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$500,000 Prize for Faster Airport Security Checks

timothy posted more than 6 years ago | from the more-logical-would-help-too dept.

Transportation 517

coondoggie writes "A security company is willing to fork over $500,000 in prize money to the person or company that comes up with an innovative technology to speed airport security lines. The company making the offer, Clear, says the winning technology must meet a number of criteria including TSA approval and it must reduce inconvenience by, for example, allowing for no divesting of shoes or outer garments."

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So let me get this straight... (5, Funny)

nweaver (113078) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971702)

A company which is trying to rake in millions by providing a "You paid more so you can skip the line" service, which promised shoe scanners etc, has to resort to trying to give a (rather small, given the need to get TSA approval) prize purse to make their business model work?

No, you are incorrect... (3, Interesting)

Actually, I do RTFA (1058596) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971780)

Like most government million-dollar prizes (such as for the next-generation of battery technology), the prize is a bonus. The government, or in this case the security company, also agrees to purchase X units at whatever it costs you to build (including start-up costs, and usually a profit margin of 6-10%). So, if you have a good idea, and invest your time in making it work, the company will end up giving you millions, but you know that $500,000 will be upfront as an interim reward.

Easy as Pie (2, Insightful)

AmericanInKiev (453362) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972242)

Lock the God-D@mn Cabin door, and shoot the first co-pilot stupid enough to open it.

please send check to AIK

When do I get my money? (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21971708)

I suggest...

Do Nothing.

It will be just as effective, and much cheaper.

When do I get my money?

Stand in line! (2, Funny)

EmbeddedJanitor (597831) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972042)

Dear Sir/Madam

There are many people after this prize and you need to stand in line. To expedite processing please remove your shoes and place your keys and watch in the basket.

Re:When do I get my money? (1)

Hatta (162192) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972180)

I have a rock that keeps tigers away. Maybe they could adapt this technology for terrorists instead.

Re:When do I get my money? (4, Funny)

PrescriptionWarning (932687) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972268)

How about make the security so tight that very few people actually want to fly anymore... brilliant!

Or you always do more profiling, I hear thats popular these days when you don't want people to fly.

You can also put the terror alert level up to code Magma Hot Super Extreme Red. Red means bad, so people will avoid flying for sure then.

Move to another country (2, Informative)

loshwomp (468955) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971724)

Anywhere in Europe or Asia ought to work. No "divesting of shoes" anywhere I've traveled outside the USA.

UK security sucks as much if not more than the US (3, Interesting)

Sanity (1431) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971766)

I don't recall if I had to remove my shoes, but I do recall security procedures in the UK being at least as inconvenient as those in the US. One of the most rediculous was only being able to bring one piece of carry-on including your laptop (ie. you must choose between a laptop and a carry-on bag).

Re:UK security sucks as much if not more than the (1)

veganboyjosh (896761) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971914)

what if you had a laptop in a carry-on bag?

Re:UK security sucks as much if not more than the (1)

kannibal_klown (531544) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972018)

what if you had a laptop in a carry-on bag?

I can't tell if you're trying to be cute, or are asking a valid question. Here in the US we're used to our policy being: 1 piece of carry-on luggage, but 2 if the second is a laptop bag or a garment bag. So we can usually bring 2 pieces on the plane with us is we have a laptop bag.

I personally keep my laptop in a small laptop backpack along with everything I absolutely need: phone numbers, map, extra cash, etc. I also put a set of casual clothes in there just in case (usually very thin pants, a T-shirt, etc). I've also done this with the mini laptop briefcases as well. Then I bring a regular carryon with my real clothes and what-not.

Re:UK security sucks as much if not more than the (2, Interesting)

commanderfoxtrot (115784) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972040)

You have to take the laptop out to go through the X-ray machine separately.

The whole thing is a farce- I know (hypothetically of course) of many cases when the scanners haven't spotted knives, lights, liquids, even bullets. Maybe they only spot those sorts of things with the "Evil bit" set??

A simple way to speed up the security queues is by giving more space for taking off coats/shoes/whatever and putting it back on again on the other side.

Then by abolishing the daft rule of "if a man is being searched, then no other men are allowed to go through the scanner" (Same for women). Why on earth not? If the next man "beeps" the scanner, then they can wait to be searched. Not difficult.

Re:UK security sucks as much if not more than the (1)

lobiusmoop (305328) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972038)

These limitations were lifted on January 7th [] . I flew from London Heathrow to Hong Kong (LHR-HKG) that day and had no problems getting my laptop and hand luggage on board.

The whole point behind removing shoes (4, Insightful)

EmbeddedJanitor (597831) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972126)

is to make the whole process inconvenient. Why would they do that? Well perception is the more important than reality and this is a great way to show:
a) We take this seriously.
b) The terrorists are nasty people and they're doing this to you, not us.
c)Keep the whole War On Terror in your face. A scared citizen is a controllable citizen.

If they had the space and could get away with it, they would make everyone strip and get the Rubber Glove.

Re:Move to another country (4, Interesting)

Dachannien (617929) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972146)

Bah. My plan was going to involve divesting of all clothing altogether. Show up at the airport naked, and you won't have to waste time taking off your shoes.

Scrubs (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21971732)

This guy [] has the right idea.

Here's my suggestion (4, Insightful)

tgd (2822) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971738)

Stop taking token (and largely meaningless) security actions as a way to both justify jobs at the TSA and to keep the American people in fear.

There ya go, no need to take shoes off or all that other ridiculousness.

Exactly (0, Redundant)

TheMeuge (645043) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972152)

Stop making people take off their shoes, and stop "inspecting" my bottle of fucking sublock, then discussing whether or not it's 0.5g over the allowed size limit.

Can I get my $500'000 now please?

Re:Here's my suggestion (2, Insightful)

ScottyKUtah (716120) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972244)

How about for starters we quit inspecting the 80 year old grandmas, 5 year old kids, pilots in uniform with ID, and go back to the common sense inspections? Middle Eastern males between the ages of 18-40?

I noticed a trend in the kind of person that attacked on 9/11.

Oh wait, that's racial profiling, and we can't do that. We have to waste EVERYBODY's time to make sure some people's feelings aren't hurt.

Or even easier would be to just arm everybody.

The enemy we all share is FEAR (1)

FromTheAir (938543) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972260)

There should be money spent on eliminating fear through the creation of prosperity and abundance for all. No scarcity or lacking. I think it is obvious that if we took all the money spent and fear conflict and security we would be living in paradise, probably with FREE TRAVEL. The cost of fear is killing us. All we need to do is act collectively to create a fair and balanced energy exchange accounting system, with transparency so as not to lead anyone to temptation. This is in conjunction with Global Socratic Social Dialog so all Genius and Perspectives has a voice. The key is to use technology to create balance and a fair playing field. So we can all play, and not take the game so seriously.

How about... (2, Insightful)

PresidentEnder (849024) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971740)

Not treating paying customers like criminals and removing the reasons the American government gives other peoples to hate us? Nobody's going to attack you if they like you, right?

Re:How about... (1, Troll)

ILuvRamen (1026668) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971842)

exactly! Let's get real, people. TSA should stop spending all their time strip searching 50 year old american businessmen for no reason. Here, I've got a brand new technology fresh off the blueprints. Check the person's social security number. If they're a felon, search em. If they're not a US citizen, search em. If they're arabic and not from here, search em twice. And if you call that racist, you're an idiot. That's called real. 500k please.

Re:How about... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21972140)

I think Americans are too afraid to do stuff that might be deemed profiling, due to political correctness.

Plus, its nice security theater to strip-search a 70 year old grandmother who is absolutely no threat to the country than actually go after the people who might be bringing in the fireworks... i.e. people who hark from the Middle East, are in the age range, and have been going to and from the terrorist hotspots.

Until the TSA gets over being PC, the US is not really any more secure than it was before 9/11. In fact because we are wasting effort searching people down to the jammies on a regular basis who are no risk to our security, we may be even less secure.

Yes and no (1)

Moraelin (679338) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972322)

Well, yes and no.

I'm not a fan of show-business as security, and I do believe that the USA could clean up its act... a lot. So far from me to speak against that idea.

That said, believing that just because you're nice, everyone will treat you nicely... is a bit naive.

- Some people will hate you just because they're crazy and suffering from various delusions, and in their deranged mind you're the Antichrist. Sad to say, paranoid schiophrenia is very real.

- Some people are simply sociopaths and simply don't give a damn about how nice a person you are. They could hurt you worse than you can imagine on a full stomach, and still be perfectly able to look themselves in the mirror in the morning. Now probably most of those wouldn't kill themselves on a plane, but (A) some might manipulate others to, and (B) you never know, some did kill themselves just to take a bunch of innocents with them, as their grand finale and exit.

- Some are having a breakdown and just want to end it all, often in a way that gets themselves remembered. Often that means shooting a bunch of shoppers or co-workers, or blowing up a school.

- Some will hate you for having a different religion, or different political affiliation, or whatever.


I humbly submit as anecdotal support:

1. Such things as the Bath School disaster [] . Exactly what wrong did those children, aged 7 to 12, do to that guy? What reason did he have to blow them up? Even in his madness of blaming the government for his money problems, the children didn't really star as having done him any wrong.

2. The Unabomber [] . It wasn't some foreigner blowing up Americans as some act of international revenge. He was born american, to parents born american. The whole bombing campaign had been to attract attention to his deranged theory that industrialization had been a disaster for the human race. And even there, the victims weren't, dunno, people which would have been the villains even by that theory, but simply innocents to attract public attention and get his manifesto published.

3. The fact that most violence is actually sectarian. Sure, it gets the world's attention when someone from abroad blows shit up in the USA, but actually most terrorism is aimed at sects of the same religion. And a lot more terrorism than is aimed at the "evil" westerners, is aimed at terrorizing their own countrimen and neighbours and scaring them off cooperating with said "evil" westerners or off adopting western customs and ideas.

So, to cut a long story short, I would say that _only_ being nice is actually a pretty piss-poor defense. Sure, be nice, it may make it a lot harder to motivate people to blow themselves on your plane, but do be prepared to deal with the ones which aren't deterred by your just being swell guys.

Heck, (2, Funny)

Hawthorne01 (575586) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971744)

I'll kick in a few bucks to the pot myself if it results in some actual time-saving.

Maybe if we get it up to $500,007 dollars, they'll get it here sooner.

I'm in! (1)

Bloodoflethe (1058166) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972112)

Make that 500,049.

Easy. (5, Insightful)

Chairboy (88841) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971764)

Drop the current checks. No more stupid liquid rules, no shoe removals, no taking the laptop out of the bag. Go back to metal detector and X-ray machines if you like, but acknowledge that you cannot protect against EVERY POSSIBLE THREAT and focus on the most likely.

Over 50,000 die each year in the US on the highways. If the same "zero tolerance" rule was applied to cars, then all cars would be required by law to remain at speeds below 15mph, would be covered in big foam bumpers, and would require five point safety harnesses and helmets. To maintain the effectiveness of automobiles, we don't do this. As part of acknowledging that risk exists and that we're responsible for our lives, we make tradeoffs.

Absolute security is impossible. It also makes people complacent.

Nobody will ever succesfully hijack a plane the way those were in 2001, because we've all seen a possible outcome. The TSA is the embodiment of the old saying that generals always "plan for previous war".

Where do I collect my check? Or is the painfully obvious exempt?

Re:Easy. (2, Interesting)

rdeml (867986) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971920)

Require all adults to carry a knife. If the TSA is worried about hijacks, this will deter all but the insane. And the insane will die in their attempt.

Re:Easy. (1)

buraianto (841292) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972062)

Knives. Or bazookas.

Re:Easy. (1)

prelelat (201821) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972224)

Thats an interesting idea, except if they get an explosive on board set to a trigger or timer. But this would defiantly stop what happened on September 11th(barring everyone on the plane would prefer to take their chances with a loony who could want to crash it, I'm not the bravest soul but I know if it came to dying one way or another I would want to fight). Also that the cockpit is able to be sealed tight and locked. On flight security being tighter is what really needs to be resolved. Preflight I think you need to focus on transmitters check baggage for things like RF transmitters and receivers, flag those bags to be checked. Let the people just go through a good ol' metal detector on their way up. Seems pretty logical.

Re:Easy. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21972326)

>> all cars would be required by law to remain at speeds below 15mph, would be covered in big foam bumpers, and would require five point safety harnesses and helmets

Welcome to 2025. Now sit down and put your helmet back on.

Ooh! (2, Funny)

Greyfox (87712) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971776)

Time to dust off my plans for the automated-anal-probulator(tm)! Coming soon to an airport near you...

Easy.... (5, Insightful)

i.r.id10t (595143) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971778)

Easy. Nationwide concealed carry licenses with no restrictions on where to carry. Background check thru NCIC, then fingerprint check as well. People who have carry permits already (38 states have some provision IIRC) are involved in less crimes by percent than sworn police officers...

In fact, I think I'll use my Florida permit next time I fly as my "state issued picture ID". :)

Re:Easy.... (1)

zappepcs (820751) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972102)

I think there are a lot of people in the world that would not agree with you, but I think your idea has merit. I'd like to see 4 guys who hardly speak good English trying to tell 83 angry people with guns to sit down while they hijack anything, never mind a plane they can't jump out of.

Sure, the decompression thing is kind of mythically scary, but a .38 round doesn't have too much velocity after penetrating, and mushrooming inside of a human skull.

Still, I can't see many people going for that kind of thing, but I'm certain that airport security checks would be wildly different :-)

Even if all but 4 passengers were made to check their weapons with their luggage, it would stop anyone from thinking everyone on-board was unarmed, and the would-be hijackers would not know who has the guns. It would make the odds a bit less than 50/50 for successful hijacking.

To hijack successfully, they would HAVE to use guns, and screening for guns is rather less complex than looking for exploding peanut butter. After exposing themselves as hijackers, they only become targets for the secret gun-toting passengers. Without the weapon of surprise, they just become targets.

Sure, that kind of shoot-out scenario is scary to think about, but thinking about it might deter anyone with exploding peanut butter too.

Re:Easy.... (2, Insightful)

timothy (36799) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972328)

"In fact, I think I'll use my Florida permit next time I fly as my "state issued picture ID". :)"

Though there are some who argue that concealed carry permit holders should be ultra-secretive about the fact that they have this permit, I think it's an excellent thing to use anytime someone demands a "state-issued ID" or "government ID." a) it's confusing to people who don't realize they exist, which (sadly) is a pretty big group b) it's informative to those same people, might get some of them thinking about it.


New Invention: Freedom (4, Insightful)

Foofoobar (318279) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971786)

I have this new invention called freedom and peace of mind. It allows people to travel without being paranoid or fascist. It's amazing. It's costs nothing to implement and only requires everyone to pull that giant corncob out of their asses.

Re:New Invention: Freedom (1)

rainman_bc (735332) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972026)

I have this new invention called freedom and peace of mind.
Security measures are a funny thing. Once you lift them the hole is wide open for widespread abuse. You can bet your ass if they stopped checking liquids now that you'd get poisons and explosives on the plane in liquid containers.

$500,000? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21971788)

That seems an awfully small prize for technology that would likely be *much* more expensive to develop, and probably has a long-term economic value in the Billions of dollars. Heck, if I could develop such technology, I'd patent it and become a government contractor myself, and let Clear go rot. Or if I couldn't get investors to back me, I'd auction it off to the highest bidder. I'm sure *someone* other than Clear would be pretty interested in such tech too.

Naked (3, Funny)

mrtroy (640746) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971790)

Naked airlines. No carry-on.

Where can I claim my prize?

Re:Naked (1)

Actually, I do RTFA (1058596) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971848)

Naked airlines. No carry-on.

Won't your face be red the first time someone sneaks [insert weapon] on a plane up their bum.

Re:Naked (1)

chiph (523845) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971950)

Dude, have you paid attention to the people you have to sit next to?
There's *no way* I want to see those folks naked.

Chip H.

I heard that my favorite science company (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21971794)

Apparently, Aperture Science (my favorite science company) has technology which can facilitate the speedy transferal of people and objects from point a to point b. You can read more about it during their next "Bring your daughter to work" day! []

Faith-Based Homeland Security (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21971796)

How about the technology of praying people don't kill us? It would save a lot of money that could be better spent on decreasing the more frequently occurring forms of human death.

Security fees (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21971810)

The "Security fees" tacked on to every single ticket purchased are enough to pay for a single screener, per passenger for a full hour. That's more than enough time for a full pat down search and manual search of luggage. Screw spending millions of scanner boondoggles.

Religious profiling (0, Flamebait)

Malevolent Tester (1201209) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971812)

I mean, yeah, it wouldn't necessarily catch the Jehovah's Witnesses when they use their stolen suitcase nuke, but if people are serious about security why don't they stop pretending that we're all a threat and that the current terrorist threat doesn't come from one specific religion?
Given a choice between, say, being alive or having my white liberal guilt temporarily assuaged I know what my choice is.

Re:Religious profiling (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21971904)

I say we skip the current terrorist threat and jump straight to the next one. Christians are obviously going to be the next problem (look at them, how they congregate every Sunday, beady shifting eyes, you KNOW they're up to SOMETHING).


Or maybe let's celebrate our diversity and not use knee-jerk reactions as policy, eh?

Talk about R&D outsourcing, eh? (5, Insightful)

fmobus (831767) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971814)

I mean, they are paying for someone's idea or someone's implementation (equipment design and the like)? If the former, $500K sounds good; if the latter, $500K is pocket change: research ain't cheap.

Anyway, I have one idea: how about reverting back to the pre 9/11 era modus operandi? I mean, c'mon, it is not like a "hijack-and-ram-into-building" stunt is going to work again anyway... The only real worries should be bombs and guns on board, which we managed in an acceptable way back in the 90's.

Another idea is to stop messing with the political affairs in other countries. But that doesn't sound appealing to their prospective neocon customers, does it?


Occam's Razor my friend.. Occam's razor... (5, Funny)

Cathoderoytube (1088737) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971818)

Institute a nude only polcy at the airport, and no carry on luggage allowed. Your ticket is duct taped to your chest, if you set the metal detector off they tazer you and throw you into a wood chipper.

Re:Occam's Razor my friend.. Occam's razor... (1)

i_liek_turtles (1110703) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971892)

I would like one flight to the island of the Amazons, please.

Re:Occam's Razor my friend.. Occam's razor... (4, Funny)

FauxPasIII (75900) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971962)

> if you set the metal detector off they tazer you and throw you into a wood chipper.

My colleague who has a bolt holding his knee together would be strongly opposed to this plan, methinks. ;)

Then again, I suppose he _could_ be a Terminator.

Re:Occam's Razor my friend.. Occam's razor... (1)

no_pets (881013) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972006)

That's pretty darn thorough. But still not 100%. Terrorists just get on the plane, kung-fu everybody, take over. 9/11 over again. Or they just smell really bad - no shower in weeks - people pass out, then they take over. Now we are back where we started.

No divesting of outer garments? (2, Funny)

Foolicious (895952) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971820)

But the inner garments are fair game? Interesting. Very interesting.

my submission (2, Funny)

microcars (708223) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971828)

(see attached diagram)

The travelers arrive in the entrance hall here, and are carried along the corridor on a conveyor belt in extreme comfort and past murals depicting Mediterranean scenes, towards the rotating knives.
The last twenty feet of the corridor are heavily soundproofed.
The blood pours down these chutes and the mangled flesh slurps into these...

Re:my submission (1)

moderatorrater (1095745) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972088)

"Now it's time for the killing floor. But don't let the name fool you, it's more of a grating so that the blood can be collected and sold to European countries!"

Re:my submission (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21972116)

I'm sorry, did you say, "rotating knives"???

Re:my submission (1)

microcars (708223) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972248)

Rotating knives, yes.

End the Security Theater? (5, Insightful)

corsec67 (627446) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971830)

How about we end the Security Theater [] ?

If containers of fluids are dangerous, why are they just thrown away next to the security lines? When the hell is a knife going to help you against a group of 50 angry people in a small enclosed space?

If you search the people getting on the plane, what about the luggage? If luggage handlers can steal stuff from luggage and sneak it out of the airport, what is to prevent that same person from sneaking a bomb into the plane, in place of the stuff they stole? If we are going to search the pilot, why not search the mechanic, and make sure he didn't sabotage the plane?

If you have a security check, then the line to get thorough the check becomes a target. It doesn't matter where you move that check, since it takes time to go through, you have a bunch of people there, and thus a suicide bomber would just blow themselves up there.

Why do Americans not care about their 4th amendment [] rights to not be searched, and why is simply wanting transportation sufficient cause or not unreasonable?

Re:End the Security Theater? (4, Insightful)

Angst Badger (8636) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972004)

If you have a security check, then the line to get thorough the check becomes a target. It doesn't matter where you move that check, since it takes time to go through, you have a bunch of people there, and thus a suicide bomber would just blow themselves up there.

That very thought struck me the first time I flew after 9/11. There were upwards of five hundred people piled up behind the security gates, and there were lines with even more people snaking across the area in front of the ticket counters. How much security do you have to pass through to get up to the security check? None, of course. All they did was make planes less desirable as targets and provided an even higher-value target entirely outside of all the new protections.

Re:End the Security Theater? (3, Interesting)

poetmatt (793785) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972010)

I just wanted to clarify a small part of this issue that you don't realize. Some places have notices that say you consent to search by coming through their line. However, the difference with the 4th amendment rights is people are stupid enough to GIVE them up, which is what is happening. Someone can say "I want to search you" but you can reply "I am not giving up my 4th amendment rights/where is your warrant" and if they do any form of searching/even touch you for any reason other than arrest, they just violated your rights.

Instead, we get retards that say "oh, okay, take a look, I have nothing to hide". Likewise when they ask you if you have anything harmful, even if you don't, thats asking you to give up your 5th amendment rights. Want to know why lawyers get through lines faster? It's because they ask the people who ask them a question this: "are you asking me to give up my right to the 5th amendment by answering your question" to which they have to answer no. Or, the security people know not to even bother asking (which is more common).

Welcome to logic, and where it is missing.

Re:End the Security Theater? (1)

TheWizardTim (599546) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972016)

"If we are going to search the pilot, why not search the mechanic, and make sure he didn't sabotage the plane?"

They do check the plane. I had to wait 2 hours in Seattle for my flight back to San Jose because after they fixed the aircraft, they had to do a security check. I don't know what is involved, but that is what the gate agent said.

Re:End the Security Theater? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21972138)

When the hell is a knife going to help you against a group of 50 angry people in a small enclosed space?

To be fair, the hijackings that started all the crazy security nonsense were committed with box cutters. 50 people can take down 6 people with knives, for sure, but nobody wants to be the first one to get stabbed.

time for lube? (1)

garlicbready (846542) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971832)

How about a new form of lubricant?
combined with someone who has small hands, it's a sure fire winner

all I need now is a patent

Nudity (1)

A nonymous Coward (7548) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971846)

Next to nothing, it's the best solution. But someone else has already suggested nothing, so I claim second prize.

*shudder* (1)

tgd (2822) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972144)

Go take a flight on Southwest and tell me if thats still such a good idea.

A Better Idea: U.S. $25,000,000 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21971862)

for the arrest; trial; and conviction of the world's biggest WAR CRIMINAL [] .

Of course, most Slashdot readers would prefer to keep their SUVs, mortgages, and politicians enslaved to the military-industrial-Congressional complex.

Re:A Better Idea: U.S. $25,000,000 (1)

eosp (885380) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972162)

Go back to Digg.

The Same Old Problems (1)

kilo_foxtrot84 (1016017) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971876)

This reminds me of the classic engineering choice: "faster, better, cheaper: pick two". Based on the brief article, it seems they want all three, with "faster" being the priority. My guess is that "better" will be the one that suffers.

Two Step Plan (4, Insightful)

thomas.galvin (551471) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971896)

1. Replace TSA administration wit people who will approve step 2
2. Eliminate the facade that is security the check.

People are still removing shoes? (2, Interesting)

Golgafrinchan (777313) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971902)

I traveled extensively around Christmas/New Year a couple of weeks ago, and it was the first time in years that I -DIDN'T- have to remove my shoes as I went through the security x-ray. This was true at both US airports I went through - Las Vegas & LAX. In fact, at both airports I took off my shoes, and both times the security person who saw me told me to put them back on, as it wasn't necessary.

Are people in other regions of the US seeing this recent development? For what it's worth, I was traveling with United.

Re:People are still removing shoes? (4, Funny)

Cro Magnon (467622) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972284)

In fact, at both airports I took off my shoes, and both times the security person who saw me told me to put them back on, as it wasn't necessary.

I think that had more to do with your foot hygine than with any change in policy.

Hmm, too bad.. (3, Interesting)

Idaho (12907) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971940)

It's probably insufficient money to buy you a congressman or two to introduce the necessary changes to the laws concerned.

Because changing the laws or TSA guidelines to drop these required checks would probably be the best way - or at least the way that makes the most sense. The checks at airports don't provide much real security - mostly, they are there to provide a (false) sense of security. According to several [] reports [] , the checks don't actually catch most real threats at all (and even very low-tech threats like knives slip through a lot of the time), and are just costing everyone involved a lot of time/money. Also see snake oil security [] .

Not that the EU is much better in this regard btw - the ridiculous bans on liquids on planes are still in place, even though the European Parliament wants to lift those (at some point).

Are security lines *really* that bad? (1)

ZombieRoboNinja (905329) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971942)

I flew out of Newark on January 2 (which I'd assume is a pretty busy day), and I think I was in line for... maybe two minutes. Over maybe half a dozen flights in the past year, I think 10 minutes is probably my longest wait (excluding customs lines on international flights).

Yeah, taking your shoes off sucks, and they can stop being paranoid about deodorant any time now as far as I'm concerned, but the actual waiting period seems very tolerable. A shoe-scanner and some Prozak for the TFA guys would take care of those two problems, and from there we're just waiting around for Minority Report body-scanners so I don't have to take off my belt anymore.

Re:Are security lines *really* that bad? (1)

ringdangdu (1179665) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972298)

The last few times i have traveled the security lines were relatively short. The major hold up was united airlines. I had 10 times the wait there that i had in security. So long in fact i had to carry on my bag i would have preferred to check, what i was waiting in line to do. lost my tooth paste at security but took less then 10 mins line and all.

Going out on a limb (1)

zulater (635326) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971944)

Real profiling. Until grandma and grandpa with that brace on his bad knee bombs us there's no need to 'randomly' pull them aside for a more in depth search. Tips from other countries that racially profile and do it well like Israel [] would help point us in the right direction. It's not all about racial profiling either. Just a mix of some good questions asked to people with other real security measures would be just as good if not better than what we have now.

Hmm... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21971946)

I wonder what DP World is engaged in right now. After all, they have a vested interest in US security/transportation. :P

this will work, but won't be cheap (4, Interesting)

OutOnARock (935713) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971952)

1. Walk through detector for both metal/explosives. Appendages like those found on drive through car washes "lick" the shoes.
2. Carry on scanned same way, with automated "tongues" sampling the residue on the bags.
3. KEY: Everyone, and I mean everyone, on board gets their own Taser. Its clipped into the seat in front of you, right next to the phone! Locked of course until released by the captain (or head flight attendant (the one with the dirty knees?? (had too))). These would be the newly developed "Taser in a shotgun shell" where the entire electronics package is delivered to the target, rather than the wires running from the gun to the target.
4. Profit!!!!

So you breeze through the detectors, which should catch 99% of the nasties coming through, and for the 1% they miss, you've got enough non-deadly force, non-going through the skin of the airplane causing explosive decompression, armed passengers to quell any threat.

Worst case scenario would be a Taser battle in coach!

I guess this is more of "an innovative use of existing technology" rather than "an innovative technology" other than the new "Taser in a shotgun shell", but it meets the criteria.

Where's my half mil?

Cattle Industry and The Real Issues (1)

FromTheAir (938543) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971960)

Well they might look to find some solutions in the cattle industry. Of course we should not be treated like cattle. Here is the temporary solution, a computer system, you enter the name, and if you have at least 10 other 2nd generation Americans vouching for you, you fly through without a second glance and no searching. Of course that is not what it is all about. The master plan is about creating a FEAR and Control environment which creates division and disempowers the citizens making them subservient and easy to control like an indentured servitude. The spelling checker wanted to say disembowels the citizens. Maybe it was right. The permanent solution is to eliminate the fear in the minds of our enemies, as well as the fear in our minds of them. Let's create a world of prosperity and abundance for all where there is nothing to fear, that is the solution.

Airline responsibility + free market (3, Interesting)

Harmonious Botch (921977) | more than 6 years ago | (#21971972)

Transfer responsibility from the feds to the individual airlines. That's it.

Let the airlines make whatever policies they wish, implement them as they wish. Anything from 'Come on aboard, no questions asked!' to strip searching and anal cavity inspections. The customers will reward the airline whose policy makes the most sense with lots of money.

The other side of the coin is that the airlines' insurers would work to make sure that the policies were effective. If your plane gets hijack, and flown into a building, your premiums go WAY up.

Re:Airline responsibility + free market (1)

mp3phish (747341) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972228)

Ignorance: what happens when people blindly trust the free market.

easy (4, Insightful)

Srsen (413456) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972022)

  1. Tell TSA whiteshirts to "work faster"
  2. Add more lanes
  3. Actually use all the lanes you already have
Boom. Where's my $500,000 ?

The captain obvious solution (1)

192939495969798999 (58312) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972036)

Do the checks at each gate before people board planes, rather than corralling everyone up at a few detectors. Costs more? yes. Goes faster? yes, because everyone already has to wait at the gate once you get past the "screening". Applies to current TSA rules? yes... people still wouldn't be able to get on the actual planes.

Please send me my $500k check, thanks!

The airline issue (1)

Z00L00K (682162) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972046)

is soon a problem that's no more if the fuel prices starts going up as they have.

And anyway - the majority of people boarding an airplane aren't going to blow it up.

The metal detectors in use are a relatively good way of detecting weapons. Use of other detectors to sniff out nitrate compounds is the best option. Of course - there are explosives that aren't based on nitrogen compounds - but they are rarer. Removal of any lighters and matches will also be a good step - but it's harder to detect.

And handle the transportation of tax-free alcohol differently - don't allow it as hand luggage - transport it in a way where it can be picked up at the destination instead. (it would actually be convenient not having to carry around the bottles everywhere...) Glass bottles are really awesome weapons and alcohol is flammable so you have it all... The limits on water bottles and soda is just stupid. You may be able to harm somebody with a plastic bottle - but you will get a plastic knife - or even metal knife along with the inflight meal which may prove a much better weapon. But don't resort to serve pee-warm soup in a cardboard cup just because of the risk the kitchenware may pose. A large cup of water and an emergency ration will do as well ;-)

And try to not annoy your passengers - flying feels more and more like cattle transportation...

Maybe everyone that's flying should resort to a complete body-shave, wear a skin-tight swimsuit and moccasins whenever passing through the security checkpoint and see how the security persons react... OK - maybe someone will consider that "indecent behavior" or something instead...

From a security point of view the security would be best if all persons were required to wear only airline-issued bodysuits before boarding, but that would sure cause one hell of an outrage. Get naked, drop your clothes and other items into a box and put on a bodysuit. No big difference from the prison system...

No wonder some people tries to get drunk before boarding...

an all-nude airport (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21972048)

because you can't remove what you don't have on... Money please.

Wow (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21972094)

Something about this topic really caused the worst of the worst at Slashdot to start posting stupid comments as quickly as possible.

The IQ here just hit zero.

not possible with given conditions... (4, Funny)

PhreakOfTime (588141) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972106)

the winning technology must meet a number of criteria including TSA approval and it must reduce inconvenience

Isnt that the problem? That those two conditions are mutually exclusive? If you have one, you automatically do not have the other.

Technology is already there - fix is simple/cheap (1)

Tired and Emotional (750842) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972118)

If we attach the front of the line to the back of the line - which won't need too many more of those tape barriers, the line can go round and round as fast as people can walk.

As people tired, you would pull them out of line and send them onto planes so that they would not be slowing down the line. We already have separate lines for people with disabilities so that's not a problem.

Easy (1)

GroeFaZ (850443) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972120)

I'll graciously assume you want the same or better level of security. Another advantage of this proposal: Increased utilization of the airplane. Here you go. []

Got it... (1)

Capt James McCarthy (860294) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972136)

Everyone get on the baggage belt and run through a bunch of X-Rays, Dogs, and a charged particle space that should trigger any bombs on your person.

Or have everyone travel naked. Ramsey and Trojan would benefit the most with the dire need of seat condoms using this method.

RFID chip humans (1)

agent (7471) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972170)

It work great for the Jews.

Fast and effective. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21972174)

Passify the passengers and wrap them in black plastic before the flight. Do the same to the pilot(Planes practicly fly themselves now'a'days) to remove the risk of assault or bodily harm.

faster, more secure (1)

sir 8ed (207862) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972192)

wood chipper

Don't make me chug my coffee (2, Insightful)

choongiri (840652) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972194)

Don't make me chug my coffee in the line waiting to go through the metal detector, thereby holding everyone else up.

Repeat after me:

My beverage is not a national security threat.

I have an idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21972198)

1. International and domestic terminals should not be in the same structure. Period. Preferably the airfields, aircraft support, etc. would be separate as well, Yes, this means building new airports, but given that citizens' inalienable rights are at stake here, guaranteeing safety without sacrificing liberty is essential.

2. International terminals are subject to the fascist searches the current administration is so fond of -- aren't we all sick of hearing of this nebulous "war on terror" where there is no unidentifiable enemy? Sorry bush, I'm not falling for your social engineering tactics.

3. Given the common sense in #1 above, domestic flights are domestic and are not subject to such searches. For domestic flights, given that they are not leaving the country and are subject to _US_ law, citizens' right to bear arms shall not be infringed. Gee, I think I recall reading that right to bear arms shall not be infringed thing somewhere. The first time I read it, I understood what shall not be infringed meant. Why do politicians not get it? Anyway - if there is a good chance that 10% to 50% of citizens will be armed, how likely would a wannabe-terrorist be to attempt hijacking a domestic flight?

Sure, it doesn't solve the international flight problem, but that was why we segregated domestic and international terminals in #1, above. AA missiles can solve international flight problems. :)

I propose the F-Ray! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21972204)

Airport Security (Starring at Passengers): Who should we point it at first?
(Security Turns F-Ray on a Random Passenger):
Random Passenger: Ow! My Sperm!

Mod up a fleet of Roombas (2, Interesting)

rholland356 (466635) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972220)

Mod up a fleet a Roombas to carry minature bomb-sniffers or even spectral-analysis units (beam that data to a central CPU for the intense processing needed). Let Roombas approach shoes, sniff them and move on. Central CPU directs them back for another whiff if need be.

Load those Roombas with floor wax and you have the cleanest, safest airport in the county.

You may donate my winnings to the NASA program dedicated to robotic missions on Mars.

Easy (1)

Karem Lore (649920) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972240)

Make everybody fly naked with no luggage.

Hello sir, anything to declare?


Simple (1)

avatar4d (192234) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972266)

Allow everyone, as is indicated as one of our Constitutional RIGHTS, to carry a weapon. Anyone trying anything won't get very far anymore at that point.

Insurance (5, Insightful)

FrankSchwab (675585) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972272)

1. Take all the money spent buying security theatre (TSA salaries, machinery, Airport reconstruction) and place it into a fund. There's $5,000,000,000 to start with each and every year. 2. Use minimally invasive metal and bomb detectors to deter the obvious threats. 2. Should an aircraft go down as the result of Terrorist actions, pay everyone on board $1,000,000 from the fund. From just the TSA's budget, we could handle 5,000 deaths a year from terrorist actions on airplanes. How much are we willing to pay for each life saved? Ask an inner-city hospital. /frank

Forehand knowledge of number of passengers (4, Insightful)

KiltedKnight (171132) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972276)

The airline industry is one of the few that can tell you how many people will be passing through its doors during a given time frame. Why is it such rocket science to have the airlines coordinate with the local office of the TSA in order to get a sufficient number of screeners in place for those times when there will be more people flying? And it's not like they'll come in that morning and suddenly discover, "Oh crap! We've got 3500 more people going through today at 2pm than we originally thought!" The airlines all want you to book seven or more days in advance, which is what happens most of the time anyway.

Use the knowledge you already have. It's not that tricky.

Parachutes (1)

voislav98 (1004117) | more than 6 years ago | (#21972316)

Give each passanger a parachute and there is no need to screen anyone. I'll have my 500,000 now. "Donations" from the parachute lobby are welcome
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