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GPS Panic Alarm

location panic button
  (+9, -2)
(+9, -2)
  [vote for,

Maybe have a panic button type gadget which incorporates a gps device. If someone gets attacked, then all they have to do is hit the button. A function then dials the police station with a message including the exact location of the alarm.

Good for women walking home alone at night etc....

redleader, Jul 17 2000

Enhanced 911 http://www.fcc.gov/e911/
Includes the ability to locate the caller. Baked? [egnor, Jul 17 2000, last modified Oct 04 2004]


       Since GPS doesn't work in a handbag or pocket, the user would have to always wear their GPS beanie, though...
jutta, Jul 17 2000

       The point is, what self-respecting mugger is goint to wait around while you get your phone out, call the police, and give your location to them. I didn't realise that GPS doesn't work in you pocket or handbag, otherwise it could be activated completely out of sight
redleader, Jul 18 2000

       It's even worse than that - GPS systems also take time to figure out where they are, once they're out of the bag. By the time they've reinitialized themselves after a long sleep, the mugging is probably over.   

       So, let's assume this is a crime that takes longer. After you pull out your little GPSInfoGrenade(TM), push the "activate" button, and throw it away, the thug has a choice of either sticking around and getting nicked, or running to the device, finding it, and covering it up before the GPS Almanac has been downloaded - giving you a chance to either run away, or to get your cell phone out and make your call!
jutta, Jul 18 2000

       You know, they're putting them in cars now. And I'm sure we're all aware of the 911-cell phones that are available. It's probably not so far-fetched to have it available. I've got a better use for small GPS units though.
algioru, May 23 2001

       GPS is a technology in its infancy (and seems to have been there for an awfully long time). When GPS grows up and the signal becomes as easy to pick up as mobile phone signals are today then this will be a great idea. It's worth keeping around until then.   

       A more immediate use for this could be as a distress signal for hill walkers and mountain climbers. So you may have broken both legs and be completely off course but push the panic button on your mobilephone/GPS panic device and it calls mountain rescue stating your position. If you still have the power of speech you can tell them what state you're in too.   

       You should be able to pick up a GPS signal on the side of a hillside the only problem might be the mobile phone signal. Since I've witnessed a call form the top of Ben Nevis, if this isn't baked then it probably will be soon.
st3f, May 23 2001

       Not everyone apprecciates the military approach, but what I see is a PDA (personal digital assistant) carried by a squad leader that's linked to a GPS unit on his war gear. His squad members, maybe every two of them are wearing emitting fabric on their uniforms somewhere. On his PDA they register as blue dots like they do for the tanks these days. He sits there with his light pen and checks the terrain, the battle plan and the location of his nearest freindly units. He marks on it that another squad needs to move to a certain position nearby. As he's writing, his directions are transmitted in real-time to the other squad leader's PDA and to HQ.
algioru, May 24 2001

       algioru: Part baked, part bad.   

       Baked bit: British army [at least implies on its recruitment ads that it] uses GPS enabled radio PDAs to call in air strikes from the field.   

       Bad bit: "wearing emitting fabric on their uniforms" - If you're ever going to put me into combat, for the love of the deity of your choice, please don't radio tag me so that the enemy can target me. "Blip blip blip blip... ping. Got another one, sir." "Fire at will private."
st3f, May 24 2001

       Isn't this all baked with E911?
egnor, May 24 2001

       You know, I thought of that. I figure that if you can scramble a radio signal in such a way that it takes weeks (even as a little as a few hours) to crack, why couldn't the signal sent from the equipment they're wearing do the same thing. I would just do so randomly so that the method of encryption changes every, for example, 12 hrs when it's actually turned on. It wouldn't take a computer much smarter than a good calculator to do that.   

       The benefit is that freindly fire casualties caused by indirect fire would drop. It also helps the infantryman take advantage of the resources surrounding him in the form of terrain, freindly forces and up-to-the-minute intel.
algioru, May 25 2001

       I would for sure not want a transmitting uniform! You don't need to decode a thing - just pin down the location and shoot-em-up with 100% success.
jetckalz, May 25 2001

       You know, the guy who carries the squad radio only gets shot when, in the mess of the conflict, someone sees him wearing it. Just because the technology exists to do a thing does not mean that is, necessarily, the case. Your average American company-sized unit wouldn't have the technology to do it. Advanced aircraft might. What's happening is that we're throwing the baby out with the water.
algioru, May 27 2001

       algioru: Possibly I was a little hasty. You could have a fabric transmitting uniform that maintains radio silence until it is interrogated by the PDA. It would therefore only squirt out the occasional radio signal every 30 (-ish) seconds. Sounds a little safer than a constantly-transmitting uniform.   

       idea2 - shielded satellite uplinks. Use heavily directional aerials which transmit upwards but have very little leakage sideways. Using these each node on the radio link would be able to stay in touch via a (satellite/network of spy planes/pie in the sky) without giving away their position.   

       The systems still have a shared weakness. If the encryption is broken or the PDA falls into enemy hands you give the enemy complete intelligence.
st3f, May 29 2001

       I like idea 2. So, aircraft (like the AWACS) and rear ground-transmition vehicles need to assist in the use of that.   

       I appreciate your rethinking the concept. Most people stay stuck on their convictions without ever taking time to re-evaluate.   

       The problem you mention with the equipment falling into enemy hands has been a problem for some time until the new SINGARS radios. These require certain access measures to operate the radio and the frequencies are encrypted. The old PRK-77s were such a hassle to switch that the radio man (often a Private or PFC who didn't understand the importance of it) would leave it on a hot channel instead on an open channel. Just as that problem was solved, I'm sure imagination and innovation can solve this one.
algioru, May 29 2001

       One application is having these devices at fair grounds or large complexes whwre kids may get separated from parents.   

       If a child gets lost a security guard or the child themselves can press the button to have you pages with their relative locations.   

       Two problems: a> How did kids get lost :-) b> What happens if child is taken/attacked? Device may become useless   

       NB: Devices are sold where the GPS is hidden in a backpack or watch so you can track children on the web---orwellian???   

group_of_seven, Jul 29 2003


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