And The Winner Of Our Dash GPS Contest Is . . .

Last week, I announced (in conjunction with Dash and Trulia) that we would give away a Dash GPS car navigation device to whoever could come up with the best new app for it. Readers came up with more than 300 suggestions, including the sketch at left (which I have no idea what it is supposed to be). But many of the ideas were pretty solid.

They included things like calendar integration, ride-sharing apps, an OpenTable mashup, and some interesting location-based games.

But the Dash GPS goes to Alfred Toh, who came up with ParkSpot:

ParkSpot – A real time social parking utility.

Basically, dash owners will help other dash owners find parking on busy city streets. When one dash owner is getting ready to leave, set your ParkSpot status to ready to leave and this will broadcast your location to nearby dash owners whose set to finding spots.

Another great idea, which a few people hit upon, revolved around location notes or geographic bookmarks, but the person who nailed it best was Rob Graff, who came up with Muck:

Muck – ‘A location based twitter like app’
You write a 200 character or so message, which is then geo tagged and sent to a database. When other people drive pass location where you wrote the message, they are read you message through their dash. Stuff like “this is the longest red light in town” or “there is a funny looking bum on this corner every morning” come to mind.

Rob will get a TechCrunch T-shirt. The second runner-up, who also gets a T-shirt is JW, who came up with:

*Ad-Supported Tolls*
The GPS knows when you are going thru tolls and could show however many geo-targeted ads would offset the cost of that toll. This could be linked to an E-Z Pass account so Toll-Booths wouldn’t hafta make any changes.

Honorable mentions (sorry, no prizes):

Seth McGuinness:

Garage Sale search and proximity locator.

Tim Baker:

My app would be a shopping utility. You input the item you’re looking to buy and it shows you retailers on the map that sell that item and the price. You can find the shortest distance to get the product for the lowest price.

Chester Ng:


An app that blabs to you; er, reads (e-mail, RSS feeds, etc.) to you so you crazy drivers (me included) can stop thumbing around on your iPhones and Blackberrys while you drive.

John Whitney:

Guided Tours!

Your in a new city, or maybe your hometown. You download a tour, maybe for a specific topic like architectural history. You follow the tour in your car and it tells you some interesting things about where you are. It tells you stop & park and then you can read some more, maybe get out and look for something interesting. The cool thing about this is that the tours could be on many subjects. I’d love to take a guided tour of my town, Schenectady – there’s lots of hidden history all around.


Valet Monitor – it keeps track of how far they took your car! (think of Ferris Bueller) You enter a PIN and the device won’t shut off till you disable it. I think the Ferris Bueller car scene would be a great marketing ad for Dash in general.


P2P Parcel Delivery: A peer-to-peer parcel delivery service that brings people who want to send parcels with people in their area who are going to the parcel’s destination area. Dash can be used for tracking purposes.