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Author Topic: Canadian Spy Coins?
Olivet
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http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070111/ap_on_hi_te/spy_coins

No foolin'?

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Tara
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I feel like there's some great joke to make about this, but I can't put my finger on it.

Maybe, duh they're spying on us?

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SenojRetep
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No transmitter I know of that's small enough to embed in a coin (even a large one) would have a power source sufficient to transmit 1) very far or 2) very long.

Still though, makes you wonder. I thought the pen idea was better, if a little less original; less likelihood of spending it or leaving it behind, and more space to hide the transmitter and battery.

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skillery
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"Experts said such tiny transmitters would almost certainly have limited range to communicate with sensors no more than a few feet away, such as ones hidden inside a doorway."

We're talking about RFID. You'd pretty much have to stake out the place ahead of time where you thought the coin-carrier might be visiting. And then all you'd find out is, yes, he was here, just as expected. I don't know how useful that would be unless the U.S. had agreed to stay away from certain areas, and the Canadians wanted to verify that the U.S. was holding up their side of the agreement.

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SoaPiNuReYe
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Unless there were several transmitters hidden in several doorways, that would each be able to transmit farther distances and for longer periods of time. Then the person tracking the guy could tell where the guy was and what direction he was going in.
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ricree101
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Assuming that they were actually the ones with the coins. If the coins get spent, or dropped, or left behind somewhere, then you're out of luck and potentially looking at a lot of false positives.
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BlueWizard
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Two points -

Consider the likelihood of being able to predict when and where this person will be, and to predict what he will spend and what his exact change will be in order to insure you are able to give him a specific coin. The odds of bringing together all those events is extemely thin when you consider these are strangers to Canada, and are only there a short time.

If these are in fact RFID devices, true they could be very small. It seems they can embed them in credit cards. But they are worthless unless they pass in close proximity to an RFID reader. So, you really couldn't track a person's where abouts unless you could convince them to constantly and only travel passed the very few RFID readers that exist. And assuming you could do that, you have to be able to access the 'read' RFID information.

It all seems very unlikely.

Steve/bluewizard

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Evie3217
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So THAT explains why they won't take Canadian quarters at the toll booths! Now it all makes complete sense!
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mackillian
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Or in washing machines. I really hate getting a roll of quarters from the bank or the store and somehow a Canadian quarter has snuck its way through. [Mad]

useless coins.

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Dan_raven
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How to use them.

Put coins in coin container in car.
Go to valet parking.
Have portable RFID reader with you.
Scan valet attendants after retrieving car to see who's been stealing all your #@$#@$#@ change.

or

Put coins in purse.
Connect RFID reader to alarm at front door.
See who's been stealing money out of momma's purse.

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Storm Saxon
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Damn you, Canada! We'll get you yet!

*shakes fist*

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ketchupqueen
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This strikes me as absolutely hilarious, for many reasons.

I do wonder, though, if this might not be used as a) a test run for future more sophisticated technology or b) a diversionary tactic (the "agent" they used to hide Ultra in WWII, anyone?) In fact, I could even conceive of it being c) a plant by U.S. agents designed to be found, to help increase paranoia within the U.S. population, part of a propaganda campaign. (I know my dad's creepy lecherous crazy conspiracy nut friend will be all over this.)

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BlackBlade
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KQ: perhaps your dad's friends would not be, "creepy lecherous and crazy" if there were NO conspiracies. Clearly a government agency has tampered with their brains.

In all honesty I wouldn't be surprised to find the Chinese or possibly the Russians behind this.

Clearly I have no choice but to acquire all the lose change I can and spend it all in vending machines where they can't do any harm. Normal people wouldn't understand, so of course Ill have to take drastic steps to obtain their coins.

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ketchupqueen
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It's one friend. And I'm not sure whether he was this way before, but he WAS run over by construction equipment and had a brain injury as well as physical injuries and is on permanent disability. But I don't think that's the government's fault; by all accounts it's a miracle he's alive. I just wish he didn't get drunk and leer at me and corner me with conspiracy theories every time there's a party.
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Olivet
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I research paper on RFID technology and its possible uses. I don't see how this would be effective unless they, like you said, hid readers in specific doorways. Like if they wanted to know know if X contractor went to X office in X building or not. And they could be so easily spent.

I don't like the idea that American Passports now have these chips in them, though I did hear a local talk radio personality explaining how to best disbale them without invalidating your passport. That was amusing.

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Teshi
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Darn. Foiled again.
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aspectre
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Could be that the Canadians are really paranoid.
So it doesn't matter on who or where the coin ends up when they want to spy on everybody and everything.
I mean look at the US spending billions on Spirit and Opportunity roving the barren frozen wasteland of Mars to spy on rocks.

Which leads to alien space probes spying on the similarly barren frozen wastedland called Canada. Given the track record in Iraq, Americans could easily mistake the appearance of flying saucers for that of Canadian coins.
Or be hallucinating the whole thing out of nothing. Gotta expect flashbacks when the babyboomers favored by the DubyaAdministration spent the entirety of their highschool and college years massively overdosing on drugs.

Back with a more serious discussion later. But for now, citing "experts" who minimized the capabilities of coin-sized electronics in the article demonstrates only that the reporter isn't interested in the topic.

[ January 13, 2007, 04:47 AM: Message edited by: aspectre ]

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