MS patents GPS technology to help keep pedestrians safe

Microsoft has been granted a patent that would use location-based services to help keep pedestrians safe.  The “pedestrian route production” technology will “construct a direction set that allows the user to take paths that take him to his home in a quickest amount of time while keeping the user relatively safe (e.g., taking the user through neighborhoods with violent crime statistics below a certain threshold).”  This means that based on crime statistics, unsafe weather reports, etc., the service will create a route that will maximize their chances of getting to their destination unscathed.  The routes will also be customized based on a user's tolerance for such risk based on historical data.  So if you think you're a tough guy, the service will give you the opportunity to prove it.

The patent comes without any detail from Microsoft as to how or when they will use it.  Presumably, this technology would be incorporated into Bing Maps or similar applications.  If so, it would be the first mapping utility to offer such services to users.

Source: TFTS; Thanks to Sohaib for the Tip!

Seth Brodeur