Re:The perfect phone for a birder?

To: "" <>, "" <>
Subject: Re:The perfect phone for a birder?
From: Peter Shute <>
Date: Mon, 28 Dec 2009 05:02:27 +1100
Regarding GPS accuracy, my phone generally claims the coordinates are within 
10m, sometimes much lower, occasionally higher. I would imagine that's easily 
good enough for finding most birding locations again, what kind of accuracy are 
you talking about?

I'm under the impression satellite signals are deliberately encoded to prevent 
civilians getting too much better accuracy than that, for military reasons, 
including making it hard to pinpoint the location of the actual satellites in 
order to shoot them down. To get better accuracy (precision might be a better 
word), I think a long succession of coordinates must be averaged.  This may be 
what the more expensive gear does.

Not so very long ago, GPS wasn't even an option. The alternative for those 
without access to expensive electronic distance measuring equipment was a tape 
measure or triangulation.  In my opinion, the decision by the USA to release 
even this level of accuracy to civilians is absolutely wonderful, even if it 
does occasionally lead you back to the wrong side of the creek.

Peter Shute

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