Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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mobile phones, queues and good manners

A method for attaining goals whilst preserving good manners
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Whilst standing in a queue for my local bank cashpoint, the person in front of me received a call on their mobile phone, and left the queue to answer it.

Noticing this, I conceived of a device, which by the use of mobile phone and/or bluetooth proximity push advertising technology makes a single call to each of the nearest five nearest mobile phones.

The device flips through the numbers and when it rings a mobile in front of me in the queue, I merely press a button and they get the full call, which is a 45 second sound recording of a lot of static interlaced with unidentifiable fragments of speech.

So, the owner of such a device gets to gain rapid access to the cashpoint, toilet cubicle at [insert name of music festival] or space at a crowded bar without unseemly jostling, so preserving good manners.

I have had a look and it doesn't seem to figure on HB (but I could be wrong) I'm sure I'll find out quite soon.

not_morrison_rm, Feb 17 2011


       hmmmmm - how does it find the five nearest mobile phones (or are you relying on people having bluetooth turned on all the time?)? - and then how does it find these phones' numbers?
hippo, Feb 17 2011

       Is it not simpler just to set fire to the tail of their coat, like everyone else does ?
8th of 7, Feb 17 2011

       It's likelier that the person will remain in the queue, take their turn at the cashpoint, and be slower about it because they are trying to understand the unintelligible voice on the phone...
MaxwellBuchanan, Feb 17 2011

       Discreetly give the person two ahead of you a provocative pat on the posterior and watch them fight it out with the person in front of you.
RayfordSteele, Feb 17 2011

       //There's a lot about this idea that I don't understand.//   

       I can't explain gravity either, so that's me and Stephen Hawking. Sadly, that the only time are names are likely to end up in same sentence.   

       //can't hear one side's juicy details.// I'm not that bothered, but I have got a bit bored of "'ello....'ello...yeah, I'm on a train.....do you want me to get some bread?" which obviously could be about anything really...
not_morrison_rm, Feb 17 2011

       What [21] said.
Voice, Feb 18 2011

       //It will show you every Bluetooth capable device within a 30-ft radius//   

       For the evil purposes of the device, that would have been just fine.   

       //Get over yourself.// Cuts to Ted Striker in Airplane.."I'll never be over.."   

       Final post on this topic, I'm now off the cashpoint with my flameproof overalls...
not_morrison_rm, Feb 18 2011

       // Either way, you aren't included.//

I don't think it's about being included, 21Q. I think it's about being able to make sense of what is going on.
DrBob, Feb 18 2011

       It's funny, how people react to the relatively new imposition that technology has made to us.   

       For example, we have so called "Quiet" coaches, within which it is forbidden to use your mobile. And yet, there are some people who will quite happilly, and loudly rabbit away face-to-face, at full volume, with their travelling companions, about the most intimate details of their life, in such a way that it is difficult to continue concentrating on your newspaper, sleep or whatever without being dragged into the lives of whoever is talking, or being talked about. Even more amazingly, when these people are the same ones, who, when you bashfully answer and whisper apologetically into your phone that no, you can't talk right now, you're on the train, will interrupt you, to the benefit of the rest of the carriage, and remind you that you are in the quiet coach.   

       But on the question of politeness, I don't see it as being a matter of exclusion, but, as [hippo] describes it, a case of forced inclusion. In the same way that it's considered bad form to talk in a library, where people are concentrating, on a long train-journey, people want to be able to concentrate on their own thing, without being dragged into someone else's world whether it be on a phone, or a really loud face-to-face conversation, or someone playing their music out-loud. It's all the same thing. If I talk to my friend on the train, or in an enclosed space, it would be rude of me to do so with a raised voice, forcing others to overhear what we are talking about - it'd also be rude to my friend, who might not want me to transmit the details of our conversation to everyone else in the vicinity. I guess the stipulation on phones comes from the times when they just weren't very good, and you had to talk loudly in order to be heard. I don't quite recognise the standing-in-line scenario described in the post quite so much, and expect that the person opting to forgoe their place in the queue was probably more concerned about talking freely without worrying about being overheard on a private-level, rather than as an expression of politeness.
zen_tom, Feb 22 2011

       Doesn't seem to me to be good manners to game someone elses politeness.   

       So I propose a counter-device, which through mobile phone and/or bluetooth technology broadcasts five premium numbers (charging whatever the maximum allowable fee is), and plays an alternative ringtone whenever they're called.
Loris, Feb 22 2011


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