School bus alert

Q: Currently there are systems available that automatically telephone homes to alert parents that the school bus is approaching. My company designs and manufactures electronic equipment for the mobile communications industry. One of our technologies is automatic-vehicle-location fleet management based on global- positioning systems. We can provide the technology through a cable system that would show a "school bus is near" message on a television screen. Do you think the industry would be intere

Oct 1st, 1998

Q: Currently there are systems available that automatically telephone homes to alert parents that the school bus is approaching. My company designs and manufactures electronic equipment for the mobile communications industry. One of our technologies is automatic-vehicle-location fleet management based on global- positioning systems. We can provide the technology through a cable system that would show a "school bus is near" message on a television screen. Do you think the industry would be interested?

John Kruse

ida Corp.

Fargo, ND

A: I don`t know about the industry, but from my experience of parenting four children through thousands of bus rides, I only have one question: Where were you 20 years ago? If you give children a choice between either watching television or answering the telephone to see when the school bus is coming, the television will win every time.

My personal take on this: Don`t try to sell your idea to the "industry." Instead, target your marketing toward parents and school administrators. The cable-TV providers in our area have always been very supportive of our schools with free programming and other services. I don`t think this would be an exception, but the demand has to come from the subscribers.

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