Re: Why buy GPS navigation?


--- In, "Chris Martinson"
<chris_xx3@y...> wrote:
I have read all the technical debate about GPS, handhelds,
etc, etc and am very very tempted to buy. I love gadgets,
and computers. I see that I am urged to upgrade `this', add
on `that', `buy the best' so as to future-proof a
technology in
constant evolution. Then I think why spend £400 or so, have the
complication of carrying it around when I leave the van, have the
inevitable faults to deal with and have the distraction of the
directions or the view of the map while I am driving. I get lost
sometimes but so what. There are road signs, maps and the
entertainment (sometimes) of asking directions in a foreign
I have a fairly good sense of direction, unlike my wife. If I spent
lot of time driving around a major city in the van then, yes, it
be a wonderful thing to have but these are the places I geneally
avoid.So, I think it is really not for me and it would take a bit
the adventure out of new places although I can see the possible
value, as a back up, to gps itself when out fell walking.
Does anyone else feel the same or I am a lone Luddite.
Safe travelling!
I'm not sure you're a luddite (didn't they bust up machinery?) but
you are adventurous! For me, one of the greatest benefits of SatNav
is avoiding areas I don't want to be. Narrow roads in the motorhome
or less salubrious areas of some of our cities.
First of all I'm going to declare an interest because I'm talking
about something I sell.
For those who already have a laptop computer you should consider a PC
based package. Navigator gives you street level mapping for the whole
of Europe, all the UK full 7 character postcodes, visual and audible
directions, automatic recalc of the route if you leave the planned
route, map rotation in the direction of travel and a wealth of other
features. None of this is revolutionary but it is affordable. We sell
Navigator bundled with a GPS mouse at £110 for GB & Ireland and
for Europe (including GB & Ireland). Software is updated free of
charge and the latest maps are available for a small fee.
I always start it before setting off even if I ignore it. Like most
people I can probably find my way to most areas and there are times
when I know a better route. But it's when I DON'T know where I'm
going that it is priceless. It really is fabulous having an A-Z of
every village, town and city available. Last year I had to go to
Maximillianstrasse in Munich. It took us unerringly from Venlo to the

If anyone would like to see it I'm going to be exhibiting at Malvern
and Peterborough shows.

On another note, GPS isn't always the best idea for terrain as it
encourages straight line navigation. Not a great idea if you don't
know what's ahead of you! I remember one exercise a few years ago
when we were first issued with Trimble GPS. One group banged in the
target coordinates and away they went. Unfortunately the target was
just on the other side of a very deep and fast flowing river! Had a
very long walk to find somewhere to cross.
<SMUG MODE ON>We, on the other hand, used maps and compasses saw
immediately that we needed to cross the river and set off in a
completely different direction but arrived at the target a couple of
hours earlier.


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