- The typical story, repeated yet again: Inter-service and/or DOD vs. service rivalry, combined with Congressional stupidity, team up to kill a potentially breakthrough technology. (Excerpts, followed by my bulleted comments.)
- Ah, so basically, it sounds like someone in the Air Force has an interest in GPS-III and is having his/her toes stepped on with this i-GPS project. As a result, we seem to be heading in the direction of having a system that is better than the current system by 2013, as opposed to a potentially even better system 3 years sooner
Those test results led to the controversy, DOD sources said.
- Uh…except that you CAN argue with data, which is why the data from the simulations was controversial. And if people really have vested interests in seeing i-GPS killed (which it sounds like they do), then you can be sure that someone will argue with the data. This is another area where STS could provide valuable insight in the area of defense technology. Scientists and engineers argue over the meaning of data, whether it was properly collected, whether it is representative, etc. all the time. Yet, “officials” like this one make exactly these kinds of hackneyed statements all the time as well.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“We believe thereÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s a significant commercial applicability of i-GPS,Ã¢â‚¬Â said Greg Ewert, IridiumÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s executive vice president.
- Of course they will. And if it works, they will probably make a ton of money. And if they can incorporate this technology into some sort of slick, ultra-portable, consumer electronics devises–i-GPS meets iPhone maybe?–then it will make a huge splash, will become the next big thing. Of course, then the Senate Armed Services Committee will have to hold hearings about why your average Tom, Dick, Harry, or Muhammed on the street can get this technology but the U.S. military can’t.