GPS 3 is the future of navigation, and it’s set to roll out in 2023


Lockheed Martin GPS III

Since 1993, the US Air Force has made its Global Positioning System (GPS) available to the world, and ever since then that technology has found its way into many facets of our everyday lives. It’s in our cars, in our phones, and even in our watches. It’s not surprising then that the United States continues to invest in the development of the technology for both civilian and military use — and that investment is beginning to pay off.

With two satellites in orbit and eight more in various stages of development, the latest iteration, GPS III, already is in the process of being deployed. Here’s what you can expect when the next generation of GPS goes fully operational in 2023.

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Apple wants to put AR navigation in your car


Apple Maps could make driving easier with augmented reality navigation tips.

Apple is exploring ways to build augmented reality into Apple Maps. Rather than top-down views of roads and intersections, the company is considering overlaying route information onto live views of the road ahead of the car.

Apple Maps has always lagged behind Google Maps. Building in AR could help it jump ahead.

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Earth’s magnetic north pole has officially moved


This map shows the new location of the magnetic North Pole (the white star). NOAA NCEI/CIRES

Earth’s magnetic North Pole has drifted so fast that authorities have had to officially redefine the location of the magnetic North Pole. The extreme wandering of the North Pole caused increasing concerns over navigation, especially in high latitudes.

Earth’s magnetic field is known to have wandered and flipped in the geologic past. Earth’s magnetic field is a result of spinning molten iron and nickel 1,800 miles below the surface. As the constant flow of molten metals in the outer core changes over time, it alters the external magnetic field.

What we’ve seen in the past hundred years is that the location of the magnetic North Pole has moved northward. That migration of the magnetic North Pole was switched into overdrive in the past few years, causing the pole to rapidly move. The increased speed with which the magnetic North Pole has moved prompted authorities to officially update its location. The official location of the magnetic poles is specified by the World Magnetic Model, which acts as the basis for navigation, communication, GPS, etc. around the globe.

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Quantum ‘compass’ promises navigation without using GPS


It could keep society humming when satellites fail.

GPS is vital to modern navigation, but it’s extremely fragile. Never mind coverage — if a satellite fails or there’s a jamming attack, it quickly becomes useless. Scientists may have a much more robust answer, though. Scientists have demonstrated a “commercially viable” quantum accelerometer that could provide navigation without GPS or other satellite technology. The device uses lasers to cool atoms to extremely low temperatures, and then measures the quantum wave properties of those atoms as they respond to acceleration.

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How technology has revolutionized the cruise industry


The cruise industry is one which has undergone enormous change in recent times. A huge amount of money has been spent on revamping the cruise ships with new facilities and new technology to define new levels of luxury and comfort. This, and making cruises more affordable through places like Bolsover Cruise Club, has made cruise vacations much more appealing to a younger audience and transformed the industry.

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Toyota’s driverless cars will be able to talk to each other in the future


Cars will be able to talk to each other to avoid accidents, merge onto highways and drive us to a destination we set on the GPS sometime in the near future. This type of technology is actually already on the roads across the world and will be rolling out in Australia over the next few years.

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Here Auto: Nokia’s connected car platform

Here Auto

Nokia announced last week its intention to become a much bigger technological force in the vehicle after years of being the auto industry’s mapmaker. Nokia took the wraps off of Here Auto, an embedded infotainment and connected car system, which it hopes to sell to the world’s car manufacturers.



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Mercedes-Benz is integrating Google Glass into its cars

Mercedes is testing Google Glass-based navigation systems.

Mercedes-Benz just went public with its initial plans for Google Glass integration, and the results are fascinating. Using Glass’s built-in GPS capabilities, Mercedes is testing a functional door-to-door direction system that guides users to their destinations even after they park the car.



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Wearable computing devices are next big thing

wearable computers

Wearable computers

A report released by Forrester Research says that the wearable computing wars are about to begin. They predict that consumers will begin experimenting more with wearable computers over the coming year, specifically around health and fitness, navigation, social networking and gaming. This new theme among consumers will hasten big tech companies to begin creating wearable computing products.

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