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!

Military Testing WMD Sensors at Super Bowl

CowboyNeal posted more than 8 years ago | from the save-what's-left-of-detroit dept.

Wireless Networking 176

Lam1969 writes "Members of the Michigan National Guard will be at the Super Bowl on Sunday to deploy 'sensor fusion', a real-time, IP-based wireless technology that combines readings from portable and fixed devices that can potentially detect terrorist threats. While sensors capable of detecting chemical, biological, or radiological threats have been used at previous Super Bowls, the readings had to be communicated by radio between different security personnel. Sensor fusion automatically takes readings from the devices and uploads them to a central, secure Web server, where security staff anywhere can monitor conditions at the event. From the article: 'The software uses open standards and is open-source, based on the OSGi Service Platform, which is a standardized, component-oriented computing environment for networked services. OSGi allows networked devices to be managed from anywhere in the world, while allowing software to be installed, updated or removed on the fly while the device is operating.'"

cancel ×

176 comments

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

f1rst p0st!!! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14641650)

lol

So.... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14641915)

does this mean neither team can throw the long bomb?

(ducks)

"secure" (4, Funny)

scenestar (828656) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641652)

Let's hope it isn't anything like those voting machines.

Re:"secure" (2, Interesting)

Musteval (817324) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641660)

According to the article summary, the software is open source. So everything should be fine unless some terrorist discovers a gaping security flaw in the code and doesn't tell anybody.

Personally, I wouldn't open-source software this important, just because the ratio of potential abusers to fixers, not to mention the potential damage done, is so high.

Re:"secure" (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14641676)

Yeah, obviously it should only be trusted to the lowest bidder where the ratio of potential corners cut, not to mention the potential for the CEO to flee the country with his millions of dollars, is high.

Re:"secure" (1)

Musteval (817324) | more than 8 years ago | (#14642046)

No, obviously it should be trusted to people who have proven themselves to be trustworthy. If you open the code to qualified, benevolent outsiders, you get many of the benefits of open source with none of the downsides.

Re:"secure" (2, Informative)

brunson (91995) | more than 8 years ago | (#14642094)

The Linux and OpenBSD implementations of the TCP/IP stack are Open Source. Do you think they'd be better off writing their own closed source version of it from scratch?

Re:"secure" (2, Insightful)

budgenator (254554) | more than 8 years ago | (#14642353)


The OSGi Alliance ("OSGi Alliance") hereby grants you a fully-paid, non-exclusive, non-transferable, worldwide, limited license (without the right to sublicense), under the OSGi Alliance's applicable intellectual property rights to view, download, and reproduce the OSGi Specification ("Specification") which follows this License Agreement ("Agreement"). You are not authorized to create any derivative work of the Specification. The OSGi Alliance also grants you a perpetual, non-exclusive, worldwide, fully paid-up, royalty free, limited license (without the right to sublicense) under any applicable copyrights, to create and/or distribute an implementation of the Specification that: (i) fully implements the Specification including all its required interfaces and functionality; (ii) does not modify, subset, superset or otherwise extend the OSGi Name Space, or include any public or protected packages, classes, Java interfaces, fields or methods within the OSGi Name Space other than those required and authorized by the Specification.


IANAL, but that doesn't strike me as open; viewable source and open source are two seperate things! This one seems to lack the ability to modify the source.

Re:"secure" (4, Insightful)

MooseByte (751829) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641907)


"Let's hope it isn't anything like those voting machines."

I was going to joke that at least they were testing WMD detectors and not WMDs, but your post sparked the realization that a hacked voting system is far more dangerous to a nation than any WMD ever could be.

Re:"secure" (1)

Sj0 (472011) | more than 8 years ago | (#14642272)

You say that, but have you TRIED the chillie?

Security of individual nodes (5, Interesting)

elwin_windleaf (643442) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641657)

They mentioned that the central web server was secure, but is there any information about the security of each node?

Whenever I hear anything about Wireless networking, I instantly have a security lightbulb that goes off in my head. Since it's based on IP technology, is there anything in place to prevent traditional wireless security issues? Can you spoof nodes?

Granted, no system is perfect, but I'm wondering if this system could be used to draw security away from a particular area, only to allow a potential threat to get in the back door.

Re:Security of individual nodes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14641932)

Wireless also presents a poor choice for relaying sensor information when an adverse group is involved. Radio jammers are very basic and inexpensive technology.

Also, per your example, a jammer placed right near the desired sensor and a false wireless signal generator (relaying a signal of it's-all-okay) right near the base (assuming encryption, protocol, etc. could be broken and duplicated) could really render this system not merely insecure but hazardous to those relying on it.

Re:Security of individual nodes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14642184)

Since it's based on IP technology, is there anything in place to prevent traditional wireless security issues? Can you spoof nodes?
Being based on IP has nothing whatsoever to do with wireless security. IP is Layer 3, and the wireless transport covers Layers 1 and 2.

That said, they're not exactly going to be deploying a bunch of Linksys WRT54G routers in the stadium. The military has invested heavily into research areas like Ultra Wide Band which make it very, very difficult to intercept messages or jam signals.

Re:Security of individual nodes (1)

Transcendent (204992) | more than 8 years ago | (#14642282)

Even though IP isn't at fault... use IPSec or some other low-level encryption scheme. Use private keys as well for authentication. Sure they can listen in on what you're saying and know the to/from addresses, but it'll just be garbage to them.

Re:Security of individual nodes (1)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | more than 8 years ago | (#14642348)

Since it's based on IP technology, is there anything in place to prevent traditional wireless security issues? Can you spoof nodes?

If they're smart, they're not relying on any transport-layer features for security and they sign each packet on both ends.

Still, the transport layer is worth examination. If this makes it to the news, that's enough information for a moderately sophisticated attacker to deploy a jamming device. Will they evacuate the stadium if the nodes lose communication without a specific threat? So why would they publicize this?

I, for one... (0)

Andy Gardner (850877) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641658)

Welcome our new terrorist-smeller pursuivant overlords

testing? (3, Insightful)

2MuchC0ffeeMan (201987) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641663)

This may seem like a silly question, but how can you test for something that won't be there?

Are they just trying to restrict false positives? Or just show off that they have something? This is just going to be another ineffective technology [com.com] that too much money was spent on.

Re:testing? (4, Informative)

damsa (840364) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641711)

They are testing the technology to communicate between the sensors and the base station, not the sensors themselves. It's similar to testing fire alarms, you don't need a fire to test those either.

Re:testing? (1)

sconeu (64226) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641733)

DoD is *VERY* interested in ad-hoc wireless sensor nets.

Re:testing? (1)

timeOday (582209) | more than 8 years ago | (#14642024)

This may seem like a silly question, but how can you test for something that won't be there?
Maybe it has a sensor module for weed :)

Re:testing? (1)

squiggleslash (241428) | more than 8 years ago | (#14642032)

They'll be sending over some terrorists with WMDs...

Re:testing? (2, Informative)

Mr. Underbridge (666784) | more than 8 years ago | (#14642285)

This may seem like a silly question, but how can you test for something that won't be there? Are they just trying to restrict false positives?

Partly. If they're smart, they'll task the things to also search for substances that are somewhat rare but similar to agents of interest, and that are guaranteed to be there. Pick a bacterium carried by 1 person in 1000.

This is just going to be another ineffective technology that too much money was spent on.

Really? You're basing this on a popular news article on face recognition? These technologies can be fairly effective if used correctly, I've worked on some chemical detection in the past.

WMD ? What is the problem with you Americans ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14642355)

I mean, deploying such technology at super bowl to detect Wardrobes with Mammal Dysfunctions ?

You can't really get more f*cked up than that.

Re:testing? (1)

canajin56 (660655) | more than 8 years ago | (#14642472)

Option A: They are just testing the sensor network, not the accuracy of the sensors. They don't really care about false positives, given that airport bomb sensors are routinly set off by new electronics and perfumes.

Option B: Testing the sensor network is how the evil NSA has convinced ignorant higher ups to let them hire arabs to smuggle "fake" bombs in to "test" the sensor network, when in reality these backpacks actually ARE filled with explosives, as well as Iranian passports. Bush then uses the permission he has already been granted by the Senate to nuke Iran, Russia follows through on its promise to attack any country that attacks Iran, and everybody on earth dies in a huge nuclear war, except Australia.

Believe whatever option you want. They're both fine choices ;)

Hmmmm, and the proof of concept is... (1)

3seas (184403) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641665)

those green glowing footballs.

This may be just a PR exercise. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14641667)

This might stop a suicide bomber, so I'm not saying it's a useless exercise. On the other hand, if you put it in the context of everthing else that's going on, it seems likely that they are spending a vast amount of money to wave the flag. They even have the Canadian army and airforce deployed presumably to keep an enemy airforce or army from flooding over the northern border. Sounds like overkill to me.

I'm not saying the terrorists won't strike again or that we shouldn't protect ourselves. Spending this much money on a big show just doesn't seem like the best way to deploy our resources.

Re:This may be just a PR exercise. (1)

Chowderbags (847952) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641993)

What, someone could be a suicide bomber in the lines outside the stadium? Do you really think it wouldn't be not only possible, but fairly easy? Just run as far into the crowd as you can and press the button. Quite honestly, I'm more surprised it hasn't than if it were to happen. But hey, I guess the terrorists prefer a boatload of showmanship.

The problem isn't that it's overkill, it's that it's not really effective. Someone determined to kill Americans could do it, and could do it very effectively. At this point, it seems like we're not outsmarting the terrorists, they just seem a whole lot more incompetant than us.

Re:This may be just a PR exercise. (1)

Sj0 (472011) | more than 8 years ago | (#14642290)

If you have a true WMD, does it matter that you decided to set it off a few meters downwind of the target rather than on top of it?

"Oh no! We can't get our nuclear weapon into the superbowl......oh well. "

Re:This may be just a PR exercise. (3, Insightful)

westlake (615356) | more than 8 years ago | (#14642362)

They even have the Canadian army and airforce deployed presumably to keep an enemy airforce or army from flooding over the northern border. Sounds like overkill to me.

Try opening a map. You think just maybe an arena seating 65,000 wouldn't be as a tempting a taget and an easier kill than the twin towers?

Open source a good thing here? (1, Insightful)

alan.briolat (903558) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641679)

OSGi allows networked devices to be managed from anywhere in the world, while allowing software to be installed, updated or removed on the fly while the device is operating
So if the source code is available for anyone to analyse, AND the software can be updated on-the-fly... what makes this effective?

Why does everyone keep assuming terrorists are stupid? Attacks don't succeed through stupidity, they succeed through ingenuity. Look at the source, find a hole, "fix" the software, detonate a WMD...

Re:Open source a good thing here? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14641741)

Why does everyone keep assuming terrorists are stupid


If they possessed such skills and technology, we would be seeing massive terrorist attacks on information infrastructure, not people blowing themselves up in buses.

Re:Open source a good thing here? (2, Insightful)

FinestLittleSpace (719663) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641766)

Terrorism's aim isn't usually just to screw up an infrastructure. They tend to realise that it's a heck of a lot more productive to kill a few people and make everyone cry their eyes out, than for a few corporations to fall to their knees (which, given the fact that there's a lot of EXCELLENT IT infrastructures on this planet - run by slashdotters often!).

Emotional terrorism will nearly always beat information terrorism, especially when any sort of harm caused creates huge economic strains in the rush, build up and subsequent 'security increase' afterwards (why the hell do they even entertain the idea of half million pound sluggish weapon scanners at busy train stations in the UK?)

Re: Open source a good thing here? (3, Funny)

Black Parrot (19622) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641768)

> So if the source code is available for anyone to analyse, AND the software can be updated on-the-fly... what makes this effective? Why does everyone keep assuming terrorists are stupid? Attacks don't succeed through stupidity, they succeed through ingenuity. Look at the source, find a hole, "fix" the software, detonate a WMD...

Yeah, 'cause closed source always keeps the evildoers out.

Because some of them are (1)

technoextreme (885694) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641847)

Why does everyone keep assuming terrorists are stupid? Attacks don't succeed through stupidity, they succeed through ingenuity. Look at the source, find a hole, "fix" the software, detonate a WMD...
Yeah some terrorists are stupid. I remember recently in the news about how someone got caught trying to make a black cumin bomb. His cover story for buying so much spices: Im making cookies. It's these type of people that are easy to catch.

Re:Because some of them are (1)

budgenator (254554) | more than 8 years ago | (#14642413)

Of course once the stupid one is caught then the NSA goes over his phone logs with a fine tooth comb and starts to social-network the smart ones that told him "quit calling me, you moron" 3 years ago.

Re:Open source a good thing here? (1)

burritoKing (768156) | more than 8 years ago | (#14642005)

And i thought it was only communists who used open source!!!

Scary (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14641680)

Don't mean to sound paranoid or anti FOSS, but this is what first came to my head / heart: OMG!! Isn't that freaking scary?!... I mean, when I had some metal detectors isolated from everything else, at least I knew that everyone was watching for any sign of danger. But with this, I think the security team will rely on the network. But the access is made through standard network protocols, and with software which code is open and freely available (for someone to look for for an unpatched exploit). Isn't it scary??? Or am I just darned paranoid?

Of course... (4, Funny)

TCQuad (537187) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641683)

Because the best place to beta test a top-secret military project is in a forum with six billion people watching.

I'm not saying that this shouldn't be used here, but why weren't they tested at, say, a regular Lions game beforehand? It's the same number of people in the same location, just not as many of them are VIPs with the associated security concerns in case of evacuation.

Re:Of course... (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14641720)

six billion people watching.

The viewing figures are less than 100 million. I think you are confusing the Super Bowl with an event that the rest of the world gives a damn about.

Re:Of course... (2, Informative)

pyro_dude (15885) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641823)

And has TVs for

Re:Of course... (0, Offtopic)

name773 (696972) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641840)

this is the first time i wish i still moderated :)

Re:Of course... (2)

Reality Master 101 (179095) | more than 8 years ago | (#14642057)

The Super Bowl is televised worldwide, and gets about a billion viewers [redwoodfallsgazette.com] .

Re:Of course... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14642164)

Sorry, but outside the US (and maybe Canada) no one care about the Super Bowl. It might be viewed by some in cafes and things like that, but as a European I can assure you that no one is interested in american football. Saying that 1 billion people will watch it is really, really dumb.

Bull (1, Informative)

ObsessiveMathsFreak (773371) | more than 8 years ago | (#14642166)

The Super Bowl is televised worldwide, and gets about a billion viewers.

Bullshit!

There is absolutely no way, no way in hell that one sixth of the world's population both cares enough about, and has access to a broadcast of the Superbowl. From YFL:

anticipating that an estimated 90 million viewers and one billion people around the globe will tune in,


What the hell is that supposed to mean? 90 million viewers I'll buy, but what the hell do you mean by "tune in". I doubt that on billion people are even watching television over the course of the Super Bowl. 95% of people outside the United States probably don't even know what the Super Bowl is.

Re:Bull (1)

Sj0 (472011) | more than 8 years ago | (#14642322)

The cultural imperialism of the US means that we all know what the superbowl is. The fact that it's not as successful as leftists would like to think means that we just don't give a damn.

Re:Bull (1)

Professor_UNIX (867045) | more than 8 years ago | (#14642331)

95% of people outside the United States probably don't even know what the Super Bowl is.

Hell, I bet 50% of Americans don't even know who is playing in the Super Bowl or when it is being played. I only found out it was this weekend because they were playing Super Bowl commercials on the news (sad when commercials are considered a news item). I still have no idea who is playing in it though. I THINK the Steelers and somebody else (Detroit Lions maybe?), but I'm only guessing that because they showed a shot of downtown Detroit when they did a piece of the security for the Super Bowl and there were a lot of fat drunken Steelers fans roaming around in their costumes.

the appearance of security (3, Insightful)

JanneM (7445) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641728)

I'm not saying that this shouldn't be used here, but why weren't they tested at, say, a regular Lions game beforehand? It's the same number of people in the same location, just not as many of them are VIPs with the associated security concerns in case of evacuation.

This has little to do with the technology, or any actual threat. It is a fairly high-profile event, and so it is widely perceived as a target for an attack. If you stage public, high-profile events creating the perception of security you calm people down, and the event can proceed as planned.

It's just like scanners at airports - you counter the perception of a threat with the perception of security and everybody walks away happy. It means that a technology to, for example, scan passengers at airports without any visible organization or inconvenience is actually a lot less useful than a largely inneffective - but public - display of zeal. If you had an effective, unobtrusive way to scan people, you'd probably still need to keep sham security stations active, hassling people and delaying proceedings, just for the needed visibility.

Six billion? (4, Insightful)

mangu (126918) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641911)

Someone already commented how wrong your figure is. And I believe that's exactly why no one has to fear a terrorist attack on the Super Bowl. Merkins seem to have a fixation with this, I remember a film I saw nearly thirty years ago [imdb.com] . Let's face it, very few people outside the USA know or care about the Super Bowl.


Terrorists have their target audiences. The Al Qaeda wants to impress people in the muslim countries, who think of "football" as the sport that's played by kicking a round ball with the feet. If 90% of the TV news anchors around the world have to explain what this "super bowl" thing is, and its true importance in the collective American mind, the intended message of the attack would be wasted. It's not as if there was an attack in the World Cup [fifa.com] , whose audience does reach in the billions mark.

Re:Six billion? (1)

heinousjay (683506) | more than 8 years ago | (#14642047)

Ah, the sheer beauty of the expression of an inferiority complex is really unmatched in my mind.

Keep chasing #1 with clever insults and rhetorical devices. It's bound to pay off somehow.

Re:Six billion? (1)

Sj0 (472011) | more than 8 years ago | (#14642340)

By chasing #1, you certainly mean #1 by orders of magnitude [answerbag.com] , right?

I'll forego trying to fit you into a stereotype.

Re:Of course... (1)

Gyorg_Lavode (520114) | more than 8 years ago | (#14642001)

I believe we are confusing "tested" with "initially deployed". The testing should have been conducted in a lab. The operational testing takes place as part of, well, operations. For that it should be deployed where it is most needed. The superbowl is the perfect place to put it through it's paces.

Parallel universes or something.. (1)

camzmac (889291) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641690)

OSGi allows networked devices to be managed from anywhere in the world, while allowing software to be installed, updated or removed on the fly while the device is operating.

Ehh... SSH can do that too.

Great but... (2, Insightful)

jmcmunn (307798) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641693)


By the time this sensor figures out that someone has a WMD strapped to their chest, the WMD is obviously already there at the stadium (or relatively close, depending on where they set it up) and everyone there is already in danger. I mean, how likely is it that the terrorist bought a ticket and is going to the game? Remember in the movie "Sum of All Fears" they just dropped off a vending machine a few days before the game. So I am guessing they are just checking to see that this kind of thing works "In the real world" more than anything. I could see it being more useful at airports watching for WMDs making their way into the country or something.

Re:Great but... (1)

DrXym (126579) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641807)

Exactly. Searching people going into the grounds makes security theatre but it means zip if the terrorists simply laced the hotdog mustard with botulism or some equally novel attack. Hell, I bet even that huge snaking line of people waiting to go through the metal detector and pat downs would make an extremely tempting target.

Re:Great but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14641972)

By the time this sensor figures out that someone has a WMD strapped to their chest, the WMD is obviously already there at the stadium (or relatively close, depending on where they set it up) and everyone there is already in danger.

Indeed. This seems like it will only be effective against WRMD (Weapons of Relatively Minor Destruction).

Or, even worse (2, Insightful)

mcc (14761) | more than 8 years ago | (#14642293)

By the time this sensor figures out that someone has a WMD strapped to their chest, the WMD is obviously already there at the stadium (or relatively close, depending on where they set it up) and everyone there is already in danger.

Or, more likely, the sensor never figures out that someone has a WMD strapped to their chest, because

1. Nobody has any and
2. The people who actually might want to do harm to America could just as easily pull this off with totally ordianary weapons of non-mass destruction-- and are much more likely to

and so while you're spending all this time staring at the WMD detector, whatever actual threats may or may not actually exist just walk right past you undetected.

In the last 20 years the only successful major terrorist attacks against the United States were pulled off with boxcutters, fertilizer, and pickup trucks, and yet we're focusing on expensive, high-tech gadgetry that you practically need the support of the U.S. government to get hold of anyway.

Cancer Paients need not attend (2, Insightful)

IAAP (937607) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641704)

Patients of Nuclear medicine getting stopped by cops. [mindfully.org]

This was making news in the Wall Street Journal and other papers back in the early part of 2002. Maybe that's why the military wants to test at the SB? A huge sample and plenty of possibilities for picking up cancer patients that could lead to positives.

Re:Cancer Paients need not attend (1)

Sj0 (472011) | more than 8 years ago | (#14642356)

"We have discoveres a massive terrorist network of people with walkers. Our theory is that they use their bodies to smuggle the uranium into the game, then tackle each other futily to reach critical mass.

And with the american governments propoganda machine, we'll all probably believe it.

Sensors in DC (4, Interesting)

f1055man (951955) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641714)

DC has sensors that sound similar. They've also proven to be almost useless: http://www.salon.com/news/feature/2005/10/18/tular emia/ [salon.com]

Re:Sensors in DC (1)

tres (151637) | more than 8 years ago | (#14642083)

The article you link to indicates that the sensors work just fine, but even when they do detect something, there is no ready reaction, or use of the data by government officials for nearly a week.

I'd say it's not the sensors that are useless, but rather the government.

WMD's at a football game? (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14641717)

Apparently, the British soccer hooligans have nothing on American football fans. Over there, they're happy if they can keep glass bottles out of the stands.

False Positive (1)

Via_Patrino (702161) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641725)

Very good, at least until those intelligent systems detect a false positive.

wireless...had better be on a dedicated band (1)

mwilliamson (672411) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641750)

I sure the heck hope they're not using generic 802.11 on 2.4 or 5.6 Ghz, but rather a dedicated goverment band. It would be _stupid_ to put something so critical on a shared band.

Re:wireless...had better be on a dedicated band (1)

dysk (621566) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641895)

It would be _stupid_ to put something so critical on a shared band.
And I'm sure that someone wishing to disrupt communications system would obey the FCC regulations by staying out of government bands. In radio, the entire spectrum is a shared band.

Shame (-1, Troll)

FlyingPostman (610686) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641752)

A bomb going off would kill 50,000 rednecks.

Re:Shame (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14641856)

Rednecks in Michigan? I thought rednecks were limited to SOUTH of the Mason-Dixon line....

Re:Shame (1)

Hyperx_Man (936387) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641891)

I don't understand your comment. 50,000 rednecks? So what does it make the millions watching the superbowl on TV? Also rednecks?

Re:Shame (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14642343)

No, just idiots. I'm going to a 'Puppy Bowl' party. Animal Planet, you da man!

all they're testing is is remote data gathering (1)

CFD339 (795926) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641792)

...This kind of remote data gathering is in production use in tens of thousands of factories, farms, forests, and wildlife preserves all over the world. So they're sending different data. So what?

IN SOVIET RUSSIA (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14641802)

WMD's detect you!

Erm so.. (1)

Turn-X Alphonse (789240) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641812)

So if this detects WMDs how does it detect say bombs as well as dangerous substances before they have already spread? I mean "theres a virus in the air!" does little to stop people already infected and spreading it (who you can't singleout asthey swarmaway), let alonegoing "theres a bomb!", because the second these people are approached (lets say extreme Islamic people for sake of argument), they're going to blow themselvs up and any near them.. So isn't it a bit silly to go "oh we KNEW he had a bomb.. we just couldn't do anything".

It's like hiring a guy in a wheelchair to be a security guard. He might see everything but he can't exactly do much untill it's too late.

FEAR (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14641835)

Live it! All day long, all the time, at every event and every gathering. Let it control your life. Vote only for those who make you feel safe. Attack those who would limit government power.

FEAR

It becomes you.

Sensors vs Fireworks (1)

kolonel (813396) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641839)

Should be a laugh when the fire works go off at the half time show.

Sensor Fusion is not the name of the technology (5, Interesting)

gte910h (239582) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641841)

Sorry, as someone who's worked with robots before, I just had to clear this up.

Sensor fusion is whenever you take data from multiple incoming sensors, and automatically combine them to form a picture of the world. This system FEATURES sensor fusion, however it is not called that.

I think testing the system during the superbowl is a great idea. I think telling people that you're testing it during the superbowl is a stupendously foolish idea. You're going to have all sorts of people screwing with it, from people bringing in irradiated crap, to just plain 802.11 devices setup to jam it.

Wait, unless that's what they're testing about the system.....

                            --Michael

Ob. South Park (2, Funny)

Headcase88 (828620) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641857)

Well I'm Canadian and if they ever attack our Superbowl, we know what to do [wikipedia.org] .

This has nothing to do with WMD's (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14641864)

And everything to do with building a track and trace society. Consider the following conjecture: if we are planning on rolling out a new monetary system that is totally cashless -- and we've been moving that way for about a century -- it would have to be identity based in some way. And that implies knowing identity absolutely. And that implies surveillance and identity verification. Therefore, this project has nothing to do with WMD's. That's just the pretext. They are training people to be searched, scanned, tracked and traced in preparation for a new way of buying goods.

How will they know if it works? (1)

whoda (569082) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641867)

It's not like they are really expecting someone to show up with a briefcase nuke or a big bad vial of botulism to pour into the stadium ventilation system are they?

Obvious reason: Free admission (2, Insightful)

ishmalius (153450) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641878)

Has nobody else noticed the obvious reason the National Guard are doing this? Not only do they get their weekend hours out of the way, but they get free admission to the SuperBowl. Since last-minute tickets are costing over $1000, I am sure that they are bragging to their buddies what a boondoggle they have accomplished.

I once got into a U.S. Open golf tournament by volunteering for "Emergency Services." After spending about 5 minutes setting up some tables, I wandered away and got a beer and watched the tournament like everyone else. And the badge looked cool.

Stress Test (1)

Enzo1977 (112600) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641886)

The real test is if the it can tell if the radiation detected is the leftover remenants of the radioactive dye injected into a patient when they take a stress test.

I've heard numerous stories where customs agents have taken people asside because they tested for levels of radioactivity on them, after having taken a stress test at their doctor's office.

I'm sure they got a machine with (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14641887)

a shockwave detector... but on the other hand... wouldn't that be a little bit too late?

OSGi Framework very cool (4, Informative)

MacDasmans (951962) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641898)

The OSGi framework mentioned is very cool indeed. It's best known usage is the Eclipse [eclipse.org] IDE. It can also be used in web applications, where especially the Wicket [sf.net] component web framework delivers a very good integration. There are several users working with OSGi compliant frameworks (most notably Oscar, which is in the Apache incubator [apache.org] under the name Felix), and Wicket. I have used Oscar and Wicket in a commercial product and we were very satisfied with the runtime re-deployment of new components.

wait... wait... (0, Offtopic)

dr_labrat (15478) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641900)

You missed another important pointless buzzword:

Synergy

Not as scary as the alternative? (4, Insightful)

Alwin Henseler (640539) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641922)

From the article:

Future capabilities could include small wireless cameras linked to facial-recognition software databases that would help identify suspects in crowds, he said. "It can be kind of scary," Ricker said, "but it's not as scary as the alternative."

Not as scary as a (possible) terrorist attack with many casualties? I happen to disagree. I find it very annoying that law enforcement/government seems to want to have any type of 'disturbance' of our society under control. Be it terrorism, crime, violent protests, hooligans, whatever.

Just imagine an 'ideal' world where this would actually work: camera's everywhere, all your actions registered, all terrorists locked away, 100% of crimes solved, citizens obeying all rules, drop a chewing gum on the street and a fine is automatically subtracted from your paycheck, leave your doors unlocked and nobody would even think of walking in to steal your belongings. Bomb attacks only happening in movies or history books.

Now THAT is a scary thought. Would you want to live that way? I sure as hell don't. Sure, streets would be clean, life would be safe and easier, but it would also be very boring.

No need to make life 'perfect'. Just do what is needed to bring negative things down to acceptable levels. Find a balance between that and how much effort is spent to archieve it.

It seems to me this balance is often lost. Are measures really cost-effective? Just imagine that all the money going to counter-terrorism and the war in Iraq had been spent on health care and development aid for poor countries instead. That could have lifted millions out of poverty. Anyone in the Bush administration even have a rough estimate about how many (potential) terrorism that would save, or what boost that would give the US economy (and image)?

'Suspect packages' are found every other day now, and train stations cleared or appartment blocks evacuated. Terrorist strike prevented? Nope. Somebody forget their cellphone or shopping bag, and countless men-hours were wasted.

Common sense, people. Traffic, starvation (if you're really poor) or disease might kill you. If you're 'lucky', a lightning strike, plane crash or falling coconut (yes, they kill more people than sharks!) might do it. Looking at how likely it is, mr. Bin Laden & friends are near the bottom of the list. So why is so much effort wasted on that? I'll take some crime and the occasional bombing instead, thank you.

Your using fake statistics (1)

technoextreme (885694) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641964)

Common sense, people. Traffic, starvation (if you're really poor) or disease might kill you. If you're 'lucky', a lightning strike, plane crash or falling coconut (yes, they kill more people than sharks!) might do it. Looking at how likely it is, mr. Bin Laden & friends are near the bottom of the list. So why is so much effort wasted on that? I'll take some crime and the occasional bombing instead, thank you.

Ummm... Im assuming your thinking of the statistic that falling cocunuts kill 150 people each year. Guess what. It's fake. No one actually keeps track of how many people are killed by falling cocunuts.

Re:Your using fake statistics (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14642311)

I used to live in South Florida.....Naples to be exact, and I can tell you that there are/were indeed people killed every year by falling coconuts. You haven't seen/heard anything until you've been walking along the dead quiet, palm-tree-lined streets at dawn and had a coconut drop out of a 50+ ft palm tree and hit a parked car near you. Awesome. It's like a cannon going off.

Simply because nobody keeps statistics on those particular incidents doesn't mean they don't happen. Similarly, I don't recall ever seeing the statistic of how many people are killed by baseball bats every year, but that doesn't mean they aren't a method whereby people are killed.

As to the original post....it is dead on. Fuck 'security'. Preserve the ideals embodied in the Constitution and Bill of Rights first and foremost.

Re:Not as scary as the alternative? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14641983)

I find it very annoying that law enforcement/government seems to want to have any type of 'disturbance' of our society under control. Be it terrorism, crime, violent protests, hooligans, whatever.

It's a single event. You act like you're being watched 24/7. Get off it.

Sure, streets would be clean, life would be safe and easier, but it would also be very boring.

Remember that you said that if you're ever kidnapped and beaten half to death. We'll see how your values change from needing excitement via the glass eye of your nightly news versus the actual life effecting damage done by violent crime. You know, those people continue to suffer long after they're a random headline in your local paper.

So why is so much effort wasted on that?

Uh, it's a high profile target not only for terrorism but other violent and non-violent crime. Infact, if I were to take bets my sure bet about the superbowl that among the thousands of people that a few people are going to get arrested for some level of crime. Where else can you have a sure thing like that under normal circumstances?

You're just another alarmist but what disturbs me the most is you're not upset about any possible loss of privacy rights (which isn't a concern in the superbowl) but you seem to be upset that it may cut into the entertainment value you place on the suffering of others.

Re:Not as scary as the alternative? (1)

Sigma 7 (266129) | more than 8 years ago | (#14642048)

Just imagine an 'ideal' world where this would actually work: camera's everywhere, all your actions registered, all terrorists locked away, 100% of crimes solved, citizens obeying all rules, drop a chewing gum on the street and a fine is automatically subtracted from your paycheck, leave your doors unlocked and nobody would even think of walking in to steal your belongings. Bomb attacks only happening in movies or history books.

Now THAT is a scary thought. Would you want to live that way? I sure as hell don't. Sure, streets would be clean, life would be safe and easier, but it would also be very boring.


Video games can take care of the bordem, especially with Hot Coffee.

If Coffee isn't within your taste, there are plenty of other art forms to enjoy, such as Science Fiction books, Television, etc. You can even go ahead and create your own piece of art - the easiest to do is called "Modern Art", which has a green background with red paint splattered over it.

Uhm... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14641938)

Shouldn't they test them BEFORE the Superbowl? I mean, an actual lab test to make sure they work? Because I read that Tom Clancy book. the Superbowl is toast.

FIRE, FIRE! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14641943)

Which terrorist would be so stupid to bring a bomb to such an event.
Just go to a stand, point to a brown man and yell on the top of your
lungs: "This man has a bomb!" The ensuing panic will kill more
people than any bomb could.

Leave your plutonium anthrax at home this year (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14641958)

Look guys...I know it's "fun" to take your Blackberries, Cell phones, Farady Cages, etc. with you to make the Superbowl a true "geek" event, but the radioactives that you've been collecting out of your smoke detectors and the various bacilli that you've been breeding from your garden soil should be left at home this year.

Yes, yes, you can explain the innocent mixup to the guys at Gitmo, but really...is it worth it just to get a free flight to Cuba?
You may not know this, but when they let you leave...you have to walk back

But will it detect...(troll) (0, Flamebait)

cellocgw (617879) | more than 8 years ago | (#14641966)

Republicans?

(This is pretty much the first troll I've ever posted to /., but considering the incredible amount of time and $$ wasted on pointless pseudoantiterrorism efforts since 11/9/01, I just got pissed off this time).

Re:But will it detect...(troll) (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14642136)

Here's a tip for you: if you make a comment that isn't offensive (because it doesn't make any sense ... are you trying to say that Republicans are equivalent to WMDs?), and then spend twice as long explaining to everyone why you posted it ... it's not a particularly effective troll.

The real question is... (2, Funny)

niittyniemi (740307) | more than 8 years ago | (#14642012)

...will it protect the American public from the wardrobe malfunction threat?!?

Another overexposed nipple could spell doom for us all...

I wonder... (0, Redundant)

KDR_11k (778916) | more than 8 years ago | (#14642018)

Will this detect clothing malfunctions before they happen?

WMD already found (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14642084)

Football, like other professional sports, is a weapon of mass distraction. The more time people spend thinking about sports, the less time they spend thinking about more important things like how their society overwhelmingly benefits a wealthy few.

How about ... (2, Funny)

MrNougat (927651) | more than 8 years ago | (#14642221)

... testing it in Iraq? They'll be able to work out false positives there just as well, since there's no WMDs there to find, either.

I just wish them good luck (2, Insightful)

Z00L00K (682162) | more than 8 years ago | (#14642279)

by running OSGi for that. I have been involved in a solution that acted unstable and erratically since it was running on an OSGi platform. OK, it may depend on which platform, but there are several issues around developing code on that platform. Since then OSGi has been thrown away and the application is instead executing standalone.

As I see it - OSGi is just an operating system on top of an operating system, and much of the functionality can actually be achieved easier by other means.

Otherwise - a wireless sensor network as it actually is about is fairly simple, but isn't each node in the net rather expensive? A node actually talking IP will require an IP stack and that in turn will require a fair amount of CPU power together with OSGi. But on the other hand - if the nodes are able to run IP and OSGi they are certainly able to use encryption and certificates to validate the data. Cheaper wireless sensors doesn't have enough punch to be able to do much encryption - but on the other hand you may afford to lose a couple of them before anything becomes a problem.

Why bother having public events anymore? (1, Interesting)

Catbeller (118204) | more than 8 years ago | (#14642450)

Why don't we all become permanent members of the U.S. Army Reserves, subject everyone to military law, and cancel all public gatherings? Safety First! Who needs freedom when you can have ultimate safety.

I hear Halliburton is getting to build more mass detention camps [presstelegram.com] on U.S. soil. Watch what you say, watch what you do...
Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?