Posts Tagged ‘Tracking’


Wall St Journal

Lawmakers working to craft a new comprehensive immigration bill have settled on a way to prevent employers from hiring illegal immigrants: a national biometric identification card all American workers would eventually be required to obtain.

Under the potentially controversial plan still taking shape in the Senate, all legal U.S. workers, including citizens and immigrants, would be issued an ID card with embedded information, such as fingerprints, to tie the card to the worker.

The ID card plan is one of several steps advocates of an immigration overhaul are taking to address concerns that have defeated similar bills in the past.

The uphill effort to pass a bill is being led by Sens. Chuck Schumer (D., N.Y.) and Lindsey Graham (R., S.C.), who plan to meet with President Barack Obama as soon as this week to update him on their work. An administration official said the White House had no position on the biometric card.

Danger Room:

France to introduce new law banning ‘psychological violence’ in marriages

Sociologist Pierre Bonnet said: ‘The next step will be to make rudeness a criminal offence.’

Daily Mail | Jan 5, 2010

Five-dollar registration fee for persons planning to overthrow US government | Feb 5, 2010

By Daniel Tencer

Terrorists who want to overthrow the United States government must now register with South Carolina’s Secretary of State and declare their intentions — or face a $25,000 fine and up to 10 years in prison.

The state’s “Subversive Activities Registration Act,” passed last year and now officially on the books, states that “every member of a subversive organization, or an organization subject to foreign control, every foreign agent and every person who advocates, teaches, advises or practices the duty, necessity or propriety of controlling, conducting, seizing or overthrowing the government of the United States … shall register with the Secretary of State.”

There’s even a $5 filing fee.

By “subversive organization,” the law means “every corporation, society, association, camp, group, bund, political party, assembly, body or organization, composed of two or more persons, which directly or indirectly advocates, advises, teaches or practices the duty, necessity or propriety of controlling, conducting, seizing or overthrowing the government of the United States [or] of this State.”

The law also gives subversive organizations “subject to foreign control” 30 days to register with the state after setting up shop in South Carolina.

While the intention of the law is apparently aimed at Islamic terrorists, it’s unclear in the law’s wording whether it can be applied to right-wing militias, some of whom have reputedly called for the overthrow of the US government. The law states that “fraternal” and “patriotic” groups are exempt from the law, but only if they don’t “contemplate the overthrow of the government.”

While the law is clearly redundant — there are plenty of statutes at the state and federal level through which terrorists can be prosecuted — it reflects a not-uncommon pattern in some states of “doubling down” against particular crimes.

For instance, South Carolina is among those states which require drug dealers to declare their illegal income, or face additional criminal penalties on top of the already established penalties for buying, possessing and selling drugs.

The South Carolina blog FitsNews describes the new law as “bureaucracy for terrorists.”

“In the long and storied history of utterly retarded legislation in South Carolina, we may have finally found the legal statute that takes the cake for sheer stupidity, which we think you’ll agree is saying something,” the unsigned blog posting scathingly commented.

New gadget being used to help keep kids in school

WOAI | Feb 25, 2010

by Mireya Villarreal

San Antonio –  At some districts the truancy problem is so bad, GPS technology is being used to handle the more serious offenders. Some students are being asked to keep a hand-held tracking device with them at all times. It may sound a little far fetched, but three San Antonio school districts that use the system said News 4 WOAI it works.

“Kids need to be in school. It’s the law,” one parent told us.

Every parent we spoke with today told us keeping kids in school is a big priority. But how to do it seems to be the tough part for some parents.

“Every school has challenges with keeping students in school and getting them to cross the stage at graduation,” Northside I.S.D. spokesperson, Pascual Gonzalez, said.

Gonzalez told us his district, like most, was looking for a solution. So they tracked down a pilot program that gave them 25 GPS units and 12 weeks to try them out. They started in the fall and almost immediately saw results.

“The students have been going to school,” Gonzalez noted. “It appears to be a very successful pilot and we’re looking to expand it.”

Nowhere to run to, nowhere to hide (Image: Zap Art/Getty)

By using buildings as mirrors, it will be possible to identify a target vehicle from radar reflections

New Scientist | Mar 20, 2010

by David Hambling

WHY jump in a cab to “follow that car” when an airborne drone could do the job for you? The US Pentagon’s Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency is developing a radar system which sees around corners and down into “urban canyons”. DARPA hopes to be able to track vehicles across an entire city using just a few uncrewed aircraft.

Traditional radar relies on direct line of sight, so it’s tricky to track a vehicle that keeps nipping behind buildings. But DARPA believes that by using buildings as mirrors, it will be possible to identify a target vehicle from radar reflections. The experimental system is called Multipath Exploitation Radar.

The agency has been exploring how MER might work by driving vehicles around a simulated urban area and collecting returns from an overhead radar. Its researchers are aiming to combine the radar data with a three-dimensional map of the test environment to calculate how the radar reflects off and between vehicles and buildings. This process should highlight which signals in the returning radar data can be used to plot the target vehicle’s path.

MER is expected to be compatible with the radar systems currently used to track vehicles, a DARPA spokesman told New Scientist. The team anticipates that using reflected radar will cover more ground than a line-of-sight system, making it possible to monitor a city of about 1000 square kilometres, such as Baghdad, with just three airborne radars. The three-dimensional model of a city needed to make sense of the reflection pattern could be created using LIDAR, the optical surveying technology which is routinely carried on aircraft.

MER makes use of Ku-band radar – frequencies of between 12 and 18 gigahertz. It is sensitive enough to produce distinct signatures for apparently similar vehicles, by detecting slight differences, such as the angle of an aerial or a wing mirror.

DARPA is also looking to develop an algorithm which would enable the system to track multiple vehicles.

Ain Sume of the Swedish Defence Research Agency says the “sound, well-known physical principles” behind MER make it feasible. His team built a radar system that detects people around a corner by using reflections from the opposite wall.

But Sume reckons it will take some time to turn DARPA’s plans into a viable system. Key challenges include maintaining a radar lock as the view shifts from line-of-sight to reflection and back, and establishing a unique radar “fingerprint” for each vehicle.