Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Meter Cheater

“Free” parking
  [vote for,

Modern parking meters have a flashing LED that faces the street, presumably for ease of enforcement: a green light signifies time left on the meter, whereas a red light indicates time has expired. Thus, a thin stick-on electronic device with a flashing green light would probably let you park as long as you liked without paying.

Anyone who feels any sort of moral compunctions about such a device should be a aware that a parking ticket in Los Angeles costs about $80 these days. That should be all the justification you need.

ytk, Oct 27 2014

[n_m_r]'s suggestion baked in the '70s https://www.youtube...AG627K_E91U#t=0m35s
"That'll fix 'er"... "That viscious, heartless trafficwardeness: the scourge of the jet-set." [TomP, Oct 29 2014]


       Bring your own meter...just some pipe and a box..
not_morrison_rm, Oct 27 2014

       Howabout a red laser beam to decoy the meter maids? You mount the laser across the street, point it at the LED of a meter, and make it look like it is flashing red when it really isn't. After enough false alarms, the meter enforcers will all give up and go home.
baconbrain, Oct 27 2014

       I was reminded of the old London scam, where people made fake post boxes, put them out in the wee hours then took them away at night, to get the postal orders or cheques posted during the day.   

       So just make a slightly larger parking meter, clamp it over the original one...suggest trying this on a parked car that isn't yours first time...
not_morrison_rm, Oct 27 2014

       Maybe the car just needs to recognize the flashing LED light and go park itself somewhere else for awhile?
RayfordSteele, Oct 27 2014

       Given the technology of the times, I think the meters would be electronically reporting that they were "expired" to somewhere, somehow.
baconbrain, Oct 27 2014

       Modern parking meters are an app on your phone.
zeno, Oct 27 2014

       I think parking is going out of fashion. One day, we will all be forced to own self-drive cars, and the only good thing about it will be the ability to tell the car, "Just keep driving round the block until I finish shopping."
mitxela, Oct 27 2014

       // "Just keep driving round the block until I finish shopping." //   

       That brings up a question: Why is it that it is free to drive on public roads in the city, but it is not free to park on the public roads. Currently there are some very good reasons for that, but that will change with automatic cars.   

       At the point where automatic cars are fully capable of circling, there will need to be some incentive to have unoccupied cars park themselves rather than circle. The automated cars could park very efficiently, parking in tight masses as long as there's a communication protocol so car can reshuffle when a car in the middle needs to get out. The incentive could be tolls for every mile driven on the road, or it could be public parking that is cheaper than the energy to keep circling.
scad mientist, Oct 27 2014

       // 4-inch by 1-inch LCD panel that flashes dimly red when the meter is expired. When not expired, it just goes blank //   

       Could the entire flashing red display be blocked with a bit of opaque cling film? It seems like quite a few electronic gadgets in the store are packaged with such a film over the LCD to give a sample of the display without the device being powered on.
scad mientist, Oct 29 2014

       //Bring your own meter...just some pipe and a box..//   

       "Diabolically cunning!" [link]
TomP, Oct 29 2014

       Wouldn't it be cheaper to have an assortment of sticky- backed squares of green cellophane to place over the already supplied red LED?
AusCan531, Oct 30 2014

       Considering that red and green are both primary colors for light, that wouldn't really work.
ytk, Oct 30 2014


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