Dear Waze

By CodingStrategies on January 19th, 2018

Or Google Maps, Garmin or other electronic device centered on assisting the geographically challenged population.  Thank you for your service.  Whether I am traveling in my own home town or in a strange new city I can enter my intended destination into your search engine and confidently know that you will get me to that precise location with minimal stress.   This is a significant improvement over the days of printing out internet directions or balancing the Rand McNally paper maps on the steering wheel while navigating one way streets. 

Not every system is 100% fool-proof.  A friend had a GPS system installed in his Mercedes and as we were driving thru a new subdivision, the familiar voice sternly told us we should “find a road, you are in a field, find a road you are in a field.”   That familiar voice can also be startling after hours of silence driving on the same interstate.  Technology is ever evolving.

And to that point, this millionmiler, GPS addicted user would like to offer a few suggestions. 

Currently, Waze alerts me to road hazards like car stopped on shoulder ahead, or there is a police vehicle ahead hidden from view.  Those are helpful, but it would be equally as helpful to know that there is no fast food available for the next 150 miles on a particular stretch of I-29 into Iowa.  I appreciate knowing that a particular route is 10 minutes faster than an alternative route, but would it be possible to also let me know that the new route is going to require the skills of a Nascar driver to navigate the hairpin turns.

Speaking of choice of routes.  Each of the popular systems have some option that will allow me to avoid toll roads, avoid ferries, and even avoid freeways.  I can request that the selected route “reduce difficult intersections” or completely avoid dirt roads.  These are helpful but what I really need is the opportunity to enter a user profile.  Can I enter a little data about myself that will influence the choice of route(s)?  For example, if the system knew that I was a young, female, traveling alone it might not choose the route from downtown Chicago to the Midway airport that includes narrow residential areas.  I’m sure more than one porch looked vaguely familiar to the stoops in the background of last night’s headline news stories.  A note in my profile for “frequent restroom breaks” would also be helpful.   As I’m still traumatized from hitting Bambi, can I please have a route that minimizes exposure to furry four-legged things that do not stay on their side of the road.

 

Thank you,

 A lifetime customer