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FROM: Freddy Gazan

What NEED does this meet?
Widower of about 80 years, I live alone with my little Yorkshire. If something happens to me, my litle dog will remain unattended.

What is the APPROACH?
My proposal is to create a service, to which I could send an e-mail every morning (f.i.: O.K.) in the absence of same they would alarm my children.

What are the BENEFITS to people?
no worry

What is the COMPETITION?
dont'know any

What BUDGET & LOGISTICS are required?
create a call center

November 1, 2003 in Connecting People, Health | Permalink


You could receive an email that you need to respond to. Or you could have the service as your Web home page so it would be more or less automatic.

Posted by: Matthew Walker at Nov 1, 2003 8:16:39 PM

In the absence of an email (or text message),
a text message and email could be generated to a
combination of neighbour, friend, family and
emergency services. This method would cut most of the
operational labour cost.

In addition this idea could be used for any number
of 'alert types' not just elderly people.

Similar schemes may already exist, if so choosing the best and providing funding for it makes more sense than competing against it.

Posted by: George Eldon at Nov 1, 2003 8:24:02 PM

If you remove the email component and say program instead, this could be accomplished fairly simply.

The program would simply access a website and provide the user's name and number.

The website would store the contact information and send out whatever kind of "Emergency" emails messages the user had designed if he failed to execute the program on time.

There are many problems with this kind of approach. The main one is: forgetfulness - even the most diligent of us oversleep on occasion or get distracted. Other errors such as a power failure or the loss of Internet connection or the computer would generate erroneous "Emergency" emails.

Another item. The people who will receive those emails need to be notified that they may receive an emergency email. This needs to be done before an emergency ever arrives. Further, they need to respond that they are aware of it to ensure that their end of the equation is operating.

In addition, this would establish a public a “Dead man’s switch”. Someone WILL eventually use improperly.

Posted by: Lee L. Bell at Nov 2, 2003 9:05:30 AM

Great idea. In my opinion, the best of the bunch so far.

Posted by: David at Nov 2, 2003 4:11:33 PM

it exists in japanese, check the MITSUMI website.

Posted by: mathijs at Nov 2, 2003 6:32:53 PM

Instead of sending an e-mail manually via a PC, can we create a cheap device that will
enable the light switch to send a message when it's turned on, or the refrigerator
door, when opened. So that if grandpa has overslept, or missed out
to mail one day, there's no cause for panic.


Posted by: Nishad at Nov 3, 2003 6:02:45 AM

I quite like this idea, it wouldnt take that much to come up with a program that would automatically send and email to a server when the user presses the big read button on his desktop etc...

Linking it to stuff like light switches or light sensors could be achieved through home automation systems etc. If anyone wants to develop this system, give me a shout, i wouldn't mind contributing :)

Posted by: John Taylor at Nov 3, 2003 11:10:53 AM

Why isn't the first port of call the vulnerable person? - that way if the phone isn't answered, then there may be a problem. If they have overslept etc. there is less possibility of false calls being generated.

If the phone isn't answered, then contact someone on an emergency list.

Does anybody know if it's possible to find out if a phone is engaged because the phone's off the hook or if it's engaged because it's in use? This could also improve the system.

Posted by: Angus at Nov 12, 2003 2:46:24 PM

Sounds like bolox to me. How many children are to be "alarmed", by what technology?
If they were notified by email it'd only reach them when they logged on.
Are they to be issued with bleepers by the "service provider"?
(Or contacted by letter? :o)
Obviously they'll be contacted on their mobile phones, and if Freddy hasn't got one already he should do so. There are websites giving "free" txt msg's, so Freddy just needs to get in the habit of using one of them every day to txt all his kids.
Unless the kids are bogglingly dopey, one of them will notice if they don't get the expected msg one day, so they'll txt him to ask why. If he doesn't reply promptly they'll ring, and if that gets no response they'll call a neighbour. Freddy can set his mind at rest by getting a sufficiently large list of neighbours' phone numbers that it's a certainty one will be in when the kids ring. Total cost=zero - there's no need to create a service provider to leech money off old and insecure people.

Posted by: FumbleFingers at Jan 31, 2004 12:44:36 AM