GPS

GPS tracking not good enough to use in court, but good enough to pay tolls

You can’t use your GPS system log in court to defend against speed camera or Police speeding enforcement but it seems that GPS tracking might be the way the government will track you to charge you for tolls.

The Government says GPS tracking may be used to charge drivers for using Auckland’s roads – a move which experts say is the most advanced in the world but also raises concerns about “Big Brother” behaviour.

Road tolls are likely to be implemented in the next 10 years in the city and transport officials say the most effective system would cover all roads and charge motorists different rates depending on when and where they drive.

Transport Minister Simon Bridges said this could be done by GPS satellite, as opposed to toll gantries or cameras.

“You’re talking about a system that crudely speaking runs from satellite and is able to, through electronic devices, tell where your car is and charge you on the time and place.  Read more »

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GPS Bracelet Escapee of the Day

Analog tracking device

Analog tracking device

Just as well this is Corrections again.  If it was Serco, they would have been fined and fired.

Police are on the hunt for a man who has slipped his monitoring bracelet in Christchurch.

Thirty-seven-year-old Richard John Percival removed his bracelet around 10pm last night in the Burnside area.   Read more »

If you are thinking of bugging your partner’s phone you already know the answer

Spying on cellphones of partners is on the rise.

I suspect it will be more women spying on their partners than the other way around, though when blokes do it isn’t to find out what they are up to it is about being manipulative and controlling.

Still if you are thinking of spying on your partner because you suspect they are playing away then you probably already have your answer.

Spying on spouses and partners through mobile phone bugging systems has reached epidemic proportions, according to pressure groups monitoring electronic abuse in the UK.

They warned women to guard against the growing use of ‘spyware’ which can tell a suspicious husband, boyfriend or former partner how they are using their phones.   Read more »

Police cop backlash over GPS speedometer inaccuracy claim

The Luddite view of the police (who probably just want to keep things simple), has been comprehensively crushed:

The maker of a vehicle GPS navigation system is taking police to task over comments suggesting the units are unreliable.

Last week, a police spokesman said readings from GPS devices were not accepted as a reliable means of accurately proving a driver’s speed and therefore could not be used to disprove a speeding fine.

Software used by manufacturers was based only on straight-line driving, police said, and was less reliable because of signal loss through buildings, terrain or weather conditions.

Yesterday, former Navman engineer and current New Zealand development manager Sajeewa Dayaratne said GPS devices were susceptible to some interference but that was unlikely in New Zealand.

“The open roads in New Zealand where there are no tall buildings, and drivers are not frequently stopping, are perfect conditions for GPS speed readings.”

GPS speed readings are going to be more accurate than those on the car’s odometer.  Which is the problem really, as people with true knowledge of their speed are  likely to “speed” close to the limit.   Read more »

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The House always wins

Even though GPS speedometers are clearly more accurate than those inside the car, the police aren’t going to accept GSP records as evidence in speeding cases.

Typically, [inbuilt car] speedometers would give a faster reading so drivers were travelling slower than what was shown.

Many comments touched on the accuracy of GPS devices when it came to reading speed.

But yesterday a national police headquarters spokesperson said GPS devices were not a certified method of tracking speed.

“Given that a GPS is not accepted as a reliable means for proving a driver’s speed, police do not accept this as an excuse for speeding.

“GPS systems used for speed or locations can only be an indicator, not a source of absolute true information due to signal loss through buildings, terrain or weather conditions,” the spokesperson said.

Police detection devices, such as speed cameras and speed guns, were checked annually for accuracy, and were calibrated to strict international standards. Read more »

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Finally a minister who gets that driverless cars and not trains is our future

Simon Bridges appears to get it.

That our future lies in enabling technologies not restrictive technologies.

Trains are constrained by tracks and are not at all versatile, whereas driverless vehicles are enabling in many, many ways.

The prospect of cars travelling New Zealand highways with no one behind the wheel is moving closer says new Transport Minister Simon Bridges. Officials are reviewing legislation allowing for the testing of umanned autonomous vehicles on public roads.

Mr Bridges has pledged to work with environmental interests while also pursuing the Government’s road building programme.

Mr Bridges said he was committed to “a balanced approach” and ongoing investment roads were important even from a green perspective, “over time as we move to electric vehicles and autonomous vehicles”.

Mr Bridges said the Government was not doing a great deal to accommodate autonomous vehicle technology, “but I don’t think there’s any doubt that if you look at what’s going on internationally, maybe not in the next couple of years, but over time we will see driverless vehicles and that will have implications, like for example less congestion because vehicles can travel closer together”.

Read more »

Why self-driving cars and not rail is the solution

The Atlantic has been investigating California’s highly expensive and likely to be a white elephant project, the High Speed Rail solution.

As part of their investigation they have looked at the promise of self-driving cars…which in a direct comparison shows precisely why train-spotting projects like Len Brown’s rail loop and California’s HSP solution are nothing but boondoggles costing rate and taxpayers billions.

First, self-driving cars. I turn the floor over to a reader in California whose identity and background I know. He works in the advanced-research parts of the info-tech industry and did his bachelor’s and doctoral training at Caltech and MIT. He says:

Your series on High Speed Rail is under-emphasizing an important aspect of the big picture.

Should we invest in infrastructure? Absolutely!  But the right kind of infrastructure.

The technology and accompanying infrastructure creating the greatest impact today and over the past 30 years has been not just big scale physical stuff, but the brains coordinating and controlling physical stuff—specifically, computing and communication.    Read more »

RED: How Israel warns it’s citizens from Hamas terrorism

Yesterday I mentioned the app that is available to push alerts of rocket strikes to your smart phone.

It is called RED and is available for iPhone and Android.

I have it installed on my phone and at dinner last night a flurry of alerts came in reminding me to share with you what it looks like.

When you login you have two possible screens.

The latest alerts and and a Map showing the latest alerts. It uses GPS and cell towers to know where you are.

Here is the Map screen showing the flurry of rocket attacks against Ashdod and Askelon and the general vicinity at around 6:45pm last night.

Screenshot_2014-08-23-19-07-15 Read more »

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Help please, my livelihood might be under threat

Michael Field has taken a break from writing poorly researched pieces aboutFiji or whispering the same erroneous information into Karl du Fresne’s ear to write one of the most outrageously stupid articles I have seen in a long time.

The headline makes you think that we are under attack from Drones or that a massive accident has occurred as a result of drones.

Drones

 

Far from the alarmist headlines what ewe find upon reading the article is that it’s actually a story using the press to try and protect one blokes own interests.  Worse he is using his media pals to do it making Michael Field a gun for hire advocating for legislative change to protect his mate.  Read more »

Find ‘Facebook’, Replace ‘Government’

The left wing loons and opposition politicians think that GCSB is going to employ 130,000 spies to trawl through all New Zealanders’ emails.

The suggestion is patently absurd.  But here’s an interesting data collection policy that is way worse than anything the Government is proposing.

I’ve exchanged the word ‘Facebook‘ for ‘Government’.

We also receive other types of information about you:

  • We receive data about you whenever you interact with the Government, such as when you look at another person’s timeline, send or receive a message, search for a friend or a Page, click on, view or otherwise interact with things, use a Government mobile app, or purchase Government Credits or make other purchases through the Government.
  • When you post things like photos or videos, we may receive additional related data (or metadata), such as the time, date, and place you took the photo or video.  Read more »