Weasley Clock Ticks Closer to Becoming Reality
May 09, 2009, 09:03 PM
Those who desire a Muggle version of the Weasley family clock may not have much longer to wait for this type of technology to be available in their homes. The Times is reporting this evening that researchers at Microsoft have completed user trials for their Whereabouts Clock. As TLC reported back in 2007, the company had been testing this device which 'monitor[s] the movements of family
members through their mobile phones.' According to the article, the device 'works by identifying which cell of a mobile phone network
a family member is in at any given time. When users set up the Whereabouts
Clock they have to give each cell a name, such as “work” or “school”, by
downloading software onto their phone.' With this information, the clock would be able to assign a location to each person based on when they enter that cell. Researcher Richard Harper spoke of the aims of this device by saying:
“We want it to give enough information to be comforting without giving
so much that people feel they are being watched."The Times goes on to note that Microsoft is looking at how to market the product, but makes no mention of its release. Janice Day, one of those who tested the clock, said that she "didn’t
like initially everyone knowing where I was - and I thought, Janice, you
hypocrite. But by the end I was actually quite happy about it."
This is amazing to me. I can’t believe how far we’ve come with technology.
ha that pretty cool now they just got to make it look cool ha
That is an awesome idea… But I get the whole privacy thing… If it was like the Weasley clock and it could just tell you when people are in Mortal Peril or travelling etc., that would be awesome but … I don’t know if that is possible. Still! Wicked!
omg sooo cooool when i have kids im so getting one! gotta love the weasley’s
it be cool but thats the point of having a cell phone in the first place, so that people can call you and find out where you are. you don’t need a clock for that even if its cool.
I tink it would be great to have one then some people will think before they act.
People will be bothered by this, but safety wise it’s a wonderful idea. Kids could find themselves with more freedom, because at least parents would be able to find them if they really needed to.
cool! i want one!
haha! This is would be awesome. But would you need to be on a family plan for this to work?
it’s cool that they’re coming up with this technology, in a way, it could be useful.
though, by the information, it seems that it still has a lot of glitches.
a lot of hassle for something that could be easily “hacked” and changed the location. also, we sort of already have this technology, remember, GPS systems and tracking devices? my dog has one, in case she ever got lost, we find her with a microchip she has embedded in her – they even have it for kids these days.
the Duracell Batterie commercial shows the tracking device for kids – kind of freaky, no privacy.
I want one!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
That is so cool! I don’t know if I would like it, seems like a lack of privacy but then my mom wouldn’t worry about me. But if someone never entered their cell (in which their location is submitted to the clock) and doesn’t use their cell often (like me) the clock still wouldn’t give accurate whereabouts.
I’d like one! It doesn’t seem too invasive, I mean, the only things on the clock are travel, work, school and home. If you really don’t want people you’re not at home/work/school, leave your phone at home.
What’s the big deal? Amateur Radio Operators have had location tracking for a decade. It is called Automatic Position Reporting System (APRS). Take a small GPS unit, connect it to a hand-held or mobile radio transceiver and your position is reported regularly via a network of radio repeaters. The system is internet connected so that family and friends can follow you in real time. There are software applications to display your position on a map on your PC. Best of all is there is no Microsoft in this. Check with your neighborhood Amateur Radio Operator (HAM for short) and see the magic.