An idea for the iPhone and GPS

Once again success! Panning for gold in my archives brings this nugget from June 2003:

Amble Time / “A shortcoming of standard maps is their inability to convey a sense of temporal scale. Can I stroll to the park for lunch, or would it take me all day? Amble Time adds an element of time to a PDA-based tourist map. By using a GPS system and your average walking speed, it creates a bubble that indicates everywhere you could walk in an hour.” This could be a lot of fun.

Don’t bother clicking, the url is kaput. One quick Google finds Amble Time alive and well:

A steadily shrinking area of a city map shows where you can walk as time ticks by. The bubble shows everywhere you could go within timing constraints that you provide. Researchers used this “travel-sensitive alarm clock” to explore ways that location-based information and ad-hoc networking could support participation in interactive stories.

There’s even a nice PDF available, Time, Voice, and Joyce, that discusses the project Amble Time was built to support:

We present a design for recapitulating walks through Dublin’s City Centre by characters in James Joyce’s Ulysses. Our computationally supported walkers will avail themselves of a “map with a sense of time” and a system that translates their hand lettering gestures as attributes of colourful typographic forms.

Now I definitely have to see it working again. Amble Time has iPhone written all over it.

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