of crashes, but fatigue is right up there.

There is a fine line for many people between being tired and being so tired that you have a micro nap, eyes closed and next thing you know, you're no longer driving. Hopefully you are still alive.

I was woken one morning around 5AM with a major grinding noise and crash. I ran outside and found that a car had left the road, jumped over a culvert and gone half way over and then landed on my fence, such that one of the solid metal posts, which was still in the ground, was poking out of bonnet. The car had obviously done a great aerial. The driver wasn't hurt, possibly because he was asleep at the time the car crashed (on a straight road).

This system (which sounds expensive) is actually monitoring specific brain waves and knows when you are entering that initial state prior to falling asleep and then uses technology to vibrate the seat or the steering wheel to alert you that you are about to fall asleep.

Of course it is then still up to the driver to do something about it. To make the smart decision, which is not to quickly drive 20 minutes to get to a cafe or somewhere you can get refreshments. IMHO the smart decision is to stop then and there and in fact, I'd take the technology a step further and after allowing you to park the car on the side of the road, I'd disable the car for 15 minutes and force the driver to have a rest. 

It may be possible for the system to detect a unique brain signature, allowing a passenger to continue driving, but just shaking the seat or the steering wheel when you are nodding off and allowing you to continue driving isn't the best answer. If you've nodded off to that point once, chances are you will do it again. There are short term temporary things you can do like have a coffee if you have one with you, open the windows, but the safest thing to do IMHO is to not drive until you are confident that you are now fully alert.

The question is how to get technology like this into all cars, not just top of the line luxury vehicles. 
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This GPS watch allows parents to track their kids online – and even listen to conversations

This GPS watch allows parents to track their kids online – and even listen to conversations | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
A Vaudreuil man has brought a GPS watch technology to Canada that allows parents to track their kids online and listen in to their conversations.
Luigi Cappel's insight:
As a teenager I wouldn't be keen on my parents being able to listen to my conversations, that would be a fatal flaw, but for younger kids there may be times where this is of huge value, for example for kids at risk of being abused.

What I absolutely love about this product is the price $80-$100. I assume that is Canadian currency. It has cell phone capability and GPS and doesn't need a mobile to tether to.

What are your children worth? This is the cost of a cheapish evening dinner. If I still had young kids, they would be getting cool new watches next week.

They are bringing out new products shortly for Alzheimer's and seniors in a few weeks.  If they are similarly priced and featured, we could start seeing the change we need to protect both sides of the spectrum
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Virtual advertising on windshields aimed at the driver?

Virtual advertising on windshields aimed at the driver? | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
Are we putting too much tech in front of drivers? As they navigate down the road, there are an awful lot of things that can add to your distracted driving.
Luigi Cappel's insight:
This isn't science fiction folks. I have to say it is a huge challenge to a geek who loves technology to look at the stats such as the huge increase in fatal crashes, particularly due to driver distraction.  

Panasonic is taking about 'revenue per car' and whilst you may not be aware, they have been in car entertainment systems and navigation for decades. So now they they are demonstrating systems like the one in the picture where you can be given advertisements for cheap gas or food projected directly onto the windscreen of your car, order AND pay for it, and be navigated to the drive through where your Wendy's burgers are waiting for you.

“Owning the inside of the car is critical, it’s really where the money is made. The real value is locked up in the ad opportunity.”  says John Butler, Bloomberg Intelligence analyst in the attached article.

Cool you say? Now think about the weather in parts of the US and Europe. You're in the middle of paying for your burger and slightly concerned about whether the payment transaction is safe when the car in front of yours slides on the ice or snow and loses control right in front of your car. But you're busy responding to the upsize offer and confirming the order on your windscreen or checking with your passengers to make sure you get their orders right. Ever noticed how your eyes can focus on something (like say your TV) and be oblivious to someone talking to you when it's getting interesting or exciting?

Initially at least, which makes it worse, it's not even about saving time, it's about having fun, its infotainment. It's a lot more captivating than the boring freeway in front of you or the nameless people in the car next to you. 

This is the world we live in. We demand innovation and we want it. I want innovation, I live for it. But we also have to have a social conscience. 

We are heading directly for the chasm between self driving, driver distraction and driverless cars. 

To explain, think back if you will to Winnie the Pooh where Christopher Robin is describing how he will catch a Heffalump. He decides to dig a Very Deep Pit. The Heffalump will be looking up at the sky wondering if it will rain and won't see the Very Deep Pit until he is halfway down and then it will be too late. 

 Pooh asked what if it was already raining? To which Christopher replied that the Heffalump will be looking up at the sky wondering when the rain would stop and wouldn't see the Very Deep Pit until he was halfway down and then it would be too late.


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Bosch backs Kiwi email reading app for in-car use

Bosch backs Kiwi email reading app for in-car use | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
Global automotive equipment maker Bosch has added New Zealand company Beweb’s Speaking Email app for reading emails to its portfolio of apps designed to assist car drivers
Luigi Cappel's insight:
I road tested the speaking email app on my mobile using my Gmail account about a year ago. It was a Beta version and had a few bugs, but that's why we have Beta software.
It was quite competent when it came to reading out my emails, providing they were not graphics based, but I have to say it was a major distraction, both taking in the content of the email and then dealing with the content in some way afterwards.
The main distraction was that if it was an important email it required concentration, both left and right brain focus, often requiring a decision of some sort.
Some of the decisions were simply whether to save or delete (it actually archived to make sure you didn't accidentally delete important emails). This is easy to do because a lot of the email we get is either spam or just time wasting. Even just deleting took time and focus away from the road especially when you receive as many emails as I do. 
I hate to say anything negative about any Kiwi entrepreneurs and I am delighted that they are having success, however I'm worried that it will come at a cost. Distraction on the road costs lives. 
There is more and more scientific evidence coming out that humans, outside of lizard brain activity, are not good at multi-tasking. We are good at managing repetitive sequenced tasks. Women frequently claim that they are really good at multitasking, as in raising a family with all the things that involves, but what they are really good at is linear sequencing. Sometimes that appears like multi-tasking because lots of things get done in a short period of time. Cooking might be a good example, making sure everything is ready at the same time. But cooking 3 different components in 3 different pans at the same time is not multitasking, you move from one pot to the next and back. You look at a pan to see if it needs stirring while ding something on another one, but you either temporarily stop what you were doing unless it is a muscle memory task like stirring. 
You can train yourself in some cases to do repetitive process work and communicate or think at the same time. I'm thinking to holiday stint in Nelson opening scallops and chatting with colleagues at the same time. I was really good at it, but I remember (because we were paid on quality as well as quantity) that the more I focussed on the job, rather than chatting, the more scallops I opened, the better they looked, the more tongue they had and the more money I made. Other people who solved the world's problems and were good at opening scallops, made less money than I did and many suffered cuts or other injuries. 
When I first heard about this email reading product I was really excited, I thought it would save what for me is a serious problem. The software ended up driving me nuts and I could easily see the risks. if you are listening to email while you are driving and have an accident, what is the insurance company going to say. Was it an accident or was the driver knowingly taking on more than they were capable of. 
Make no mistake, these discussions will be taking place in insurance companies risk departments, just as they are in Government and law enforcement with a health and safety view. 
It doesn't make much any difference to me if a pedestrian was killed or injured because my eyes were pointing up to the right when I am tapping into my imagination and up to the left when remembering or recalling something. Both of those directions are not focused in front of the car, which means I would be using peripheral vision for road awareness (which we already do a lot).You can't deny that where the iris is focused is where our greatest attention is.
There is an enormous amount of activity happening on our roads and footpaths which you may recall from your early driving lessons or defensive driving courses and until driverless car technology can focus and act better than we can, I'm into saving lives more than saving time. 
I do love the concept of the product, perhaps as a public transport passenger for example, or while walking to work or during exercise.
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‘Smartphone driving distraction needs hi-tech solution not hoping for best’

‘Smartphone driving distraction needs hi-tech solution not hoping for best’ | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
A ‘carrot and stick’ approach is need to stop drivers being distracted by smartphones, according to a road safety charity.
Luigi Cappel's insight:
This is a very good article, but as quickly as developers come up with app restricting solutions that drivers don't want, because they want to use their mobiles, car manufacturers are working hard to sync phones and integrate all of our favorite apps into the entertainment system of the car.

Interfaces include steering wheel, hand gestures and touch screens on the car dash. The fact is that the CES industry has made such geeks of us that we can't stay disconnected for long. 

Fines of a few hundred dollars are an annoyance and the cost of catching people, proving they were infringing, collection of fines etc are onerous unless they can be collected on the spot, or deducted from peoples' bank accounts by by big brother. 

How about putting some responsibility on the CES industry to come up with safer solutions. They could start with things like better voice recognition.

Even Neil Greg, Director of Policy and Research at IAM RoadsMart in the UK wants drivers to not only have navigation, but also tourism and traffic information, which I agree with, but who gets to decide what we can and can't use.

It is a critical problem, but I haven't seen or heard of any solutions that will work for Pavlovian technology users who salivate when we get a new cool mobile feature and we haven't even started on AR, well actually we have, there are car manufacturers working on windscreen AR. The good things are early recognition and highlighting of speed signs and pedestrians on the road, but the money will be in offering discounts for attractions, promotion of retail products, AR billboards of pending concerts, shows and sporting events and then off course did you think mobile gaming would end with Pokemon? 

I can assure you there are thousands of programmes coming up with new location based AR games. It's kind of funny because Garner predicted it with uncanny accuracy, businesses and entertainment companies invested in it, a few people did PHD's on the risk, but Governments barely acknowledged the risks or potential outcomes. 

There probably isn't anyone alive the remembers the first motor vehicle fatality in London over 100 years ago. The Government reacted immediately and said this must never happen again. From now on, any motor car must have a flag bearer walking in front of it to warn pedestrians.

My point is that they did react quickly. Of course now we have faster cars. Audi just announced they are launching a street car that can cruise at 300 km per hour. Try running in front of that with a flag. There are strong regulations on car safety, which is great. I'd hate to go back to pumping the brakes, but this is a tricky one. 

Driver distraction has only just started and driverless cars which could be "a" solution are barely at the early adopter phase. What can we do in the meantime? I can't see a lot of easy solutions. I think I would start in the education system. 

Get distracted driver survivors as part of the punishment (instead of a fine) to visit schools and talk to people about what happened to them, what they did and what the consequences were.

Develop more driver distraction games and bring them into driver education.

Make people sit their licenses including a driving test every 10 years and include driver distraction elements into the test. I wonder how many people have tested their ABS and know what it feels like when they slam on their brakes. 

Companies should put their driving staff through advanced driving courses and enforce strict policies on mobiles and driving.

Look at that, I've solved the problem. Now we just need to have a critical mass of driverless cars. That could be possible in about 40 years. 
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N.J. traffic fatalities soared in 2016 with 607 deaths

N.J. traffic fatalities soared in 2016 with 607 deaths | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
Of the 607 people who died, 333, were behind the wheel; 167 were pedestrians, 89 were passengers and 18 were on bicycles.
Luigi Cappel's insight:
This isn't a NJ story, it's a global story, fatigue and driver distraction are right at the top of the list in most countries for fatalities and serious injury crashes as well as near misses.
It's not just car drivers either, we seem to be seeing more accidents involving pedestrians and cyclists and often it is the pedestrian or cyclist at fault. I've seen cyclists run red lights and think they are tougher than trucks, I've seen pedestrians with headphones using active noise cancelling cruise along, crossing roads oblivious to the rest of the world and I've recently had a near miss on a large road where I was using the pedestrian crossing 2 lanes had queues of traffic sitting patiently at the red and I felt the wind as a car in the third lane gave me a close shave  at speed even though the light had been red for about 20 seconds or so.
Some of it is about technology and the mobile phone and its interface to car entertainment systems is an added distraction that we didn't used to have. There was a time when people used phones to make voice calls and many drivers had hands free kits if they decided to take the calls at all. Now the mobile is way more powerful that my original IBM PC and far more entertaining.
What are we doing about it? It seems to me and I'm sure visitors to CES would back me up, that we are adding more cool distractions. Have a look on Ali Express and see all the cool flashing lights and other gizmos that you can use to impress people.
Why? Because it sells. Do you want the car with the full satellite entertainment system, gaming consoles, TV and DVD in the back seat, massive displays like the Tesla where the most common application is reading newspapers, or the one with the wind up windows? 
This will certainly help the argument for driverless vehicles, but in the meantime brothers and sisters, Moms and Dads, precious cargo is being maimed or killed.
I hate the thought, but if we can't be more intelligent as human beings, then legislation, such as having apps disabled whilst driving may be what it takes to save lives. Fines and confiscations will need to hurt, especially for recidivist offenders. We will whine like little pigs about civil rights, but what about the people who are dying, their colleagues, their friends and families?  
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Dead Prostitute's Mother Sues Feds for Lax Monitoring of Sex Offender-Serial Killer

Dead Prostitute's Mother Sues Feds for Lax Monitoring of Sex Offender-Serial Killer | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
The U.S. Probation and Pretrial Services agency is being sued for lax oversight that apparently allowed two sex offenders wearing GPS ankle monitor
Luigi Cappel's insight:
It's tragic that this had to happen and more so that it is not an uncommon story, but I hope it results in changes in the monitoring systems. I have heard so many stories about lack of budget and resources resulting in lax monitoring of GPS tracking devices and anklets.
In this case it was apparently quite a sophisticated system where they were able to monitor the proximity of the alleged offenders (why weren't they on home detention?) to at risk women's mobiles.
So many departments don't have budget for the monitoring of the bracelet locations and alarms so they spend it on hardware and hope it will work as a deterrent, or they contract it out to public companies, some of which are great, some of which don't appreciate or commit to the enormous responsibility they carry.
In most situations (Rolls Royces sometimes break down) the hardware is of excellent quality, but if it's not being used properly, i.e. adequately monitored, and no one pays attention to the various alarms. Don't blame the technology. 
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As deaths mount, lawmakers seek to ban all handheld device use in cars

As deaths mount, lawmakers seek to ban all handheld device use in cars | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
Washington’s decade-old distracted-driving laws prohibit texting and holding a phone to your ear. Some state lawmakers are preparing another run at toughening the rules in a bill tentatively called the Driving Under the Influence of Electronics Act.
Luigi Cappel's insight:
There are a couple of significant points here. Legislators are suggesting that if someone is convicted of distracted driving, fundamentally described in this instance as driving while holding a phone to your ear, meaning you are not in a position to do make a host of defensive manoeuvres whilst driving, they are going to tell your insurance company.
Insurance companies are risk averse and profit hungry. We are already seeing boutique PAYD (Pay As You Drive) services, designed to charge people who drive less, a reduced premium.
We are seeing insurance companies looking for new clients, offering them a mobile app which monitors driving behavior like harsh braking and acceleration, harsh cornering, speeding etc. The safer your driving, the lower your insurance premium and excess will be. 
It stands to reason that if this Washington law is updated such that if you are convicted of 'Driving Under The Influence of Electronics Act' that this could then see your insurance risk and premium go up, even if you haven't had a crash. You are a higher risk and those 3,477 people who died in 2015 and the huge number of people injured, livelihoods lost, damage to vehicles, property and road assets cost insurance companies a fortune.
Of course this behavior is endemic, we all see it every day and most of the time do nothing about it even if it is the driver of the car we are a passenger in.
What does that mean? Besides the risk to all of us, these people who insist on driving with the phone in one hand will increase insurance costs to all of us. You might be a model driver and never ever hold your phone, even at a red light, but here's my prediction for 2017. You will start to see insurance premiums go up for all drivers. For those who don't offer PAYD or performance bonuses, the easiest thing is to penalize everyone by increasing car insurance premiums for one and all.
So before you go complaining about Government, complain to the people using their phones while they drive, they are the ones causing it. The Government is trying to save lives and insurance companies are trying to maintain profit and the good ones are trying to reward safe driving which I think is a wonderful thing. 
I recommend that you read some of the stories in the attached article. They are sobering. 

Tell people to #PutItDown

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FaceTiming driver caused fatal accident, lawsuit charges

FaceTiming driver caused fatal accident, lawsuit charges | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
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Luigi Cappel's insight:
I never thought I'd be quoting the NRA who say that guns don't kill people, people kill people. In this case a 5 year old girl died because the driver of the car that hit the car she was a passenger in was Facetiming when he hot her family car at 65MPH. 
His defence wants to blame Apple for making it possible. To me that shows ignorance and a total lack of remorse. If anything Apple should not allow him to ever own an iPhone again! IMHO
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Jacksonville Lawyer Talks To Teens About Distracted Driving

Jacksonville Lawyer Talks To Teens About Distracted Driving | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
A Jacksonville lawyer is splitting his time between representing clients and teaching Duval high schoolers about distracted driving. Personal injury
Luigi Cappel's insight:
This is awesome, exactly what we need. Teach people before they are driving and think  they are bulletproof super heroes and show them the potential consequences. Let them see videos and hear from the survivors and the distracted drivers. 

The thing is, the majority of the time these are good people, they are us. Just people who made a bad judgement call because they weren't thinking about the risks. Hat off to Wayne Hogan.
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Plant High teens meet dad who lost child in distracted driving crash

Plant High teens meet dad who lost child in distracted driving crash | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
Get this: 7 in 10 drivers admit to texting behind the wheel,  according to a survey from AT&T .
Luigi Cappel's insight:
This is a great story about a Dad who lost his 17 year old daughter when a distracted driver crashed into the car she was in.

Like Vijay Dixit http://shreyadixit.org/ who visits schools and educates children but also helps drivers copy with the enormty of what they have done after his daughter was killed in a distracted riving crash, Steve Augello visits schools and shows students the risks using a simulator as he tells his story. 

Many children cried when they heard about how his daughter died for the sake of a txt message and vowed not to do it.

I'm still looking for my mission by I am very inspired by people who turn their grief into providing a preventative service to help save other people. I guess  have had a little success with my prostate cancer in that so far 14 people have had their tests in the last year. If I hadn't had PSA tests, there is a possibility that I would be terminal by now. I will be spreading the message with Relay for Life again in Auckland in  a few months.

My late father-in-law was a smoker. He probably learned to smoke in the Air Force where they were provided for free or next to nothing. He ended up having his voice box removed , had a stoma and had to relearn how to talk, initially through a valve in his neck. He suffered a lot of discomfort, pneumonia and other complications and in the end it metastisised and he passed away from bowel cancer.

During that time though, he counselled many cancer patients who had the same condition and visited lots of schools where he told his story frankly and let children look into his throat to see the direct consequences of smoking. He received hundreds of letters from children saying they would never ever smoke as a consequence of his openness and frankness about his experience. He didn't set out to scare them, he just gave them the opportunity to see first hand what they were risking.

He was President of the Auckland Lost Chord Club and was one of many local heroes who was not really recognised publicly for what he did, but I have no doubt he saved many lives. 

Check out the statistics on the graphic. 70% of people have admitted to texting and driving. I maintain the answer to this is education not fines. People aren't deterred by fines. I'd like to see them meet survivors of people who were hurt by people who TXT and drive, or perhaps the relatives and friends who were killed. Maybe they can get a little context around a quick message and someone lost for ever. 

#PutItDown
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Teacher distracted by Pokemon Go hits two pedestrians

Teacher distracted by Pokemon Go hits two pedestrians | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
Pinellas County deputies arrested a middle-school teacher Sunday afternoon after his car struck two pedestrians on a Dunedin sidewalk, causing them serious injuries in an apparent case of distracted driving.
Luigi Cappel's insight:
Before the Kiwis freak out, this Dunedin is in Largo in Florida, but the fact that a science teacher hit two pedestrians while playing Pokemon Go and driving. Perhaps it was a physics experiment.

He then flew the scene which which showed another valuable lesson. Bad guys get caught. Whatever his sentence is, I would expect he would also be found unsuitable as a role model and teacher. 
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M4 driver shaving at the wheel stopped by police in distraction crackdown

M4 driver shaving at the wheel stopped by police in distraction crackdown | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
137 drivers in one week caught using a mobile phone on main routes
Luigi Cappel's insight:
This is totally understandable. I don't know about you, but my mother told me as a little child that I needed wear clean underwear every day because it would be very embarrassing if I had an accident and had to go to hospital.

I guess that's the reason that men shave and women pull down their visor mirror to apply their makeup and lippy while driving. Imagine arriving in triage with stubble or a face that had a pimple not covered by foundation.

Of course what they aren't considering is that some of them are finding themselves in hospital because of the things they were doing that took their eyes or their minds off the road.

Very scary that they caught 137 drivers using their mobile phones over a period of only 5 days. I wonder if their employers have policies covering use of mobile phones while driving?  

As the story says, people die because of driver distraction. They quoted a crash on the A34 last year where a woman AND 3 children one aged 13 and two aged 11 died as a consequence of a truck driver using his phone. He did jail time. 

I wonder how he feels about what he did? I'd like to see him and the husband of the woman, father and stepfather of the 3 kids who died, talk to the 137 drivers that were caught about the impact of his decision that his phone call was more important than 4 lives, three of them that had hardly begun. 

I don't believe that current fines work and this exercise bears that out. When I talk to people who get speeding fines for example, they are pretty blase about it and frustrated about the things they decided not to buy that they could have bought with the fine money, rather than regret that they took unnecessary risks.

I suspect that a lot of people who get fined for using their phone or eating their breakfast cereal while driving will be saying things like "Why don't the Police focus on real criminals?" So being forced to confront the personal consequences might give them a different perspective. How would they feel if it was their family that was killed or injured by someone else doing what they did. 

How about trying the scales of justice yourself metaphorically? Put the mobile phone on one side and a 10 year old boy or girl on the other. Now how important was that phone call or shave?

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Soon, Your Skinny Jeans Could Moonlight As Your GPS

Soon, Your Skinny Jeans Could Moonlight As Your GPS | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
These skinny jeans connect to your phone and give you turn-by-turn directions.
Luigi Cappel's insight:
Wearables aren't new, there are shoes that vibrate when you need to make a turn although I haven't met a single person who owns a pair.
Now we have jeans that vibrate in the direction that you need to turn so you don't have to look like a mark when you are walking in a strange town. Nothing makes strangers stand out more than carrying a map or following directions on your phone or tablet. 
If I'm walking around a strange town, especially as a tourist, the last thing I want to do is look like one.
I wonder how else they could use them. Imagine GPS in a football that can tell the player through vibrating his boots, where the ball is and where it is headed. OK maybe that's cheating, but it might be really good for training and learning to anticipate instead of just react. 
The only wearables I have are headband and beanie speakers, oh and I once bought a T-Shirt with a graphic equaliser that lights up based on music frequencies. It was cool once.
I'm sure we will get to see a lot more cool toys or useful gadgets coming very soon. They just need to move from CES to the retailer showroom. What wearables do you own?
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NRF's BIG Show 2017: Retailers Need to Treat Mobility as a Unique Channel

NRF's BIG Show 2017: Retailers Need to Treat Mobility as a Unique Channel | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
Retailers need to have a specific purpose for creating and deploying mobile applications and set them apart from other e-commerce initiatives, retail executives say.
Luigi Cappel's insight:
Other than the New York temperature outside in January, I love NRF and am glad it's still going because retailers need it more than ever. I learned so much from these conferences and used it to help many retailers either survive when they were heading towards the back door or thrive exponentially if they were already doing well.

Changing some of your retail business processes is hard to do except with owner operators because many retail chain boards are more focussed on increasing EBITDA by more than last year, preferably by employing less resources.

Many of the concepts that we discussed, even back in the 90's around mobility, the world wasn't ready for, but today with smartphones being ubiquitous, especially in the demographics that have the money to spend, even on things they don't need, the time is right now to take advantage of mobility and especially location.

There are some chains that are still doing well but the landscape has changed. The old concept of location, location, location became much less important when I can get much of what I want online. 

I am so disappointed that many large retailers, hooked into shared loyalty programs, don't take advantage of the opportunity to have a mutually beneficial direct relationship with their customers. Do group loyalty programs truly increase your profit and solve your aged stock problems? Really? 

Don't tell me you don't have time, because if your store goes the way of Borders, Sounds Music, and countless other brands, you will have plenty of time to think about what you would have done differently, do it differently now. Both could be thriving here still if they adjusted their MO.

I'm not in the industry any more but I feel frustrated when I think about the simple things I know that would help retailers have huge successes while also delighting their customers. There are certain business segments like Hardware DIY and CES for example that could be making a killing, but they are too busy doing BAU. What a waste for all of us. 

At the very least make a commit to go to the next NRF. A tax deductible business trip to New York that could make you loads of money  if you apply what you earn wouldn't be a bad place to start. 

Tim Ferris made a good observation in his new book Tools of Titans, that the businesses, established and startups,with the real growth and success are doing the opposite to their competitors. It doesn't matter what industry you are in, if you don't change, an upstart newcomer will come and take your business from you. Why not be smarter and innovate first, it;s easier for you than it is for them. 
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Man follows GPS directions to disastrous results

Man follows GPS directions to disastrous results | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
A driver nearly went airborne when he drove up a sloped concrete divider in Queens — all because he was following his GPS directions.

The SUV came to a grinding halt on top of the structure after its driver was led astray by the navigation system at around 10 p.m. Tuesday on the Union Turnpike, near 168th Street.

The driver, who declined to give his name, told The Post that he was simply trying to follow the device's directions, which told him to veer right.

When he complied , the SUV suddenly scaled the graded incline of the concrete divider, scraping up the undercarriage and stranding him several feet above the roadway.

The man's car had to be towed off the divider and away from the scene.

He was questioned by police who did not arrest him. It was unclear if police charged him with anything over the mishap.
Luigi Cappel's insight:
Oh come on! Veer right? It's the old #THEGPSMadeMeDoIt again. The flat part is a road, the wall part is a wall. The windscreen is for looking out of. Sorry, but it wasn't because he was following the GPS directions, it was because he wasn't paying attention. It will be an interesting discussion with his insurance company even if he doesn't get fined. If you follow his argument and we all "followed GPS directions" there wouldn't be many cars left on the road...
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Ford's updated Sync taps into drivers' phones

Ford's updated Sync taps into drivers' phones | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
Now drivers can project their smartphone maps onto the car infotainment screen, potentially reducing distracted driving risk.
Luigi Cappel's insight:
I don't want to be cynical, but isn't Ford Sync a classic example of a solution that adds some great features but also adds additional distracting functionality that can cause crashes.
Let's start with the location of the display. Going by the picture, the infotainment screen (doesn't that name suggest distraction in itself?); the tainment part if infotainment does not imply looking through the windscreen in case a child runs out on the road unexpectedly, is in the double DIN slot of the car. That means people need to look down from the windscreen at a display with an array of functions. Have a look at where your screen or stereo is and concentrate on something while you are stationary and think about how far you would have travelled at 60 miles an hour.
You can listen to audiobooks in the car. OK I do that sometimes, but I do not in any way control the audiobook while driving other than volume control.
Ordering items online while driving your car? I have enough trouble concentrating on that when I'm at my desk on a computer. You are reading descriptions, reviews, looking at images of the product, checking pricing and finally doing something pretty risky and critical, you are making financial payments. How can you do all that while driving past a school zone, monitoring the behavior of other traffic, reading street signs and remaining alert for the unexpected. Even if some of that is done by audio it requires significant brain activity which is taking your attention from the fact that you are barrelling a massive powerful machine on the road.
Navigation? I'm into that, but it should be on the windscreen or thereabouts, not down in the traditional DIN slot. The reason it was traditionally there was a mixture of keeping costs down and convenience. I have no doubt that all cars will have HUDs or Heads up Displays in the future, my car has one and I almost never look down at my display, my eyes are able to be on the road pretty much all the time.
Now in fairness, a lot of the Ford Sync features have voice control, using 3rd party tools like Siri and maybe it's me, but Siri frequently misunderstands what I'm asking for, maybe I need to develop an American accent because Ford is largely manufactured for an American accent. But then I have noticed that some people struggle to understand accents from various parts of their own country in a general conversation.
The Ford Sync Manual does say that you can control a lot of the features (depending on the model of car and software version of SYNC) like changing artists, genres and stations on your music system by voice, or by control on the steering wheel.
I love that it reads out your TXT messages to you so "you can concentrate on the road". So are you concentrating on the TXT message or the road. Next time you listen to an important message on the phone (preferably not while you are driving). Stop and replay the action and think about what happened to your eyes. 
SYNC AppLink is cool, you can transfer your mobile apps directly to the Double DIN display. Pokemon Go anyone?
I'm not picking on Ford. Most manufacturers of popular cars are doing the same thing because they have convinced their customers that not only do they want new features (they have been doing that ever since radios, electric windows and air conditioning appeared) but they don't want to own cars that don't have these features. Even the modestly priced new cars integrate with your mobile phone and have a host of cool functionality. They offered it and we came back with a resounding YES.
Do you think there is any possible link between the significant growth in driver distraction based accidents and the huge wealth of infotainment we now have in our cars? If the systems are built into the cars and many of them are totally independent of the mobile phone, because the car has it's own SIM which is needed for navigation and other essential services, that locking down functionality in individual people's phones when they are driving will solve the problem?
I suspect the situation is hell bent on growth until we have driverless cars, which as I have previously said, is a long way from reaching critical mass, we are going to lose hundreds of thousands of lives around the world. 
The only real answer to me is education, teach people the risks and consequences which will be fought against by the car manufacturers.
Remember "My Doctor prefers Camel Cigarettes"
In New Zealand we have an interesting battle between the beef industry and Greenpeace over serious water pollution in what were once pristine rivers and lakes allegedly caused by dairy farming. I read an interesting comment in the media which suggested if you don't like what they are doing, stop buying beef products. Will scary videos of filthy waterways and "do not swim" water pollution signs stop you from buying your next burger or Angus steak? I didn't think so.

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Increasing Technology May Impact Consumer Privacy

Increasing Technology May Impact Consumer Privacy | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
Digital assistants are becoming more popular, and Amazon reported selling a record number of Alexa-enabled devices this holiday season. NBC News' Brian Mooar explains how this technology is expanding--into devices for almost every room of the house--and what that means for privacy.
Luigi Cappel's insight:
I don't think it's so much privacy that we need to worry about, it's security. It's possibly one of the downfalls of being able to buy so many call connected gadgets so cheap. If you buy a security camera or a WiFi deadbolt front door lock that you can open from your Smartphone for $50, how much of that $50 do you think went into security encryption? 
I love the gadgets, but I also want to know that criminal geeks aren't also out there buying equally cheap scanners that can save the signal, just like a learning remote control and clear out my house before I get the chance to show off my cool front door that opens itself as my car comes down the drive. 
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North-east haulier out of business after breaching safety measures | Press and Journal

North-east haulier out of business after breaching safety measures | Press and Journal | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
A north-east haulier has been put “out of business” after breaching safety measures aimed at tackling driver fatigue. Ronald Dawson Wink, of Inverurie, has been disqualified from professional driving for 12 months by Scotland’s traffic commissioner after he used a magnet to confuse the tachograph on his vehicle. He has also been banned from operating …
Luigi Cappel's insight:
I've always had the view that if we follow common sense, that much of legislation is not necessary. However common sense is frequently an oxymoron and in some industries such as field service, freight and distribution, times can be tough and some people take short cuts on important decisions.

When it comes to driver fatigue, one of the top 3 causes of vehicle crashes and fatalities around the world, the sheer number of people dying EVERY DAY proves that common sense is is not enough and legislation that isn't applied is not a deterrent.

Using devices that jam GPS or Fleet Management systems implies intent which is even worse.

Many years ago I sold a Fleet Management system to a field service company with a fleet of about 700 vehicles. It grew significantly as a result of the effectiveness of route management and took a lot of business from their competitors because they were able to provide a better service. They even ended up buying out some of their competitors.

Interestingly, where a lot of drivers complain they can't get their work done because of traffic and running costs, using a complex system of route optimisation, not only was this company able to manage, they were able to go back to their existing clients, explain the new system and in many cases, 'renegotiated' contracts with customers at reduced rates because they were more productive. They charged less, did more, made more profit and increased customer loyalty.

How often do you hear a story like that? They were very smart and did what I heard Tom Ferris recommend on a podcast last week. To be successful today, do the opposite of what everyone else is doing.

However, within a short period of time the location of vehicles started disappearing off the map and I was personally getting calls about defective technology. It wasn't defective at all, drivers found out that if you put aluminium foil around the GPS antenna, the vehicle couldn't be located and staff could continue taking their kids to school, popping home for a few hours at lunchtime and other activities that they had gotten away with before GPS. 

After sending several vehicles to the auto-electrician for 'immediate, stop all other activity service checks' the offenders were spotted, questioned by their management and invited to keep their jobs if they did a fair day's work for a fair day's pay. Some left because they lost their wonderful lifestyle of doing pretty much what they liked but most agreed that there were also benefits with navigation, safety and transparency. 

When it comes  to driver fatigue, once you are that fatigued it is too late. You can't react quickly to changed circumstances, other vehicles driving erratically, debris on the road, flat tyres, communications with the base or other drivers, bad weather conditions that require constant concentration like the snow and ice on many American and European roads right now. 

The irony is that this industry has a global shortage of drivers. Wouldn't you think that operators (and I do know that many are) put safety first and protect their drivers such that they are not overloaded to the point that something has to give.

There are some wonderful systems out there today, such as from suppliers like eRoad that put a significant emphasis on safety. There are systems that monitor for erratic behavior and even some that monitor drivers eyes, looking for micro naps that could turn into eternal sleeps. Systems that vibrate the seat when they think the  driver might be nodding off.

Trucks can be insured, but your drivers are a lot harder to replace. Young people don't want to be truck drivers any more. I take my hat off to companies that voluntarily install and implement safety systems because it is the right thing to do and not because of legislation.

I'm also looking forward to seeing more collaboration between companies, load and backhaul sharing, systems integration between companies so that the industry doesn't get disrupted by Amazon and others in the same way that Uber, Lyft and others are doing in the taxi industry. There wouldn't have been an opportunity if the incumbent players looked to innovate instead of just trying to bleed more margins out of BAU.
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GPS blamed for surge in runaway trucks in small Arkansas town

GPS blamed for surge in runaway trucks in small Arkansas town | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
Armed with GPS technology, truck drivers have been barreling through a rugged section of the Ozark Mountains, burning up brakes and occasionally bouncing off bluffs or rolling into a ditch.
Luigi Cappel's insight:
Here we go again, #TheGPSMadeMeDoIt. They are so ready to blame Google and GPS companies for not telling people that there are very steep windy hills. There are no settings in GPS for that.
What blew me away is that the Highway Department "Plans to post signs that will read will read "Crooked and steep next 3 miles. Drive with care."
Why didn't they do that 20 years ago and why blame GPS companies? If there are any conditions whether it is is steep hills, cliffs, tight corners, risk of high winds, isn't it normal to have warning signs. 
This is 2017 folks. If Arkansas has high risk roads, isn't it up to them to tell motorists?
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GPS in stolen car leads to arrest of suspects

GPS in stolen car leads to arrest of suspects | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
THE global positioning system (GPS) installed in a car allegedly stolen in Manila enabled law enforcement authorities to intercept the vehicle in Bukidnon and seize 2.225 kilos of methamphetamine hydrochloride or shabu, worth some P20 million last Tuesday, December 27. Highway Patrol Group (HPG)-Northern Mindanao Chief Gabriel Lopez said the owner of the Toyota Altis the suspects rented had a built-in GPS program that gave away the location of the carnapped vehicle.
Luigi Cappel's insight:
I don't know how often I need to share these stories and what it takes to get people to install GPS tracking in their cars.
What I truly love is that once again, when they caught these crooks, they didn't just find the car, they found narcotics, and a pile of firearms and ammunition.
I love these stories. 
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33% of Canadians admit to TXTing at red lights

33% of Canadians admit to TXTing at red lights | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
Luigi Cappel's insight:
Have a look at these statistics. It is horrendous. Btw, it's not a Canadian problem, this is just an example of a country that is placing an emphasis on it.
I won't paraphrase the numbers, I recommend you do read them, especially prior to New Year's eve because I am hoping that you will still be here next year.
One of the other crazy things besides 33% of people admitting they TXT at red lights is that they frequently miss or are late for the green, even though they may look up regularly, a sight we are all familiar with. You know the nod of the head, up and down every 3-5 seconds. 
What gets me is the people who would have gotten through the green light if the person in front of them wasn't on the phone, so many of them decide they are now entitled to quickly run the red and do, next thing BAM!. Tell me you haven't seen this happen. We are predictably irrational and it costs lives.
People think "It's fine, I'm not moving, it's OK, I'm bored, it's just a quick message". Some will even put their handbrake on as if that makes it OK. That just adds to the delays. It is still illegal. It causes accidents and it the congestion we all like to blame the Government for.
Take some responsibility folks. If it is that important, legally pull over to the side of the road, put your brakes on, turn your engine off and TXT till your thumb drops off:)
Happy New Year. Be there because you #PutItDown

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How POWs got playing cards with secret escape maps for Christmas

How POWs got playing cards with secret escape maps for Christmas | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
US troops and their playing cards have a long history.
Luigi Cappel's insight:
Here's a Christmas story I've never heard of before. Apparently playing card manufacturers and particularly the famous Bicycle brand, hid escape maps inside the playing cards that were sent in the Christmas parcels that went to Prisoners of War.

They looked like ordinary playing cards but when you wet them they would open up and inside were sections of maps that you could put together and they apparently helped 32 people escape from Colditz Castle and inspired many more escape attempts.

There are only two known original packs still in existence at the International Spy Museum in Washington, but for war souvenir buffs, you can buy replicas of the cards (no you don't have to wet them) for only $3.99 from the Bicycle web site at http://www.shopbicyclecards.com/Escape-Map-P208C67.aspx


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Toddler run over by S.U.V. as mom is distracted by phone

Toddler run over by S.U.V. as mom is distracted by phone | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
A video showing a toddler being run over by a S.U.V. as her distracted mother looks at her cell phone has captured the world's attention.
Luigi Cappel's insight:
Please share this post.

You probably won't want to watch this video. If there is any new gadget that should become mandatory on vehicles it's motion sensors surrounding vehicles, not just as parking aids. 

We hear these tragic stories all the time and it happens all over the world, mostly larger vehicles like SUV's with less visibility. In the USA alone at least 50 young children are backed over AND KILLED by vehicles every week.

It happens all year round but of course at this time of year when they are playing with their new presents on the driveway and in cul de sacs the risk is far greater. 

Perhaps reversing cameras should be made mandatory. But that only covers the back. If you have a large vehicle and it is parked in a space where kids might be playing or wandering around, save yourself and the families from a life time of misery. In this case it was once again the distraction of the phone.

Please, please, please, if you are in a moving motor vehicle and the driver picks up their phone ask them to kindly #PutItDown

Check out these stories and photos to make it more real for you.

Did you know that in the USA of non fatal accidents involving children between 2006 and 2010 30% were run over by vehicles going forwards and 34 by vehicles reversing into them. But 2,500 fatalities a year from backovers. Imagine the potential of those children being lost, the contribution they could have made to society. Imagine the heartbreak and trauma for the families, many of whom will never fully recover. 

Most of the time these are not accidents. We just get in our vehicles and drive. 
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Bait package with GPS left on Arcadia porch to catch suspected thieves

Bait package with GPS left on Arcadia porch to catch suspected thieves | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
Arcadia police used a bait box to catch suspected package thieves, who also turned out to allegedly have a stolen car, drugs and a taser.
Luigi Cappel's insight:
I love stories like this. I wish they would do this more often. These happy looking people took the bait and stole a package containing a GPS tracker.

As is so common, when Police located them, the bait was just the beginning. The also found that the car they used was stolen and they were also in possession of drugs, stolen mail, burglary tools and more.

I suspect that most burglars don't do it as a random one off thing, they are recidivists and the more success they have, the more they want and the more potential there is to find more stolen items to return to the victims and longer sentences for the crims.

I'm hoping that soon these devices get below the $50 mark. But if you think about it from the Police perspective, they got 3 criminals with all the evidence they needed, plus they still have the GPS to use again for next to no effort.

If you compared the cost of locating these criminals and getting appropriate evidence for a conviction, without the GPS, chances are they would only get apprehended during a failed heist, which could include danger to Police and innocent bystanders, otherwise they just become paperwork and uncleared cases. 

Congratulations to Arcadia Police for their initiative and success. Hopefully more districts will copy their efforts.

A couple of thoughts for people at home, your Christmas presents are a prime target.  Police advise that if you have security cameras (probably some great Boxing Day deals available) make sure at least one is positioned so that you can get the registration number of any car that comes down your driveway. Often offenders will be well covered with masks and their faces will be hard to see, but the rego of the car could be the way they get caught. 

There are lots of low cost WiFi systems available at your favorite Consumer Electronics stores or from sites like Deal Extreme http://bit.ly/2i5XZkp from which I have made several great purchases with free delivery. That means that not only can you video your home and driveway, you can use motion sensors to alert you that someone is there and view them on your Mobile. 

When it comes to old mobiles, there is also the option of using them as a low cost GPS tracker when you upgrade. You could get a prepay SIM, stash the phone inside your jet ski (where it can be connected to it's battery) or some other item of value, like the bottom of your jewellery box (make sure it gets regularly charged) and all you need is the basic free Where's My Mobile App. 
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