Friday, February 5, 2010

Sour grapes maybe but ...

Last night I was watching back-and-forth between O'Reilly's interview of John Stewart and the real deal John himself and somehow a commercial slipped in for Mercedes for a new (released in 2009) Attention Assist system. Simply put this monitors drivers' behavior and if you exhibit signs of being drowsy, it will alert you visually and then again audibly.

Jump back with me to somewhere between 1978 - 1980. We were living in Virginia and I had an idea. We were making regular trips back to Ohio and on these long trips I would, like most people, get drowsy. So I had an idea of putting some kind of device on the steering wheel that sensed your finger pressure. If you let off for more than a second or two, something would set off an alarm.

Now way back then there was no internet or any quick way to check this out but through the library I found that General Motors had a system for taking in consumer ideas. So I wrote them. I can not honestly say exactly what their response was and I have no written proof of this but I got something back to the effect of "thanks, but no thanks."

Ironic that almost 30 years later, my idea is actually out there in use. Maybe I should have written Mercedes instead.

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