One Satellite Goes Out, Ruins Everything

What’s the Anik F2? It’s a telecom satellite! And, since it’s currently not working, it’s screwing a good chunk of the country and even some of Canada.

The satellite shut down, for some reason, and that’s so far knocked out a major satellite ISP, flights in Northern Cananda, and even ATMs.

Yes, ATMs use satellites. We were surprised too.

Don’t worry, if you’ve got cable internet, you’re fine, and it’s not like this is going to precipitate a major crisis. On the other hand, it does also illustrate how dependent our communications system is on a few choke points: knock out a few satellites, and a fair chunk of us wouldn’t be able to use our phones, pull cash out of the bank, or even fly anywhere.

Fortunately, nobody is testing anti-satellite weapons. Certainly not the Chinese. They have no military interest in space! Honest!