Privacy and Personal Geographic Data
This will be interesting to watch over the next few years. It should not come as a surprise that there is little legislation on geographic and spatial privacy. We have never been in a position to worry about it before. We never had the capability to store that kind of data. With the state of storage and broadband speeds that is not a barrier anymore.
I do not think we will see much legislation in the next couple years since this a low profile talking point. However, in the couple of years after that I think we will see large strides in privacy protection in mobile device positioning. We need to consider all forms of privacy and data protection in GIS, but I think that the largest concerns we will see from the general public will come in the form of cell network position.
It is impressive that the technology is at the point where you can track a device this precisely, but I can definitely see outrage and technophobia come out of the idea that the general public could be tracked at this level.
GPS Civil Funding Request Slashed
This should not have come as a surprise to anyone. Budgets everywhere are being slashed. It is necessary. However, GPS systems in this country influence everybody. Cutting these budgets will, over time, hurt every industry, every person. Airlines, a major driving force in GPS tech, rely on this data to manage their flights and adjust schedules for maintenance and weather. Surveyors, environmental consulting, and shipping all rely on available and free GPS signal to perform their jobs. Individuals are rapidly becoming one of the largest consumers of GPS through their phones. I know I always rely on my phone when I am in an unfamiliar area to find my destination.