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Startup's tech warns chatty drivers of upcoming stoplights

Evan Blass

Necessity is definitely the mother of invention, so after getting hit twice in one year by drivers gabbing on their cellphones (only once as a pedestrian, thankfully), an understandably-peeved Demetrius Thompson decided to develop a system for warning chatters that they're about to approach an intersection. Since it's pretty clear that in-car cellphone use will never be completely banned, and that the "hands-free only" laws really don't address the underlying problem, the next best step would seem to be improving the attentiveness of those who insist on talking behind the wheel. Thompson's system would use already-available location data from GPS-enabled cellphones combined with information on the coordinates of local traffic lights to audibly alert the driver with a cuckoo clock-like chirp when they need to perk up and pay (more) attention to the road. While this is certainly an innovative and cost-effective method for circumventing legislative routes to tackle what is likely a widespread problem, the fact that Thompson's company, Global Mobile Alert, has yet to get any carriers interested in the system means that it will likely remain just a concept for the foreseeable future.

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