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Social Media Predictions For 2012 - Forbes

Social Media Predictions For 2012 - Forbes | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
This article is by Avi Savar, founder and chief creative officer of Big Fuel, a social media agency that is part of Publicis Groupe. Companies sometimes gripe that social media is useless as a branding tool.
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Location Is Everywhere
Location is Everywhere, How is it Changing our Lives? It . affects everything in our daily lives. How do we manage it to live, work and play smarter?
Curated by Luigi Cappel
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Maps reveal which countries have the most endangered mammals - Daily Mail

Maps reveal which countries have the most endangered mammals - Daily Mail | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
London-based The Eco Experts created the maps using World Bank's World Development Indicator for deforestation and biodiversity. Sumatran tigers endangered in Indonesia are pictured.
Luigi Cappel's insight:

When was the last time you went to the zoo? I enjoy the zoo, but the thought that in the not too distant future, the zoo might be the only place you could see some of these animals is pretty scary. Take it a step farther, without breeding stock or programs to reintroduce wildlife into supportive habitats, our children and grandchildren will not have the chance to see some of these animals at all which would be a crime.

It also makes me wonder what this is doing to the delicate balance of the ecosystem. Every creature has its place and in some way supports the balance of life. We need to be aware of the implication of this situation because it isn't just about cute animals, its about the survival of the planet as we know it. We are the root cause of this problem and the only animal with the ability to do something about protecting other species.

These maps are a great way to become aware of what is happening around the world and get some perspective of what a problem it is. Whether you start at home or abroad, this might be an opportunity to do something. It really IMHO isn't about saving a particular species from extinction, ultimately we could find our own survival at stake because we have destroyed the planetary ecosystem in our hunger for more space and a better lifestyle for mankind.

Check these maps out and see if there is anything you can do to help, somewhere. If nothing else, go visit your local zoo because they are involved in giving back and trying to restore habitats.

 

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Ride-hailing Cars with Smart Navigation? Almost There - CRIENGLISH.com

Ride-hailing Cars with Smart Navigation? Almost There - CRIENGLISH.com | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
CRIENGLISH.com
Ride-hailing Cars with Smart Navigation?
Luigi Cappel's insight:

This is going to be a short post, more of a brief rant. I catch a lot of taxis for business. The business prescribes which brands I use.

Over half of the rides I take, ask me for directions or are vague in their response to my questions of "Do you know where that is?" and "Do you know the quickest way to get there."

Most of them have GPS in their cabs, some of them have a TomTom or other device, but they also have nav built into their dispatch systems, the touch screens they have on the windscreen between themselves and the driver door so you can't quite see what is on it.

As per this blog I wrote a couple of years ago http://ow.ly/LpaHF about how to get an honest fare out of a cabbie, I reckon there is a syndicate that trains taxi drivers and send them out of their homeland to a country where they don't speak the local language (or English) (or pretend not to) and don't know the local roads. It is a rarity in many cities (not so much small towns) I go to, to find a local driving a cab.

So the reason his little story caught my fancy was that the taxi company is telling their customers that they use GPS navigation in order to help customers trust them.

As I've said in previous blogs, if taxi drivers were more honest with their customers and give them what they want, they would be able to get more repeat business and wouldn't have to compete against the likes of Uber. Do they know what customers want? Of course they do, cabbies know everything, they overhear conversations all day every day, many of which they shouldn't. If you want to know something ask a taxi driver right? So why don't they give us the best deal? Because every extra mile is an extra dollar.

I challenge taxi drivers everywhere to be honest, drive by the fastest or best route using GPS (with real time traffic) and let your customer know you are dong the best possible job for them. Then, like Uber, get them to rate you, give them your business card and tell them next tie they are in town you will give them the same high quality service. Build trust and loyalty and the competitors will struggle to take your business off you.

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Could this be the ANSWER to traffic congestion in our cities?

Could this be the ANSWER to traffic congestion in our cities? | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
The technology, which sits on the windscreen like a sat-nav, is designed to reduce congestion and pollution and help motorists drive more efficiently
Luigi Cappel's insight:

There are certainly vehicles that should get priority either because it is urgent, or because of certain rules. Ambulance time is very relevant because for certain conditions, it is known that every minute counts to saving a patient's life or their quality of life. There are trials of green-wave technology taking place right now in many cities around the world and they work, particularly where it is a predefined route, because it doesn't put to much pressure on other parts of the network.

One of the 'obvious when you think about it' learnings is that as Isaac Newton said, "For each action, there is an equal and opposite reaction." Traffic demand engineers spend a huge amount of time trying to generate harmonious interaction between intersection controls. They know that once a degree of harmony is in place, changes can have far reaching ripples throughout an urban network.

Managing a common route, say from a freeway to a hospital can be relatively easy and justified, especially if it is fundamentally one route.

This concept has been used for many years for urban bus routes, that effectively allow buses traveling at an optimal speed up a major route, typically a motorway feeder, can have green lights all the way.

The concept of a system being suggested here is very complex. It is something that will work in the future, but requires massive computing capability and the ramifications when it fails are significant, because the network has to be able to reset itself.

This would be a great concept to try with consumers at night when demand is low. We all hate getting stuck at red traffic lights late at night when there is no traffic coming the other way, in fact I've often seen frustrated motorists 'run the red' in those situations. Often successfully.

I believe an AI based transport network is possible when a critical mass of vehicles have appropriate technology and that has to start somewhere. Probably one of the biggest concerns is if we get to a point where it works and then it fails, due to power outages, or technology failures, do we then get such an utter "equal and opposite reaction" that we wind up with total gridlock?

So the question is how do we get from here to there? For me it is start with emergency services and public transport. If we can get that working effectively, we save lives and move more people more efficiently. Do that and we might even get more people out of their cars into those buses.

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Six Navigation Features To Look For In Your Next Car - Forbes

Six Navigation Features To Look For In Your Next Car - Forbes | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
Navigation is an aspect of car technology that's benefiting the most from connectivity and the rapid evolution in the space.
Luigi Cappel's insight:

I guess if the writer is looking to what you would want in your car in the next 5-10 years, then fair enough, but having been in the car navigation business, you also need to consider the degree at which the technology is available to give a quality result.

I'll go for two of the features in the story and let you decide about the rest:

Parking. I totally agree that people want to know where to park. They want to know that parking is available. This has come up in surveys all around the world. There are some very good systems being developed and installed for this purpose like the excellent Frog Parking system out of New Zealand that even solar charges it's sensors. They provide API's for developers of systems like car nav to be able to identify where parks are free. When I presented to the national parking association I had to remind them that they are not the destination, so digital information and even booking a car park needs to ensure that it is handy to the destination, that the duration fits the reason you are going to the destination and that there will still be a park available when you get there. The easiest solution to me is pre-pay and reservation. If you don't use the park, that's fine but the parking company doesn't lose out. The fatal flaw when I interviewed car park chain managers was that they did not want to EVER tell potential customers that their car park was full. Footnote on this one, if you have a hybrid or electric car you also want to know if they provide chargers and then there is mobility parking....

Navigation Tour Guide. Fortunes have been made and lost in this market. Most people end up turning them off. Navigation instructions can tend to get intrusive when you are listening to your Pandora or Spotify, or simply having a conversation. On the other hand it is a great module to have as an option. Will it sell cars or add value that will make people want to buy that for the car they mostly use to take the kids to school, commute and go shopping?

Final thought, w are still not in a mature age where it is easy or cost friendly to update maps and services in cars. I can't buy a nav disk for my $6,000 OEM car navigation device. The market was too small and they stopped producing them. So I use a portable TomTom, and the $6,000 car nav computer takes up space under my driver seat and half of my DIN slot (it has a motorized drive for the display to come out when  need it. I think tomorrow's cars should focus more on features under control of the manufacturer such as in car entertainment, climate control etc, and then provide a WiFi interface for mobile solutions. Something like the Navdy, but OEM factory installed, then give the customer the choices.

How would you feel if you bought a nice VW Golf and found that the mobile mount only supports an iPhone 4? True story.

 

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Crave giveaway: Arccos Golf GPS performance-tracking system

Crave giveaway: Arccos Golf GPS performance-tracking system | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
The Arccos Golf system includes 14 disc-shaped sensors, plenty to attach to all of your golf clubs. Arccos Golf...
Luigi Cappel's insight:

I'm not a golfer so I have a casual interest in this. We appear to be taking baby steps in this industry. 20 years ago there were apps that could use GPS to identify where you were on the world's top golf courses. They could tell you whee you were in relation to the hole and which club to use.

Surely by now it should be possible to have sensors in the balls themselves that don't interfere with the flight and travel (perhaps RF) and therefore the ability to track everything. You could then have a virtual coach and a full record of everything you do. I wouldn't expect it to be cheap, but neither are coaches and caddy's.

Which club to use? How far did the ball travel? Where is the ball? How far to the T, Heck why not also include IoT access to weather stations around the course that tell you what direction the wind is coming from and us the compass on your smartphone to tell you what direction that is.

Purists might hate that idea, but if it improves your game and makes you a better golfer, what's the difference between that and millionaires' yachts that do everything from navigation to sail trimming at the push of a button if you can even be bothered to do that?

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Voice-controlled GPS helmet to help bikers

Voice-controlled GPS helmet to help bikers | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
TechnologyVoice-controlled GPS helmet to help bikersMotorcyclists will no longer have to rely on maps or GPS systems, both of which require riders to take their eyes off the road, once a new Russian...
Luigi Cappel's insight:

As long as it doesn't include the ability to respond to TXT messages, read emails and various other things, I think this is a great idea. If I was still riding, I'd buy one:)

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Apple Maps Connect services branch out to Italy, Mexico, Switzerland

Apple Maps Connect services branch out to Italy, Mexico, Switzerland | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
Apple on Monday expanded the reach of its Maps Connect service for small businesses to three more countries, namely Italy, Mexico, and Switzerland.
Luigi Cappel's insight:

As Sales & Marketing Manager for the company that supplied map data to the major car nav brands (and web portals) in New Zealand for 8 including Navman, TomTom and many others, we used to get a lot of calls from businesses who weren't on the map or were in the wrong location.

Many people today use car navigation and mapping applications to locate pretty much anything from petrol to shops, tourist attractions, public toilets and rest areas, to name a few. There are literally hundreds of categories and being on them is extremely valuable to a business in this world of ubiquitous smartphone usage.

The problem until recently was that unconnected systems like Portable Navigation Devices (PND's) had to come out of your car, get connected to a PC and updated, typically a maximum of 4 times a year and frequently less, not counting the likelihood that people do it even when they can. With many brands it is not as easy as it sounds.

I still have problems with my current TomTom because my computer is set up for my previous model and I can't seem to change it to the newer one (which is now 2 years old).

With global brands of mobile map apps starting to make it much easier (as explained in the attached article), companies can go online, verify that they are the rightful owner of the business or location they are sharing information about, add or edit the data. As soon as it is verified and the database is recompiled, application users can start finding those businesses and services.

If you are in business, I strongly urge you to make sure you can be found on the major map data bases, whether you are an alligator hatchery in Louisiana or a petrol station in Madison Tennessee. if you don't know how to do that, ask your children or your friendly geek. There might be a business opportunity for school children to charge a nominal donation for this service.

Having done a few straw polls, ubiquitous the smartphone and tablet devices may be, but that doesn't mean that the average business person knows how to do these things. Many of my geek friends have been very surprised to find out that outside of their immediate techie circles, most people have no idea what they are talking about. That's the real challenge here. Baby boomers in business when they say they are not interested in today's technology often mean they don't get it. One of the things those people also may not be getting is willing customers who don't know they are there when they are open to buy.

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Goodbye GPS? DARPA preparing alternative position-tracking technology

Goodbye GPS? DARPA preparing alternative position-tracking technology | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
DARPA considers GPS unreliable, as it isn't always available and signals can be easily jammed.

Via TechinBiz
Luigi Cappel's insight:

What takes this into a step change from evolution, is that's what it is, is the use of ordinary every day objects. Whether it is revolutionary or evolutionary may be something they don't share for now if it is about getting an edge on military opponents.

A key issue is the cost of technology. When I got my first in-car navigation system, the NASA designed gyros and accelerometers which gave me high accuracy put the retail price tag at around US$4,500. I didn't lay for it, part of my job was the launch of these systems in New Zealand.

Our mapping car however had a system which was also large and bulky and in the region of $200,000 and the reason was that it had to be accurate to within 15cm even when no GPS was available, because being down at the bottom of the planet, the spread of GPS signals was not designed to cover all of our country down at the bottom of the planet.

Today the use of assets or Points of Interest can be valuable, but of course there are questions about how permanent those assets are. Systems like iBeacons make a lot of sense. After all it worked for Hansel and Gretel. Passive RF devices can be placed pretty much anywhere, they can be dropped on or into dirt, placed on buildings and can provide breadcrumbs anywhere. As long as you have the technology to know where they were placed, they can work for a long time because some of those technologies only consume power of significance when they are activated.

When they talk about TV, I wonder if that is designed to put us off the scent or whether they are talking about Internet connected or smart TV's because they, being effectively WiFi access points therefore are transmitting a unique signature.

Google got itself into hot water by tracking WiFi signals from people's home WiFi transmitters which also have a unique signature and aren't likely to move very often, therefore if DARPA uses technology to map the location of those access points (they don't need to spy on what is being communicated across them, all they need is a unique identity of a fixed router, whether it is in an office, a public device on a street or in a home. Triangulate those unique mapped signatures in an urban area  and you will have pretty good accuracy. Telco's have been doing this and improving on it for years. It's much cheaper for them than GPS, which requires either legislation or informed permission from consumers, which is typically only given for the purposes of the apps they are using. Then there is GPS assisted tracking which is probably what DARPA are using. It doesn't replace GPS altogether because there are inherent safety elements to GPS and typically other technologies, such as those we used in our mapping cars were still based on starting each day with a highly accurate GPS fix. From there we could function without it for long periods of time. More satellites are going up and jamming them or using EMP bombs on a satellite is likely to be more difficult.

The consumer will ultimately benefit from these technologies if we are serious about driverless cars. Cars that navigate themselves without a human sanity check solely based on GPS will fail, even in urban canyons where the signals bounce of he glass and metal foundations on urban buildings. Have you ever sat at a red light in a city and had your nav act as though you were still moving and instinctively pressed a bit harder on the brake pedal?

 

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Russell R. Roberts, Jr.'s curator insight, March 27, 12:01 AM

DARPA is the federal agency responsible for much of the classified research carried out for the Department of Defense.  If DARPA is concerned about the integrity, availability, and security of the current GPS system, so should you.  DARPA is working on a new position-tracking technology that will be more available to users and more resistent to jamming.  Whether we realize it or not, we've been in a cyber security war for many years.  Aloha, Russ.

Oksana Borukh's curator insight, March 30, 3:18 AM

Quoted:

DARPA considers GPS unreliable, as it isn't always available and signals can be easily jammed.

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Spanish cities renamed after Islamic kingdoms in Google Maps prank - Telegraph.co.uk

Spanish cities renamed after Islamic kingdoms in Google Maps prank - Telegraph.co.uk | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
Unknown Google Maps users altering names of Spanish towns to reflect their former status as Islamic kingdoms
Luigi Cappel's insight:

As I have said in a hundred blogs or more, maintaining a national accurate map data-set is a costly exercise. It takes time, local knowledge, a lot of relationships and a passion for your country.

It has been interesting spending 8 years in one of those companies to see on one side, staff working really hard to get every single street name right, or making sure the speed zone or intersection controls are accurate and current, mapping road centre lines to sub 15cm with a car that cost hundreds of thousands of dollars, and then having major brands of car navigation and fleet management putting the squeeze on price so they can sell their product for a pittance.

When you devalue knowledge or provide open source access to modifying the core data, without expert checking, or it is managed by people who do not live in a country, or have a local customer advocacy focus, you have risk. In the car navigation and Fleet Management industries that risk is brand (or expensive tax or insurance audits) , and can end up being very expensive for the consumer who paid $99 for the device.

There are multiple edges to open source data. What level of information are you willing to accept from total strangers and build into your critical data set? This example demonstrates that not all contributors are benign.

We have some wonderful people who help with data and really want to do good work, just for the sake of being a contributing citizen. Others may want to pull pranks or have a bit of fun, which is fine if it is corrected in time, but there are others with more sinister objectives and maps have of course been a military tool for disinformation for millennia.

Whatever the cause behind the people who changed the names of Spanish towns to reflect their former Islamic status, it exposes a weakness in the management of curated tools, especially when people rely on them for accuracy to run business, to travel, to manage their lives. That's why local mapping companies are so important. As they disappear, so do years of passion, commitment and experience.

I'm not criticizing the model or Google. I doubt there is a day in my year that I don't use a Google map. I'm just suggesting that here are inherent dangers that can't be mitigated by simply revoking someone's account. How long does it take to set up a new Google account?

If you are working in open data, there are degrees of open and I suggest that you add some form of vigilance early in the process. Is near enough good enough? What are the risks to your customers, to your reputation? How do you ensure that your data product can be presented as consistently accurate and reliable?

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Farmers of the future will utilize drones, robots and GPS - Phys.Org

Farmers of the future will utilize drones, robots and GPS - Phys.Org | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
Today's agriculture has transformed into a high-tech enterprise that most 20th-century farmers might barely recognize.
Luigi Cappel's insight:

Thus the race continues. We have this paradox with humanity that through our management (perhaps an oxymoron) of the planet's ecology, we live longer. That is those of us who can afford food. We know we can't sustain the global growth in human population. We have tried GM, we use more modern technologies for every aspect of the process and this is just another leap forward. My biggest concern is that every step on this process removes the human labor element, which displaces people who can no longer pay for the food they buy, because they can no longer get jobs growing it.

If we lived in the utopia I was promised as a youth, we wouldn't have to work, but our desire for power and a lifestyle that is measured by assets and financial wealth makes it near impossible to come up with systems that redistribute resources including equal opportunities for health, education and opportunity.

We went from horse to tractor to automation of so many aspects of agriculture, at least where farms are big enough and the education is available for those who can afford it to use it. Great if you are a giant and this technology will level the playing field for western agricultural producers who have farms large enough to justify it.The costs will be significantly less.

This is not science fiction dear reader. In the past I worked for a company that pioneered such technology for the forestry industry. Using light aircraft it could count trees from the sky, genus type them and even report on their health. It also had technology from the ground that could scan a tree and tell you how much harvest-able timber each tree contained. Unfortunately the industry went into a nosedive and many companies couldn't afford the technology.

Today even small farms (by western standards) use GPS daily in farm management, but there is still the element of how much an experienced farmer, vs farm hands and casual labor can cover on motorcycles, horses, tractors and SUV's. Many farms share equipment and  technology and often a contractor will develop a specialty and provide that service to others. The concepts here will work well and increase yield and production, enabling us to feed more people.

But what about the 3rd world. If we could enable farmers in small villages in Africa, Asia, South America with technology like this, we could up production and feed more people. This would be great for the ecology, for the planet in so many ways from providing healthy food, to greater production of bio-fuels, to balancing the planetary ecosystem.

The fatal flaw that I don't see being answered anywhere is the rampant population growth will escalate. We may delay the tipping point on climate change, we may improve the standard of living all over the globe, but we will also promote even more rapid growth of population. That can't go on for ever. There are always other planets, but I can't see us getting to them in a hurry and unless we invent new means of mass transit across great distances, that might mean that the human race itself is not doomed, but it may not solve the problems on Earth. On that front we are our own worst enemies and as long as enough of us feel we have more rights, or are more right, than our fellow man, the clock continues to tick to our race's impending doom.

In New Zealand there is a TV advertisement that says the planet doesn't need us. It managed very well before humankind and will manage after we have moved on. What's sobering to a thinking person is that this is a very true statement. Do you think birds and cockroaches care about OLED TV's and self driving cars?

 

 

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Government Orders GPS Installation in All Cabs Plying in Delhi

Government Orders GPS Installation in All Cabs Plying in Delhi | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
The Delhi Taxis' Union has threatened to launch a series of protest if government does not withdraw its decision immediately.
Luigi Cappel's insight:

So here we go again. A couple of years ago they said that all rickshaws should have GPS, but it transpired that the operators could not afford the cheapest solution available and if I remember correctly, it was too expensive.

My questions though are about how this will protect women passengers. Will there be a panic switch that the passenger in danger can access easily. The location would need to be clearly marked and the driver would of course know where that location is. The driver also would need a panic switch in case of an accident or incident where they themselves are in danger. If they have radios, they may already have that feature without the location information. Traditional taxi alarms hold the communications channel open so that the call centre can hear everything being said in the can and the driver then only needs to make some sort of comment about where they are or where they are going.

The GPS devices, can be very low cost. Vodafone for example could provide devices in volume that connect to the ODB2 port in the taxi for well under $US100, complete with built in SIM Card. The extras would be the means of triggering the alarm (software and hardware) and an annual SMS subscription fee.

A smart taxi company would just invest in them, make sure they vet their staff very well, have a monitoring system in place that checks that all devices on taxis that are working, can be seen on a map, then market aggressively saying that they are a safe company for passengers to drive with. They could even get Government Support in this marketing as a reward for being the first cab off the rank with this service.

The risk, which is why it needs to be monitored in real time is that a taxi driver doing something or being somewhere they shouldn't, s likely to interfere with the GPS antenna. As in previous blogs I have given the example of people who wrapped their GPS antenna in aluminum foil, blocking the signal of the GPS. We were however onto that trick and consistent offenders no longer work for that company.

 

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Mass. man indicted for using GPS to orchestrate attack on ex-wife in Portsmouth - The Union Leader

Mass. man indicted for using GPS to orchestrate attack on ex-wife in Portsmouth - The Union Leader | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
A Massachusetts man is facing new charges for secretly planting a GPS-device inside his estranged wife’s car and directing a bat-wielding assailant to a Portsmouth home where she was savagely beaten in bed alongside her boyfriend, prosecutors said.
Luigi Cappel's insight:

Here is a classic example of how we don't want GPS being used. The good news is these guys were caught. I sometimes fear when curating stories like this, that I am giving other people ideas, particularly people who want to abuse technology to nefarious ends, but then as my little 6 year old tells me, the bad guys get caught. In this case the same GPS information that helped him track his estranged wife, resulted in the evidence that is likely to see him convicted.

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Google Maps for iOS auto-dimming is driving users crazy - CNET

Google Maps for iOS auto-dimming is driving users crazy - CNET | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
Undocumented feature dims the screen between directions to save battery, but it's having unintended consequences.
Luigi Cappel's insight:

One of the big issues in using phones as GPS nav devices remains battery power. As a power mobile user and a power location based services users, the battery is a major problem for me.

To illustrate the power drain of car navigation, plug in your portable car navigation device and see how long it takes for the battery to go flat. My TomTom is about two years and the battery hard;y holds a charge at all, but when it was new it lasted about 4 hours on a fully charged battery of it wasn't plugged in. That's a battery that is probably much larger than the battery in my iPhones.

GPS solutions use communications all the time, because they have to locate and calculate their location by receiving signals from satellites. The nature of the moving map is the equivalent of watching a movie, watching the maps move which you shouldn't be doing a lot of the time, for its distraction factor also uses a lot of power as players of games will tell you.

This is a problem for mobiles. my business phone is an iPhone 5s and the battery no longer lasts a day, i.e. I have to remember to charge it regularly. There was a time when I carried phones with a spare battery, just as I do with my SLR digital camera. I' can't do that with my iPhone, although I can off course carry one of those portable chargers and do, from time to time.

I like this feature, but obviously it should be programmable, including the degree of dimming. But there might be other features they could also consider, like how often it updates your physical location, using gestures or taps to wake up the screen when navigating so the back-lit screen can go to sleep, but be instantly on when you need it i.e. it doesn't turn off, it just uses less power.

One of the things I frequently talk about is that no matter what phase a technology is at, we demand more from it. It seems that battery power remains to be one of the biggest limiting factors in portable computing and telecommunications. The apps and functionality we most like to use are the ones that consume the most power.

 

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Where women have the most economic opportunity and security, in 5 maps - Washington Post (blog)

Where women have the most economic opportunity and security, in 5 maps - Washington Post (blog) | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
A new study offers a national tour of the economic conditions for women.
Luigi Cappel's insight:

So in the land of the brave, home of the free, are things all as they need to be?

One does need to be careful interpreting some of these statistics. Not all women want to have high profile careers. Not all people want to live an affluent lifestyle. For many women, supporting their family is a top priority and having a nice home that doesn't look like a handyman's dream, close to family and in a safe environment for kids to go out and play represents total success.

However, the American dream, which to me has focused on the right and ability for all people to be treated equal, regardless of race, creed, color (does it say gender?) should mean equality anywhere in the country.

You could look at some of these maps and say, well this is a poor state, it's not just women who are on low incomes, low educations and lifestyle. But there are indisputable trends that this map shows that are work looking at.

I live in New Zealand, the country which first gave women the right to vote. I live in a country that had one of the first woman Prime Minister's and many of our companies are ably led by women. That doesn't mean that gender doesn't still sometimes come into the equation, and I'm sure if I had time to dig down I would find towns or areas where we could do better, but fundamentally I believe our maps would show far greater equality than the country that more than any other, espouses to stand up for full and equal rights for all citizens. I find that interesting.

Check out the maps and let me know what you think.

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Delta Now Offering Pet Tracking with Wireless GPS

Delta Now Offering Pet Tracking with Wireless GPS | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
Delta Now Offering Pet Tracking with Wireless GPS
Luigi Cappel's insight:

Delta has got it right in this case, pun intended.  Not only will they let you track your luggage and pay you a penalty of 2,500 Sky Miles if your luggage doesn't turn up within 20 minutes, but they will also track your pet for you with GPS. 

This is a great response to a PR debacle when people flew to New York for the prestigious Westminster Dog Show, but their pets ended up in Seattle and other places, not New York. Unlike United, they have taken a really bad situation, learned from it, committed to a better result and now provide a service which people will trust.

As to United, not only do they have a reputation for damaging guitars, they don't appear to have learned from it. I stopped flying with them after a trip to Orlando, where I took one of my favorite guitars in a brand new case. When I picked up my guitar from the fragile luggage counter, it rattled. The bridge was broken and the piezo microphone power pack had been knocked out of its mount, which takes an enormous amount of pressure. When I asked for support from United staff at the airport they told me I obviously had a faulty case and that it was my fault. I've done a lot of travel since then, but not with United. They would not accept a claim and I spent my first day in Orlando getting it fixed so I could play a gig  in Longwood.

I love the idea of luggage tracking and I know SITA has been looking at this for years. My question is, if we have to have our mobile devices in flight mode when we fly, how can they have a cargo hold with a concentration of luggage and pets all transmitting their location in a fly by wire plane?

Anyway, I did fly Delta a couple of years ago and whilst the plane broke down in Denver and their agent thought Auckland was in Australia, the service was pretty good. I was too scared to carry my new guitar home as hand luggage so sent that by FedEx, but that was a hangover from my United experience, not Delta.

Word to the wise, I've been told a number of times that the care some ground crew treat your luggage with is inversely proportional to the number of fragile stickers on it.

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How This $7000 E-Bike's GPS Tech Thwarted a Thief - Wired

How This $7000 E-Bike's GPS Tech Thwarted a Thief - Wired | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
With the help of some built in theft-deterrent technology Bill Kiriakis was reunited his brand new e-bike just two hours after discovering it was stolen.
Luigi Cappel's insight:

My first thought was who buys a $7,000 bike unless they are seriously into cycling as a sport, but then you could ask, who buys a Maserati?

This is obviously a very cool, bike, event the thief said so.

I love the feature that says the bike has been stolen, locks the back wheel, starts lights flashing and even has a light that says 'THEFT'. The best part is that you can lead Police to the exact location of the bike.

What I like the most is that all of this, including the pairing to the phone, which I assume includes other features, is that it is a standard feature of the bike, not an optional extra, hence the ability to do things like lock one of the wheels. Regular bike thieves will quickly learn to leave bikes of this brand where they are. Those that don't, and those purchasers who don't raise an eyebrow when they pay $100 for a sophisticated bike, might find it extremely good value when a night's accommodation is included......in a Police cell.

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GPS tracking counts as a "search", says US Supreme Court - Naked Security

GPS tracking counts as a "search", says US Supreme Court - Naked Security | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
The court sided with an offender who argued that being forced to wear a location monitor for the rest of his life is unconstitutional.
Luigi Cappel's insight:

Hopefully this will simply result in a modification of the wording. It means that the convicted criminal as a condition of parole consents to the GPS anklet, or serves more of their sentence. The anklets are only there for people who are at risk of re-offending and I would have thought home detention would be preferable to being in jail.

These challenges are a legitimate way of making sure that the wording of a sentence is legal and if not, the wording needs to keep up with changes in technology. Thousands of people would still be in jail without the chance to redeem themselves and start fresh lives if it wasn't for GPS anklets. Recidivist criminals would otherwise have  conditions including daily reporting or have to be checked to make sure they are still at home or where they are supposed to be and often without a deterrent, would violate their conditions, with the consequence that more police are required to  watch parolees instead of being out and about preventing or resolving crimes.

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ByHours Now Lets You Book a Hotel Room in London for 3, 6 or 12 hours

ByHours Now Lets You Book a Hotel Room in London for 3, 6 or 12 hours | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
If you think the only accommodation you can book by the hour is the sort of end-of-the-line motels you might find littering parts of the US, then ByHours’ decidedly conventional hotel…
Luigi Cappel's insight:

A few years ago, some bright spark saved the company $100 on a return trip to Amsterdam where I was an international speaker at a conference on location based services.

My return flight was Lufthansa from Amsterdam via Munich to San Francisco and then via Air NZ back to Auckland. I arrived in San Francisco around 6AM and in order to save the company $100 I had to stay there until around 9PM for my flight home. Whilst I have been to California several times this was my first trip to San Fran and I was excitedly trying to work out what I could fit into a 12 or so hour day.

I arrived and so did my luggage, but it transpired that Air NZ did not have a luggage handling agreement with Lufthansa, so I had to hang on to all my luggage until the Air NZ check in people arrived.

It turned out they didn't arrive until 2 hours before the flight departure so I had to look after my luggage (which was too much to cart around) for 13 hours.

Because of anti terrorism laws I couldn't leave my luggage anywhere at the airport, although I was thinking you could put plenty of explosives into the tiny little lockers available for rent.

If I'd had an app that told me about local places where I could get a day room I would have happily put that on my company credit card, grabbed a shower and maybe a nap between sight seeing and returning to catch my flight that evening.

Unfortunately my next longish day stop will be in China, not the USA, but to avoid having a really tiring and annoying trip like my San Francisco experience, you might consider an app like this a great investment.

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Zoologists tap into GPS to track badger movements - Phys.Org

Zoologists tap into GPS to track badger movements - Phys.Org | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
Zoologists from Trinity College Dublin's School of Natural Sciences are using GPS tracking technology to keep a 'Big Brother' eye on badgers in County Wicklow.
Luigi Cappel's insight:

I guess I've seen a badger at a zoo somewhere, obviously they didn't make a big impressions on me. They can make a big impression on dairy or beef farming because they spread TB. but apparently little is known about exactly how the disease transfers from one species to another. That's part of the purpose of this exercise which shows another great use of GPS as a technology to understand how things happen in our world. Obviously this study is in Ireland, but our part of the world isn't immune.

In New Zealand bovine tuberculosis is known to be spread by possums. Same problem. What happens if our beef, dairy and deer were to get TB? Have a think about our economy and the fact that 14 Billion dollars of our exports are from parts of these three animal groups. All it would take is a major reputation scare to send our economy down the drenching chute.

What other problems could we solve or gain better understanding of with the use of GPS and other locational technology?

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GPS navigation involved when car plunges off demolished Indiana bridge

GPS navigation involved when car plunges off demolished Indiana bridge | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
EAST CHICAGO, Ind. (AP) — Police say a driver apparently was following GPS navigation when he drove off the ramp to a demolished bridge that had been closed since 2009, killing his wife. The Times ...
Luigi Cappel's insight:

I can't comment on the GPS navigation map. It could be that the map data hadn't been updated by the car nav manufacturer, or it could be that the driver was using an old device with an old map data-set. A huge number of people don't update their navigation maps. When was the last time you updated your maps?

Bottom line as I have said in so many blogs. The navigation is a guide. You are not in a driverless car. You have windows and as the disclaimer says when you start up your navigation, it is an aid only and you must drive based on what you see out of your windscreen. Clearly the road was well marked and blocked off. Enough said.

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Mawson Lakes: Police arrest two boys with machetes after they allegedly steal car fitted with GPS tracking device

Mawson Lakes: Police arrest two boys with machetes after they allegedly steal car fitted with GPS tracking device | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
TWO teenage boys were allegedly found with machetes in a stolen car after SA Police tracked their every movement using a GPS system fitted to the vehicle.
Luigi Cappel's insight:

Have I ever told you I love these stories? A question for you. Do you have a where's my phone app installed on your mobile?

Here's a thought about vehicles. With vehicle tracking devices now being available for less than $100 if  you buy enough of them, why don't insurance companies give them to you as part of your insurance package? It could be limited to cars over a certain value, but simply  means of shared risk. Whenever a car is reported stolen, it s tracked, governed or disabled, depending on how fast it is going and where, and reported to the police complete with it's current location. Why not even lock the doors so that the thieves are stuck in the car until the police arrive. Yes I understand there are safety risks to those people who accidentally found themselves driving a car that didn't belong to them, but you could use the technology that alerts you when you aren't wearing your seat-belts, to lock the belts from opening as well, that way they can't hurt themselves, although they could cut themselves out with their machetes.

With so many new cars coming out with GPS based technology, hopefully it will become increasingly more difficult to steal them, although given stories I have heard about sophisticated crooks able to hack the key-less entry systems, particularly of top of the line cars, they are going to need to get smarter.

So the last question is, who has more to lose if your car gets stolen, you or your insurance company. Perhaps it depends on how easy your car (and the things in it) are to replace.

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ESPLORIO An online social media travel diary - Geographical

ESPLORIO An online social media travel diary - Geographical | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
Esplorio is an online travel diary that brings together Twitter, Flickr, Instagram, Foursquare and several other social networks.
Luigi Cappel's insight:

On my last road trip I made extensive use of Foursquare to track where I had been over a 4,000 mile journey across 4 states. It was incredibly useful because I had taken so many photos on my mobile and I didn't have location working on my camera, it was all but impossible to identify which photos I had taken where.

I bought a couple of travel diary apps, but because I was an FIT and spent many evenings looking for accommodation, deciding on attractions to visit (most of the state tourism operators still do tourism guide books, not apps) ans negotiating on accommodation, writing a diary in one of the beautiful applications was just more than I could deal with.

The photos and check ins worked a treat, but then I still had to deal with working through them all. So I was very pleased to find Esplorio before I leave for my next trip, especially because it links multiple social media apps together.

I installed it this morning before work and it took me all of about 2 minutes to link half a dozen social media accounts and hey presto it showed me where I had been yesterday. Now the main thing I need to focus on is having fun and collecting my favorite shots as I did last time to print a photo book of my trip.

There is suggestion that in future it will also offer travel information around the locations you go to which is welcome because I am looking for new places to see and new things to do. Foursquare and Swarm are pretty good at that, but I don't want to miss out on anything.

If you want a travel diary but can't be bothered making entries because you want to experience your trip while you are on it. Check this one out. It's free.

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Save time and money with free travel apps - The Seattle Times

Save time and money with free travel apps - The Seattle Times | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
Use apps to find last-minute hotels, free Wi-Fi hot spots, good happy hours and more.
Luigi Cappel's insight:

Just when you think the topic of free travel apps has been done to death an article forces its way to your attention with a few apps you didn't know about.

Ever been forced to change your plans and the deal you bought it on was no cancellations, no refunds? First of all, whenever I've had that situation, the property has been prepared to give me a credit or a some sort of a deal that means I don't lose out entirely. If you make the phone calls and sincerely apologize with an explanation, most properties in the hospitality industry will do their best to help out. If you were a no show and didn't tell them, thus making it impossible for them to reseller your room, well that's a different story. So apparently the app Roomer allows you to resell that room to someone else.

WiFi Finder. I tend to be very weary of WiFi expect on my iOS devices, having had my account hacked by someone in China while I was in a hotel in Australia. But an app that tells you where to get free WiFi is great. Just make sure your device is well protected and if possible don't do any banking, or financial transactions on those public places.

Happy Hour. I'm not so much into those any more, but they do happen all over the place as businesses look to up their patronage. Lets face it, with taxes and not being able to drink and drive, getting discounted drinks can go towards the taxi fare or simply get a good deal. I'm all for anything that encourages properties to offer good value for money. Just remember price isn't everything.
My TSA. I like this. I travel a lot, some people don't and there are still people who don't understand that you can't carry your family heirloom diamond studded nail file on-board the plane. You can't carry large bottles of liquid in your check in luggage. I've seen people in tears over things they packed and can't take on boars. It's great to have an app that tells you what you can and can't take.

Best Parking. In the world of travel information, we know that car park availability is very important and when motorists drive around in circles after finding that the park nearest to their destination is full, it causes stress and traffic congestion as they drive around in circles trying to find a park. So it is great to have an app to tell you where the best parks are, my TomTom does that too, but what I really want to know is where is the nearest to my destination, do they have parks available, what do they charge and what time do they close?

Last one out of this list, which is great but perhaps a little scary, Air PNP. That's right, places where people will let you use their conveniences and have a tinkle. This raises the security hackles around my neck, but we have all been in situations where we had to go in a hurry right? I had a woman knock on my door one Christmas who was playing bagpipes in a Santa parade and desperately needed to go. It turned out she was also a police officer, which made me feel a bit better about having a total stranger use my bathroom, but I'm not sure about people who advertise, come and have a tinkle at my place for $2. How about you?

 

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What we lose when GPS does all our navigating for us - Washington Post (blog)

What we lose when GPS does all our navigating for us - Washington Post (blog) | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
The last holdouts — cab drivers — are increasingly adopting the technology.
Luigi Cappel's insight:

I am all for these discussions, they are important, but I'm not sure that this isn't a Luddite expression of a wish for things of the past. I'm sure people said the same thing about the car. When you are on your horse, you can breathe in the fresh air, you are in tune with nature and your environment, you can take off your hat and exchange conversation, polite or otherwise with strangers.

But how about some other thoughts. With navigation, I get the fastest route to where I'm going because that's where I'm going to do my socializing, my work, enjoy the roses. I can avoid the worst traffic that the city planners didn't foresee when we did away with the horse and cart.

I can avoid the person in the 6 berth motor home who has never driven anything that big before, let alone with a map book on the steering wheel as he crosses into my lane looking for a street sign or a landmark.I don't get stuck driving in circles because I couldn't find a street sign on a one-way urban road network, making me late and stressed and distracted so that I am now myself at risk of being the cause of an accident.

Personally I don't like asking for directions. Often the people I used to ask didn't know how to get to my destination themselves or have the spatial awareness of how to navigate. I would argue that isn't so much a skill that we have lost, but more one that many of us (not myself of course) never hard to start with.

As to taxi drivers, in many parts of the world they do know where they are going, but then as you'll find often when you visit a city like Wellington, New Zealand, if you arrive from the airport to go into town, or in Sydney wanting to go to the North Shore, the taxi drivers know where they are going alright, but if you show that you don't, there is a 50:50 chance they will take you the long, or the congested way, by asking you which way you want to go. Where I live, taxis have been deregulated and a lot of the cheaper taxis will happily take you the long way, which is one of the arguments for a service like Uber (or prepaid fares), that if you have an agreed fare, they will take you the quickest way. My GPS helps me keep the cabbie honest.

My GPS tells me where to find petrol, I no longer have that nagging feeling about whether I should have stopped at that last gas station, should I go back? My map book and spatial awareness was never able to tell me that I was going to run out of gas, how much gas I have available to the next destination and where the next petrol station on my route was.

I still know where north is and what direction my destination is in. I have a choice of routes, I can even randomly go in different directions and explore, anywhere in the world, knowing that my GPS will help me find my way to where I want to be.

There was a time that I felt I needed to walk  in concentric circles from my hotel in a strange city, in a strange country. When I got my first GPS, I was able to go explore cities like London and Paris, jump on the Metro and hop off when I felt like it, knowing it would be easy to use my GPS power Smartphone to find my way back. I have the choice and the freedom without the stress.

If it all fails, I can still ask for directions, catch a cab or use Uber (who are typically locals and often want to be a tour guide. Of course the beauty of all this technology is that we can opt out of it if and when we want to. Even the geekiest of us still frequently do that.

 

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Facebook fugitive attached GPS monitor to a “motorized contraption” - Ars Technica

Facebook fugitive attached GPS monitor to a “motorized contraption” - Ars Technica | Location Is Everywhere | Scoop.it
Stunt was to give appearance "he was still present and moving within his home."
Luigi Cappel's insight:

This is a belief it or not story. I've had field service workers put aluminum foil over their GPS antenna, but that quickly got them the spare time they were looking for. They could have just asked. This one certainly gets points for creativity.

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