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GPS for your shoes

How footwear can find missing people.

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Isaac Daniel will never forget the call alerting him that his 8-year-old son had disappeared from his school bus queue. Daniel was in New York City on a business trip and immediately jumped on a plane home to Atlanta - only to learn that his boy had sneaked back into school. "He didn't want to pee on himself," Daniel recalls.

That experience got Daniel, 39, a former United Nations analyst, thinking about more efficient ways to find missing people. Result: the Isaac Daniel Co. GPS shoe, which just received its U.S. patent. Daniel's hiking boot goes on sale in December, and his running shoe and children's sneaker will follow in early 2008. The footwear ranges from $289 to $479 a pair, plus $30 a month for GPS monitoring, and Daniel projects $29 million in revenue for 2008.

Embedded in the sole of the right shoe is a small CPU with a 20GB hard drive, which must be recharged every three weeks. Its GPS beacon is activated when the wearer pushes a button on the side of the shoe, or a parent, spouse, or the police calls Daniel's tracking service, ID Conex, to ping the device. The shoes cannot be randomly tracked, however: "We're the only ones who know the frequency and how to get information back," Daniel says.  To top of page

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