Fact of the Day
As the No. 1 retailer and job provider on the planet, Wal-Mart strives to be bigger. With the purchase of global satellite imaging technology, Wal-Mart plans to do extensive geographical research into new store locations around the globe. Currently Wal-Mart does things like count the amounts of cars parked in the Kmart lot, check for newly dense areas (high traffic), and avoid areas with elemental challenges (water damage) [Space.com]. With the said technology, Wal-Mart cut the cost of location research; saving time, money, and man hours.
Many believe that this technology can cause security risks including terror related threats and the invasion of privacy. On top of that, Wal-Mart is a global company operating in over 10 countries around the world.
Inversely, there are others who see this technology as essential to the US market. Without it, some say, the US may not stay ahead in the global marketplace. Wal-Mart has been pioneering space tech since the late 80s when they established America's largest privately owned satellite communication infrastructure.
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