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Widely described as one of the most romantic cities in the world, Venice is a destination spot for many honeymooners and couples in love. The main attraction of the Italian city are the gondola rides that transport couples throughout the city where roads are paved with water. With gondoliers serenading couples in love and kisses being shared under bridges, it is impossible not to see and feel the beauty of the city. Unfortunately, the popular tourist spot has seen a rapid rise in traffic on the waterways resulting in a variety of problems including accidents, one of which resulted in the death of European tourist recently. In a effort to unclog city waterways and provide an overall better experience for gondola riders, city officials in Venice have decided to move forward with the use of GPS tracking systems to monitor gondolas and other watercraft in hope it will improve maritime safety.
A couple months back in August while on the Grand Canal near the infamous historical site of the Rialto Bridge a man was killed due to what local investigators describe as negligence. The aftermath of the tragedy resulted in a couple gondoliers and a few vaporetti pilot is being investigated by law enforcement officials. The hope is that with better fleet management strategies through the use of GPS tracking systems that tragedies like the above mentioned become a thing of the past. City officials believe that eliminating accidents and reducing near misses among water taxis and other vessels with the help of GPS trackers will only help the local economy and increase the visitor experienced.
What the new GPS tracking system policy will do is make it mandatory that approximately 5,000 different vessels be equipped with GPS trackers. The GPS devices will determine the speed of water vessels, historical routes and other locational data that will be accompanied with time stamps. This new tracking system is thought to be much more detailed and reliable than the previous method in which gondolas and other watercraft were monitored (identification numbers outside of the boats similar to license plates). Along with the use of GPS tracking devices other measures will be taken to increase safety that include making it illegal for gondolas to line up alongside each other in rows to attract visiting tourists as well as removing some jetties that extend deep into the canals.
According to local reports the Venice waterways are frequently plagued with heavy traffic with over 2,000 boats, water taxis and gondolas passing under the famous Rialto Bridge roughly every 10 hours. This is a uncomfortably dangerous number that spikes even higher during the summer months when tourists flock to the Italian city at a rate of 60,000 per day!
A city official working in Venice explained that the local economy is essentially built and sustained on tourism, but that it's also important to preserve the natural beauty of the city that is often described as a museum. He said that balance was needed to improve safety, increase tourism and protect that city from such significant traffic. Hopefully, the GPS tracking systems will help improve conditions so romance can continue to blossom in Venice for generations to come.Last Updated on Tuesday, 15 October 2013 22:36
Australia has been one of the very few nations in the world that has kept unemployment low and the economy relatively strong in the midst of a global slowdown. The Aussie dollar continues to be strong against many other global currencies, and with vast natural resources such as gold and silver being mined this trend should only continue. Unfortunately, with a growing economy comes some unique challenges. One of those challenges Australia is facing is land management practices that are leading to a direct decline in koala populations based upon new data gathered from GPS tracking systems.
What researchers at the University of Sydney did was conduct an experiment that monitored approximately 40 koala bears in the Gunnedah region using GPS tracking devices. The GPS trackers provided real-time tracking data showing the koala bears fed on eucalypts during the evening then escaped to find shelter from the hot temperatures during the day. The problem is that trees offering a shaded protection from the brutal Australian heat waves are being cut down in mass frequency, placing koala bears at an increased risk of dehydration or death from heat related illness. The rise in temperatures combined with loss of shaded trees that offer protection is something that is of great concern to researchers who monitor koala bear activity. In fact, a heat wave that struck Australia roughly 5 years ago killed nearly 25% of the koala bears being monitored by the University! This is very alarming, especially with data showing warmer weather will likely increase due to human activity.
A researcher for the University of Sydney explained that the best thing people can do to help koala bear populations is by maintaining or increasing the areas of shaded trees that offer protection from the sun for the animals. The researcher explained that large trees provide shade and a mixture of nutrient requirements that help the beloved animal in Australia survive. Simply put, koala bears are large animals that live and take shelter in trees so if land management regulations and deforestation remove those trees the impact will be koala bear populations on the decline.
Researcher will continue to use GPS systems and other tools to monitor koala bear activity to better gauge how human interaction is impacting the animal populations. Hopefully, lawmakers and land management officials will recognize certain activity is having a negative impact on the koala bears along with other animal species resulting in more environmentally friendly legislation.Last Updated on Thursday, 03 October 2013 17:55
With the increase of technological tools and sharing of information, hackers everywhere have had an easier time accessing private and personal information of people. Whether it be through social networking channels such as Facebook, personal web cams or private chat rooms, hackers can strike any where at any time. Unfortunately, for a scumbag by the name of Jared Abrahams, the Federal Bureau of Investigation takes hacking and extortion very seriously, as the Temecula man found out when authorities raided his house and arrested him for hacking and extortion criminal acts.
Abrahams became the focus of an investigation that had become publicized after Cassidy Wolf, also known as Miss Teen USA, reported to authorities that her web cam and other personal and private data was stolen by the hacker. However, the theft of personal data was only the start of the problem because soon after the 19-year-old creep began telling Miss Teen USA along with other women whose computers he hacked that he would leak nude images and other potentially reputation damaging information if the women did not send him additional nude images, engage in video chats and other basically lonely guy creepy non-sense. Women from places all over the world including Russia, Canada and Ireland were victimized by the web cam hacker.
Abrahams had a pretty simple racket that involved cyber hacking into the web cams of unsuspecting women, blackmailing the women to send him more nude images and then posting the images online if the girls refused. He would harass the girls so harshly that Miss Teen USA even became emotional when discussing the investigation while conducting an interview on the Today show. Miss Teen USA even had her twitter image changed by the hacker and showed her multiple nude images he captured of the young pageant winner that he stole using her webcam.
Authorities investigating the matter went on to state that nearly ten women were targeted by Abrahams with one of the victims being as young as 17.
When law enforcement arrested Abrahams and began interviewing him the hacker opened up and took blame for his crimes. At Abrahams' residence the authorities discovered numerous forms of computer malware, hacking software, cellular communication devices and other technological systems used for cyber hacking. Agents also were able to verify that Abrahams used a popular forum shared by hackers that essenitally was used to brag about the type of hacking techniques he called upon to access the web cam of Miss Teen USA.
Abrahams is currently being held on bail and if he somehow posts the $50,000 bail amount he would be required to wear a GPS tracking system to monitor his every move. He would also not be allowed to use any computer devices unless it was for word described by the judge as "academic".Last Updated on Friday, 27 September 2013 18:57
The constellation of GPS satellites orbiting miles above the Earth make our lives so much easier even though none of us ever physically see the technological marvels. GPS tracking and navigational technology is the driving force behind the innovative routing and direction programs such as Google Earth, numerous fitness applications and about a million other things. GPS technology is critical in so many components of our daily lives that many of us take for granted the detailed data provided through low level radio frequencies, but hurricane researchers are certainly not one of those groups of people.
On the eastern seaboard and in states surrounding the Gulf of Mexico the month of August is identified as the start of hurricane season. This means researchers are using every available tool to learn more about the conditions that cause tropical storms and of course once those storms evolve into hurricanes how powerful they are. How GPS tracking and navigational technology is providing assistance to hurricane researchers is by giving the investigators data such as the direction and strength of wind speeds, data calculated by GPS signals bouncing around in the tropical storms.
According to a hurricane researcher working at the NASA Langley Research Center, the new technique that uses GPS technology to gather data regarding hurricane activity is both extremely precise and cost-effective. This is because the previous method of collecting data on hurricanes involved using dropsondes into a active tropical storm or hurricane via what is known as a Hurricane Hunter aircraft. Basically, the old technique used an aircraft that released tubes filled with different meteorological devices and instruments used to calculate things such as pressure, air and water temperature and humidity in the air. Although this technique had been effective at gathering data related to hurricane strength and the conditions involved in the development of the storm, the cost of such projects limited the amount of dropsondes available and therefore left holes in the data. The more modern method of using GPS technology will not only be more affordable but fill those once empty holes with more data!
The new GPS tracking and navigational tools used to gather information about storm activity is just the first step in helping hurricane researchers better understand the twisted and beautiful mind of Mother Nature. This is because by 2016 the brains at NASA intend on launching a smaller set of satellites into space that will be used specifically to measure what are known as reflected GPS signals to provide even more accurate data about storm activity from outer space. This new GPS satellite system is known as the Cyclone Global Satellite System.
With more and more technological tools being called upon to help researchers it is only a matter of time before humanity will have a more complete understanding of the conditions that cause, grow and change hurricane activity. The data from GPS will place a significant part in this understanding which will most certainly help in providing the most detailed and concrete weather forecasts.
Source: ABC News Charlestown
Last Updated on Monday, 16 September 2013 19:25
GPS tracking systems are the premiere solution when it comes to managing the vehicle activity of a large or small fleet. The devices can provide very detailed accounts of fuel consumption, improve safe driving habits, increase automotive security and much more. That is why municipalities, law enforcement agencies and cities all across the country have been investing in real-time GPS hardware, and the reason why Cass County Board Commissioners voted unanimously 5-0 to equip real-time trackers on county owned and operated vehicles.
After receiving formal requests from a number of different departments throughout the community, the Cass County Board of Commissioners decided to take a more in depth look at the feasibility and benefits of equipping GPS trackers upon numerous vehicles. After talking with numerous GPS vehicle tracking device manufacturers and wholesale distributors it was determined that it would cost roughly $15K to place GPS systems on approximately 60 county vehicles. The service costs for those real-time trackers would cost an additional $1,500 per month for data. The Cass County Board of Commissioners were able to see the benefits of using GPS trackers while keeping the cost low enough to be functional even during tight financial times and voted to move forward with the GPS fleet tracking initiative.
The plan to equip GPS tracking systems on county vehicles received support from a number of different departments throughout Cass County, including the Sheriff's Department and County Roads Department.
With the real-time GPS systems installed on county vehicles fleets managers will have the ability to review vehicle diagnostics, route choices, historical driving records, driver speeds driven and more. Information Cass County Commissioner Dan Henry believes will help in employee evaluation, enhancement of automotive security and overall improvement of public safety. GPS tracking systems will offer another avenue to measure accountability and that is something that the people of Cass County are certainly in support of.Last Updated on Thursday, 12 September 2013 16:51