Feeds

SMS-enabled solar parking meters for Eastbourne

Txt chat hits new levels of tedium

Remote control for virtualized desktops

The Sussex coastal town of Eastbourne is soon to receive a new hi-tech boon, in the form of solar-powered armoured parking meters which can send text messages.

Apparently the machines, each of which has its own SIM card, aren't endowed with Douglas Adams style overspec'd artificial intelligence brains. Nobody need fear that a desperately bored carpark ticket machine will try to strike up a philosophical txt conversation, or get depressed and refuse to issue tickets.

Rather, the idea is that the boxes, jingling as they must be with cash, will text a control centre when their coin compartments get full up - or if anyone should try to break into them.

The Guardian quotes East Sussex councillor Matthew Lock, "lead member" for transport, as saying:

"We are serious about giving Eastbourne a parking system that will encourage economic growth and will make the lives of residents that little bit easier. So we have thought long and hard..."

...And come up with the idea of text-messaging solar powered carparking hardware.

Apparently in the event of an attempted meter-raid, the droid will squeal for help by text, at which point the forces of law and order will spring into action and apprehend any shrapnel-snaffling miscreant before he can make his escape.

According to the Guardian, mechanical "cries for help will be sent via text and picked up at a 24-hour control centre... Staff could then alert police."

Given that police will seldom respond with any urgency to home-security-system-generated alarms (justifiably, given the percentage of false alerts), it's hard to see how this would help. Indeed, as the Guardian implies, they probably won't even bother calling the law in many cases.

But Councillor Lock was gung-ho.

"This will be one of the most secure parking services in the country," he said. "With this system, anyone who tampers with a machine runs the risk of being caught in the act and could be jailed."

Sure. If the jails weren't quite so full they might, anyway.®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
I'll be back (and forward): Hollywood's time travel tribulations
Quick, call the Time Cops to sort out this paradox!
Musicians sue UK.gov over 'zero pay' copyright fix
Everyone else in Europe compensates us - why can't you?
Megaupload overlord Kim Dotcom: The US HAS RADICALISED ME!
Now my lawyers have bailed 'cos I'm 'OFFICIALLY' BROKE
MI6 oversight report on Lee Rigby murder: US web giants offer 'safe haven for TERRORISM'
PM urged to 'prioritise issue' after Facebook hindsight find
BT said to have pulled patent-infringing boxes from DSL network
Take your license demand and stick it in your ASSIA
Right to be forgotten should apply to Google.com too: EU
And hey - no need to tell the website you've de-listed. That'll make it easier ...
prev story

Whitepapers

10 ways wire data helps conquer IT complexity
IT teams can automatically detect problems across the IT environment, spot data theft, select unique pieces of transaction payloads to send to a data source, and more.
The total economic impact of Druva inSync
Examining the ROI enterprises may realize by implementing inSync, as they look to improve backup and recovery of endpoint data in a cost-effective manner.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.