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The iOS version of Nokia's cloud-based mapping service has been released on Apple's App Store. The service boasts a number of compelling features and undoubtedly aims to capitalize on the problems iPhone and iPad owners have encountered while using Cupertino's own Maps app. Read More
The European Space Agency (ESA) wants to know if it’s possible to use dead stars as a navigational aid for traveling in deep space. To answer that question, ESA has contracted Britain’s National Physical Laboratory (NPL) and the University of Leicester to investigate whether pulsars can serve as navigational beacons in the far-flung reaches of the outer Solar System or interstellar space. Read More
By studying the behavior of bees, a group of researchers at Queen Mary University of London has documented and modeled the way in which the insects can fly from flower to flower and then come back to their hives expending the least amount of time and energy. The findings might lead to better, much more flexible ways to deal with problems ranging from building faster computer networks to creating more powerful microchips. Read More

As we noted in our iOS6 overview last week, customers and critics have been up in arms over Apple's new maps application and the reports of inaccuracies and misplaced cities and towns continue to flow. Read More

While we’ve pretty much got to the point where we take GPS-enabled navigation systems for granted, there’s one rather prominent place where they can’t access the necessary satellites – indoors. A number of projects have taken on the challenge of indoor navigation, incorporating things like accelerometers, “invisible” landmarks, rapidly flickering lights, and magnetic fields. The experimental new NAVVIS system, however, utilizes a database of photographs. Read More
Researches at MIT have demonstrated a remarkable new micro-UAV capable of flying and avoiding obstacles in an indoor environment. It's autonomous, gathers data solely from onboard sensors (without GPS), and is fixed-wing—so it doesn't have the luxury of hovering. Read More
The HUD, or "Heads Up Display" is now a common feature in military and commercial aircraft, projecting critical data such as airspeed, altitude and navigation information onto a transparent screen in front of the pilot while allowing him/her to maintain an outside vigil. Very handy when landing or maneuvering close to the ground. Not surprisingly, this technology has now filtered down to the recreational flying arena with Italian outfit PAT Avionics showing its G-HULP system at the Experimental Aviation Association’s annual gathering at Oshkosh in the USA. Read More
Garmin signals its entrance into the outdoors GPS watch segment with the fēnix. Despite its annoying punctuation and emphasis baggage, the watch appears to be a fully featured and functional wrist top for the outdoors set. More than just a watch with a GPS chip, Garmin sees the fēnix as a hands-free navigation solution. Unlike its existing GPS sports watches, the Fenix (we've humored Garmin long enough) offers a more robust feature set that will navigate you into and out of the wild. Read More
By listening to the complexity of radio signals that pervades the human environment, BAE Systems thinks its new positioning system is as accurate as, but more secure than, GPS. Because its Navigation via Signals of Opportunity (NAVSOP) system uses a wide range of signals such as Wi-Fi signals and radio and TV broadcasts, it's resistant to the jamming or spoofing of individual signals to which GPS is vulnerable. Read More
The commercialization of GPS technology has been a boon for those navigating unfamiliar city streets, highways and byways, but head inside out of sight of the GPS satellite signals and the limitations of the technology can quickly become evident. Other efforts to solve the problem involve the use of accelerometers, sometimes combined with magnetic field sensors, but a new system developed at Duke University promises to provide precise indoor localization using a different approach – detecting “invisible” landmarks. Read More
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