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Ford Goes Woke for Women’s History Month
Ford has released a snotty commercial to celebrate Women’s History Month. They support it by referencing a website. It asserts with respect to Dr. Gladys West and GPS:
Dr. Gladys West — pioneer of the modern-day GPS
Known for her contributions to the mathematical modeling of the shape of the earth, this brainiac mathematician and “hidden figure” worked for decades for the US military. Being in a field entirely dominated by men did not stop Dr. West, however. Her data and work on the development of satellite geodesy models became the basis for the modern-day GPS we use in our cars today. Here’s a woman who knew exactly where she was going.
As I’ve mentioned before, there are significant problems with giving her the credit for GPS. Her paper on the GEOID was published in 1986; GPS was being used by civilians in 1981.
The Reagan administration announced after KAL 007 was shot down in 1983 that GPS would be offered free to airlines when it became operational. GPS was working prior to any work she did on it. The main issue for GPS in 1986 was launching the Block 2 (operational) satellites needed to make it fully operational, given the Challenger disaster. Congress in the 1970s decided that all governmental satellites would be launched on the Shuttle. After Challenger blew up, the Air Force developed Delta II in response.
Here’s some of the work my father did which led to GPS:
1,. Designed the 1st solar-powered satellite, Vanguard 1. GPS satellites use solar power.
2. Started working on a Navsat with atomic clocks in 1964. A key concept of GPS.
3. Designed two space tracking systems – Minitrack and the Naval Space Surveillance System. Space tracking is vital to determining the orbits of GPS satellites, vital for the accuracy of the system.
4. Launched the 1st rubidium and cesium atomic clocks into orbit in NTS-1 and 2. Key to the accuracy of GPS.
5. His Timation Development Plan from March 1971 has all the key components of GPS.
No one else comes close to matching his contributions to GPS.
But he has the wrong sex to be recognized by Ford.Published in Science & Technology
I don’t know that I would want to buy an item as complicated as a motor vehicle from someone who is that sloppy on details.
That must be really hard for you to read. It’s so wrong to step over your dad’s work. I’m sorry this is happening.
But at least it appears they’re giving undeserved credit to a biological female. It would be so much worse if it was someone “trans.”
I saw that commercial and thought of you (as you have written about this misconception before).
Also, as to their point, even if were true, do they really want to go down that road? Would the woman’s only Ford have no motor, transmission, or any other parts developed by men? I guess it would have windshield wipers but no windshield?
Well, that’s easy to fix. Just tell Ford that he was your mother.
What is a “biological female” as opposed to a “woman”? I don’t see why it’s necessary to use two words when one will do. Saying “biological female” implies that there is such a thing as a “non-biological female,” which there is not.
Is it really complimentary to call someone a “brainiac”?
Perhaps it would have been accurate to say “Her data and work on the development of satellite geodesy models greatly improved the accuracy of the GPS systems we use every day”, rather than “became the basis for”…if that’s indeed true, not sure how significant the accuracy improvement was, but presumably better earth-modeling would have some effect…but contributions of people being recognized in these sorts of targeted-group thing are generally overstated even when real.
An acquaintance who joined the GPS Joint Program Office in the late 1970s told me that GPS does not use the GEOID so her work isn’t used by GPS. He says that part of problem is that the people giving out the awards decades later did not talk to the people who built the system. Now you risk being called a racist if you question her supposedly critical role. One thing is clear; GPS was being used successfully prior to her work on the GEOID.
Is there an earlier earth model used for GPS? And what’s the application (if any) of GEOID?..ballistic missile trajectory calculations, I’m guessing?
Because the left insists that a “trans woman” is a “woman,” because “the word ‘woman’ is right in there, don’t you see?!?!?” whereas “biological female” doesn’t allow for that lie.
I sent emails to several people who have worked on the space program for decades. Here’s one response.
Here’s another response from a person who started working on GPS in the early days.