Google Maps is surely the most accurate mapping service on sale now or ever made – even if I find its iPhone app palpably annoying to figure out – but as well as all its technology, it has people. Some drive those dinky cars you’ve seen. Others change the maps under their fingers.
It’s an example of just how much you can do when you have a lot, I mean a lot, of data gathered from everyone and everywhere around you.
The maps we use to navigate have come a long way in a short time. Since the ’90s we’ve gone from glove boxes stuffed with paper maps to floorboards littered with Mapquest printouts to mindlessly obeying Siri or her nameless Google counterpart.
The maps behind those voices are packed with far more data than most people realize. On a recent visit to Mountain View, I got a peek at how the Google Maps team assembles their maps and refines them with a combination of algorithms and meticulous manual labor—an effort they call Ground Truth. The project launched in 2008, but it was mostly kept under wraps until just a couple years ago. It continues to grow, now covering 51 countries, and algorithms are playing a bigger role in extracting information from satellite, aerial, and Street View imagery.
The Huge, Unseen Operation Behind the Accuracy of Google Maps – Greg Miller, Wired (8 December 2014)
Read the full piece for more.
From Groundhog Day by Danny Rubin and Harold Ramis. There is very little relevance here but I read the words “Don’t drive angry” and that’s what starts playing in my head. What may be more relevant is where I read the words.
Time magazine has a feature on this and nine other things you really should not do when you’re angry. I’m afraid I think I’ve done at least 12 of them.
You shouldn’t drive
Operating a motor vehicle when you’re enraged can be dangerous. Research shows that angry drivers take more risks and have more accidents. “When you’re angry, you’re primed for attack, so it’s not a good time to jump in a vehicle,” says David Narang, PhD, a clinical psychologist in Santa Monica, Calif. “In addition, anger gives a person tunnel vision—you stare straight ahead and may not see a pedestrian or another car coming into your peripheral vision crossing the street.” If you must drive when angry, Narang suggests opening your eyes purposefully and looking around you to avoid tunnel vision.
10 Things You Should Never Do When You’re Angry – Time
It’s very easy to get angry as a writer, most especially when your latest rejection is just nuts. But don’t drive. And nine other things. I’d like them to have included a few things you should do, but for a strong list of what to avoid and why, do read the full feature.