Utilizing GPS, SMS and Wireless Connectivity

FEMA and National Weather Service launch Wireless Emergency Alert System:

I know that ten years ago the idea of individuals tracking where we were was something that most folks didn’t quite like the idea of. With the advent of the movie, “Minority Report” even more individuals became aware of the idea of advertisers tracking location, purchase information and other characteristics to provide you with customized recommendations and targeted advertising.

FEMA seems to be taking this to a new level, but in a way that’s actually smart. For a number of years there always seem to be stories of someone that would hear hail on their rooftop and not realize that outside a storm was brewing with dangerous line winds or tornadic nature approaching.

Source: Engadget
Image from: Engadget

This “Weather Emergency Alert (WEA)” system delivers messages to cell towers in affected areas – so if you happen to be driving through a county that has a tornado warning, your mobile phone quickly alerts you to it through the WEA.

Now the caveat to all of this of course is that this all flows through a multiple step process – so I guess the question at hand is whether or not the National Weather Service will be able to act quickly to actually push forward information.

Curious whether or not you’re covered? Well if you’re on Verizon or Sprint, it would seem that yes you are, but for a full listing and explanation from FEMA, check out the “Commercial Mobile Alert System (CMAS)” web page for more information as to participation of different mobile providers.

So while some folks might see it as an invasion of privacy in being able to track or locate an individual based on the fact of where they happen to be in relation to a particular cell tower – I personally don’t mind getting alerts that let me know that a storm is brewing or perhaps a zombie horde is about to descend on my location. Course the CDC tells us that Zombies don’t really exist… or do they? 😉

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