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Offline George Wallace

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GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« on: September 06, 2010, 10:41:47 »
This can not be stressed enough:

Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act:

Mantracker warns about dangers of GPS
By Greg David
2010-09-06


LINK

Terry Grant says map skills needed to survive in the bush

They’re mounted on the windshields of cars, strapped to knapsacks and are in our cell phones. They’re Global Positioning Systems, and Terry Grant is against them.

Grant, known for his television role as the Mantracker, believes there is too much reliance placed on those little boxes of circuitry that tell us how to get to destinations, saying they should be used in partnership with maps and compasses, not instead of them.

The cowboy-hat donning, chaps-wearing, horse-riding search-and-rescue worker is back for Season 5 of the OLN series, returning Monday with 12 episodes that find him all over the globe. Among the locales Grant visits this time around were the Big Island of Hawaii; Grande Cache, Alberta; the edge of the Mohave Desert in California; and Temagami, Ontario. The first episode kicks off in Ontario, in the deceivingly rugged woods surrounding Elliott Lake.

It is there Grant and local guide Phil Lemieux are tasked with chasing Canadian country rockers The Road Hammers. Lead singer Jason McCoy and guitarist Clayton Bellamy leave the posh hotel rooms and tour buses behind, getting tired and filthy while tearing through dense forest to elude the hunters on horseback. The duo sprint off from the start line in good time, sticking to logging roads and stopping often to refer to their map and compass (no GPS allowed here) as they attempt to cross 40 kilometres to the finish line in just 36 hours.

Within the first 20 minutes of the episode, however, it appears the musicians should have stuck to their daytime (and night-time gigs), as Grant and Lemieux bear down on McCoy and Bellamy and drive them into the forest. The move turns into the bandmates’ saving grace, as thick brush stops Grant and Lemieux cold.

“The country leans one way or the other, and that’s exactly what happened here,” Grant  recalls while on the phone during a press day in Toronto. “I could make my way through the brush pretty well on Day 1. And on Day 2, the hills got big and rocky and there was a lot of deadfall. They ran through stuff I couldn’t even think about putting a horse through.”

One twisted ankle, bruised shoulder and cold night exposed to the elements and The Road Hammers have the finish line in sight, but will they make it before they’re captured? (I know, but I won’t ruin it for you. Heck, Mantracker might track me down and shut me up for good.)

At its core, Mantracker remains stubbornly the same as it was five seasons and 49 out of 70 captures ago. A flare shot into the sky signals the beginning of the chase, Grant is still accompanied by a local guide as he pursues two people from varying backgrounds, as they evade him. And he still gets upset when he loses to the prey.

“I get pretty cranky when things don’t go according to plan,” the expert horseman admits with a chuckle. “It’s just so frustrating sometimes that [the prey] can go where they want to and the country makes it restricting for me because I’m on the horse. It just makes me want to yell.”

What has changed is the growth in popularity that Grant has enjoyed. An Albertan ranch cowboy for almost 25 years, he gets a kick out of being recognized on the street by fans, and is amazed that they can spot him even when he’s wearing a baseball cap, sunglasses and golf shirt.

“I can’t go anywhere without being recognized,” he exclaims. “I went across the street to buy lunch, and when I went to pay, the lady said, ‘Oh, I know you!’ And I had no hat on at all!”

Clearly his fans have picked up some skills from their favourite tracker.




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aesop081

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #1 on: September 06, 2010, 11:55:22 »
The title of this thread is misleading. The article is not about wether GPS can be trusted or not.

Offline Jarnhamar

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #2 on: September 06, 2010, 12:30:33 »
I didn't think they even used GPS's on mantracker, do they?
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Offline OkanaganHeat

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #3 on: September 06, 2010, 13:05:54 »
The first two paragraphs of the article are the subject of this topic in that Terry Grant does not trust GPS rather a map and compass. I also believe that GW made the title more as a starting point for debate than a direct representation of the article.

The article does state that GPS are not allowed for the competitors.

Personally, I prefer a map and compass for navigation. They never run out of batteries and do not make errors in direction. Too often I have seen a GPS give strange directions or not have updating for new roads, etc that can lead to more confusion than using your eyes and brain to determine your route. My  :2c:

aesop081

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #4 on: September 06, 2010, 13:10:57 »
well then, if the tile was intended to start debate, hers my 2 cents :

Yes GPS can be trusted. Yes, GPS is bang on. I fly on a GPS-equiped aircraft so i rely on GPS on a near-daily basis. GPS works and it works reliably. I know how to work without it and so do the pilots but that does not change the fatc that GPS is reliable and can indeed be trusted.

People screw up with maps too.......People who cant works GPS properly most likely have a VCR at home that flashes 12:00
« Last Edit: September 06, 2010, 13:13:34 by CDN Aviator »

Offline Trueblue

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #5 on: September 06, 2010, 13:13:52 »
Although I do agree total reliance on any electronic device is a bad thing, that "Mantracker" show is ridiculous.

Watching people hide in bushes and trenches while they have a camera crew standing above them filming takes away what little credibility the show might of had. 

Offline Jarnhamar

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #6 on: September 06, 2010, 13:20:35 »


People screw up with maps too.......People who cant works GPS properly most likely have a VCR at home that flashes 12:00

Totally agree. Maps are quite easy to misread and screw up.
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Offline ballz

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #7 on: September 06, 2010, 13:25:45 »
well then, if the tile was intended to start debate, hers my 2 cents :

Yes GPS can be trusted. Yes, GPS is bang on. I fly on a GPS-equiped aircraft so i rely on GPS on a near-daily basis. GPS works and it works reliably. I know how to work without it and so do the pilots but that does not change the fatc that GPS is reliable and can indeed be trusted.

People screw up with maps too.......People who cant works GPS properly most likely have a VCR at home that flashes 12:00

I can't speak for flying obviously but... this summer the DAGRs were pretty terrible for getting signal if you were standing in 3 foot grass, let alone if you were in the woods (hopefully if you were flying this has not become the case haha). Also they could be off by a significant distance a lot of times, like 50-60m, but I think we were told both these problems had a lot to do with not having the crypto.

As for civilan GPSs that I've used... yeah, they're pretty bang on within 3m, get signal relatively easily and update fast... and you could set up all your routes and stuff before going out and rely on it pretty safely... I still wouldn't do that without the map of the area and a compass tucked away somewhere though, just in case Murphy wants to make an example out of me.
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aesop081

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #8 on: September 06, 2010, 13:29:45 »
I still wouldn't do that without the map of the area and a compass tucked away somewhere though, just in case Murphy wants to make an example out of me.

That would be the sensible thing to do of course. We fly with all the maps and know how to use them. That being said, GPS can be relied on for navigation and is bang on when it comes time to land so, yes, its can be trusted.


Offline George Wallace

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #9 on: September 06, 2010, 13:45:53 »
That would be the sensible thing to do of course. We fly with all the maps and know how to use them. That being said, GPS can be relied on for navigation and is bang on when it comes time to land so, yes, its can be trusted.

As you said, that is the sensible thing to do.  Not everyone is working in an environment that has an accurate GPS 100% of the time.  Most are probably working on batteries.  Lesser quality devices suffer lose of satellites more often.   What do these people do when there is a fault or failure with their GPS and they may not know it?  Do they turn to their map?  Do they even have a map?

The thing is, we have more people now relying on GPS than ever, who have no clue how to use even the most basic of maps.  My Garmin was bang on (out perhaps 25m), while the GPS in the Mercedes was off by a whole city street, on a visit to Germany. 

You said, and I agree, people make mistakes with maps, just as easily as with the GPS.  True.  However, the point is, a vast majority of people these days are totally lost if given a map.  If their GPS is off, then they are really screwed.








Then again, there are those who would be lost no matter what they had as a navigation aid.   ;D
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Offline BulletMagnet

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #10 on: September 06, 2010, 13:49:52 »
I will say this from what I would like to think is an expert point of view when it comes to Land use of GPS and Map Compass (I'll leave the Air Nav to CDN and any actual Air NAV member)

I teach Nav rather often and usually when I do I tell my students who always ask almost right off the bat how to use their GPS that GPS is an excellent tool but is subject to things beyond your control IE: Battery Failure, GPS Spoofing (which I have seen first hand screw people way over) And that the core skill of Land Nav is Map and Compass. Which so long as you have both (though you can use just a map if you are good enough) will not fail so long as you make sure the map is maptacted to keep it safe.

Now that all being said I do and will continually will Nav use GPS only BUT I always have my Map and Compass on me as a back up. I have never been lost using my GPS (but I have extensive training on using it). So in short I do trust me GPS but I double bank may Nav tools at all time.


If you can Nav using Map and Compass only you can nav with very little effort using a GPS. A GPS is listed as a Aide to Navigation where as Map and Compass are the core tools to Nav.
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Offline Greymatters

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #11 on: September 06, 2010, 13:56:56 »
That would be the sensible thing to do of course. We fly with all the maps and know how to use them. That being said, GPS can be relied on for navigation and is bang on when it comes time to land so, yes, its can be trusted.

As a technology a GPS can be trusted, but it does have drawbacks, such as not having the most up to date maps or information (i.e. new or changed addresses or streets), and that it runs on batteries which limits how long you can use it if you are out in the bush.  The basic packages that most people buy also do not provide elevation, composite imagery, or other guides that a person travelling cross-country needs to use for planning their travel path.   

The point the article is making is that most people are depedent on the GPS and do not even know a simple thing such as how to tell which way is north using the sun or stars; if their GPS becomes nonfunctional they're likely to get themselves lost easily.


Offline George Wallace

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #12 on: September 06, 2010, 13:58:53 »
I will say this from what I would like to think is an expert point of view when it comes to Land use of GPS and Map Compass (I'll leave the Air Nav to CDN and any actual Air NAV member)

Agreed.  Should be a whole topic of its own, and this one basically sticking to "Land Nav" for persons on, or very close to the ground (Just for the Tac Hel folks    ;D ).

................ A GPS is listed as a Aide to Navigation where as Map and Compass are the core tools to Nav.


This I think is the key point.
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aesop081

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #13 on: September 06, 2010, 14:07:43 »



This I think is the key point.

They key pont is that people are the point of failiure in navigation. It is people who do not carry sufficient batteries for the task. It is people who do not update stored digital maps. it is people that cant read what a GPS is telling them and it is people who cant be bothered to learn how to use them properly.

Automobile GPS.......well they are a beast on their own but even then, updating your maps goes a long way.

And as far as the land/air GPS argument goes, i have been in both environment using GPS so i am not entirely clueless.

Offline Petamocto

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #14 on: September 06, 2010, 14:13:53 »
I think that some people get confused as to what is really important.

It's not the compass that someone needs to know and then if they know that they can move on to the GPS; it's the basic fundamentals of navigation that a person needs to understand if they are to use either.

People who stick to map + compass and refuse to adopt GPS are no different than people who refused to trust guns or airplanes because they stuck to what they learned first.

GPS is a phenomenal tool, but a person has to understand what is happening with their position vs where they want to go and not just blindly follow the GPS anymore than they blindly follow a map and compass.  Something should jar in your head as "error" when you "know" you're moving East but your Eastings are getting lower, for example. 

A GPS can be trusted just fine as long as the satellites don't get shot down or there's an EMP, but at that point there are bigger things to worry about and we would have to revert to a compass the way we'd revert to a knife to fight wars if we ran out of guns.

In either case, if your GPS or your compass leads you astray it was user error.
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Offline Technoviking

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #15 on: September 06, 2010, 14:17:03 »
They key pont is that people are the point of failiure in navigation.
Agreed.

GPS are a wonderful tool, and people only need remember that any GP system does NOT replace your ability to read the ground, both visually and with a map, etc.  And the ability to read the stars, the sun, etc also help.  You need only to know where you are, and which way you are facing.  But I find that to be the greatest battle.

As for air nav and land nav, I recall back to my BOTC, where the instructor actually had difficulty with land nav, and acknowledged it to us.  He was a pilot, and he could nav by air at 500+ km/h (when I would be lost and over some foreign land creating an international incident before I knew it), but he was perplexed by the ground-view of things. 
So, there I was....

Offline BulletMagnet

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #16 on: September 06, 2010, 15:58:28 »
There are a lot of points I disagree with here PM but I will highlight this one as the main one.

In either case, if your GPS or your compass leads you astray it was user error.


That's a big Negative I can spoof your GPS really easy and even though your GPS will be telling you onething you will in fact be hundreds or meters off. I can't spoof the Map and Compass it is simply impossible.

And before you say Spoofing is user error all I have to do is move your GPS a few Mils here and there and the terrain will look good but I'll be walking you into an Ambush or leading you far enough astray that you wont find what you are Naving to.... Essentially once the Spoof crew has your GPS you are screwed if you don't have the map and compass and the ability to know you are being Spoofed.

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #17 on: September 06, 2010, 16:20:20 »

That's a big Negative I can spoof your GPS really easy and even though your GPS will be telling you onething you will in fact be hundreds or meters off. I can't spoof the Map and Compass it is simply impossible.

Your faith in spoofing betrays your lack of understanding of the system itself.


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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #18 on: September 06, 2010, 17:34:43 »
Your faith in spoofing betrays your lack of understanding of the system itself.


;D


I still think you've nailed it when you said that the key pont is that people are the point of failiure in navigation.

So, there I was....

Offline PuckChaser

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #19 on: September 06, 2010, 18:11:33 »
Although I do agree total reliance on any electronic device is a bad thing, that "Mantracker" show is ridiculous.

Watching people hide in bushes and trenches while they have a camera crew standing above them filming takes away what little credibility the show might of had.

Yeah, I've always wondered if the camera people were covered in camoflauge or something. A big HD camera sitting 50 feet from "Mantracker" and he doesn't see it is pretty dumb.

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #20 on: September 06, 2010, 18:23:06 »
Bullet Magnet,

The old me would have gone on a rant about a military GPS being different than a store-bought Garmin, and any error in the grids being because the user entered the wrong system like MGRS, etc (similar to a compass being "right" but the user having the wrong magnetic declaration set), but I am actually curious about your answer.

So before I discount it, can you please tell me what you meant by spoofing my PLGR/DAGR? 
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Offline George Wallace

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #21 on: September 06, 2010, 18:34:41 »
They key pont is that people are the point of failiure in navigation. It is people who do not carry sufficient batteries for the task. It is people who do not update stored digital maps. it is people that cant read what a GPS is telling them and it is people who cant be bothered to learn how to use them properly.

Automobile GPS.......well they are a beast on their own but even then, updating your maps goes a long way.

I think I alluded to this a little earlier:

Then again, there are those who would be lost no matter what they had as a navigation aid.   ;D

And as far as the land/air GPS argument goes, i have been in both environment using GPS so i am not entirely clueless.

Great.  Has anyone questioned that?  I feel comfortable doing Recce or Tanks.  Most have a problem with one or the other.  So what?  So you feel comfortable doing both.  As we know some don't/can't; and some can't do either. 

Yes.  Ultimately it is the person who will be at fault.  Then again there are extenuating circumstances, such as the many editions of CFB Gagetown maps where MCE placed a road on the map that was at the top of Headline Hill south at an intersection above Bell Bridge.  I think it is only recently that that curved tank track off the Lawfield into WTP has been placed at the correct grid.  The old maps had it going through where an old house used to be at Bell Bridge/Ford.  Oh well.


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Offline Petamocto

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #22 on: September 06, 2010, 18:38:11 »
As long as the sh!tters at the Nerepis Biv are still at grid 123456 I know my map/compass/GPS are zeroized.
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Offline George Wallace

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #23 on: September 06, 2010, 18:43:53 »
As long as the sh!tters at the Nerepis Biv are still at grid 123456 I know my map/compass/GPS are zeroized.

Once upon a time there used to be a house at that location.  I used to use that grid when teaching map using at the School.  Can't use that anymore, as when they did the rejigging of Grid Lines in the mid '90s, when they started correcting old surveys with GPS and Satellite imagery Grids have moved a one or two hundred meters.   The house is probably a ruin today anyway; and hopefully the basement plowed in.
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Offline Jarnhamar

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #24 on: September 06, 2010, 18:56:49 »
Edit: question answered in PM thanks
« Last Edit: September 06, 2010, 20:21:49 by Apollo Diomedes »
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aesop081

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #25 on: September 06, 2010, 19:05:46 »
I use the GPS in my iPhone regularly to measure my runs and walks. i drove the routes to compare and the GPS is bang on.

Offline George Wallace

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #26 on: September 06, 2010, 19:11:47 »
Your GPS is more accurate if you "move".  If you have some sort of software ( I use GPS Photolink) and download your Track onto your computer or input into Google Earth, or if you have the patience to sit in one place for a while (a long while) you will see that a stationary GPS will bounce your position around up to 50, and occassionally 100 m.  (Civi GPS)  Once you move, you will see that your location more closely resembles you position on the ground.    I have not experimented with PLGR, so I will not make the same comments on it.

I have had some problems with my personal GPS due to loss of satellites, or low battery power.  Other problems occured due to being stationary for too long and under too much overhead cover (again loss of satellites). 


Love my GPS for marking distance, time and average speed, etc. of ruck marches.   

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #27 on: September 06, 2010, 19:14:10 »
...The house is probably a ruin today anyway; and hopefully the basement plowed in.

Any remnants of any houses that existed in the 50s have now been essentially destroyed.  At first they were not and they were just left abandoned, but of course over time the troops would end up going in them when on Exs and all it takes is some garbage like a used IMP being left in there and it was mice and insect central, so they were all destroyed.  There may be the odd rubble left but nothing resembling a house.
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Offline George Wallace

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #28 on: September 06, 2010, 19:18:18 »
I remember whole villages out there into the mid '70s.  However, troops on Winter Exercises/Trg often took shelter in them, and quite often burnt them to the ground with fires (cooking or for warmth) or through the use of munitions in assaults.  Later, the unfilled basements offered many a Tanker a bad day when they suddenly found themselves in one.
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Offline BulletMagnet

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #29 on: September 06, 2010, 19:27:46 »
It's hard to get into on an open forum....

However What I can say is there is technology out there that will grad your GPS signal and from there people behind computers can subtly or not so subtly change all your grids.

For instance my GPS should read 18T UR 3456 0987..... My GPS is grab by the techno geeks so My GPS now reads 18T UR 3462 0976.... and from there everything is slowly and subtly changed to move me where they want me.... It doesn;t take much really. Or if they don;t care my GPS could read 19Z IR 0987 5678. I know damn well I am no where near that but if I was stupid and didn't bring my Map and Compass I truly screwed.


PM trust me on this Crypto means SFA when it comes to this....No seriously Trust me!



EDIT: CDN My faith in Spoofing is very very well founded. Is it flawless NO nothing is, is it damn dangerous.....Yes yes it is. I have done some testing with it and have come to know it for the threat it is if you are in the vacinity of a ground station that can do it. That being said I have no knowledge of what it takes to to that to an Aircraft so I can't comment. But I have first hand knowledge of what it can do to ground based GPS system.




« Last Edit: September 06, 2010, 19:34:35 by BulletMagnet »
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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #30 on: September 06, 2010, 19:40:01 »
It's hard to get into on an open forum....


It is unfortunately so.

Offline BulletMagnet

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #31 on: September 06, 2010, 19:47:34 »
CDN

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #32 on: September 08, 2010, 21:01:34 »
Used both GPS, and map and compass as a seismic surveyor and in seismic exploration.  I trust both to a degree.  We found that we would lose sattelites between 2-4pm almost daily which made the job tedious when recording positions down to 5 millimetres (don't ask me why such accuracy was needed, I just operated the pack).  The compass has limitations.  In some mountain areas, especially around mining operations, the needle would actually spin.  The biggest problem with maps were how current they were (logging roads and cat cut lines really screwed with that).   Even with LIDAR maps, the location of water bodies would sometimes be off a hundred meters.  Great thing about compasses, you never need batteries, and they are fairly easy to learn how to use, but as with any skill, you need to actually use it on a regular basis, or skill fade rapidly sets in.

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #33 on: September 09, 2010, 05:46:32 »
The biggest problem with maps were how current they were (logging roads and cat cut lines really screwed with that).   
True to a point.  Roads, treelines and even some waterways alter over time; however, contour lines rarely do.
So, there I was....

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #34 on: September 09, 2010, 22:37:43 »
True to a point.  Roads, treelines and even some waterways alter over time; however, contour lines rarely do.
Agreed, and vital in doing a common sense check I'd say
"Trusting" ones' instruments without a common sense check, usually by using  hard copy map, can cause your mileage to unexpectedly vary.

An instrument slaved to a GPS (e.g. Vector 21 with DAGR) can produce elevation errors (false altitude) relative to those contour lines used in the map data base to compute firing solutions, whether air or ground delvered, resulting in the munitions going long or short depending on the error.

This link helps explain one of devices, called PSS SOF,  used to mitigate this "false" altitude problem, and how this information can be shared jointly.
http://www.dtic.mil/ndia/2007psa_winter/winnefeld.pdf

Another article on how important that is given the increasing number of precision guided weapons becoming available
http://sill-www.army.mil/firesbulletin/2009/Jan_Feb_2009/Jan_Feb_2009_Pages22_27.pdf

Another deadly error can occur if the users don't do a gross error check and too hurriedly just read the GPS data because its always right.
The typical scenario I'm getting at, is with some GPS that resort back to their own last known location if its goes into a dormant or hibernation stage to conserve power. If that same GPS had been used to produce a target grid earlier, and the user prompts the GPS for that target grid, forgetting that it had gone dormant, they might mistakenly read their own grid as the target location. A quick common sense check against a map, preferably by someone that isn't using the GPS, would eliminate that potential.

Wikipedia's explanation covers a number of errors
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Global_Positioning_System

But one that isn't very clear in there, is the error that can come out of the user trying to assist  a system by forcing a grid into their navigation system, possibly because of perceived spoofing or satellite dead zones, or even just as part of rushing initial set up. This possibly could make things worse, if the nav system has a Kalman filter  that may use this location as correct, and include any user induced errors as it resolves the systems location when the GPS signal does become available..


To me, the point of all that is I agree with the the mantracker, you really do need to know how to read map, if for no other reason then as a gross error check of your instruments, or for the inevitable time when you don't have them.

Offline Tango18A

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #35 on: September 10, 2010, 00:07:19 »
And the last time i checked, a map didn't need 2-4 AA batteries.

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #36 on: September 10, 2010, 00:41:20 »
And the last time i checked, a map didn't need 2-4 AA batteries.

Thats like saying fist fighting the enemy is better because it doesnt require ammunition.

Why dont we just go back to cans and string for communications too......

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #37 on: September 10, 2010, 07:03:27 »
And the last time i checked, a map didn't need 2-4 AA batteries.

Last time I checked, a dismounted soldier didn't require tens of thousands of litres of fuel to go on an op.  Or a fighter jet.

NVGs and flashlights use batteries too, but just like a GPS the benefit you get from them is worth the weight.
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Offline Tango18A

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #38 on: September 10, 2010, 08:26:53 »
True, but at least our troops should walk before they run and use a map proficiently before moving on to a DAGR or other GPS device. Then they can fully understand how to navigate when their device of choice fails them in any way.

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #39 on: September 10, 2010, 11:31:36 »
True, but at least our troops should walk before they run and use a map proficiently before moving on to a DAGR or other GPS device. Then they can fully understand how to navigate when their device of choice fails them in any way.

I'm not convinced on the compass and I don't think you need it in order to learn Nav anymore than you need to learn a bow and arrow in order to use a rifle.

As per one of my original posts, it's the fundamentals of navigation that people need to understand, not the compass.

I agree that a map is the basic building block though, and that is the one item that is critical.  If you have a map and navigation fundamentals you don't really need anything else because you understand what direction you're going, you can read the contours/roads, and you can measure distance.

After you have the map and fundamentals though, IMO a compass was last millennium's tool.  That doesn't mean it has no use any more than saying you don't need a knife anymore, but I do not see a compass as mandatory before moving on to a GPS. 

Another analogy would be a fighter pilot.  Is it critical that they learn to fly in a Cessna, or is the basic building block understanding the basics of flight, instrumentation, etc?  I have met ex-Soviet pilots who thought it was silly for a fighter pilot to learn on anything that wasn't a jet...a simpler jet yes but not a prop plane [/tangent].
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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #40 on: September 10, 2010, 16:50:36 »
And how many airlines are looking for Ex-Soviet fighter pilots to fly their passengers around??? The navigational equivalent to a bow and arrow would be a Sextant. Which for some reason is still used by Air Navs. Satellites can fall from the sky, but that big piece of iron floating inside the earth... well when it fails it just won't matter.

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #41 on: September 10, 2010, 17:35:58 »
Agreed, and vital in doing a common sense check I'd say
"Trusting" ones' instruments without a common sense check, usually by using  hard copy map, can cause your mileage to unexpectedly vary.

Even though I have a GPS for my car, I always do a map recce. It's a certain source of amusement for my wife, and wonderment for my civilian friends.

I suppose the wise thing to do is to never trust a single source of information.
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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #42 on: September 10, 2010, 17:42:59 »
Even though I have a GPS for my car, I always do a map recce.

Mike,

And I think you've hit a perfect point there.  I'm as much of a GPS believer as a person can be, but still not silly enough to rely entirely on it.

The key fault with the civilian versions is that if a person only cares about how far until their next turn, they risk not being able to visualize where they actually are on the ground.  Numerous times I have entered an address on my Garmin Nuvi only to get there and have it be nothing at all like what it's supposed to be, but due to understanding what roads are where I can find it.

A person who doesn't do that map recce and doesn't have a built in compass is just going to stop at the side of the road and cry, or have to start making cellphone calls and embarrassing himself.
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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #43 on: September 10, 2010, 19:57:22 »

I agree that a map is the basic building block though, and that is the one item that is critical.  If you have a map and navigation fundamentals you don't really need anything else because you understand what direction you're going, you can read the contours/roads, and you can measure distance.

After you have the map and fundamentals though, IMO a compass was last millennium's tool.  That doesn't mean it has no use any more than saying you don't need a knife anymore, but I do not see a compass as mandatory before moving on to a GPS. 


Navigating in close complex terrain, especially thick forest or jungle, where GPS signals may be attenuated to the point they're not useable, and there is no line of sight to see much of any contours or landmarks, I'd say a compass is very useful.
And for supported arm call for fire a compass is a very easy thing to use to get a a bearing to adjust off of

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #44 on: September 10, 2010, 21:20:23 »
But what you are discussing is a very specific arc of employment, and yes I still carry my compass for just such an occasion (or sitting in a trench and wanting a static bearing).

That is the same as having a knife for doing something and a gun for doing something else.
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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #45 on: September 10, 2010, 22:33:13 »
Which for some reason is still used by Air Navs.

Stellar navigation is no longer taught at the school in Winnipeg and has not been for years. GPS and INS.........

Offline Oldgateboatdriver

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #46 on: September 11, 2010, 07:56:29 »
Simple truth is never trust a single source for any information needed to carry out a task.

Many moons ago, there was a picture on the walls of the DC/FF school in Halifax of one of the big ferries that cross the English Channel high and dry on the beaches near Calais. Now the mariners that run those things are like bus drivers: they know their route by heart. So how did it happen? Simply, the input wire that connected the GPS feed to the electronic map got loose - and the map automatically went into dead reckoning mode. It just forgot to compensate for the five knots currents found in the area. By the time the captain felt a "weird" vibration, made his way to the bridge, looked at the radar screen and figured out where he really was, it was too late.

That is why naval captains insist to this day: never two fixes in a row using the same source in coastal waters - check each source against the others all the time. And why the pilots on warships still try to put in a good astro-fix once a day in mid ocean - just to feel comfortable with the GPS data.

Offline Jungle

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #47 on: September 11, 2010, 08:18:30 »
Navigating in close complex terrain, especially thick forest or jungle, where GPS signals may be attenuated to the point they're not useable, and there is no line of sight to see much of any contours or landmarks, I'd say a compass is very useful.
And for supported arm call for fire a compass is a very easy thing to use to get a a bearing to adjust off of

I'm a fan of the GPS, but I was well-trained in the use of the map and compass; some good ways to train people to work with a map is to give them a bearing and a one-grid square map of the destination. We did this at night in France; reading the map (the destination-only grid square) and everybody's SA IOT find the TGT become extremely important.

During jungle warfare trg, we were sent out with no map, but a set of bearings, distances and destination landmarks for the route. Pacing rapidly becomes your best friend...

Modern GPSs are much more effective in complex terrain. I use the Garmin Oregon, and I rarely have reception problems with it.
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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #48 on: September 11, 2010, 22:03:02 »
Simple truth is never trust a single source for any information needed to carry out a task.


And that, gentlemen, is the best line of this entire topic.

What's that old quote about guns, comms, flashlights and riflemen....? Oh yeah:

"2 is 1. 1 might as well be none."

"Return with your shield, or upon it."

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #49 on: September 12, 2010, 07:12:22 »
The quote "2 is 1 and 1 is none" is I believe better attributed to one of the awesome instructors in GI Jane.
"Do what you feel in your heart to be right - for you'll be criticized anyway." - Roosevelt

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #50 on: September 12, 2010, 12:30:22 »
If that's where you think the quote originated from, I'll let you run with that thought.
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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #51 on: September 12, 2010, 13:08:17 »
If that's where you think the quote originated from, I'll let you run with that thought.

Not originated, just made popular.
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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #52 on: September 12, 2010, 13:34:50 »
While I gave thick brush or jungle as an example of complex terrain, i of course didn't mean those are the only types of conditions that can attenuate the signal.
The point I'm getting at is, as good as GPS is, and I agree it is an incredibly useful instrument, users need to understand its limitations

The GPS can be tracking only 3 satellites, and while this will give a very useful approximate fixation, this might continue for some time until it picks up a fourth satelite. During that time there can be some drift. Should the GPS be coupled to navigation system, and if the user had entered a location into the nav aid earlier that was not that accurate, then it is possible the nav aid will try to incorporate that difference from where it thought it was to what the user put in, exacerbating the situation.

Since GPS relies on its latitude for its direction, having a grid that is somewhat skewed can degrade any bearings displayed, though for most navigation purposes its not that noticeable.

But these things combined (bad fix and orientation) can become very noticeable if for example lasing a tgt using a system that relies on inertial/GPS navigation (and why devices like PSS SOF can help resolve them)

Another reason I believe map and compass training is vital, is from a human factors point of view. The DAGR currently in use, when used alone,  has the draw back of displaying primarily just a location, altitude, and direction/heading, whereas most civilian applications use a more effective rolling map type of display to convey surrounding information. I think for that reason alone, sound knowledge on how to use a map helps a great deal in maintaining situational awareness.

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #53 on: September 28, 2010, 14:34:52 »
i have a few things to say about GPS, speaking as a DAGR (new army GPS we got a few years ago)

IT DOES NOT REPLACE PROPER NAVIGATIONAL TRAINING

That being said, GPS is a wonderful tool as long as it works.  There are a few things someone does need to worry or watch.  Do they know how to operate the GPS properly? If not they should not play around with it too much.  Are you in a situation where spoofing could apply?  If so i would not use it, just so people know spoofing is when someone is messing with your GPS signal, it will say your somewhere but in reality your somewhere else.  This apparently happened to the Israelis when they went into Lebanon in 2006.  Did not end well for the Israelis.

As well i hope people in the field are seriously not totally relying on GPS as there are times when its accuracy is less than ideal (ive seen the old PLGR with a 150km variance, I was not impressed)

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #54 on: September 28, 2010, 14:53:02 »
i have a few things to say about GPS, speaking as a DAGR (new army GPS we got a few years ago)

IT DOES NOT REPLACE PROPER NAVIGATIONAL TRAINING

That being said, GPS is a wonderful tool as long as it works.  There are a few things someone does need to worry or watch.  Do they know how to operate the GPS properly? If not they should not play around with it too much.  Are you in a situation where spoofing could apply?  If so i would not use it, just so people know spoofing is when someone is messing with your GPS signal, it will say your somewhere but in reality your somewhere else.  This apparently happened to the Israelis when they went into Lebanon in 2006.  Did not end well for the Israelis.

As well i hope people in the field are seriously not totally relying on GPS as there are times when its accuracy is less than ideal (ive seen the old PLGR with a 150km variance, I was not impressed)

Pretty sure you've just reiterated what has been said in the last three pages.

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #55 on: May 13, 2016, 15:40:52 »
May 13, 2016

Kitchener woman follows car's GPS directions into Lake Huron, swims to shore
http://www.680news.com/2016/05/13/kitchener-woman-follows-cars-gps-directions-lake-huron-swims-shore/
Police say following the instructions from a GPS on a foggy night left an Ontario woman taking an unplanned swim in Lake Huron.

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #56 on: May 13, 2016, 15:50:52 »
During my Co-op with the Pan Am / Parapan Am games, I would have been lost without GPS.
I bought a new smart phone, ensured it had a high data plan and current updates.

I had no problems where I was going. Some places were off road, but attention to detail solved
those challenges.
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Offline NavyPhoenix

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #57 on: May 13, 2016, 15:52:45 »
Just bought the Garmin U2Nav. Useless. The streets have no names and I still haven't found what I am looking for.

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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #58 on: May 13, 2016, 16:00:39 »
Just bought the Garmin U2Nav. Useless. The streets have no names and I still haven't found what I am looking for.

Maybe you're not at the right elevation?

:rofl:
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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #59 on: May 13, 2016, 16:07:25 »
Just bought the Garmin U2Nav. Useless. The streets have no names and I still haven't found what I am looking for.

Does your GPS play this ?  U2 song - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4qairkoPEUQ    [:D
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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #60 on: May 13, 2016, 16:23:40 »
If there's no line on the horizon, he's probably in the heartland on Cedarwood Road.
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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #61 on: August 05, 2016, 09:15:57 »
Aug 5, 2016

Avenue Rd. and St. Clair Ave. W.,

Tourist follows GPS onto St. Clair streetcar tracks, slams into pole
http://www.680news.com/2016/08/05/tourist-follows-gps-onto-st-clair-streetcar-tracks-slams-into-pole/
A man from out of town was in a rental car en route to the airport and instead of turning onto the street, he followed his GPS right onto the streetcar tracks, slamming into a pole holding up TTC wires.



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Re: GPS - Trust / Don't Trust
« Reply #62 on: October 01, 2017, 15:09:37 »
Allegations that Russia is spoofing GPS in the Black Sea: https://www.wired.co.uk/article/black-sea-ship-hacking-russia
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