Has anybody else heard about this? Apparently a company called Lightspeed bought some satellite frequency band (because it's cheap) and then got a special waiver to use it at ground level (with the resultant increase in power), and there's concern that it might interfere with GPS signals, which could be of concern to any of you using GPS systems.

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I'm a believer of: map and directions... We're too technology needy. GPS is good but it can lead people onto the wrong direction... Always know where to go before you go; not go and hope you'll know...
I to am a big believer in map books, but sadly my employer has taken them away from us and we are to rely soley on a gps program on our unit laptops

If the "gps system" is linked with your county's GIS system it works great.  Ours is not as of yet, have heard some scuddlebut about that possibly happening, but nothing concrete yet.  Yes, mapbooks are still the best and a good knowledge of your run area. 

Perfect example, 2-3 years ago one of the other crews left on a call (approx. 1 mile away).  GPS took them to a town approximately 10 miles away and neither relized it until dispatch asked them what was taking so long.  And then they had no idea how to get there and got turn by turn over dispatch, because they still refused to pick up a map book. 

The call was for a local college student.  The college wrote a lengthy letter about their displeasure of the experience.

I prefer web-based GPS, like google maps or a similar technology for a few reasons. 1 is that you don't have to worry about things like signal interference, as cell phone coverage for a laptop receiver rarely goes down. 2nd is that its editable. By this i mean whilst gps goes off where you are and the roads around you, with very little concern as to present road conditions, you can edit a web based system to close out roads that may be closed for construction, weather issues, or fire/ems incidents. You can do this too with a map book, but once you mark the book, its marked for good. Just my two cents.
Not heard about that so far, the only thing i noticed was a loss in accuracy during some military operations nearby. To train our teams in using a map instead, we randomly deactivate the gps devices of some units once a while. Thats a good training on using a map on approach, and for the dispatchers in leading the units with their GIS according to descriptions, in the rarely case of entering a non-mapped region. Drivers in education have to prove geographical knowledge of mayor roads, crossings and ponits of interest before they are allowed to drive independent.
The company is actually called LightSquared and http://HighPerformanceEMS.com started a blog on it with running commentary at http://hpems.wordpress.com/2011/05/23/trading-gps-navigation-for-wi... back in May.  Basically the 4G signal from LightSquared is 1000x stronger than the GPS satellite signal on a band directly adjacent to GPS so everyone could be affected - especially closer to a tower with their signal.  The Feds own tests show the conflict during trials.

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