Wednesday, 14 January 2009

Is it to be Mam or Big Brother on the school bus?

I'm not sure whether's story from Birmingham represents progress or another step towards a total surveillance society.

It seems that the Green Bus company, which ferries more than 1,400 children to and from lessons each day in and around Brum, has deployed wi-fi internet access on 23 routes. Bus pass holders get free web access at download speeds of up to around 2Mbps.

Over half the children have found the facility useful. In addition, the wi-fi access point on each bus incorporates GPS to enable real-time tracking of the vehicles. Thus, parents or other interested parties can log into Green Bus's website to follow the progress of a bus during its journey, using a Google Maps display.

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