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back to article Is that a truncheon in your trousers, officer, or ... an antenna, you say?

An EU project to create wearable tracking devices for cops has recruited Sofant, a mobile tech startup spun out of Edinburgh University last year. The plan is to slip Sofant's antennas into uniforms to receive Galileo satnav signals. And it's not just for the police: the ARMOURS* project will spend €1.5m developing prototypes …

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WTF?

wtf

"ARMOURS stands for, believe it or not, Antenna and fRont-end Modules for pUblic Regulated Service."

I think some people just haven't got the idea of how acronyms work.

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Vic
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Re: wtf

> "ARMOURS stands for, believe it or not, Antenna and fRont-end Modules for pUblic Regulated Service."

Well.

There We Are, Then.

Vic.

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Joke

WTF stands for...

THe DePartmEnt of verY teNuouS aCronymS

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Angel

Re: WTF stands for...

THDPEYNSCS?

I was hoping for more.

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Alert

Re: WTF stands for...

A Ridiculous Made-up acrOnym that yoU Really have to Stretch for...!

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Anonymous Coward

Scottish cops are already tracked via ARL which is embedded with the Airwave terminals.

"AR534 are you free to take a call?"

"Negative, still on enquiries for that theft."

"Really.... you appear to be at the hot food counter of Tescos..."

"..........."

Along with ambient listening, when they can turn on your radio without your knowledge and listen to what's being said.

Erk.

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Anonymous Coward

Apart from the fact that the poll rate for airwaves is 10 minutes, so it'd have to be a sit down haggis lunch for the hapless polis to be caught out.

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Thumb Down

The European Union

I don't like them... so in my opinion the wrong vehicle to deliver this project. It shows something good can come from cooperation of individual nations though. We could achieve this as a separate project. Faster and for less cost.

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Facepalm

Re: The European Union

"We could achieve this as a separate project. Faster and for less cost."

Hahahahahaha... I can see britain achieve this on its own, the week after successfully rolling out an ID across the nation(s).

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FAIL

Re: The European Union

I did say it could be achieved via international cooperation.

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Silver badge
WTF?

Why do we need to reinvent the wheel? And why countries need their very own GPS

Every day, legions of laddies and a few of their women walk around, electronically tethered to Plod or their bail supervisor, using devices attached to their bodies allowing their whereabouts to be monitored.

I wear a GPS device whenever I am out of the office and I rarely lose signal other than in jungle forest areas with heavily whetted leaves.. Others use the Joy GPS personal tracker, such as Spot.

Why is it so necessary to have new 'toys' for police and the military when off-the-shelf civilian equipment would suffice?

Besides. we all know where to find the Plod - down at the local greasy spoon scoring a big, free, cup of tea.

The need for having multiple GPS system systems is obvious. Although the US GPS system is wide open, thanks to Bill Clinton, the US has and does degraded the signal accuracy when the need occurs.

The USA and Europe don't always agree with each other and having Galileo gives Europe the ability to give the Americans the finger sign when the need arises.

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Re: Why do we need to reinvent the wheel? And why countries need their very own GPS

@JaitcH "Why is it so necessary to have new 'toys' for police and the military when off-the-shelf civilian equipment would suffice?"

Suggested answers:- a) Because it's to to with 'Law & Order' b) They want their own custom designed toys c) It's 'Public' money' so they don't have to think about value for money/cost benefit/etc d) All of the above

I'd like to when we're going to get Galileo support in our devices. The only reason GLONASS is covered is due to import tarrifs

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Re: Why do we need to @ JaitcH

"The USA and Europe don't always agree with each other and having Galileo gives Europe the ability to give the Americans the finger sign when the need arises."

Maybe. But I'd expect there's lots of US export controlled tech in Galileo, which is fully likely to enable the US to have its way - eg degraded public accuracy when intending to attack someone. Most likely by consent (ie the US phone up and say "turn down the volume"), but if you were cynical enough you'd presume there may be by backdoors in the technology, or that the US might develop active countermeasures (and not just for the EU system).

And if the dispute's serious then I've no doubt that the US, China, and Russia have the means to ensure that somebody else's satellite is "accidentally" lost. But I can be pretty sure that the EU, who can't agree on anything defence related, probably would have neither the means nor the will to reciprocate. Worse still, the EU system becomes the warning shot target, the one that somebody takes out to show the Americans that they could do it if they wanted to. I think that, along with the US control issues above rather dismisses the "we need control of our own" argument.

So Galileo is sadly an expensive EU vanity project, unless there is an incremental €20 billion of benefit in improving the accuracy of positioning from around 3m to perhaps 20cm. And even then, the current location accuracy of GPS on the move is (in practical terms) better than the theoretical value, so actually about 1m, which is why devices can offer lane guidance.

I'm open to offers, but since my existing phone could (if I allowed it) already tell a shop that I'm right outside it, where's the €20bn value of being able to tell the shop which pocket I keep my phone in? How often do emergency services go looking for a reported crash, but miss it because the reported location was inaccurate by twelve feet?

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"all sorts of emergency personnel who need to be tracked with an accuracy in centimetres"

Why on Earth would anybody need to track emergency personnel with an accuracy in cm? The only possibility I can think of is for SAR on fire/rescue personnel, in the event of a building collapse - but that's even money to put the rescuee in a Faraday cage, negating tracking signals.

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Joke

Re: "all sorts of emergency personnel who need to be tracked with an accuracy in centimetres"

"PC123 you have been in the toilet for 20 minutes, I'm sending an emergency medical response team to your location.... "

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Bronze badge

There are a number of modules already on the market which support GPS and Galileo - and many have integrated antennas. Some can also support SBAS (WAAS/EGNOS) and/or GLONASS. Maybe I am missing something but I fail to see the novelty here.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: "all sorts of emergency personnel who need to be tracked with an accuracy in centimetres"

same people who track how long the vehicle emergency services spend on any given call, which way they are heading etc, so they have a locked down employee who cannot head back to a toilet if he's on the way to his next call.

As more and more Plod services become "private" (yes SERCO, AGILE etc) the more need to get as much value per monkey see monkey do employee their profit margins need

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That claim again....

'by combining the signals one can achieve a **much higher** level of accuracy than any network alone can offer'

Wouldn't this require that the clocks are synchronized between the different systems?

Other than the americans telling the europeans what the time is, i can't see that happening between any of the 4 or 5 systems.

europe has already let america interfere with the development of Galileo, we should be telling them to fuck off.

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