GPS in cars
Class name and code:
GPS in Cars
Due to the developments achieved in the field of IT, some complex as well as cognitively demanding technologies has emerged in modern transportation. One of these systems is the use of global positioning system (GPS) technology. This is a navigation system that is used for continually broadcasting the position, time, and date. GPS receivers are attached to cell phones, vehicles, and other equipment on the ground and utilize information from satellite signals in calculating their locations. Currently, cell phones are equipped with GPS. This technology is currently use for tracking and cataloging people’s behaviors. However, this has remained a controversial issue with some people supporting it and others completely opposed to the idea of tracking with the use of the technology due to privacy issues (Brynjolfsson, 5).
The hardware software and telecommunication of a GPS
Telecommunications is a major industry that deals with the creation of hardware, production of software, and service provision. Hardware comprises some products that are created with the aim of facilitating communication, globally, as well as others such as telephone handsets, fiber-optic transmission cables, and video broadcasting satellites among others. Services such as enabling switches to run controlling the telephone systems, provision of access to the internet, and configuration of private networks are provided through the hardware (Sokolović, 448). Software comprises of the programs that enable all this to work, from transmission of e-mails to sending data via the satellite to controlling switching in telephone systems. Such are the concepts that are applied to GPS. The system has a Position Logic platform for tracking, which can be accessed through different GPS devices.
The global positioning system (GPS) is used about a constellation of 24 satellites that circle the earth on six different orbital paths. The satellites orbit the earth a single time after every 12 hours and in doing so, it can calculate the time, position and velocity of any GPS receiver. This is done through accurate timing calculations as well as a technique known as triangulation. This technique operates on the idea that one can find any location in case the distance from another three locations can be determined. Conceived for the first time by the United States Air Force in the 1960s, the technology has cost $14 billion (GPSWorld) and taken three and half decades to develop (Miller, 554). Other branches of the United States military joined the project in 1974, other branches, and it was announced operational in 1995 (Sokolović, 450). Its current usage has continued to increase, and it is applied in various sectors such as transportation.
The system works with the GPS satellites circling the earth two times every day in a perfect orbit, transmitting some information signals to the earth. This information is taken up by GPS receivers and using triangulation the precise location of the user is calculated. Basically, the receiver makes a comparison of the time when the transmission of the signal occurred with the time when the user obtained it. The GPS receiver reads the distance of the satellite from the time difference. With measurements of distance, from some satellites, the recipient can tell the position of the user, displaying the electronic map of the units.
In calculating a 2D position (longitude and latitude) and tracking movement, the receiver of the GPS should be linked to at least three satellites’ signal. The 3D position of the user (longitude. latitude, and altitude) is determined when there is a view of four or more satellites. After determining the position of the user, other information can be calculated by the GPS unit. The information includes bearing, speed, track, trip distance, sunrise and sunset time, and distance to destination among others (Sokolović, 452).
Uses and reasons of the GPS
Since the GPS was made available by the United States military for civil usage, an increase in the use of the technology has been noted in the private or commercial sector. Currently, the technology is mostly being used for navigation, law enforcement, scientific research, fleet monitoring and many other private and leisure activities. This technology is so versatile such that it can be utilized for any outdoor activity. Currently, there are even golf GPS applications that can be used in displaying the layout of each hole as well as the location of the player course. Most of the new vehicles are installed with the technology to aid in navigation. They are also used in case of third person use of the vehicle such as in car rentals and public transport to track the location of the car all the time. The technology is being used by scientists for research on the movement of arctic ice sheets, tectonic plates, and volcanic activity (Miller, 555).
Technologies for monitoring movements of people are presently available in the United States. Various companies such as Wherify have specialized in the location-based products and services. A common product that is offered by the company is Wherifone with GPS receiver incorporated into a mobile phone. The device depends on the person’s use of the phone for tracking purposes. This is not hard in the modern age as many people are relying on the phone in their daily lives. The technology can also be used for tracking a group of persons. Those with special needs such as those suffering from Alzheimer’s and dementia can be tracked with ease in case they go out wandering. Criminals out on parole can also be easily tracked with the use of the technology to ensure that they do not break their parole regulations. The GPS can play an important role in providing an alibi for the crime (Holstein, 41).
Benefits of having a GPS
The GPS technology is beneficial for some reasons. One of the benefits is aiding navigation. With the use of the GPS system, it is possible for a driver to get accurate directions, whether one is driving locally, nationally or internationally. Besides directions, one can get constant monitoring of the present position. This minimizes the chances of getting lost, even when one is in a new place that he or she is no familiar with. It is highly convenient when driving if one can navigate around without getting lost or having to ask around (Plunkett, 72).
GPS Tracking is beneficial to ensure security of cars. For instance, for people who operate businesses that depend on vehicles, such as rental business, courier business, or simply delivery services, it is possible to track the movement of the vehicle to avoid delays or theft of the car. It can also be beneficial in reducing overhead. Even in case a vehicle is stolen, with GPS Tracking it becomes easier to locate it. Parents are benefiting from tracking where security of their children is at stake.
For instance, for a long time, parent of public school children in District of Columbia have been dissatisfied with the buses coming late or failing to come at all. A federal court in the District required the use of a technology that would allow the buses to be tracked at all times. The technology would provide tracking services to clients like District of Columbia, Fairfax County, state and federal government organizations, private companies, and police departments. This would make it possible the tracking of school buses, keeping the parent at ease with the assurance of the safety of their children. Besides equipping the buses with GPS technology, children with special needs using the transportation are provided with cards that log once they board or alight from the bus. The parents get secret codes which make it possible for them to track their children using the Internet (Plunkett, 72).
GPS technology has come on the increase in the current era and its interest has extended worldwide. This is because of the capability to give the exact location of a device fitted with the system. There are very many applications of the technology, for private, corporate and government use. GPS is coming with a variety of benefits for various individuals and organizations. The technology has, thus, increased in use even though it remains controversial due to the issues of invasion of privacy. This technology is currently use for tracking and cataloging people’s behaviors. The GPS can play an important role in providing an alibi for the crime.
Brynjolfsson, Erik, and Adam Saunders. Wired For Innovation : How Information Technology Is Reshaping The Economy. Cambridge, Mass: The MIT Press, 2010.
Holstein, Ann L. “Geographic Information And Technologies In Academic Libraries: An ARL Survey Of Services And Support.” Information Technology & Libraries 34.1 (2015): 38-51
Miller, Jordan. “New Age Tracking Technologies In The Post-United States V. Jones Environment: The Need For Model Legislation.” Creighton Law Review 48.3 (2015): 553-603.
Plunkett, Jack W. The Next Boom : What You Absolutely, Positively Have To Know About The World Between Now And 2025. Houston, Tex: Plunkett Research, Ltd, 2010
Sokolović, Vlada, et al. “INS/GPS Navigation System Based On MEMS Technologies.” Strojniski Vestnik / Journal Of Mechanical Engineering 61.7/8 (2015): 448-458
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