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Sunday, January 01, 2006

 

Whatever will they think of next?

The bullshit merchants have been at it again. Apparently, according to the mess room rumour mill, our lords and masters are considering some form of GPS system to keep tabs on the precise location of each and every one of us.

If this is true, which I suspect most strongly that it is not, should not the funds about to be utilised for this purpose be used to get us decent kit? You know, waterproofs that are really waterproof. Electronics with batteries that don’t perform their own dance of the dying swan halfway through a shift. Hand held computers that have software that doesn’t crash twice a shift losing all your observations. Radio’s that form part of an effective communications net and don’t just hiss and squawk at us at odd moments. You know, simple stuff.

Mind you, if the GPS bullshit is true and our masters get it as right as the radio’s, hand held computers and uniforms, they’ll probably get reports that we’re all sunning ourselves on the Costa del Sol when we are actually patrolling our assigned beats.

I can imagine it now.
“515, this is control.”
“Receiving. What can I do for you?”
“515, you’re closest, can you go to main car park to assist a customer who has lost a pound in change machine 3?”
“Er, control.”
“Get there soon as you can 515, the customer is waiting.”
“Control, I’m in Quick street.”
“No you’re not. That’s two miles away, the tracking system says you’re just entering High Street.”
“Control, I’m definitely doing limited waiting in Quick street.”
“515, are you sure?”
“Positive control, I can see the road sign from here. Says Quick Street.”
Unintelligible reply.
“515 to control, can you repeat, I missed that last one.”

The rest of this conversation has been cut to protect everyone else’s delicate sensibilities, but you catch my drift? The most sophisticated system in the world is no good unless it is backed up by some carefully applied brainpower. Fortunately, that doesn’t seem likely in the near future. Reality bites.

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Exasperated expatriate expostulations all the way from British Columbia, Canada. As if anyone really cared. Oh, I also watch Icelandic Volcanoes and seismic activity. Don't ask me why.

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