It's really tragic that this even seems like it's worth a post at all, but we've seen so many ridiculous stories of people creating cool and useful apps for their cities
-- only to have officials freak out that outsiders are somehow violating intellectual property laws, and only official city/university apps should be allowed. So, when we heard about a guy in Elgin, Illinois who created a simple iPhone app to help people avoid parking tickets
, it just felt likely that city officials would be upset about it. But... instead, they actually seem happy about it:
He just start selling his Elgin Parking iPhone application last week, but already city officials are commending him. For a download price of $1.99, it helps people comply with the city's odd/even parking law.
Hopefully, this means that common sense is making a bit of a comeback. I half expected officials to either be upset that he was "making money" by selling an app that helped people avoid parking tickets, or be upset that, with fewer parking tickets to give out, they'd have less revenue -- but it's great to see the city endorsing this sort of thing, where a citizen is free to help make life better for others in the city. And... since people sometimes complain that too many of the stories on Techdirt are negative, it seemed worth a post to give kudos to Elgin for not doing the stupid things that many other cities have done. In this day and age, that's progress.