May 15, 2006

Idea: A parking lot compass

Maybe this idea is obvious enough that somebody is already developing it, but I did a quick search and didn’t see anything. So I submit the following.

parking lotWhy doesn’t someone make a compass to help you find your car in the parking lot? This should be an optional accessory for every GPS-enabled car. You should be able to get a keychain or purse-sized device that will point to your car so you can find it when you come out of the mall, grocery store, etc.

Obviously, this presents a small problem because if someone finds your keys they can find your car and drive away with it. So maybe there’s a keypad on the device so you can type in a password. Or, if it can be done cheaply enough, there can be a thumbprint scanner attached, to make identification even simpler.


Good idea. I like it.

This is a brilliant idea, especially for hopelessly absent-minded folk like myself. I think I shall hold off moving to a suburb and buying a car until such a thing exists.

I once had the idea of having a big arrow holograph would hover over your car by clicking the button on the key chain, but I think i like your idea better. ;)


problem with that is people like me and my friends would all park in a parking lot and stand by our cars waiting for someone to turn on their giant holograph and as soon as we saw it, we would all turn on our holographs making the person have to look for their car amid a parking lot of hovering holographs of arrows.

Just a thought.


I had this idea a couple of months ago and am just now searching for it.. you are the first hit! I’m going to develop it myself, if I can. Isn’t it funny how two strangers can have the same idea at basically the exact same time in history.. so strange.

already on the market…
too bad it doesn’t say how it works.

Well it took a while but someone did come out with a product similar to this, the Bushnell BackTrack. You mark your starting location and the BackTrack gives you a head and distance to get back there.—20

The issue I’ve found with GPS type device, is that it usually takes a while for the device to find the GPS signal to “remember” where the car is. It basically means I have to actively press something and stand outside the car in the parking lot, which in my experiences, after I park, I just want to go inside the store.

I’ve found a gadget at, works similarly, but doesn’t require GPS. The drawback is that it’s got limited range up to 1/2 mile. It’s good if you lose your car in a parking lot of a mall or ball game, but if you go further than that, the gadget doesn’t work as well.