The Shortest Route

I use Google Maps frequently. Although both my car and my wife’s have GPS, knowing where you’ going before you start is helpful. The feature that shows you photographs of junctions is a real plus, often allowing me to drive without even entering the destination into the onboard GPS.

Today, however, Google Maps showed a failure in common sense. I wanted to know how long it takes to drive from Boston Airport to Portland. We are going to New England for our tenth anniversary and have accommodation just outside of town. Why when asked for this route does Google assume that I want to drive to Portland in Oregon and not Portland in Maine. It knows my home is on the west coast, so why would it think that I want to fly to Boston and drive 3,100 miles across country. Surely, the obvious assumption that when asking for driving directions I want them to the city that is 105 miles away. At the very least, it should have asked me which one I meant.

I suppose the bright side, is that I am checking now and not having a car GPS make the same mistake. It would be embarrassing to find oneself in Idaho and wondering why the New England autumnal foliage had given way to fields of potatoes.

Published in: on 20 August, 2011 at 18:31  Leave a Comment  

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