Wednesday, 3 September 2008

All cars should be taxis

Lift sharing with strangers can be a bit daunting. The person might not pay up or may be an axe murderer. If all cars were set up with an contact card reader (e.g. Oyster) then people could easily pay without worrying about cash. Additionally, the details recorded in the card reader would provide some security. Cars could also be fitted with displays saying where they are going, allowing people to flag down a car that is going in the same direction. This "flagging" need not be by hand, but could be done on a mobile phone, which communicates with cars in the area.

There are insurance implications to lift sharing, but the law could be changed to force insurance companies to cover life sharing by default.

Emergency service warning

When you hear the sirens of emergency services vehicles it is often difficult to work out where they are coming from. Using GPS locating technology, a bit of computing and communications, your car could be told by the emergency service vehicle where it was going such that your car stereo could tell you "There is an emergency services vehicle coming behind you, please move to your left/right".

Drive your own bus

Most bus routes have enough people who can drive sitting on the bus for a significant proportion of the journey - why not let the passengers drive the bus, bringing down the cost of public transport? An electronic ID or fingerprint recognition system could be used to only allow qualified people to drive. Drivers would get a small fee and a free ride.