Saturday, February 12, 2005

Seeing where you are going...

I reckon some whiz-kid out there has probably implemented this somewhere already, but I was pondering multimap-style directions and google-map today, and thinking about the mental model that map-type views force us into. Personally, I look at the world with a horizon-point rather than from above, and find the easiest directions to follow are those which give me clear, visual reference points at each major change along my path:
"turn right at Junction 5 at the Red Lion pub onto the B112 heading towards Osmotherley".

In the day and age of Flickr, Keyhole, Mappr and the like, it would be quite nice to have a set of tags to give useful direction hints - particularly if these could be associated with geo-tags from GPS-enabled devices (or manually inputted) - when you use a service like multimap. I guess as well as having a valid latitude and longitude, you'd need to know which direction the photographer was pointing when he/she took the photo, but if it worked it would be very cool to be able to print off a map with photos to verify you were taking the right direction.
So, for the above example, on my hypothetical journey, along with my set of "after 1.5km, turn right onto the B112", I would also have a photo of the Red Lion to reference.
I'm sure there would be enough motivation from clueless, directionally challenged drivers like myself to map key junctions on principle routes.

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