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#625865 - 03/09/05 08:55 PM Handy little device...
Sam Casey Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/05/05
Posts: 1135
Loc: SW Missouri
I own a Garmin IQUE 3600 PDA and GPS combo. Palm OS5 software. Has 32 mg internal memory and I bought a 1 gig SD card for the detailed street maps and topo maps. It comes with navigation software that will link to Outlook. Have an address, tap an icon and get a map and route with ETA.

The guidance software has a Voice. A female Voice. Calm, business like, assured. The kind of voice your wife uses when she thinks you’re a moron.

The Voice has many of the traits of the “better half” of our species.
On the minus side:
She is never wrong. She’ll tell you “drive 32 miles then turn left,” with a display of the road she insists you turn on. At about 1 mile she’ll remind you again. Then at 500 feet. Then she’ll tell you to exit on the ramp and turn left, (or right). (Like where else was I gonna exit?) If for some worthless reason you miss the turn, she’ll hesitate then say (rather smugly I think) “off route. Recalculating.” Never mind that the road she told to turn on DOES NOT EXIST. Does she care? Does she say, “gee I’m sorry. I must have misread the map.” Nope. “Off route, recalculating. Turn left 500 feet, turn left again,” etc.

I have been known to purposely keep going the wrong direction to listen to her go into a frenzy. “Off route, recalcu…Off route…Off rou….Off…Off….” then she clams up and I get The Silent Treatment. The route disappears and the map remains with my little triangular icon wandering hopelessly lost down the highway.

I’ve given her a name: RC for Recalculating Carol.

On the plus side: RC never gets mad. You can yell at her, pound on the steering wheel, insult the factory she came from, the chips in her square little head and she pops up calm and assured as ever, letting you know that after all she does know best.

My wife can’t stand her. She says “why do you do whatever SHE tells you and you don’t listen to me? Go on, go on do what RC says,” then hurls her map to the floor. I don’t remind her that all RC does when we disagree is pout for a while. There’s no unseemly outbursts, from RC anyway.

I’ve come to accept and interpret RC’s little quirks. She gets confused whether the house is on the left or right side of the street. She claims you’re at the destination when the house numbers are a block off. She gets hysterical when you cross a new bridge not on her maps and your little icon is sailing across the blue water. As with most women, it’s more a question of getting the right “feeling” in the route than the actual facts. It’s no use trying to reason with her. She is set in her ways. You take the good with the bad.

I think Garmin is missing some marketing chances. When you miss a turn she should say, “what is it with men and directions?” Or, “I just knew you would do that.” Or “You did that on purpose to torment me.” Or, “Do you want me to drive?”

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#625866 - 03/09/05 09:50 PM Re: Handy little device...
velopresto Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/05/04
Posts: 605
Loc: Santa Clara, CA
Nice post, Sam...I've almost made the jump to a GPS, but I'm getting by with Mapopolis on my PDA. It works well, and I'm already over-reliant on the little bugger. Glad to hear you got an SD card. I had a hard-reset happen once while on the job. Fortunately, the SD reinstated everything in the computer in less than a minute.

The female voice thing might wear thin after awhile. Every time I hear a computer voice, male or female, I think of Hal in "2001". I'm afraid to go there...
Dave Stahl
Dave Stahl Piano Service
Santa Clara, CA
Serving most of the greater SF Bay Area

#625867 - 03/10/05 08:47 PM Re: Handy little device...
Bob Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/01/01
Posts: 4010
"The kind of voice your wife uses when she thinks you’re a moron."

When I hear that voice, my selective hearing kicks in (learned from years of tuning in noisy environments), and suddenly the voice goes away...... \:\)

A GPS is in my sights in the future as well. I currently look up directions the night before using Yahoo Maps.


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