Browse Prior Art Database

Timely notification of emergencies or other time-varying information

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000013592D
Original Publication Date: 2000-Mar-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2003-Jun-18
Document File: 2 page(s) / 56K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Abstract

Disclosed is a system and method for providing users with time-critical information that is available on web-sites but which do not provide a “push” or notification service to interested users.

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Timely notification of emergencies or other time-varying information

Disclosed is a system and method for providing users with time-critical information that is available on web-sites but which do not provide a "push" or notification service to interested users.

    The general idea is to convert sources of time-varying information that are presently accessed in a 'pull' fashion into a 'push' mechanism. That is, where without this invention the user would have to take active steps to access the information (such as logging on to a partic- ular site), with the invention the information gets to the user without his needing to log on.

    Two examples of the kind of information transmission supported by this invention will be described - travel delays and weather.

    There are various way in which one's travel can get delayed. Often, information about the delay is available, but if it is not readily accessible or made available in a timely fashion, alternative plans can't be made. This example uses the example of traffic delays due to accidents/congestion/whatever, but could equally well apply to flight delays or other kinds of plan interruptions.

    In major metropolitan area, if not all over the country by now, there are Web sites that carry up-to-the-minute information about traffic situations such as accidents, lane closings, etc. To get that information, though, one has to access the site. It can be a nuisance to do that regularly while in the office, and next to impossible when out of the office. There does exist a medium through which this information can be conveyed that is currently usable by millions of people and growing quickly - digital phones or pagers with text e-mail capability. However, there is currently no mechanism to get the desired information transmitted this way.

    The invention is a system that discovers late-breaking traffic information and sends it by e-mail to subscribed users' digital phones or pagers. A variation of the same mechanism will send the latest weather forecast.

    The invention requires a workstation with a network connection. There are two vari- ations - one for emergent situations, the other for operation at regular inter...