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Thread: What if: GPS and all Western satellites are successfully neutralised

  1. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by JAD_333 View Post
    I can't tell whether you are concerned about technological over-reliance bringing down nations or you are not concerned. I see technology replacing human problem solving to the extent that cutting the power could make us virtually helpless. But what I want to understand is the term over-reliance. At what point does it become 'over' versus simply 'reliant"?
    Frankly, I'm more concerned with what personal electronics are doing to society, period. The other day I was sitting in the car waiting for my daughter to get done with her shift at a local boutique and I was watching two 20-somethings walking out of another store, looking intently at their iPhones or whatever, and they literally stepped in front of a moving car without looking. Had the guy not stood on his brakes he'd have hit them . . . and they would have deserved it. I used to think kids on bikes were an issue, but the things I see regularly these days are well beyond the pale of common sense. When I used to teach my masters course "on ground" I'd enter the back of the lecture hall, all heads would be looking down at their widgets whatever they may be, and never once would they look up at me for the next 90 minutes. WTF is that? If I could find the person that thought up the cell phone, I'd cut his nuts off and stuff them up his nose. I won't have one. I have On Star in the car and that's as connected, beyond exchanges like this, as I want to be.

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    Quote Originally Posted by desertswo View Post
    One more time; how does the drone know where it is?
    Captain,

    Wouldn't the UAV take off from a known location? There is your starting point.

    Assuming you can get the speed and the direction right from there you would always know where your bird is.
    No such thing as a good tax - Churchill

    To make mistakes is human. To blame someone else for your mistake, is strategic.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JAD_333 View Post
    I can't tell whether you are concerned about technological over-reliance bringing down nations or you are not concerned. I see technology replacing human problem solving to the extent that cutting the power could make us virtually helpless. But what I want to understand is the term over-reliance. At what point does it become 'over' versus simply 'reliant"?
    IMV it would be the point where without the tech you can't get the job done in reasonable time.
    No such thing as a good tax - Churchill

    To make mistakes is human. To blame someone else for your mistake, is strategic.

  4. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by desertswo View Post
    Frankly, I'm more concerned with what personal electronics are doing to society, period. The other day I was sitting in the car waiting for my daughter to get done with her shift at a local boutique and I was watching two 20-somethings walking out of another store, looking intently at their iPhones or whatever, and they literally stepped in front of a moving car without looking. Had the guy not stood on his brakes he'd have hit them . . . and they would have deserved it. I used to think kids on bikes were an issue, but the things I see regularly these days are well beyond the pale of common sense. When I used to teach my masters course "on ground" I'd enter the back of the lecture hall, all heads would be looking down at their widgets whatever they may be, and never once would they look up at me for the next 90 minutes. WTF is that? If I could find the person that thought up the cell phone, I'd cut his nuts off and stuff them up his nose. I won't have one. I have On Star in the car and that's as connected, beyond exchanges like this, as I want to be.
    I'm a big cell phone fan, especially since the smart phone came out. Mainly I use it to make business calls and stay in touch with the family. But having immediate access to a camera, GPS, weather reports, messenger, internet browser, and being able to check the market and make trades all from one little box can't be beaten for efficiency and convenience. I go back to the original Motorola brick. I think it cost around $2k at the time, and you had to stand by a window to get reception.

    I understand how you feel about cells. Being old school I would never sit around in company pecking away at one like so many young people do these days. It seems impolite to me. But kids do it without batting an eyelash. One positive; it's made my son and daughter better spellers.
    To be Truly ignorant, Man requires an Education - Plato

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    Quote Originally Posted by Surreal McCoy View Post
    Premise: Let's just say China (for example) is capable of disabling US satellites in a near future engagement..... The point is, would the US/Nato/West be able to conduct effective operations without all the goodies they've become so dependent upon? Never mind civilians driving off a cliff because their Tom Tom went tits up, what about the military? Are they still drilled in the traditional, non-technological, methods of manoeuvre? If so, would they be able to coordinate sufficiently to perform their duties?
    Sorry, I saw this thread a bit late.
    If all GPS systems are down, then the military can still so it's job.
    Basic army training still teaches map reading and use of a magnetic compass.

    But without real time info, we would be back to the tactical and strategic skills of the WW2 Generals, though.

    PPS - I broach this subject because I wonder, as we move into a new age with more and more unmanned weaponry, what would happen if all the drones suddenly didn't work? Are we still training enough people to fly? Same goes for every other aspect of conflict. Your considered responses are very much appreciated
    I'm sure you have enough of pilots, even the drone pilot is a real pilot, except that he/she cannot order a pizza while taking out a target. They would have to fly through the gauntlet of lead.

    Cheers!...on the rocks!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Doktor View Post
    IMV it would be the point where without the tech you can't get the job done in reasonable time.
    If no one had access to the tech, all things being equal, a reasonable time would be whatever time it takes people to the job the old way.
    To be Truly ignorant, Man requires an Education - Plato

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    Quote Originally Posted by JAD_333 View Post
    If no one had access to the tech, all things being equal, a reasonable time would be whatever time it takes people to the job the old way.
    Reasonable time in wartime would be whoever can get the things done first, I'd guess.
    No such thing as a good tax - Churchill

    To make mistakes is human. To blame someone else for your mistake, is strategic.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Blademaster View Post
    But how often do you practice them in the field exercises?
    Regularly
    “We had been hopelessly labouring to plough waste lands; to make nationality grow in a place full of the certainty of God… Among the tribes our creed could be only like the desert grass – a beautiful swift seeming of spring; which, after a day’s heat, fell dusty.”
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    Quote Originally Posted by S2 View Post
    "But how often do you practice them [land nav] in the field exercises?"

    I'll have a partial answer in a few weeks. Curious to see how a co-employee, newly-commissioned 2Lt infantry officer, reviews his OBC (or whatever they call it now) experience. Particularly land nav and how it's practically integrated. It's only partial as that's institutional training. What goes on at the troop level is more telling. I know this-I have utter disdain for any soldier above the rank of PFC and any officer regardless of rank who can't land navigate.

    It would be a long, slow slide and enough to stretch the wildest imagination must occur before armies and nations are brought to their knees because of technological over-reliance. You are correct, however, that older technologies might regain some relevance. PADS (Position Azimuth Determination System) might, for instance, make a re-emergence. A cool, HUMVEE mounted gyro-nav system that had to periodically re-orient over a known point and a limited range (about twenty miles max from the orienting station). Still, a quantum leap forward for artillery survey. New and utterly revolutionary in 1985.

    Outmoded by 1991.
    I just spent a great evening last weekend with 2 of my former Scouts who are recent graduates of Infantry Officer Basic Course and Field Artillery Officer Basic Course.

    Both stated they used map and compass extensively. Don't know what it is called at Sill but the Yankee Road Land Navigation Course at FT Benning is still the scourge of second lieutenants.

    They do train with GPS later in the courses but only after they have mastered map & compass. And the land navigation with map & compass is still tested annually for all soldiers regardless of MOS....its a requirement for promotion to NCO.
    “We had been hopelessly labouring to plough waste lands; to make nationality grow in a place full of the certainty of God… Among the tribes our creed could be only like the desert grass – a beautiful swift seeming of spring; which, after a day’s heat, fell dusty.”
    ― T.E. Lawrence, Seven Pillars of Wisdom: A Triumph

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    Quote Originally Posted by Albany Rifles View Post
    I just spent a great evening last weekend with 2 of my former Scouts who are recent graduates of Infantry Officer Basic Course and Field Artillery Officer Basic Course.

    Both stated they used map and compass extensively. Don't know what it is called at Sill but the Yankee Road Land Navigation Course at FT Benning is still the scourge of second lieutenants.

    They do train with GPS later in the courses but only after they have mastered map & compass. And the land navigation with map & compass is still tested annually for all soldiers regardless of MOS....its a requirement for promotion to NCO.
    This is somewhat analogous to how we teach fire fighting in the live fire exercises at the school I used to own. The people, whether officer or enlisted as they are all in the same course, are taught that AFFF and PKP will knock a fire down in no time, and they will. However, they are never allowed to use those things. We teach them how to put a Class Bravo (petroleum based) fire out with water alone. It's hard to do, but doable nonetheless, and it instills confidence, so that they know when they have ALL the tools at their disposal with the real thing, they can get in and knock the thing down with little trouble.

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    Quote Originally Posted by desertswo View Post
    One more time; how does the drone know where it is?
    Thanks for reminding me why I refrain from posting on technical issues.

    Did you ever wonder how a sattelite knows where it is after correcting it's orbit (for instance to avoid space debris)?

    One way it could be done is with triangulation. Let's say you have 3 sattelites lying on the floor in exact known locations an a GPS reciever in space.
    You can triangulate the position of the GPS reciever in space.

    Replace the word sattelite with ground based transmitter and GPS reciever with sattelite and you can figure out a possible method of how a sattelite knows it's position in space.

    Replace the word sattelite with ground based transmitter and GPS reciever with UAV and you can figure out a possible method of how an UAV knows it's position.
    As long as an UAV can recieve distance measurement from 3 ground based transmitters in friendly territory it can be anywhere and know it's position. Or 2 ground based transmitters and another UAV, or 1 ground based transmitter and 2 other UAV's, or 1 sattelite and 2 other UAV's for that matter.

    The area the UAV can occupy is limited by the area covered by the range it can receive the ground based transmitters. The higher the UAV flies the larger this range theoretically becomes. (line of "sight" frtom UAV to transmitter). Also the higher the UAV flies the larger the range where the UAV provides GPS triangulation. (line of "sight" from GPS receiver to UAV)

    As for how long such a system needs to be operational depends on the type of war, remember that the majority of Saddams air defence system was basically destroyed by cruise missiles within an hour (simultaneous time on top).

    And with 8 UAV's you can basically have an UAV transmit for 5 minutes, switch off, reposition, and retransmit, as long as 3 or 4 UAV's are transmitting at any given time.
    Wich means that an enemy basically has 5 minutes to get to an UAV if that UAV is stealth.

    So you triangulate from at least 3 ground based transmitters to know where the UAV's are, and you triangulate from at least 3 UAV's to know where your cruise missile is at.

    This really isn't rocket science.

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    JAD_333 Reply

    "I can't tell whether you are concerned about technological over-reliance bringing down nations or you are not concerned..."

    Realistically? Virtually unconcerned. Romantically? I might wist for the good ol' daze a bit. You know- gun positions fifty meters or so apart, land-lines being cut everywhere by vehicles, aiming circles getting knocked down in the mud, charts and darts racing with freddy FADAC for a firing solution (required but kept things fun). On some missions a well-trained HCO (Horizontal Chart Operator) and VCO (vertical chart operator) could give you a solution faster than vacumn tube Freddy. Usually initial rounds. Adjustment rounds always went to FADAC.

    Don't need it anymore. When we ain't dinkin' around in these piss-ant insurgencies we prefer Battalion FFE TOT. No adjustment. 24 155mm rounds intersect from all over the grid on one point. Now. End-Of-Mission. All technology. Tight as gnat's azz survey, accurate muzzle velocities recorded and updated near instantly. Solid metro. Digital secure comms. In short, everything necessary to disperse a battalion of artillery and yet fire accurate battalion-sized massed fires which minimize detection but maximize effect.

    Where the shoe fits, don't argue and say a silent blessing.
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    Quote Originally Posted by S2 View Post
    Realistically? Virtually unconcerned. Romantically? I might wist for the good ol' daze a bit. You know- gun positions fifty meters or so apart, land-lines being cut everywhere by vehicles, aiming circles getting knocked down in the mud, charts and darts racing with freddy FADAC for a firing solution (required but kept things fun). On some missions a well-trained HCO (Horizontal Chart Operator) and VCO (vertical chart operator) could give you a solution faster than vacumn tube Freddy. Usually initial rounds. Adjustment rounds always went to FADAC.
    Don't need it anymore. When we ain't dinkin' around in these piss-ant insurgencies we prefer Battalion FFE TOT. No adjustment. 24 155mm rounds intersect from all over the grid on one point. Now. End-Of-Mission. All technology. Tight as gnat's azz survey, accurate muzzle velocities recorded and updated near instantly. Solid metro. Digital secure comms. In short, everything necessary to disperse a battalion of artillery and yet fire accurate battalion-sized massed fires which minimize detection but maximize effect.
    I love your vivid illustration of the old versus the new. Having never been around an artillery site I can't claim to know exactly what you're describing, but I can tell you this much: I know more now than I ever did.

    But the question had to do with over-reliance on electronics and electrical power dependency. Let me put it another way. Would an outage be more crippling now on the battlefield than before, or are there fallback procedures that can be quickly implemented to continue effective operations should power sources run dry?
    To be Truly ignorant, Man requires an Education - Plato

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    JAD_333 Reply

    "...But the question had to do with over-reliance on electronics and electrical power dependency..."

    I missed that in your reply and, instead, presumed it an example of this larger question-

    "I can't tell whether you are concerned about technological over-reliance bringing down nations or you are not concerned...But what I want to understand is the term over-reliance. At what point does it become 'over' versus simply 'reliant'?"

    Not sure where I'm at with all this but my original reply stands. I'm non-plussed by it all. Unconcerned. I don't twitter or instagram and won't. I don't skype but sorta wish I did. Don't NEED it though. If I did, I'd be grateful. Didn't own a cell phone until 2001 and didn't own a computer until 2004. Now I don't maintain a land-line but live on a computer while benefiting from communities like WAB (although there's really nothing out there quite like this lil' corner of heaven).

    I'm trying to recall the last army brought to its knees by an "over-reliance" on technology? Couldn't be many. I'm trying to recall the last nation brought to its knees from promulgating a culture that readily embraces technology.

    Doesn't mean redundancy of systems and methodologies. Always good to have fall-backs.

    Still, they're fall-backs for a reason.
    "This aggression will not stand, man!" Jeff Lebowski
    "The only true currency in this bankrupt world is what you share with someone else when you're uncool." Lester Bangs

  15. #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by S2 View Post
    I'm trying to recall the last army brought to its knees by an "over-reliance" on technology? Couldn't be many. I'm trying to recall the last nation brought to its knees from promulgating a culture that readily embraces technology.
    I can think of two. Pre-WWII France and Nazi Germany. Both were waiting for the next best thing while being shafted by the "it's good enough" powers.

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