Tuesday December 24, 2013

Tracking Santa, With a Little Help from That Brand New GPU

NORAD began tracking Santa in 1955, when a newspaper ad misprinted a call-in number for Santa. Instead of Santa, callers got the crew commander on duty at the Continental Air Defense Command Air Operations Center آ– the predecessor to NORAD آ– in Colorado Springs, Colorado. The crew commander went with it, telling his staff to give callers Santa’s official location. Tracking Santa Goes Viral Since then, NORAD’s efforts have evolved for a connected era. NORAD’s Santa tracking team now has 1.3 million Facebook followers, and آ— with a little help from a development team led by Scott Hunter at Analytical Graphics, a 250-strong company that develops analysis and visualization software for the aerospace, intelligence and defense community آ— a site able to report Santa’s location in real time to tens of millions of visitors every Christmas Eve.