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#1
VolksNav

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Hi everybody,

looking for a method to reform the house numbering in Japan, I've accidentally developed an orientation standard which would be proper to reform all orientation tools including post codes and room numbers.

The system is based on the division of the horizon into 12 directions, a method used by soldiers, boy scouts, blind people, pilots etc. for more than 100 years. Why do cartographers insist on 360 directions and square grids or none www.volksnav.com/YouAreHere?

In my opinion, a clock based grid acc. to www.volksnav.de/MagicGrid forces the reform of all maps in favor of the reader, consequently opening a lot of work for cartographers.

So I'd suggest than anyone thinks about the question

- why not be a Cartist? www.volksnav.de/theCartist

or at least calls the attention of the customer about the listed benefits. In case the answer is “let’s give the idea a chance”, please contact

Henrique Koehler
Munich Orientation Convention
www.volksnav.de/actual
volksnav@volksnav.de

#2
Matthew Hampton

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My $0.02

I think the MagicGrid is too relative for widespread use.

In many (most) situations it's nice to have a global reference grid that is not relative, however for limited, site-specific locational inferences - the clock paradigm works well.

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#3
VolksNav

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Hello Matt,

in my humble opinion, the question "too relative or not " should be decided by the market, that means, also the users of your maps should be involved.

The MagicGrid is a tool for the applications

- indoor, www.volksnav.de/PortlandExpo
- urban www.volksnav.de/Portland
- global www.volksnav.de/UNmapplet

Acc. to this, your own address could be: www.volksnav.de/MetroPortland, so you'd offer an alternative to geocoordinates, names, post codes or simply "here" (like your map) and your customer could VolksNavigate to you as elegant as in Rio de Janeiro around the Christ statue:

- inwards/outwards
- clockwise/counterclock

I'd like to propose my system to Metro. Would you support me on that or should I contact the Counsilor directly?

Henrique / VolksNav

#4
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Why do cartographers insist on 360 directions and square grids or none


Are you saying that it is cartographers that are behind this?

Actually the most meaningful coordinate system for the world are three-dimensional polar coordinates. No more worries about datums etc!
Hugo Ahlenius
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#5
Hans van der Maarel

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Why do cartographers insist on 360 directions and square grids or none www.volksnav.com/YouAreHere?


We don't. At least not always:

Attached File  apeldoorn_voorkant_2011.jpg   355.99KB   39 downloads

Attached File  apeldoorn_detail_2011.jpg   341.48KB   20 downloads

For a circular map of a (roughly) circular area I figured a rectangular grid would just look very very ugly. So I came up with concentric circles divided into 8 sectors. About half of the users had trouble figuring it out (hence the little "hint" or "explanation" in the lower right corner), though I suspect that's mostly because of the unfamiliarity with it (i.e. there is a group of people who will instantly blurt out "I don't understand it" whenever they encounter something new).

However, this was done for esthetic purposes, and I don't suggest ditching square grids (or square coordinate systems for that matter) alltogether. I've looked at your site, but I think I completely fail to see your point. It seems to me you're proposing a new system for giving directions (although direction/length is really not that new) and I don't really see the link between that and square grids on maps.
Hans van der Maarel - Cartotalk Editor
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#6
VolksNav

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Why do cartographers insist on 360 directions and square grids or none


Are you saying that it is cartographers that are behind this?

Actually the most meaningful coordinate system for the world are three-dimensional polar coordinates. No more worries about datums etc!



Hi, Hugo

I was rather affirming that cartographers use square grids or none.

I see me as a defender of a target group which can read a clock but can't handle with 3D BIpolar coordinates, for example how many meters are a longitude second. I'm defending 5 billion people (!) which know nothing about your worries but don't get a simple answer to the simple question "where?" (most important: on map AND on reality) .

Please measure the time average people need to solve the following task: www.volksnav.de/LatLon. Is this a consumer friendly system?

Henrique / VolksNav

#7
Dennis McClendon

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But no one ever gives directions (except to bomber pilots) in Lat/Long, and no one ever navigates by a bearing unless they're in the air or on the sea. To reach the hospital, the friendly passerby would tell you "go to the traffic signal and turn left and look for the big white building." The satnav would say "turn right in Franzstraße, turn left in Leopoldstraße, turn right in Bismarckallee 200 metres to your destination."
Dennis McClendon, Chicago CartoGraphics
chicagocarto.com

#8
VolksNav

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Why do cartographers insist on 360 directions and square grids or none www.volksnav.com/YouAreHere?


We don't. At least not always:

Attached File  apeldoorn_voorkant_2011.jpg   355.99KB   39 downloads

Attached File  apeldoorn_detail_2011.jpg   341.48KB   20 downloads

For a circular map of a (roughly) circular area I figured a rectangular grid would just look very very ugly. So I came up with concentric circles divided into 8 sectors. About half of the users had trouble figuring it out (hence the little "hint" or "explanation" in the lower right corner), though I suspect that's mostly because of the unfamiliarity with it (i.e. there is a group of people who will instantly blurt out "I don't understand it" whenever they encounter something new).

However, this was done for esthetic purposes, and I don't suggest ditching square grids (or square coordinate systems for that matter) alltogether. I've looked at your site, but I think I completely fail to see your point. It seems to me you're proposing a new system for giving directions (although direction/length is really not that new) and I don't really see the link between that and square grids on maps.



Hi Hans,

no wonder that the readers of your map didn't like it: the division of the horizon into 8 directions is really strange. At the other side, everybody took a long time to learn to read a clock, consequently the 12er division is familiar. In my opinion, also the centering of your polar system isn't convincent.

Another discrepance: you're limiting the city, what a terrible vision. A Cartist will never do this.

Will you propose www.volksnav.de/Apeldoorn to the city administration or should I do this? Another feature: this Convention allows also a logical house numbering www.volksnav.de/houseNumber with a precision of 2 meters.


Henrique / VolksNav

#9
Hans van der Maarel

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no wonder that the readers of your map didn't like it: the division of the horizon into 8 directions is really strange. At the other side, everybody took a long time to learn to read a clock, consequently the 12er division is familiar. In my opinion, also the centering of your polar system isn't convincent.


The center is indeed not in a very inspiring location. However, this was not my main concern. I wanted to make sure the 4 highway exits from where one can enter the city were shown and that the scale was as large as possible to increase legibility.

Why would 12 be better than 8? There's 4 cardinal directions (north, east, south, west) with 4 intermediates (northeast, southeast, southwest and northwest), 4 plus 4 makes 8. In addition to that, having 8 sectors instead of 12 reduces visual clutter in the center of the city.

Another discrepance: you're limiting the city, what a terrible vision. A Cartist will never do this.


This is a printed map. A piece of paper is finite in size. So is the city for that matter. I wish I could have an infinitely large piece of paper that still folded to an easy to use size.

Will you propose www.volksnav.de/Apeldoorn to the city administration or should I do this? Another feature: this Convention allows also a logical house numbering www.volksnav.de/houseNumber with a precision of 2 meters.


I'm not going to propose this system because I still fail to see the point. What exactly is the problem that you're trying to solve? I never give directions in lat/lon, I hardly ever have to figure out the length of an arcsecond (and that's because I'm a professional map user, your average person will never come across those). There sometimes does seem to be a tendency, especially among GIS people to give coordinates with an astoundingly high precision, but again, that's generally only for communication within the same field.

As for house numbers, we have a pretty logical system in place already (street name + number) which has been working just fine for centuries. Changing those (which occasionally has to happen with new developments in existing streets) is a huge hassle which really affects people, so it's not something that is done on a whim. Changing them citywide (or even nationwide or worldwide as you seem to be suggesting) is simply not going to happen.
Hans van der Maarel - Cartotalk Editor
Red Geographics
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#10
VolksNav

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But no one ever gives directions (except to bomber pilots) in Lat/Long, and no one ever navigates by a bearing unless they're in the air or on the sea. To reach the hospital, the friendly passerby would tell you "go to the traffic signal and turn left and look for the big white building." The satnav would say "turn right in Franzstraße, turn left in Leopoldstraße, turn right in Bismarckallee 200 metres to your destination."


Hi Dennis,

A route chain with left/right commands (a polar system ! ) looks nice but what if the one of both makes just one left/right or east/west confusion? What if the passerby just want to be friendly but doesn't know where is the target?

Imagine you have to visit China, are you happy with the orientation tools there? Or would you prefer the additional information www.MinZhongDaoHang.de ?

Concerning the memorizing of map information: what are your recommendations, see www.volksnav.de/fundamental
Again: soldiers, boy scouts, blind people, pilots etc. use imaginary clocks for more than 100 years.

I'm just proposing better addresses and smarter post codes, e. g, yours: www.volksnav.de/ChicagoCartographics, which harmonize with the cartography and with codes for crossings, stop points, bridges etc. No one information gets lost and new information arise, so the customer - and not the cartographer - can decide what he prefers.

I'd appreciate if Chicago Cartographics would release the app "VolksNav© in Chicago" www.volksnav.de/iChicago. What do you think about?

Henrique / VolksNav

#11
Dennis McClendon

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I don't think there would be interest in Chicago, where we're pretty Cartesian. Every resident knows where the grid originates (State & Madison), where they are on the grid, and (dividing by 800) how many miles they are from the origin. Nearly every street is orthogonal. Even 50 miles out in the hinterlands, addresses are based on the Chicago system. It's the city as graph paper. About 60 percent of the US has some similar system that is deeply ingrained in the culture and the landscape. Even land titles are based on a rectangular survey system.

A bearing-based wayfinding system assumes you know the traveler's starting point. It doesn't help at all someone going from one outlying point to another except to give them an idea what district contains their destination. A number-based system for districts can be more logical, but it is harder for many people to remember. Some people find it easy to remember where the 15th Arrondisement is in Paris, while others find it easier—after a bit of familiarization—to remember the district name Montparnasse.
Dennis McClendon, Chicago CartoGraphics
chicagocarto.com

#12
VolksNav

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I don't think there would be interest in Chicago, where we're pretty Cartesian. Every resident knows where the grid originates (State & Madison), where they are on the grid, and (dividing by 800) how many miles they are from the origin. Nearly every street is orthogonal. Even 50 miles out in the hinterlands, addresses are based on the Chicago system. It's the city as graph paper. About 60 percent of the US has some similar system that is deeply ingrained in the culture and the landscape. Even land titles are based on a rectangular survey system.

A bearing-based wayfinding system assumes you know the traveler's starting point. It doesn't help at all someone going from one outlying point to another except to give them an idea what district contains their destination. A number-based system for districts can be more logical, but it is harder for many people to remember. Some people find it easy to remember where the 15th Arrondisement is in Paris, while others find it easier—after a bit of familiarization—to remember the district name Montparnasse.


Hi Dennis,

I continue beeing the opinion, a map is something for strangers and not for residents. So I ask you: how can a stranger know where is Chicago SE without knowing that the crossing State/Madison is the pole of this polar system? With www.volksnav.de/ChicagoMapplet or your address www.volksnav.de/ChicagoCartographics m5 r2 (two blocks in direction 5 hours) a stranger can detect this and your position within a second.

Nobody is Cartesian - see www.volksnav.de/fundamental - we always have to turn our bodies clockwise or counterclock (angle orientation). The truth is, architects press us into squared systems and cartographers fail into the same weal point. Hans tried to do something better but has divided the horizon into 8 directions, difficulting the building of an turn angle.

I dont't want to abolish names but post codes. That means, everybody can continue using his preference but has the possibility to someday discover the elegance of a polar navigation like around the Christ statue in Rio de Janeiro or Eifel tower in Paris: inwards/outwards and clockwise/counterclock.

So I renew my proposal of cooperation inside and mainly outside of maps.

Henrique

#13
VolksNav

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no wonder that the readers of your map didn't like it: the division of the horizon into 8 directions is really strange. At the other side, everybody took a long time to learn to read a clock, consequently the 12er division is familiar. In my opinion, also the centering of your polar system isn't convincent.


The center is indeed not in a very inspiring location. However, this was not my main concern. I wanted to make sure the 4 highway exits from where one can enter the city were shown and that the scale was as large as possible to increase legibility.

Why would 12 be better than 8? There's 4 cardinal directions (north, east, south, west) with 4 intermediates (northeast, southeast, southwest and northwest), 4 plus 4 makes 8. In addition to that, having 8 sectors instead of 12 reduces visual clutter in the center of the city.

Another discrepance: you're limiting the city, what a terrible vision. A Cartist will never do this.


This is a printed map. A piece of paper is finite in size. So is the city for that matter. I wish I could have an infinitely large piece of paper that still folded to an easy to use size.

Will you propose www.volksnav.de/Apeldoorn to the city administration or should I do this? Another feature: this Convention allows also a logical house numbering www.volksnav.de/houseNumber with a precision of 2 meters.


I'm not going to propose this system because I still fail to see the point. What exactly is the problem that you're trying to solve? I never give directions in lat/lon, I hardly ever have to figure out the length of an arcsecond (and that's because I'm a professional map user, your average person will never come across those). There sometimes does seem to be a tendency, especially among GIS people to give coordinates with an astoundingly high precision, but again, that's generally only for communication within the same field.

As for house numbers, we have a pretty logical system in place already (street name + number) which has been working just fine for centuries. Changing those (which occasionally has to happen with new developments in existing streets) is a huge hassle which really affects people, so it's not something that is done on a whim. Changing them citywide (or even nationwide or worldwide as you seem to be suggesting) is simply not going to happen.



Hi Hans,

I agree with you that the 4 cardinal points are fundamental. 12 can also be divided by 4, so we don't collide on that. But I can't follow your 4+4 logic, where the user hardly can define turn angles, see www.volksnav.de/fundamental.

To be exact: I've solved the problem of the lack of a general orientation standard for signage, addressing, position codes, coordinates etc. which solves 25 (twenty five!) problems including the lack of a standard of grids. Every cartographer has this problem: I know a cartographer who divides the horizon into 10 directions because we have 10 fingers. Do you agree with?

Papers have limitations, our imagination power is unlimited. One characteristic of the Magic grid is Extrapolation, you can address objects OUTSIDE the map, see www.volksnav.de/MagicGrid. Open your eyes, THERE is the new biz: smarter post codes.

To be exact: I'm proposing a system where the cartographer hasn't to castrate hisself to a mere paper supplier but has now the possibility to use maps as a sales tool to propose complete systems with codes for crossings, stop points, bridges, countries, islands (Indonesia), vulcans, road exits, room snumbers, house numbers etc. including navigation software www.volksnav.de/smartphone.

If you have a problem, think big. I have now an invitation to candidate for NACIS 2012 in Portland www.volksnav.de/PortlandMapplet.

Will you propose www.volksnav.de/Apeldoorn to the city authorities or do I have to do this?

Henrique / VolksNav

#14
Hans van der Maarel

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So what exactly is the problem you're trying to solve? Is it navigation? Is it postal codes? I'm trying to keep an open mind here, but I still have no clue. What if I would propose your system to Apeldoorn and they'd ask me to explain it?

You mention "25 problems" that you're solving. Which are those?

PS. we do have terrible issues with the postal services over here, but I doubt they're related to addresses/postal codes, because it used to work just fine... It's a result of management running the organisation into the ground, replacing experienced people with cheaper rookies...

PPS. I'm going out on a limb here and assume your native language is German. Would you mind posting a short overview of your idea here in German?
Hans van der Maarel - Cartotalk Editor
Red Geographics
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#15
Dennis McClendon

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how can a stranger know where is Chicago SE without knowing that the crossing State/Madison is the pole of this polar system?

The same way they know the pole of your system: by learning it or looking at the addresses around them. The traveler entering the metro station signposted as Garfield (5500S-200E) immediately knows where he is in relationship to the point of origin, and which direction to travel to reach 1313 E. 60th: 9 blocks east and 5 blocks south. He knows that a restaurant listed in his guidebook as 3200N-2800W is 10 miles north and 4 miles west of his position. A glance at the metro map in the station will tell him that the closest station to the restaurant is the one at 3200N-3400W, Belmont (Blue).
Dennis McClendon, Chicago CartoGraphics
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