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Robinson Meyer

Robinson Meyer is an associate editor at The Atlantic, where he covers technology.
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The New App That Could Revolutionize How the Postal Service Delivers Mail

June 22, 2016 FROM NEXTGOV arrow There is a city in central Florida where two homes have adjoining backyards. One of the houses sits on Anna Catherine Drive; the other faces Summer Rain Drive. You could scramble under a hedge and get from one property to the other in seconds. If you wanted to make the...

Navy Is Making a New GPS for Drone Submarines

June 15, 2016 FROM NEXTGOV arrow To prepare for the possibility that it will one day deploy swarms of uncrewed drone submarines, the U.S. Navy is developing a system that will allow the global positioning system to function deep below the ocean’s surface. If successful, the technology could start to appear as soon as the 2020s....

The Navy Is Making a New GPS for Drone Submarines

June 14, 2016 To prepare for the possibility that it will one day deploy swarms of uncrewed drone submarines, the U.S. Navy is developing a system that will allow the global positioning system (GPS) to function deep below the ocean’s surface. If successful, the technology could start to appear as soon as the...

POSYDON Is Like GPS, But for Underwater Drones

June 13, 2016 To prepare for the possibility that it will one day deploy swarms of uncrewed drone submarines, the U.S. Navy is developing a system that will allow the global positioning system (GPS) to function deep below the ocean’s surface. If successful, the technology could start to appear as soon as the...

No One Will Save You From Cellphone Tracking

June 3, 2016 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Nearly everywhere your cellphone goes in the world, it is tracked. When you start or end a call, your cell provider logs a piece of data saying where your phone is in the world. When you send or receive a text, it logs the same kind of data. And every...

The Promise of Terrapattern: The Visual Search Engine for Satellite Imagery

May 28, 2016 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Sometimes, a new tool comes into the world that is so expansively, obviously useful that you can’t do anything but sit back and think: wow. For me, at least, that’s Terrapattern, a visual search engine for satellite imagery, released this week by a team of artists and geographers at Carnegie...

How Facebook Could Tilt the 2016 Election

April 18, 2016 FROM NEXTGOV arrow It’s November 6, 2016. The world is not in good shape. After years of historic lows, oil prices have rebounded—in fact, they have rebounded too well. Gas is now fast approaching $4 per gallon. High energy costs have kicked the Chinese economy into a depression, and the United States begins...

This Very Common Cellphone Surveillance Still Doesn't Require a Warrant

April 15, 2016 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The government does not need a warrant to access the location data created on an ordinary, often minute-to-minute basis by cellphones and logged with cell providers, the Sixth Circuit for the U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Wednesday. The ruling adds to a growing consensus among federal appeals courts that law...

As Library Funding Wanes So Does Their Usage

April 14, 2016 A curious phenomenon is gripping public libraries in the United States. On the one hand, Americans still adore their libraries. According to a new Pew Research study, 76 percent of Americans say that libraries well serve the needs of their community. And since 78 percent of Americans say they’ve been...

How Should the US Fund Research and Development?

April 11, 2016 FROM NEXTGOV arrow A&Q is a special series that inverts the classic Q&A, taking some of the most frequently posed solutions to pressing matters of policy and exploring their complexity. In the summer of 2012, despite the controversy over the solar panel manufacturer Solyndra, a presidential candidate came out swinging for government funding...

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