Thursday, December 16, 2004

GPS to be switched off during major crisis

The Bushies have made public their intention to turn off the GPS system in case of a major terrorist attack. Ok, so just when Americans might need GPS the most, they won't have it. Do they plan to shut down the cell phone system too? Terrorists use cell phones to detonate bombs after all. How about the Internet? Terrorists might be using it too.

I suppose it would be irresponsible of the people at Homeland Security to not even consider shutting down parts of our information infrastructure in the case of a terrorist attack, but I think switching off GPS is a dumb idea in most scenarios.

In Tom Clancy's novel Rainbox Six, there was an Information Technology (IT) guy on the team and he used a program (or command code of some sort) to shut down cell phones, but he had to drive to the local tower to do it, and he only shut the cell phone system down locally.

Oh well, like I needed a reason to own a compass (or three). GPS is a nice toy...until the batteries run out and then you're back to the compass and maps.

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