The (minor) perils of GPS navigation

December 17, 2006

Just after seeing off the brother-in-law (who’d taken the kids to be fitted for new bike helmets) something rather ironic happened. Ironic because said brother-in-law is involved in the navigation industry (for a competitor’s product).

A family pulls up in front of our house asking for help – their TomTom in-car navigation unit couldn’t find Courallie Avenue, Homebush West. They were in the general area, but hoplessly lost and on the wrong side of a major arterial road that meant they would never have stumbled upon their destination by themselves.

This is notable for a few reasons – apparently they felt no need for a backup of their navigation system. You know, the old paper version called a street directory. Do you have a backup for your navigation? The street they are looking for is definately not a new one, so it is a pretty serious omission from the maps.

Finally I find the whole thing interesting because I immediately went inside and printed off a map from the online directory whereis.com.au – which had no trouble locating the street for them. At least, I hope it was the correct street 🙂