Then and Now: GPS, Wi-Fi, and Social Media


The Astonishing Commence and Success of Your Favourite Technologies

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Our bodily retail and digital innovation exploration journey so significantly: 

Section 1 – We explored the humble beginnings of section retailers, supermarkets, and the initial use of a bar code in a bodily store Component 2 – We expanded our innovation journey to ecommerce, smartphones, and robots Portion 3 -We shifted to loss prevention technologies: money registers, CCTV cameras, and Electronic Article Surveillance Portion 4 – Rapidly increasing RFID, Self-checkouts, and the World-wide-web of Factors (IoT) manufactured an appearance.

In this Element 5, we geo-locate ourselves with GPS, go wireless with Wi-Fi, and come to be influencers on Social Media.

The Very first Use of GPS   

The World-wide Positioning System (GPS), as you may possibly have guessed, has their origin in area, the closing frontier. In 1957, Russia released Sputnik, the initially productive area satellite. Researchers at the Utilized Physics Laboratory (APL) at John Hopkins University observing the bizarre radio signals identified what became known as the Doppler Effect.

“Utilizing the Sputnik’s Doppler Result allowed the researchers to use radio indicators to monitor the motion of the satellite from the floor. They later expanded the plan: If a satellite locale could be determined from the ground by means of the frequency shift of its radio signal, then the locale of a receiver on the ground could be decided by its length from a satellite.”

In 1958, the US Defense Department Innovative Investigate Initiatives (ARPA) applied the basic principle of the Doppler Impact to develop Transit, the world’s to start with international satellite navigation technique.

By 1968, 36 satellites were being operational with Transit technology which dramatically improved area precision and were being credited with strengthening the precision of the maps of the earth. In 1996, US Defense Division changed Transit with the latest World-wide Positioning Program (GPS).

Fast ahead to 2021 when just in United states of america there are now additional than 900 million GPS receivers in use. “You’ll find them in cellphones, commercial vans and buses, and railroads. Additional than 100 million autos have navigation techniques. Ships, planes and drones use GPS for navigation. Vans use GPS not only for area expert services but also for digital logging gadgets, which show no matter whether drivers have been driving for as well prolonged and receiving sleepy. Emergency responders use GPS instead than maps to track down accident sites and get people to the healthcare facility. You really do not want to be waiting around for the firetruck or ambulance when GPS is hacked or disrupted.”


Above picture points to some of the locations that manage the 30 operational GPS satellites operations in house as of April 12, 2022. With accuracy now at roughly 2 meters (6.5 ft), we are all hooked on GPS as our come across all the things know-how.

First Use of Wi-Fi

The “Father of Wi-Fi” was Vic Hayes who was the 1st chair of the IEEE 802.11 team which in 1997 finalized the wireless common that would run in the frequency spectrum opened up in 1985 by the United states of america Federal Communications Fee.

Fascinating that I share a background with the employer of Hayes. The 1997 ruling “sparked the curiosity of his then-employer NCR, which recognized that a wireless standard would enable the company, and its retailer consumers, make a radio hyperlink involving NCR hard cash registers and again-close mainframes. The radio backlink would make connecting the methods bodily more simple, and reduce the need to have to fiddle with proprietary protocols.”

According to the Wi-fi Broadband Alliance, Wi-Fi these days is providing considerable optimistic financial, social, and environmental contributions which continue on to exceed expectations.


My preferred from above, smartphones and IoT devices with Wi-Fi 6 have up to 67% decrease energy usage with electricity-saving characteristics. The pandemic was a remarkable accelerator for Wi-Fi utilization and wi-fi and the Online are forever connected.

As above Wireless Broadband Alliance infographic factors out, substantially a lot more desires to be done to unify the entire world by means of electronic connectivity that Wi-Fi permits.

Initial Use of Social Media

Is there a Kevin Bacon, the actor, to be uncovered in the heritage of social media? Yes, if you contemplate that Six Levels was the first on line social media web site.  

“Six Degrees is named soon after the “6 degrees of separation” theory, which states that everyone in the planet is linked to everybody else by no more than 6 levels of separation. This is often identified as the “6 Degrees of Kevin Bacon” concept, though Kevin Bacon himself is irrelevant to the phenomenon.”

Began in 1997, 6 Levels at its peak had 3.5 million people. It was purchased by YouthStream Media Networks in 1999 for $125 million, but it shot down in 2001.

In fast succession, in this article is what adopted:


  • (12 months 2000) – Invited users to post photos of on their own so other could charge attractiveness. Site was sold a few situations and tried out to appear back again in 2014 as a sport. Rumored to have influenced the creators of Facebook and YouTube.
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  • Friendster (2002) – Initially a courting site, but it is reputation and inability of organization to react led to user decline.
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  • Myspace (2003) – Turned to go to web site for Friendster for millions of teens and web site arrived at 25 hundreds of thousands uses  in 2005 when it was sold to NewsCorp where it begun its decrease.
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  • The existing leaders get there (2003-2005) – Connected-in appeared in 2003. Fb was started in 2004 and YouTube visually produced its entrance in 2005 with this initial video clip which as of this day has virtually 233 million sights.
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Speedy forward to 2022 and an awesome 4.62 billion people today are now social media buyers worldwide.


Just around the earlier calendar year, social media has included a person million new customers for each day or approximately 13.5 new users each individual one next. Speculate wherever we invest our time on social media?


Expanded a lot more effortless connectivity as a result of GPS and Wi-Fi accelerated global electronic communications by means of new platforms such as social media. Are we delighted with the outcome? Where by do we imagine all this will consider us future?


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