Geospatial Redux: Paper Maps Win Over GPS, Where to Hail a Cab in NYC, Comic Book Maps

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John McKinney makes the argument in the article “Don’t Throw Away Your Paper Maps Just Yet” that while GPS units are great for telling you your location, paper maps are better for telling you the picture of where you are (via All Points Blog and The Map Room).  McKinney sites several arguments including the British Cartographic Society which has argued that digital maps are increasing geographic illiteracy.  Also referenced is an interesting study in Japan:

A study comparing paper map users versus GPS users yielded some surprising results. Dr. Toru Ishikawa and colleagues at the University of Tokyo found that people on foot using a GPS device make more errors and take longer to reach their destinations than people using an old-fashioned map.

Where’s the best place in New York City to hail a taxi?  Ninety million taxi trips have been collected since GPS technology was installed into taxi cabs (a move that was bitterly fought by taxi cab drivers).  The resulting analysis of those trip allows one to see what the best corners are to grab a taxi at any given time of the day, any day of the week.

The Comics Alliance site points out the site Comic Book Cartography which profiles maps from comics.

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1 thought on “Geospatial Redux: Paper Maps Win Over GPS, Where to Hail a Cab in NYC, Comic Book Maps”

  1. Indeed, here in the UK a test was carried out a while ago, a test run from Bristol to central London combining country and city driving, using paper maps, GPS and web maps… and they came in in that order too!

    From personal experience, Google Maps Achilles heel is that turn-by-turn directions (meaning without map context) go by street names, which are either not posted or not legible by car, wheras GPS gives that context, and, well, paper maps have been used since Methuselah ;-]

    Anddid you know that London cabbies – with their famous tall black taxis – must memorise their ditrict map, undergo periodic testing, and have measurably enlarge occipital lobes (brain near the neck) as a result?

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