[LINK] Family rescued after GPS blunder

Roger Clarke Roger.Clarke at xamax.com.au
Tue Aug 3 15:15:04 AEST 2010

>On Tue, Aug 03, 2010 at 01:21:35PM +1000, Marghanita da Cruz wrote:
>>  > They say the GPS instructed the driver to travel along a closed road
>>  > near Wilcannia, and the driver ignored the road closure signs.
>                         ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

At 14:50 +1000 3/8/10, Craig Sanders wrote:
>this is the crucial point.  it proves beyond any doubt that it is
>the fault of the GPS unit and its manufacturer.

Craig's sarcasm is well-justified.

But unfortunately there's a pattern of human behaviour here, i.e. 
these nonsenses will keep recurring, because people are like that.

I get very strange looks from people when I explain why I'm not 
interested in having a satnav, nor even a GPS-enabled handheld at 
this stage.

I have a half a clue when I'm driving and when I'm walking.  And I 
want to keep it that way.

It's not easy to remain switched-on to the real world around you when 
you submit to the authority of a machine that claims to be always 
right - and whose errors you have difficulty picking, and even 
greater difficulty proving to be errors.

I get more than enough positive feedback for my heretical views.

For example, various GPS-based devices give different readings for 
the same location.  And friends were recently unimpressed with 
Angelika's instructions to take the second exit from a roundabout to 
get onto the Autostrada, when the correct instruction would have been 
the *third* exit.  When combined with a second error (which was part 
GPS, part mediocre road-signage), that cost them 90km and over an 
hour.  But because she got them back on the right road (eventually), 
they continue to trust her ...

Roger Clarke                                 http://www.rogerclarke.com/

Xamax Consultancy Pty Ltd      78 Sidaway St, Chapman ACT 2611 AUSTRALIA
                    Tel: +61 2 6288 1472, and 6288 6916
mailto:Roger.Clarke at xamax.com.au                http://www.xamax.com.au/

Visiting Professor in the Cyberspace Law & Policy Centre      Uni of NSW
Visiting Professor in Computer Science    Australian National University

More information about the Link mailing list