Monday, March 17, 2008

Google has a bus routing patent

Focusing on one patent on transportation routing, he told a gathering at last week's AIIM conference in Boston that he sees not only a business opportunity for Google in transportation routing, but also the tip of a proverbial iceberg in the way the search engine colossus approaches much of its business.

"No one knows what these guys at Google are up to," said Arnold, who has written two books on Google, in an interview this week. "That's why their patents are so important."

Arnold, who takes an investigative approach to Google without help from the company, says the transportation routing patent is already embodied in Google's employee bus system in the Bay Area. Using Google's mapping technology, GPS location finding linked with Google employee cell phones, the buses and employees are connected efficiently in real time. Employees are informed wirelessly when their bus is approaching. Another iteration of the system appears to be in use at a Google facility in Korea, Arnold added.

While the system is useful now for the company, Arnold believes it can have wider use in larger transportation routing systems including highway systems and air traffic. The approach spelled out in the patent could have use anywhere routing is important, even in the spacing of cell phone towers, Arnold said.

Bold for my emphasis.

What if Franklin's new bus used this? The route runs along King St. I could use it to get to the train station if it was allowed to stop along the way. How many more people could use the bus this way?

Just imagine the possibilities!

Read the remainder of the article in InformationWeek here.