Tue 20 November 2007
The Ventura Star has run an article about privacy issues and modern geolocation technology.
As important as this topic is, John Moore (the author) is clearly uninformed. This is a horrible piece of journalism. Moore mixes the potential negative effects of various technology such as RFID, cellular communication, sensor networks, nanotech, community data collection efforts, navigation systems, and GPS into one chilling, over-simplified and baseless viewpoint. Instead of reporting the details of Michael Goodchild's talk at Ventura College, he treated us to his own paranoid, incoherent vision of the future of technology. Moore's entire premise is based on the fact that:
"GPS is a system that basically allows you to know where you are anywhere in the world within one meter"
That much is true. He uses this fact to extrapolate the conclusion that GPS allows some nefarious force to monitor your groceries, cell phone calls, and indeed your every movement.
GPS recieves satellite signals translates those signals into a location. It takes an entirely different technology to transmit these locations to some third party. I guarantee you that none of my gps tracks have gotten into anyones hands without my consent (come on John Moore, prove me otherwise).
The title speaks volumes to his ignorance:
"Where are you in life? If you don't know, others using GPS devices do"
Suggesting that other people with GPS can a) track my movements or b) be tracked by me , shows a complete lack of understanding of the technology. Sure there are privacy dangers. But those dangers must be presented clearly and concisely by someone with half a clue, not this paranoid bullshit journalism. This article would not even pass as a high school essay.