Gongol.com Archives: April 2015
Estonian president asks for some NATO troops
He's worried that his country -- with a population about the same size as Nebraska's -- wouldn't stand a chance if Russia tries to invade. And Russia's been doing plenty to make the Baltic states nervous -- including flying too close to American airplanes in the region.
April is Iowa's "Distracted Driving Awareness Month"
Too much focus is put on the specific problem of texting-while-driving, at the expense of attention to the broader issue of distracted driving. Some people can't handle a ham sandwich while driving, and it's a mistake to focus our laws specifically on a particular technology or item (like cell phones), rather than on the broader problem of driving with limited concentration.
The case for body cameras from the father of an innocent civilian killed by American police
There is undoubtedly an affirmative case to be made for police to wear body cameras, but they're no cure-all. There are significant questions that should be considered about issues like the release of video recordings under Freedom of Information Act claims, the protection of sources who may have a reasonable fear of retaliation, and the need to consider the interests of people like innocent children and adult domestic-abuse victims who may be deeply concerned or troubled by the prospect of having their words recorded. But the cameras shouldn't be dismissed out-of-hand, either -- especially not when there's strong evidence that some domestic police officers have strayed far from their mission to preserve the peace.
French company sells anti-drone drone
They claim it can track down the person controlling a suspicious drone within a decent-sized radius in about a minute. Drones have enormous potential for both personal and commercial use, ranging from amusing videography to valuable surveillance over crops and sensitive facilities. But the problem is that they're really too small to show up on conventional radar, and thus they can't really be tracked by large-scale methods...thus, they are also very difficult to defend against. It may simply be that the only way to fight fire is with fire (or drones, in this case). The technology can't be held back forever, so we have to figure out how to accommodate it and how to protect ourselves against the bad.
Startup company that watches apps for bad behavior estimated at $1 billion market price