Increasing the Accuracy of Data We Rely On

When I was a kid, we used physical maps and verbal directions. That, with a good memory and sense of direction helped me navigate across the US on my bike and through many cities in Europe on my bicycle.

Near the turn of the millennium, we got a number of mapping sites, like MapQuest, which were really designed to replace a paper map with a route drawn in. Since then, the capabilities of GPS combined with the advances of mobile phone OS and app improvements, much of the world depends on GPS working correctly.

The GPS systems, of which there are many run by different governments, have been in place for years, and have been upgraded at different times. The US government is looking to upgrade GPS (their system) with GPS III, with stronger signals and a longer lifespan. There are a few other items, better security among them.

There is a lot of GPS data that many of us take for granted. We may not worry about the actual data values, but we may use apps or include integration with services like Google Maps or Apple Maps, and we depend on this data being accurate and available.

There could be similar types of data that our applications and systems need, where availability, accuracy, and more affect the usefulness and value of some application. I think things like master data and data classification fall into these areas. The problem is that often those projects, or the idea of a project, don’t have a large government agency with a big budget working on them. As a result, they rarely move forward.

Steve Jones

About way0utwest

Editor, SQLServerCentral
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