Friday, December 18, 2009

Why isn't there a high tech solution to shoveling driveways?

I grew up east of Lake Erie, in a town that received awesome amounts of lake effect snow.  Awesome at least to a six year old when you struggle through chest high snow.

The one place you could walk safely on recently snowed upon side walks was in front of one storefront down town.  Its sidewalks were at most wet, never icy, and never with snow.  And no one ever shoveled them.

The storefront was the corporate headquarters for a small local Natural Gas company.  When you can pass your energy costs to your customers, you can afford to have hot water pipes right below your sidewalk.  The warm sidewalks melted snow on contact.

So many years later, I'm living in an area forecasted to received as much as 24 inches of snow tomorrow.  Today I was in Lowe's and people were snagging up shovels, salt and snow blowers.

Why do we have the same snow removal solutions in my son's teen years we had in mine?  Think about it.  He has access to communications (i.e smart phones), research, fun, socializing (i.e. the internet) we didn't even dream of during the 70's.

So why isn't there a high tech way to remove snow, or better yet, as the gas company did, avoid its accumulation?

If Silicon Valley was in the Hudson Valley instead of where it is, we would.

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