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Ocean City, NJ geeks up the beach

Nilay Patel

Visitors to the Jersey shore will soon have more to look forward to than just big hair and Bon Jovi -- Ocean City, in south Jersey, is currently accepting bids for a planned beach network that will encompass everything from tracking parking spots to monitoring garbage can levels. The $3M system, which will feature a mix of WiFi and RFID devices, is expected to cut the costs of running the beach dramatically -- trimming almost half of the $282,000 budget for access badge checkers, for example. Other planned features include the ability to link access wristbands together, so that parents can be alerted via SMS if one of their kids ventures beyond the boundaries of the boardwalk, and RFID payment services for food and souvenir shops. Now all they need is some of those Segway beach cops and the future will have finally arrived.

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