[FoRK] Paper vs Digital maps -- tip of an iceberg?

Sean Conner sean at conman.org
Sun May 30 14:15:44 PDT 2010


It was thus said that the Great Ken Ganshirt @ Yahoo once stated:
> This article raises both tactical and strategic questions.
> 
>    Small-picture: are GPS personal navigation devices really any better
>    than paper maps or even directions provided by a human bean?
> 
>    Bigger-picture: does the existence of digital maps, GPS navigation
>    devices, PC-based and cloud-based applications herald the end of paper
>    maps as cartographers ramp up their digital products and damp down the
>    availability of paper options?

  Ah yes, tools vs. crutches I blogged *many* times on this topic in
November (and a few occasions afterwards):

	http://boston.conman.org/2009/11/02.1
	http://boston.conman.org/2009/11/03.1
	http://boston.conman.org/2009/11/04.1
	http://boston.conman.org/2009/11/05.1
	http://boston.conman.org/2009/11/06.2
	http://boston.conman.org/2009/11/08.1
	http://boston.conman.org/2009/11/09.1
	http://boston.conman.org/2009/11/12.1
	http://boston.conman.org/2009/11/16.1
	http://boston.conman.org/2009/12/02.2
	http://boston.conman.org/2010/03/10.1

  So, is a paper map a crutch?  You should know where you're going right? 
Is a GPS unit a crutch?  You don't even need to read a map.  

>    Even-bigger-picture: the whole question of digital *versus* analog ...
>    is digital really better than analog in all things? ... in all ways?
>    Are we losing something by immediately jettisoning analog as soon as a
>    digital version becomes available? Should we be working harder on
>    finding a balance (e.g. is there a useful balance? what is the balance
>    in a particular area? etc?)?

  I personally think this question, while I can see the relation to the
above, it actually another question entirely.  And one I haven't given much
thought to, except in relation to the above question(s).

  -spc (Or "pictures" if you will, in all it's 32bit full color 10Mpx 
	splendor ... )



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