Thursday, June 14, 2007

Do We Rely Too Much On Technology?

Yesterday some friends traveled to Schlitterbahn to meet us. Early in the morning I called my friend to coordinate our arrival times, as we had already purchased discount tickets for them. My friend informed me they were in Hearne, Texas, which is about 20 miles NORTH of the route we usually take. When I asked him why he went that way his answer was it was the route Yahoo maps indicated.

Now my friend is no dummy. He has a college degree and was a Wal-Mart manager for 15 years. Somehow the idea of consulting a map or an atlas never occurred to him, and he went a long way out of his way. The same thing happened to a brother of mine, when he visited after evacuating for Hurricane Katrina.

Upon arriving home, and after following my instructions on a better route back, my friend informed me my way had cut 60 miles off the trip.

Who says computers always know better?


kherbert said...

Yes, A couple of times I've consulted on line maps - looked at them and realized the map would be taking me in the wrong direction. Not to mention may have a default to avoid toll roads. For me the toll road is the quickest way to work.

I have a GPS for my car. I love it because it shows the lanes of traffic as I approach an interchange. I'm in Houston and some times the lane you need to be in as you approach an interchange, is not the one that seems logical. To go south you have to take the ramp that looks like it is going North. With all of the construction, many signs are down.

GPS is also good for finding addresses, because of the warning it gives 2 miles before a a turn or arriving at your destination. This way I can keep my eyes on the traffic and not be reading the billboards for each strip center.

On the other hand my niece and I had a good laugh the other day, when it kept telling me to get on the Katy freeway. I was on the Katy freeway, but it thought I was on Old Katy - which no longer exists.

Also there just knowing were you are. The GPS wants me to take back roads out of my subdivision, but the roads in the old part are narrow and people park on the street. That is the long route, not the fastest route.

I use the GPS, but I double check the route before hand with my Key map, and I use common sense.

Anonymous said...

Well, you could have used Google Maps. It has a much better routing engine than Yahoo Maps.