Sometimes I find myself frustrated that certain simple problems aren’t solved by modern technology and mobile applications. As I do not have a background in mobile app development, I’m stuck simply laying out concepts that have been living in my head for years. So I’ve decided to publish a few of the concepts that I feel have not been fully realized already for mobile phone users.
My first concept is called Slingshot
I want to take the legwork out of planning my somewhat more complex daily trips around the city or even out of timing a meet up with friends. If NASA can sling a golf-cart sized probe to Mars in-between the paths of multiple careening planets, I should be able to slingshot myself into the ideal timed path to my destination.
I never know exactly when to leave my house, especially if I’m headed somewhere new. A new restaurant on 2nd street - I think that should take 20-ish minutes? Should I leave now? How about I leave in 5 minutes? If I want to arrive at point B in New York City at time X when is the ideal time to start my journey taking into account the weather, traffic patterns and public transportation schedules?
With an app the figures out the arithmetic for my perfect scheduled departure, could I glide through my given route and effortlessly time all of my connections like a perfect game of Frogger?
My best friend is arriving at an airport near me tomorrow at 5pm.
Slingshot factors in her estimated arrival time, baggage pickup time, my current location, my commute by foot to public transportation given conditions (is it snowing? raining?), my multiple public transportation connections, real-time flight delays, traffic conditions and weather delays to remove the nitty-gritty of planning my window of departure. Imagine an app that gives you one simple message - „Time to leave. Your ideal slingshot window begins in 1 minute.“
I’m going to meet a friend at a bar at 6pm in SOHO.
She’s running a tad late because her subway line is experiencing sudden delays, which shifts my departure window back further allowing me more time to get ready for a night out. Imagine an app that calculates in real-time the progress of my friend’s journey and allows me to target their updated time of arrival effortlessly with a simple message - „Time to leave and meet up with your friend. Your ideal slingshot window begins in 1 minute.“
Imagine an app that factors in all available travel information. You simply plug in a desired destination and time of arrival and the app provides you with a countdown to your ideal departure. The app could suggest an ideal departure by foot, by public transportation and by taxi giving you multiple options for your journey. Select your mode of transportation and the app will align all the factors of travel smoothly, slingshotting you to your destination on time.