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Old 12-04-2018, 09:27 PM   #31
frankbell
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Here's another example: https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/...ks/2100458002/

Words fail me.
 
Old 12-05-2018, 12:17 AM   #32
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I often use software maps by setting the destination but never saying start, the GPS then shows my destination and me moving but no set route or routes to follow. Luckily train tracks are clearly marked on maps

L L
 
Old 12-05-2018, 01:40 PM   #33
ondoho
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cantab View Post
I use Google Maps for an unfamiliar journey or if I think there might be traffic on my usual route. It seems pretty good at finding alternative routes that bypass the traffic jams.
i remember a longer journey with a suit wearing manager type (i was hitchhiking, and since he took me, no disrespect here) - our many hundred km trip took us through a large city in an otherwise rural area. this means that there was no alternative large roads around that city. but it was hopelessly congested, even the ring of motorways around it. googlemaps kept suggesting new alternative routes and the guy kept taking them. we were just getting slower and slower, getting on ever smaller and more congested roads.
i've never seen a suit swearing like this for real. not loosing time in a traffic jam was a life-or-death matter for him.
 
Old 12-06-2018, 09:54 AM   #34
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I found this quite an interesting thread, so I'm going to weigh in with my tuppence on the OP.

I think the real issue is with the lady's use of the word 'alleyway'. Of course Google doesn't tell the user that the route is specifically through an alleyway, only that there is some passage through. If you both were at the head of Elmwood Ave, I think she was referring to the railway bridge that then leads to the head of Carlton Avenue. This is just from looking at a combination of Google Maps and streetview. From what I can see you were ultimately right, hazel, if she took a short walk up Elmwood, she would be right at the station, but she seems to have wanted to go the other way via Carlton.

In this instance I don't think Google was wrong. This is a human issue with terminology. She assumed the railway bridge was an alleyway and this lead to the confusion. Either way, she should have just listened to you.

Last edited by Lysander666; 12-06-2018 at 11:12 AM.
 
Old 12-06-2018, 11:37 AM   #35
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For what it's worth, she was coming from the direction of the bridge when she accosted me. You could still be right of course. Perhaps a bridge didn't correspond to what she expected to see, so she doubled back to ask for advice from what was clearly a local resident taking her dog for a walk. But having asked, it was pretty daft not to follow the answer she was given.

When I was a child, I used to have a lot of dreams set in a kind of fictionalised version of north-west London. The geography of this dream world was fairly constant. There were a lot of alleyways connecting places that were not connected in the real world. For example, you could go into John Barnes Store on Finchley Road and come out the back into Kilburn. And there was one place from which, if you could only find it, you could get directly to any other place. Maybe some people see Google as a back door to a similar world of dreams.
 
Old 12-07-2018, 02:03 AM   #36
ondoho
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^ when I was a child we visited Venice, the city of alleyways (and no cars).
my parents sat in a cafe, and me and my brother would play this game:
  • walk on, and turn right at every crossing (i.e. not just a bend in the road, a real crossing of ways), then left at the next.
  • do this for as long as you dare
  • walk back the exact oppposite way, so if you stopped with left, you start with right.
i think we saved ourselves and our parents some trouble by not getting lost, but it was pretty close a few times.
it was very daring.

my point? dunno.
anyhow, this was long before online maps.
and it illustrates my love for finding ways in inhabited areas.
 
Old 12-07-2018, 05:18 AM   #37
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That reminds me of my long walk on Millennium Night. After the fireworks were over, I walked back to the tube station I had come out of, only to find a queue that looked a mile long. I knew that if I waited, I'd still be there by morning. So I asked a passing policewoman, "If I go that way and keep on walking, where would I get to?". She said probably Ealing! So I knew the way I was pointing was West. I needed to go north, so I turned 90 degrees clockwise and started walking. Each time I came to the end of the road, I turned either left or right, crossed the road, and then took the next turning I saw going north.

It was one of the weirdest experiences of my life. The streets were as crowded as daytime rush hour, so I felt perfectly safe. Everyone was walking north like me in small family groups. Eventually I came out into Oxford Street, near Marble Arch, and picked up the underground there. That's the only time I navigated without a map and didn't get lost!

Last edited by hazel; 12-07-2018 at 05:19 AM.
 
Old 12-07-2018, 07:46 AM   #38
Lysander666
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hazel View Post
I knew that if I waited, I'd still be there by morning.
I was on the South Bank. It took us three hours just to cross the river.
 
Old 12-09-2018, 06:05 AM   #39
ondoho
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another thing i often noticed (in different countries, too):

i ask: "is this the right direction to get to X?"
answer: "yes, but it is very far away. maybe you should use public transport."

invariably the distance is less than 1km, which i am happy to walk even with a heavy backpack.

conclusion: people aren't walking anymore, at least not as a means to get from A to B.
 
Old 12-09-2018, 06:17 AM   #40
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ondoho View Post

conclusion: people aren't walking anymore, at least not as a means to get from A to B.
Most people drive or take public transport. My old place of work was ten mins walk [according to Google maps] from the railway station. It's a journey I made on foot every day for years. Everybody else took the bus.

But then, we are dealing with a generation who will take a lift up one floor. I don't drive, so I walk everywhere or take the Tube, and I think it has done me the world of good health-wise.
 
Old 12-09-2018, 07:30 AM   #41
ondoho
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lysander666 View Post
But then, we are dealing with a generation who will take a lift up one floor.
i'm getting increasingly off topic, but this reminds me:
my house's staircase (it's a 3-storey block of flats, no lift) has windows in it, and a bright streetlamp right in front, so it's never completely dark.
i sometimes don't see the need to use the light, esp. in the early evening when there's a little daylight left and said streetlamp is already on.
this seems to weird people out completely. i have had this experience in other situations also. what's wrong with relying on one's night vision?
everyone else seems to automatically just use the light switch, sometimes even during broad daylight. try to save a little energy!
 
Old 12-10-2018, 08:31 AM   #42
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hazel View Post
That reminds me of my long walk on Millennium Night. After the fireworks were over, I walked back to the tube station I had come out of, only to find a queue that looked a mile long. I knew that if I waited, I'd still be there by morning. So I asked a passing policewoman, "If I go that way and keep on walking, where would I get to?". She said probably Ealing! So I knew the way I was pointing was West. I needed to go north, so I turned 90 degrees clockwise and started walking. Each time I came to the end of the road, I turned either left or right, crossed the road, and then took the next turning I saw going north.

It was one of the weirdest experiences of my life. The streets were as crowded as daytime rush hour, so I felt perfectly safe. Everyone was walking north like me in small family groups. Eventually I came out into Oxford Street, near Marble Arch, and picked up the underground there. That's the only time I navigated without a map and didn't get lost!
I had almost the opposite experience a few years later. I was at a closed tube station (Paddington I think) and wanted to be at King's Cross so I headed NE and checked the tube map every time I passed a station, which worked well enough. In my case it seemed like the city was asleep - it was about 2AM, and apart from one open newsagent I was alone until I reached King's X. At the time I was used to central Bristol, which it seemed never slept, and was pleasantly surprised that wasn't the case for part of London.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ondoho
...conclusion: people aren't walking anymore, at least not as a means to get from A to B.
Strange but true. I remember reading in school that people once thought the horseless carriage would cause people to lose the use of their legs, and it seemed to me that they were spot on. Years later I was surprised how right I was - even in summer my group of friends, who were mostly more athletic than me, would try quite hard to get a lift to church rather than walk one mile across town.
 
Old Yesterday, 02:02 AM   #43
ondoho
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pastychomper View Post
even in summer my group of friends, who were mostly more athletic than me, would try quite hard to get a lift to church rather than walk one mile across town.
oh, my pet peeve #31:
people who take the car to the gym!
 
Old Yesterday, 03:06 AM   #44
hazel
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In one of Plato's dialogues, a man is talking to an Egyptian priest who tells him that writing has been the ruin of memory. The Egyptians were wise and used a complex hieroglyphic script that only priests could understand and that was only used for special purposes such as tomb inscriptions, but the Greek alphabetic script allowed anyone to write things down. As a result, people had forgotten how to memorise what they needed to know.
 
Old Today, 01:52 AM   #45
ondoho
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^ and still humanity hasn't died out from all these commodities.
thanks for putting things into perspective.
 
  


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