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Thread: GPS While driving

  1. #1
    WBruce
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    GPS While driving

    I'm using a GPS receiver with MS Streets and trips on my laptop while driving. It gives me great navigation, but I think it might be a bit dangerous since it distracts me from watching the traffic.

    It's impossible to get lost though. When I pass my turn, it's very obvious and I can find another route back to where I'm trying to go.

  2. #2
    Vulture of The Western World Eric's Avatar
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    Re: GPS While driving

    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce Patterson
    I'm using a GPS receiver with MS Streets and trips on my laptop while driving. It gives me great navigation, but I think it might be a bit dangerous since it distracts me from watching the traffic.

    It's impossible to get lost though. When I pass my turn, it's very obvious and I can find another route back to where I'm trying to go.
    Hi Bruce,

    There's a good bit of debate on the pros (not getting lost) and cons ( being distracted) of these GPS units and related in-car gadgets. In the course of test driving new cars, I have found that some systems are much better than others in terms of being designed for ease of use - while some have a "Battlestar Galactica" like array of menus, buttons and "mouse inputs" that can drive a person to distraction (literally).

    The other factor at work, of course, is the "human factor." Some drivers are better-skilled and can handle the multi-tasking and still be more competent behind the wheel than a poor/unskilled/weak-eyed driver with both hands on the wheel and no electronic distractions whatever.

    The difficulty is setting regulations based on the "typical" driver and his ability to deal safely with things like cell phones and in-car GPS units.

    I may hav e to gin up a rant on this topic!

    -Eric

  3. #3
    trafficengn
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    Re: GPS While driving

    I have a gps and absolutely love it. I find that the best way to use it is to pre-program routes, waypoints etc. prior to leaving home. That way I don't have to spend a lot of time messing with it while I'm driving. It sits right on my dash though so it sort of works like a "heads up display" when I do have to fiddle with it.

    The only thing I don't like is that it's an older model and only has a small black/white screen. I tried hooking it to my laptop and using streets and trips to have a bigger map but I found the program to be completely cumbersome, not very user friendly, outdated maps and not many useful features. For offline mapping, planning trips etc. it's fine but I won't use it in the car hooked up to my gps anymore. Someday (when I'm rich : )I'll buy one of the newer big screen color gps units. Then I'll have the best of everything


  4. #4
    JohnB
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    Re: GPS While driving

    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce Patterson
    I'm using a GPS receiver with MS Streets and trips on my laptop while driving. It gives me great navigation, but I think it might be a bit dangerous since it distracts me from watching the traffic.

    It's impossible to get lost though. When I pass my turn, it's very obvious and I can find another route back to where I'm trying to go.
    GPS-- Don't leave home without it. The best feature by far is being able to find WHERE you're at. After that, getting to where you want to be is child's play.

    Mine's sort of built into the car, I ran coax from the trunk area so the "hockey-puck" is on the trunk lid and the GPS gets powered from the car's electrical system and it sits on a special base I made for the dashboard top. The PC connector is down under the dashboard so it keeps the wiring clutter to a minimum.

    J.




  5. #5
    Vulture of The Western World Eric's Avatar
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    Re: GPS While driving

    Assuming a competent operator, it's a great help.. did you catch my longer rant on the subject?

  6. #6
    JohnB
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    Re: GPS While driving

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric
    Assuming a competent operator, it's a great help.. did you catch my longer rant on the subject?
    No, I'll have to go back and catch on the unread messages when I get a square inch of time.

  7. #7
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    Re: GPS While driving

    GPS while driving --- I hope to say never. I have survived wtihout it for 25 years behind the wheel. GPS is for military applications, not so that grandma can punch in directions to get a quart of milk and baby boomer showoff can play while driving. I am trying to resist the temptation to purchase a semi-useless toy for my 6 year old car.

  8. #8
    WBruce
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    Re: GPS While driving

    Quote Originally Posted by swamprat
    GPS while driving --- I hope to say never. I have survived wtihout it for 25 years behind the wheel. GPS is for military applications, not so that grandma can punch in directions to get a quart of milk and baby boomer showoff can play while driving. I am trying to resist the temptation to purchase a semi-useless toy for my 6 year old car.
    Swamprat,

    In the last 15 years I have driven in 49 states plus Guam, American Samoa, and three foriegn countries. Every week almost I'm in a new location and have to find remote radio sites. Additionally I have to find facilities for travelers such as RV parks, hotels, resturants etc.

    Using that GPS is a godsend. The other day I was on my way to a jobsite in Blue Knob state park, PA and took a wrong turn. Becuase of the GPS, I didn't have to return to my point of origin and start over, I was able to figure out how to get back to the route I was looking for. My grandma doesn't need a quart of milk, but I need to find strange locations, sometimes in the dark.

    Got a better solution?

    Bruce

  9. #9
    JohnB
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    Re: GPS While driving

    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce Patterson
    Quote Originally Posted by swamprat
    GPS while driving --- I hope to say never. I have survived wtihout it for 25 years behind the wheel. GPS is for military applications, not so that grandma can punch in directions to get a quart of milk and baby boomer showoff can play while driving. I am trying to resist the temptation to purchase a semi-useless toy for my 6 year old car.
    Every week almost I'm in a new location and have to find remote radio sites.
    Do tell. What type of remote radio sites? Repeaters, Remote bases??

  10. #10
    WBruce
    Guest

    Re: GPS While driving

    Quote Originally Posted by JohnB
    Do tell. What type of remote radio sites? Repeaters, Remote bases??
    It's called "RCAG (Remote Communication Air Ground)" it's the remote radios that the air traffic controllers use to communicate with the aircraft that they control from 200 miles away.

    Bruce

  11. #11
    JohnB
    Guest

    Re: GPS While driving

    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce Patterson
    Quote Originally Posted by JohnB
    Do tell. What type of remote radio sites? Repeaters, Remote bases??
    It's called "RCAG (Remote Communication Air Ground)" it's the remote radios that the air traffic controllers use to communicate with the aircraft that they control from 200 miles away.

    Bruce
    Interesting. We have one such site that I know of (there are probably more) in So California, in the Santa Monica mountains. It shares mountain top space with a couple of Ham Radio and public service radio repeaters.

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