Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

LightSquared Disrupts 75% of GPS Connections In Government Test

Soulskill posted more than 2 years ago | from the back-to-the-drawksssh-sstthhhhkkk-zzzttt dept.

Government 197

Freddybear writes with this quote from BusinessWeek: "Philip Falcone's proposed LightSquared Inc. wireless service caused interference to 75 percent of global-positioning system receivers examined in a U.S. government test, according to a draft summary of results. ... The tests worked off an 'extraordinarily conservative' threshold and didn't show the devices' performance was affected, [LightSquared exec Martin Harriman said]. 'If we're affecting the performance of the device — my goodness, we'd like to be sure that doesn't happen,' Harriman said. The laboratory testing was performed for the National Space-Based Positioning, Navigation, and Timing Systems Engineering Forum, an executive branch body that helps advise policy makers on issues around GPS. It found that 69 of 92, or 75 percent, of receivers tested 'experienced harmful interference' at the equivalent of 100 meters (109 yards) from a LightSquared base station."

cancel ×

197 comments

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

Uncle diddles (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38332324)

Whos tail do you have to pull to get some gay cock around here?

Re:Uncle diddles (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38332354)

Who's cock do you have to pull to get some gay tail around here?

Re:Uncle diddles (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38332496)

Who's cock do you have to pull to get some gay tail around here?

Ask the FUCKING NIGGERS. Gay niggers, that is.

Re:Uncle diddles (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38332808)

Last time I asked a nigger if he was gay, him and all his nigger buddies beat me up, tied me down, and took turns fucking my asshole without lube or protection. They also made me suck their dicks, covered with my own shit. It was 3 days before they untied me. I'd prefer they didn't beat me up first.

This is being whitewashed from the white house (5, Interesting)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332326)

This story is bad enough until you find out the white house was pressuring people to hide issues [hotair.com] related to LightSquared.

And Philip Falcone is a huge donor for the Democratic Party.

I'm not saying Republicans are angles or anything like that. I am saying this a very bad case of corporate ties directly to the whitehouse that is threatening to disrupt a major technology just to make some money...

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (4, Interesting)

ceoyoyo (59147) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332342)

If it interfered with GPS, they'd get caught awfully fast and LOSE a lot of money. Interfering with GPS doesn't just mean that someone's turn by turn directions get messed up. A lot of things now depend on GPS, mostly for the time information.

You don't understand how this works do you. (5, Insightful)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332362)

Solyndria (another company propped up by the white house despite many reports saying the company was not financial viable) was given a ton of money, which the founders (also heavy donors to the Democratic party) got a lot of, then the company went bankrupt but they left with a few million dollar paychecks.

It doesn't matter if the company folds. Just that Philip Falcone makes money in the process, which he will.

Re:You don't understand how this works do you. (3, Insightful)

fnj (64210) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332574)

Parent is goddam right. Moderators have a problem with the truth? Corruption is corruption.

Re:You don't understand how this works do you. (-1, Flamebait)

fnj (64210) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332708)

Yeah, FUCK YOU, moderators. Talk about corruption.

Re:You don't understand how this works do you. (0)

BitZtream (692029) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332720)

I'm fairly certain you don't know what the word corruption means.

Being that its fairly obvious MOST mods are not related to the companies or governments involved, calling it corruption shows you have no idea what the word means.

Re:You don't understand how this works do you. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38333006)

I do not think it means what you think it means.

Re:You don't understand how this works do you. (4, Insightful)

Elbereth (58257) | more than 2 years ago | (#38333008)

The strange thing is that he's got a userid number around mine, which says that he's been here at least ten years. How can you go use a website for over ten years, without picking up that the moderation system is capricious, random, and certainly grounded in groupthink -- but corrupt? "Corrupt" is one of the few negative terms I wouldn't use to describe Slashdot's moderation system. One of the few actual advantages that it does have is that it's not corrupt. Even if Apple or Microsoft started paying people to mod up comments that praised them, there'd be outraged people downmodding those comments just as quickly.

I think people attach too much significance to karma and moderation, anyways. It's pathetically easy to game the system (just pander to whatever the prevailing groupthink is on a subject... or brazenly challenge the prevailing groupthink and say, "I'll probably get modded down for this, but..."). When I first started on Slashdot, I was an unrepentant karma whore, just to see how high I could get my karma. Then they hid the number, which killed that game. I've never had a (Score 5: Troll) comment, though, and I've always wanted one of those. Maybe some day... a boy can dream.

Re:You don't understand how this works do you. (3, Informative)

konohitowa (220547) | more than 2 years ago | (#38333092)

Well, what he said was that the moderators can't handle the truth. Then, in the next sentence he mentioned corruption which I inferred to mean that whether the corruption is in the DNC or the RNC, it shouldn't matter to the moderators.

Re:You don't understand how this works do you. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38333370)

The strange thing is that he's got a userid number around mine, which says that he's been here at least ten years. How can you go use a website for over ten years, without picking up that the moderation system is capricious, random, and certainly grounded in groupthink -- but corrupt? "Corrupt" is one of the few negative terms I wouldn't use to describe Slashdot's moderation system. One of the few actual advantages that it does have is that it's not corrupt. Even if Apple or Microsoft started paying people to mod up comments that praised them, there'd be outraged people downmodding those comments just as quickly.

I think people attach too much significance to karma and moderation, anyways. It's pathetically easy to game the system (just pander to whatever the prevailing groupthink is on a subject... or brazenly challenge the prevailing groupthink and say, "I'll probably get modded down for this, but..."). When I first started on Slashdot, I was an unrepentant karma whore, just to see how high I could get my karma. Then they hid the number, which killed that game. I've never had a (Score 5: Troll) comment, though, and I've always wanted one of those. Maybe some day... a boy can dream.

They are as corrupt as you can hope to get plus they are continually high on some shit or another

Re:You don't understand how this works do you. (1, Troll)

Talence (4962) | more than 2 years ago | (#38333380)

Wow, you have a rather high userID ;-)

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (0, Redundant)

DigiShaman (671371) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332532)

Politics + Money = Corruption. All of those consumer devices that use GPS? Pffffttttt, do you think any of those assholes in DC care? FUuuuuuuck noooooo!

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (5, Funny)

LtGordon (1421725) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332348)

I'm not saying Republicans are angles or anything like that.

You could, however, say they are quite obtuse.

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (1)

Surt (22457) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332396)

I was just looking to see if someone else had posted a good reply like yours. :-)

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (2)

petteyg359 (1847514) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332478)

Obtuse Anglos?

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (2)

ILongForDarkness (1134931) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332500)

Obtuse Anglos was deported I thought.

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (4, Funny)

dmomo (256005) | more than 2 years ago | (#38333260)

No that was his cosine.

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38332526)

That was acute joke.

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (2)

drmofe (523606) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332590)

That's acute pun.

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38332792)

On the upside, the Military has just found an new way to jam the GPS of enemies on the battlefield.

On a more serious note, WTF, that has to be some serious bleed over. Almost all of the frequencies used by GPS are reserved government frequencies. Light Squared will use 1525-1559 MHz according to what I have found. The nearest GPS freq is 1575.42 MHz but is the L1 freq explaining why so many receivers get jammed completely. Light Squared has a serious engineering problem, because they either produce nasty sub-carriers outside there assigned frequencies, or they just ignore their assigned frequency and use more bandwidth that they have be allocated.

This link is to the a great Freq. Allocation Chart for the US. While it says 2003, it still applies to this case.
http://www.ntia.doc.gov/files/ntia/publications/2003-allochrt.pdf

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (4, Insightful)

The Askylist (2488908) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332854)

My reading was that the GPS receivers were picking up the 1552-1559 MHz signal due to being made with cheap parts. That would correlate quite well with the finding that only 3/4 of the receivers were affected - if Light Squared were transmitting out of their assigned band, you'd expect 100% of the receivers to suffer interference.

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (5, Insightful)

Megane (129182) | more than 2 years ago | (#38333010)

It's not that they're using "cheap parts". It's that the signal from those little solar-powered tin cans whizzing around in the sky is so weak that adding a notch filter to increase selectivity would significantly affect the ability to receive the signal at all. And they want to drop this elephant right next to it.

But hey, they paid their donations to the Party, right?

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (4, Funny)

sessamoid (165542) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332930)

I'm not saying Republicans are angles or anything like that.

You could, however, say they are quite obtuse.

Following that logic, Republicans must, therefore, be wrong. Because you cannot be both obtuse and right.

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38332946)

What did you just call me?

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (1)

Ihmhi (1206036) | more than 2 years ago | (#38333178)

Too many Republicans are far right.

(Hey, I tried. I can't think of a good joke using "Isosceles". Anyone who does may be granted an Internets.)

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (1)

chromas (1085949) | more than 2 years ago | (#38333570)

Isosceles eaters circling the perimeter to sinus up for circumcisions—circumscriptions—to an irrational number of circulations.
Oh wait, you said good.

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (4, Funny)

dmomo (256005) | more than 2 years ago | (#38333252)

Ok. This thread is starting to go off on a tangent.

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (5, Funny)

Shadowruni (929010) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332358)

But the Republicans are Right (angles)! Thank you ladies and gentlemen I'll be here all week. Try the fish!

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38332378)

You forgot to mention that Phillip Falcone is under investigation by the SEC [washingtonpost.com] .

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (2)

DaHat (247651) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332410)

Tis interesting that an Executive Branch office would make such a report to him so soon after this news was leaked... you'd think the White House would have better control over the SEC... the same way it does the NLRB, EPA, or DOJ (oh I look forward to Holder going over F&F (though he should have never been given the job)).

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (4, Insightful)

fnj (64210) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332614)

The bureaucracy has a certain very real independence from the government. That can be a problem when the administration is trying to accomplish worthwhile things, but it can also serve as a check on corruption in the government, even if in turn corruption in the bureacracy is a huge problem in itself. Wheels within wheels.

It's a sad commentary when good things come from parts of the system working at cross purposes, but it works.

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332850)

He's under investigation. The SEC opens many investigations that doesn't automatically result in charges being brought. Wake me up when there's actual charges.

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (1, Insightful)

PopeRatzo (965947) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332524)

I'm not saying Republicans are angles or anything like that.

Then you'll need to get your information somewhere besides hotair.com.

When a reputable news source reports this, it will mean a lot more.

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (4, Informative)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332714)

Then you'll need to get your information somewhere besides hotair.com.

When a reputable news source reports this, it will mean a lot more.

TFA is from Business Week. The HotAir.com article only quotes from Business Week and includes other relevant facts that seem well sourced.
I'm not sure how the GP ended up talking about Republicans, but this was reported by a reputable news source.

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (1)

The Moof (859402) | more than 2 years ago | (#38333354)

I'm not sure how the GP ended up talking about Republicans

According to the original Slashdot article [slashdot.org] , this was originally brought to the floor by a Republican.

The problem is, who else makes this link? (4, Insightful)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332896)

Then you'll need to get your information somewhere besides hotair.com.

I knew someone would get all huffy about that.

See, here is the issue. I would love to link to a more "reputable" source than HotAir, because some predjudiced people cannot look beyond a name at facts. But that leads us to a HUGE problem:

There isn't another source, even though there SHOULD be.

The facts of the matter are very clear are they not? The interference with the GPS, proven. The donations of Philip Falcone to the Democratic Party, well documented [guardian.co.uk] and public.

And yet WHO in the "reputable" media made this very easy and very pertinent connection for us? Is that not in fact the very role it is vital for the media to play, as watchdog for just this kind of ultra-slimy influence peddling? This is the easiest story in the world to find evidence to show to us all, and yet only Hot Air and other "fringe" media bothers to make the simplest of connection.

The real problem is that the "reputable" media is utterly lost to partisan concerns, death afraid that "their side" may lose something. I truly respect the role the media plays in shining light on the doings of politicians everywhere, and welcome weeding out corruption. But you cannot weed only looking at half the garden.

So until the point when the "real" media decides to start acting like JOURNALISTS again, I'm afraid you'll have to suffice with information from reputable sources linked together by media you obviously despise - because no-one else is doing that job. I would argue you should probably look at the facts of the matter rather than who is pointing them out; I can discern truth both on HotAir and on HuffingtonPost as required. If you were smart you would seek to do the same rather than get lost in the echo chamber.

Re:The problem is, who else makes this link? (3, Informative)

im_thatoneguy (819432) | more than 2 years ago | (#38333434)

Yeah but that was 2010.

It's true that the Democratic party received about $20k from Falcone in 2010. But the Republican Party received nearly $50k in 2008.

If you go through his political contributions he tended to shotgun across party lines. And none of the money in 08 was for Obama. It was almost exclusively for Senatorial candidates and Giuliani and Chris Dodd.
http://www.campaignmoney.com/political/contributions/philip-falcone.asp?cycle=08 [campaignmoney.com]

I have no political ties to LightSquared but considering they're trying to blanket the nation in broadband... I'm really hoping they resolve these interference issues as well. Not because I voted for Obama but because I want to see technology succeed. I also want to see white-space succeed which is another initiative the Obama white-house has advocated for. Again, not because of my voting registration but because I agree with their stated agenda of increasing access to highspeed internet.

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38332914)

I'm an electrical engineer. I did my doctorate in a GPS lab working on safety-of-life applications (landing planes and such). The LS issue has been a very hot topic of discussion in the technical community for most of the past year. At the annual ION GNSS conference this past September, there was a panel discussion on the preliminary test results described in TFA. Out of approximately 600 people in the room, there were exactly two who expressed opinions supporting LS's contention that the interference to GPS would be insignificant: one guy was the LS General Counsel, and the other was a guy who is claiming he has retrofit kits (RF notch filters) that will eliminate the interference. It should be noted that, when asked how his kits would be fitted to the millions of GPS receivers already in the field, the latter person had absolutely no answer.

It is not at all a stretch to say that very nearly 100% of the people who have done LS testing, or evaluated the results from an engineering perspective, conclude that the effects as proposed will be somewhere between "significant" and "catastrophic."

--Jake

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38332580)

GPS disruptions will likely cause some not-so-nice feedback from the FCC and FAA, among other groups.

Worse than BPL (4, Insightful)

n1ywb (555767) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332582)

This is the worst idea yet. Worse than broadband over power lines, worse than that idea about using gas pipes. I thought the whole point to discontinuing analog TV service and freeing up that bandwidth was to provided wide area Internet. *facepalm*

Re:Worse than BPL (1)

seeker_1us (1203072) | more than 2 years ago | (#38333542)

I thought the whole point to discontinuing analog TV service and freeing up that bandwidth was to provided wide area Internet. *facepalm*

The point to discontinuing analog TV service was to be able to sell off bandwidth to private companies who wanted it and were lobbying for it. Just another case of Americans being sold out again by their government.

possible to solve that issue (0)

WindBourne (631190) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332710)

RootStrikers.org

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38332768)

I'm not saying Republicans are angles or anything like that...

Oh, don't be so obtuse!

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (3, Interesting)

virb67 (1771270) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332902)

I find it very odd that people believe that any criticism of the Obama administration has to be accompanied by a statement proclaiming that Republicans are bad, even when it's completely irrelevant to the topic being discussed. It's almost as if, for some weird reason, people think they have to apologize for making very valid and necessary criticisms against the terrible policies supported by this president. Not that I give a shit about Republicans, but I think the apologetic tone softens the criticism, which should be expressed as plainly and bluntly as possible. This president is not what he promised to be. We should't apologize for pointing out the fact that we were duped.

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38332944)

If Republicans are angles then they are obtuse angles.

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (4, Informative)

D'Sphitz (699604) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332994)

And Philip Falcone is a huge donor for the Democratic Party.

According to Wikipedia [wikipedia.org]

The Federal Election Commission has no record of Phil Falcone, a registered Republican, nor LightSquared Chairman and CEO Sanjiv Ahuja of having ever contributed to President Obama’s political campaigns.

Among the issues being raised is if political contributors received favorable treatment by the Obama administration. Since 2007, a key investor in LightSquared, Phil Falcone, has donated $85,500 to Republicans and $50,500 to Democrats.

Not what I'd call a "huge donor for the Democratic Party".

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38333146)

Superkendall is quite conservative. I believe he was/is quite prolific on reddit and/or digg. He'll say anything to make the current administration look bad, whether it's true or not.

Re:This is being whitewashed from the white house (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38333254)

republicans are obtuse angles

sohbet (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38332338)

asdasfasda

Farm GPS, airplanes, and who owns the bandwidth (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38332388)

One of the big issues is that those giant combines and harvesters on farms use GPS, so the farming industry is upset http://westernfarmpress.com/government/lightsquared-threat-gps-even-filters [westernfarmpress.com] Lightspeed owns the bandwidth adjacent to GPS, but the GPS devices are still affected by transmission on lightspeed's bandwidth. So it isn't really "lightspeed zmog destroy teh GPS" by doing some dastardly deeds, it is them trying to use the bandwidth they purchased and older GPS devices not able to handle the interference (even tho they are class B and must not create interference and must accept interference). Airplanes are another issue with interference. http://macsblog.com/2011/02/should-i-worry-about-gps-jamming/ [macsblog.com] really, though, just a clash of the lobbyists in washington on who has to pay extra to make lightspeed able to use their bandwidth

Re:Farm GPS, airplanes, and who owns the bandwidth (1)

edibobb (113989) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332446)

If lightspeed transmitters bleed over onto GPS frequencies, even a little bit, then that is a major problem. GPS receivers are incredibly sensitive in order to receive low power signals from satellites. If lightspeed owns an adjacent bandwidth, that's one thing. If they infringe on the GPS band even slightly, they are out of bounds.

Re:Farm GPS, airplanes, and who owns the bandwidth (4, Insightful)

dbc (135354) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332562)

It's very unlikely to be lightspeed signal bleeding over out of their channel. That is reasonably easy to control, and it would show up in 100% of tested receivers. More likely, this is "adjacent channel interference". It is much harder to get a receiver to reject signals in adjacent channels. It takes a difficult/expensive to construct filter. If you go back to the old days of television, you'll note that you don't find adjacent channels allocated in major markets, for instance, because in the early days it was essentially impossible to build a receiver that could reject a strong signal on an adjacent channel. So here we have a case of a receiver looking for a very weak signal, and on an adjacent channel there is a strong local transmitter that you are trying to reject. I'm no surprised that there are issues. Also, because GPS has up till now not had strong nearby, adjacent signals to reject, it could actually be that the first mixer is getting overloaded, so the damage is done before you even get to the first IF filter.

Re:Farm GPS, airplanes, and who owns the bandwidth (1)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332682)

It is much harder to get a receiver to reject signals in adjacent channels. It takes a difficult/expensive to construct filter. If you go back to the old days of television, you'll note that you don't find adjacent channels allocated in major markets, for instance, because in the early days it was essentially impossible to build a receiver that could reject a strong signal on an adjacent channel.

If these frequency channels have been defined and allocated since before good filters existed,
how come the channels were never adjusted to reflect the reality in the air?

It just seems like a very basic concept to space/allocate the channels in such a way
as to completely eliminate any adjacent channel interference, even if it means not-using
significant amounts of frequency (not that they were going to be used anyways)
/pardon my ignorance

Re:Farm GPS, airplanes, and who owns the bandwidth (5, Informative)

DeadCatX2 (950953) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332818)

It's not so much that the nearby frequencies need to be silent. I believe it was actually the case that those frequencies were originally licensed for low-power signals. So when the hardware engineer was designing his GPS receiver circuit, he would use the expected max power that could be licensed for that band in his calculation for determining how many -dB/Octave his filter needs. Now LS comes in and wants to relicense that spectrum for signals of many orders of magnitude more power; the circuits were simply not designed to handle this because such signals were illegal at the time of manufacture.

It's not the hardware engineer's fault that the adjacent bands were "zoned" to be residential and now LS wants to come in and build an airport.

Re:Farm GPS, airplanes, and who owns the bandwidth (5, Informative)

sillivalley (411349) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332820)

Nope, it's not adjacent channel interference -- the precision positioning people use a correction signal (from a satellite) in L band, below the GPS L1 signal, that is completely swamped by the LightSquared system -- these precision positioning systems, which are also used in highway construction and other large developments as well as in large scale agriculture, are among the systems that the study identified as impossible to make work even with a redesign -- these bands were meant for weak signal reception of satellite signals, NOT for multi-kilowatt ground stations.

And when you talk about adjacent channel, remember that GPS boxes aren't so much receivers as correlators -- and they are working with signals that are effectively below the noise floor -- that's why correlation techniques have to be used. What might be acceptable as adjacent channel in other modes is devastating to correlator-based designs.

See for example the FAA report at:

http://scpnt.stanford.edu/pnt/PNT11/2011_presentation_files/09_Bunce-PNT2011.pdf [stanford.edu]

Re:Farm GPS, airplanes, and who owns the bandwidth (2, Informative)

dbc (135354) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332992)

OK, I quickly looked over the excellent presentation that you link to. I don't see where it shows a GPS precision-enhancing signal in L-band getting swamped. It *does* show 15 kW (!) terrestrial base stations very near the GPS L1 band having the potential to get past the roofing filter in a GPS, as my previous post was attempting to yak about.

I was under the impression that differential GPS used short-range terrestrial VHF for a localization signal from another GPS receiver looking at the normal GPS signal -- is my understanding stale? Has something new come along when I wasn't looking?

But holey schmoley, 15KW at 1.5 GHZ? That's manly. That takes a moderate amount of effort. It also raises some RF safety issues -- what kind of antennas are they using with this? What is the EIRP?

Anyway, for whatever reason, my previous post has been generously modded "+5 insightful" at the moment, when it's really just speculation based on "here's how radios work in general"... I'm not a GPS expert. "+/-? Plausible BS" is probably a more accurate mod score.

Re:Farm GPS, airplanes, and who owns the bandwidth (5, Informative)

jchernia (590097) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332458)

Yes, but the towers are broadcasting signals that are orders of magnitude more powerful to ground receivers than the gps satellites. If Lightspeed was a satellite phone system (so if it was another satellite system producing the crosstalk), it would not interfere even if the frequencies were directly adjacent.

Re:Farm GPS, airplanes, and who owns the bandwidth (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38332560)

I'm not an expert, but read some back issues of GPS World. Lightsquared is doing dastardly deeds - this frequency was never intended for terrestrial broadcasting. They pulled a fast one and got this for a steal. The FCC screwed up big time - either incompetence or someone was asked to do a favor or paid off. There's a lot of FUD - Lightsquared has been planting stories claiming that the GPS devices won't work do to shoddy engineering. The facts are that they should be building terrestrial base stations that broadcast near GPS frequencies and not have to at least go through a thorough review and pay what this spectrum is really worth.

You don't see consumer electronics or their suppliers companies publicly complaining because it's not in their best interest to show a weakness at this time. e.g. if company A says that this will impact them, then company B can use that statement when they pay a visit or market to A's customers.

Fortunately this only impacts the good old USA. The rest of the world can continue to reap the benefits of GPS while they ramp up their systems. (Glonass has been on the rise. Galileo is finally making progress. Compass is on its way and hopefully they will eventually publish their ICD.)

Farm GPS, airplanes, and who owns the borders. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38332692)

Fortunately this only impacts the good old USA. The rest of the world can continue to reap the benefits of GPS while they ramp up their systems. (Glonass has been on the rise. Galileo is finally making progress. Compass is on its way and hopefully they will eventually publish their ICD.)

Foreign companies that make GPS dependent equipment for the US, Canada, and Mexico will be affected. GPS in those three countries will also be affected (remember signals don't respect borders). Course that's depending if the whole Lightspeed idea goes nationwide.

Re:Farm GPS, airplanes, and who owns the bandwidth (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38332868)

Read more of those issues, or read Inside GNSS: this does indeed impact Galileo and it impacts anything within 600 miles of US borders, which means it impacts intercontinental aviation.

In a letter filed yesterday (July 19, 2011), Heinz Zourek, director-general for enterprise and industry, wrote to FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski that if LightSquared is allowed to begin broadcasting in the band, “What are now neighbour MSS [mobile satellite service space-to-Earth] transmissions at similar receive powers to RNSS [radionavigation satellite service such as GPS and Galileo] would in future be many orders of magnitude higher and with the potential to severely disrupt reception of RNSS signals.”

He cited analysis — including ESA studies —carried out in Europe that showed interference effects to Galileo equipment would occur from 100 meters to almost 1,000 kilometers (620 miles), “depending on the type of receiver being used.”

Emphasis mine. Source: "EC Official Adds Galileo, EGNOS Worries to FCC’s LightSquared-GPS Deliberations,"Inside GNSS, July 20, 2011 [insidegnss.com] . That's right, July. The Europeans knew this was going to interfere with GPS/Galileo for aviation back in July. They had tested it, and they had numbers showing how far the interference would spread.

I'll leave it to the tin-foil crowd to speculate on why the FCC is only getting around to publishing its findings now. I'd suggest, though, that what they come up with might not be so paranoid after all in this case. Those who want to dig through some glaring evidence of bipartisan corruption will find it without looking too hard into this story, because the shady deals were conducted practically in the open on this one, from the SkyTerra days on through the past week. The Republicans are already working overtime on trying to assemble a timeline of Falcone's dealings with Obama: if the Democrats were smart, they'd have a team doing the same to show Republican connections, because they are there too (SkyTerra got permission for this back in the Bush era).

The fact that this story is dying in the back pages while Lindsey Lohan's Playboy spread and the circus clowns that have hijacked the Republican nomination get near-orgasmic coverage is a sad comment on how useless journalism has become.

Re:Farm GPS, airplanes, and who owns the bandwidth (1)

cheeks5965 (1682996) | more than 2 years ago | (#38333024)

yeah, but have you seen the LiLo pics? ugly ass ho! much more interesting than this lightscared or whatever.

No interference (4, Interesting)

stooo (2202012) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332958)

They might be allocated the bandwidth, but this means they are responsible for interference. Of course they probably respect the FCC requirements, but they still need to consider interference, aqnd this one is an obvious case. Transmitting 42 dBm or so a few MHz away from a band such as GPS, and that on the scale of a nation IS a bad case of interference.

I expect the project to fail anyway because the handset manufacturers have no way to implement that band in a suitable phone with GPS.
This means expensive hardware in each compatible phone. Did you look at the RF HW of a typical phone ? it's a spagetti of PAs and filters. This band would mean passing from 2 RF paths to 3, 50% price increase. Furthermore, putting another antenna is hopeless, and the phone will jam it's own GPS, if available. Nobody in the industry wants such a monster, except Lightsquared.

For civilian GPS receiver, who are more sensitive due to a design nore vulnerable to interference (first LNA before the first filter), they will be affected. GPS performance will be unacceptable in some places close to antennas, and probably compatible handsets operating in the vincinity will affect them also.

More Context (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38332390)

This came out during the week, but was overshadowed by the news that Falcone And Friends got Wells Letters [nytimes.com] , SEC notices that are basically game-over. Investors in Harbinger Capital Partners, Falcone's hedge fund, are likely to flee, but they'll be limited in their ability to withdraw funds. This has happened before to Harbinger in 2009, and Goldman Sachs seems to have gotten preferential treatment in exiting [nytimes.com] .

The LightSquared bit is juicier, though, because of the hints of corruption that have squeaked out through the press. Air Force General William Shelton, testifying before Congress about LightSquared and the interference that its plans could cause GPS, complained that the White House had told him to change his testimony to make it seem that he was less opposed to LightSquared's plans [thedailybeast.com] . There are also allegations of $30,400 donations being given to the Democratic Party by Falcone and LightSquared's CEO on the days of meetings and on days when meetings were arranged [businessinsider.com] .

BUT WHERE IS THE MASS ?? WHERE IS THE MASS ?? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38332442)

Onward christian soldiers !!

That's the start of my new song !! Like it ??

These c^2 workers need people in high places. I hear Gingrich is for sale !! Ain't he the guy whole stole christmas ?? Hence, onward christian soldiers !!

Re:BUT WHERE IS THE MASS ?? WHERE IS THE MASS ?? (1, Insightful)

fnj (64210) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332662)

They are all for sale. Everyone in the System. Corruption is the one thing which is impossible to design out, because by definition corruption *IS* the undermining of the system. Hari Seldon's Foundation is the only way to fight it, and it can't win by fixing the system. The only way is to tear down the old system and build a new one, like the 1992 revolution in the Soviet Union. It's really sad that human nature is the thing that dooms all efforts at effective governing.

Re:BUT WHERE IS THE MASS ?? WHERE IS THE MASS ?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38332738)

Yeah that 1992 thing went reeeal well. Oh well it's "OK" to protest a bit in the streets. Have to look good on the CNN.

Sister Moonshine

FUD Detected. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38332466)

FUD Detected captain, shields up and holding.

they're coming around for another pass!

someone find a link to the actual report.

someone else, point out that being within 100 yards of many military transmitters while in the beam path will COOK you.

Yet another someone else, point out that 100 yards cubed, x 40,000 transmitters isn't all that much space that it isn't "safe" to be in, with a GPS. and that it'd take very little design sense to keep them out of flight paths, and off the runways at an airport, which'd be the place they'd actually matter. when's the last time a jet buzzed your house under 300 feet of altitude?

Ensign red shirt, go down to the transporter room and await the peace delegation from the FUD ship.

Re:FUD Detected. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38332548)

hey idiot - how about we just make lightsquared bankrupt and avoid all that ?

Re:FUD Detected. (1)

ceoyoyo (59147) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332592)

GPS is used mostly for things OTHER than navigation.

Re:FUD Detected. (-1, Flamebait)

fnj (64210) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332680)

Yeah, fud you, you blind cowardly asshole.

too bad (1)

khipu (2511498) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332482)

A quick look at their service suggests that they might have been a nice addition to the existing wireless services. We really do need more providers and new technologies. But even a small chance of interfering with GPS is too much.

Maybe one could swap some rarely used military spectrum further from GPS against military spectrum close to GPS. Given that the military complains the loudest and sits on a lot of spectrum, I think it's reasonable to ask them to contribute to a solution.

Not a surprise (-1, Flamebait)

gnu-sucks (561404) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332546)

It's not surprising that an RF signal can be interfered with remotely. Whether the signal was for a baby monitor, an emergency room health computer system, remote aircraft control, etc, people will always be astonished that they were susceptible to interference.

But honestly, it's an RF signal. Blocking the signal is about the same for any given service. Some are a little more robust than others, but it's the same mathematical game.

Let's get over the sensationalism and realize the real problem: We had false expectations of GPS and therefore should not have depended on this technology in defense systems.

Re:Not a surprise (1)

fnj (64210) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332698)

How about we deal with the actual problem the best we can and not let anyone interfere unduly and systematically with GPS.

Re:Not a surprise (4, Informative)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332736)

Let's get over the sensationalism and realize the real problem: We had false expectations of GPS and therefore should not have depended on this technology in defense systems.

You do realize that the US military owns the GPS system. It seems to have worked out pretty well for them. Of course, no tech is perfect but I don't understand what you're whining about. It's not like Lightspeed is going to put transmitters in Afghanistan and if some nefarious persons try to block GPS signals with a transmitter well, the military has some nice little tools to solve that problem.

Re:Not a surprise (4, Interesting)

gnu-sucks (561404) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332974)

Here's the problem: You can block "Lightspeed" from deploying devices known to cause harmful interference to GPS signals. Big deal. What you can't do is make it "illegal" to jam GPS. Well, you can make it illegal, but it's a matter of enforcement. Expecting it to work 100%, especially in a battle field, is stupid. Your enemy will build GPS jammers by the dozen and hide them all over the place once they realize this is how you guide your missiles.

All I'm saying, is that this is a symptom of a larger problem: depending on easily jammed GPS.

I realize the military will just triangulate and find the jammers. But a jammer just has to hide their equipment in nearby hospitals and grocery stores, and use intelligent timing and antenna arrangements.... they can make triangulation a very difficult and time-consuming operation. And once the devices are found and destroyed, it's another $15 to deploy another one somewhere else.

I think it's a good idea to try and prevent what you can, such as by not certifying equipment that causes harmful interference. But let's not think this is the real problem with GPS...

Re:Not a surprise (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38333060)

GPS being Jammed? Switch to radiation seeking missiles. Shortly there-after, GPS is no longer being jammed. Return to using GPS. If you're broadcasting a jamming signal, you're going to be really easy to find.

Re:Not a surprise (2)

AK Marc (707885) | more than 2 years ago | (#38333340)

Actually, it works out pretty well. They jam GPS, and you have piles of missiles that home in on GPS jammers. It's not practical to jam the US military's GPS because you'll run out of jammers (And people willing to turn them on) before the US military runs out of resources.

I realize the military will just triangulate and find the jammers. But a jammer just has to hide their equipment in nearby hospitals and grocery stores, and use intelligent timing and antenna arrangements.... they can make triangulation a very difficult and time-consuming operation.

No, that's not the way it works. "intelligent timing and antenna arrangements" greatly impede the ability to jam, and triangulation is not necessary to destroy it unless you are shooting at it with artillery. As for someone turning a hospital into a location from which a military offensive is launched from, the person turning on the jammer is in the wrong, not the people retaliating against attack.

Re:Not a surprise (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38333484)

No, that's not the way it works. "intelligent timing and antenna arrangements" greatly impede the ability to jam, and triangulation is not necessary to destroy it unless you are shooting at it with artillery. As for someone turning a hospital into a location from which a military offensive is launched from, the person turning on the jammer is in the wrong, not the people retaliating against attack.

That would be true on US soil but usually the jammer tries to interfere with the GPS signals of drones in their country. It isn't nice to hide behind civilians, but jamming CIA drones isn't more of an attack as the drones themselves.

and now, china will make use of this (0)

WindBourne (631190) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332700)

Seriously, if this hurts GPS, then China will likely deploy this so as to interfere with local GPS.

Re:and now, china will make use of this (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38332732)

Not likely, China is one the biggest markets for high-precision GPS receivers and their new COMPASS satellite navigation system uses essentially the same frequency band as GPS L1.

Re:and now, china will make use of this (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38332766)

This mostly only affects civilian GPS.

Military GPS uses another encrypted channel along with the main channel to reject most jamming.

The GPS 3 has the ability to create spot beams that are high power so the military could steer a beam to an area and force a jammer to use so much power we could track it down and delete it from the planet.

Re:and now, china will make use of this (3, Insightful)

BitZtream (692029) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332774)

Uhm, blocking GPS functionality is extremely trivial. I assure you, every home in america (and probably most of the first world) has devices that are more than capable of knocking out GPS with only minor trivial changes than ANY RF engineer or EE could do.

It was never designed to be interference free, thats a silly notion in the first place. It is rather impractical to try and block it however, as it takes massive infrastructure to do it over a large area ... and well, its basically cutting off your nose to spite your face.

Its more useful to the Chinese to have it working when they invade than it is for them to break it.

What the fuck is LightSquared? (0, Troll)

ArchieBunker (132337) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332752)

Would a wikipedia link in the article be too much to ask for you dumbshit moderators?

Stanford Symposium held 2011/11/17 (5, Informative)

sillivalley (411349) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332844)

Look at the docs posted for the recent symposium at Stanford:

http://scpnt.stanford.edu/pnt/ [stanford.edu]

Opening comments on how LightSquared destroys GPS:

http://scpnt.stanford.edu/pnt/PNT11/2011_presentation_files/01_Parkinson-PNT2011.pdf [stanford.edu]

the FAA report on testing:

http://scpnt.stanford.edu/pnt/PNT11/2011_presentation_files/09_Bunce-PNT2011.pdf [stanford.edu]

The LightSquared idea is a good one, but not on the frequencies they've selected!

Re:What the fuck is LightSquared? (1)

Dan541 (1032000) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332882)

http://skep.li/LightSquare [skep.li] Because we could never find out otherwise.

Re:What the fuck is LightSquared? (2)

BlackSupra (742450) | more than 2 years ago | (#38333058)

Here is something visual. http://i.imgur.com/HgpdX.jpg [imgur.com]

U.S. Frequency Allocation Chart

take advantage (1)

infashion2011 (2332952) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332970)

take advantage of the competitive christmas gifts deals on offer http://www.enjoycheap.com/ [enjoycheap.com]

Obama Scandals: From Waste to Death (0, Flamebait)

Nova Express (100383) | more than 2 years ago | (#38332986)

It was bad enough when the Obama Administration was just wasting taxpayer dollars on well-connected business cronies like Solyandra. However, Fast and Furious [battleswarmblog.com] has helped kill hundreds of Mexicans and at least one U.S. citizen, U.S. border patrol agent Brian Terry, all for the the purpose of promoting gun control. Now the Obama Administration is trying to help another batch of well-connected Democratic cronies at LightSquared, and if they get their way, the results could easily be hundreds dead. All it takes is for one LightSqyared signal to interfere enough with GPS during a single airliner landing. And it might not just be one airliner, because there's no guarantee the accident investigation would find the cause quick enough to prevent a re-occurrence.

Remember how the Bush Administration was forced to appoint a special prosecutor for "Plamegate"? Both Fast and Furious are far more serious scandals, and the Obama Administration is clearly stonewalling the investigation on one.

I would think that even the most fervent liberal would draw the line at a corrupt cronyism that result in the direct deaths of innocent American citizens.

Who cares (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38333114)

Wireless broadband is way more important than some idiots who can't use maps getting lost because their GPS doesn't work 100m within a cell tower.

Who should care: People who don't want to DIE (2)

Nova Express (100383) | more than 2 years ago | (#38333148)

If you fly on airplanes, or live near an airport, you should care [battleswarmblog.com] :

Imagine a Boeing 787 Dreamliner conducting an nighttime instrument approach to Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport when the GPS signal is overwhelmed at a critical phase. Now imagine that same Boeing 787 Dreamliner plowing into downtown Arlington, Virginia at 150 miles per hour, leaving a wake of bloody body parts and burning jetfuel for a quarter-mile.

That’s the worst that could happen.

Oops ... OOPS!!! Slashdot: turn off the TV!! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38333142)

What?! Obama's administration has claims of corruption and cronyism swirling about it? Oops! Oh God, turn off the TV... OOPS, this could look bad, this is really shocking... corruption and tech in one story??? this is bad, this hits home...

Okay, where's the spin machine?? Someone on Morning Joe spin this into a right wing conspiracy right away! It's almost an election year, and we just HAVE to have another four years of Obama.

Can't people see that we've got Teddy Roosevelt in the white house? TR! Practically a Republican: everyone can vote for him. If you vote against Obama, you are a damned filthy scum racist who needs rounding up for some re-education. >:)

Let's all just pinky swear to never never never hold Obama accountable for any crimes, misdemeanors, or complete absence of leadership because he is our finest creation. Barack Obama: our vessel of awesome good vibes. We are, after all, the ones we've been waiting for, right? Aren't we just precious, aren't we just SO brilliant?

SLASHDOT: TURN OFF THE TV, DON'T LET THIS LATEST NEWS PANIC YOU!

Ooh, aren't those 2012 stickers with the Obama 'O' for the 0 delicious? How clever are we? We are the greatest, and we're definitely never wrong.

Obligatory XKCD (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38333158)

Let us see the data already... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38333212)

I'd really like to see the data. It's impossible to come to any sort of conclusions without it. If LS is radiating outside of the bandwidth they've been given, then they've got serious problems and need to deal with it. However, if this is just an issue with cheap GPS receivers not rejecting frequencies that are outside of the GPS band, then I'm personally inclined to tell the manufacturers of these receivers to fuck off.

In related news... (1)

segin (883667) | more than 2 years ago | (#38333266)

Government testing reveals 75% of GPS receivers don't know to keep their nose out of spectrum GPS doesn't operate in.

DONT BLAME Philip Falcone ! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38333512)

This is 100% the ineptness of the FCC.

The FCC have destroyed their "original mission statement." Now the FCC's engineers mission is a fascist one helping motherfuckers profit, instead of "regulating power and frequency in the public interest." Some pointed out the head of the FCC is a presidential appointee. I'm sure even the stupidest motherfucker can put together the links here of why this is another failed government agency. Commercial Interests own 98% of the public spectrum (instead of the public owning it, this is the opposite of their original mission statement) With the FCC's engineers now busy running around doing fascist business instead of trying to get everything to work together, this is what you get, a bunch of squished signals regardless of the emission. They did this with Broadband over Power also.

What has to happen here folks is this FCC needs to be controlled by the VOTERS not the President. How to do that, fuck if I know. But it's the only thing that will put it back into the non fascist box, is to have the public run it, and provide oversight. Another benefit of this is the public can decide to spank commercial broadcasters, instead of a presidential appointee (e.g. the Establishment) giving a pass to stations who tow the current administration's line. You could fill their public file up with complaints but as long as the War On Terror continues the FCC will rubber stamp their Station ID and frequency allocation. The FCC needs a TOP to BOTTOM overhaul, now at a financially, and monetarily inconvenient time, but I'll bet this is yet more of the NWO globalists (Banksters) plan.

IT's past time to start locking up these banksters and their enablers in our government!!!
Come on Slashdot wake the fuck up.

Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>