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             26 October, 2020

Category:  Articles » Communications » GPS


GPS Devices Have Made Paper Maps Obsolete

         Views: 2476
2009-12-19 06:49:30     
Article by Jon Hosier

Few cannot recall road trips with the family where a paper map was sprawled open in the front passenger seat with a frustrated parent trying to navigate the route. Meanwhile the driver was annoyingly piloting the car. Tension and confusion were the only things to come from fumbling with the awkwardly large piece of collapsible paper.

Thankfully, said events are now a thing of the past. The age of personal GPS units has taken all the annoyance out of navigation. The Global Positioning System (GPS) is a satellite-based structure that sends broadcast signals to receivers, which then uses longitude, latitude, and altitude to generate a 3-D map image. This means it is more reliable, extensive, accurate and convenient than its paper predecessor. The GPS device will work in any weather conditions, anywhere in the world, 24 hours a day.

Thanks to the use of GPS, navigation is now multi-facetted. Not only can routes be found and subsequently followed, but these devices allow for the saving of many destinations, offer turn-by-turn directions, traffic avoidance and come pre-loaded with maps of the entire continental US. Many are even capable of calculating information such as speed, topographic information,trip distance, and even sunrise and sunset times.

Paper maps are a thing of the past

So then why would anyone wish to carry around 30+ paper maps instead of a single unit? Truth be told, many do not. The hardcopy map will obviously never allow for updates. The consumer is just going to have to purchase a new map every few years to remain up to date. It will also not allow for navigation outside the designated area. Again, a new map would have to be purchased. Thus a vicious old cycle ensues. The advantages of GPS units are putting space between hardcopy maps and themselves comparable to cell phones and rotary phones.

GPS uses 24 satellites that are in a constant orbit around the globe. The system was originally designed by the US Dept. of Defense, and has been widely used throughout the government, predominantly within the branches of the military. GPS units have since found active homes with an array of industries and areas:

- Transportation
- Agriculture
- Recreation (including outdoor activities like boating, hiking and geocaching)
- Emergency response (both civil service and federal disaster aid)

* During the Hurricane Katrina relief effort GPS was used in place of paper maps because street signs were washed away, making navigation in a unfamiliar area impossible without it

The number of GPS device users has increased exponentially in just a few short years. The benefits and continued use of GPS has earned the devotion of millions of users worldwide. These devices have been shown to be highly versatile, advantageous and have displayed unsurpassable dependability in the past. The ease and satisfaction of GPS devices is apparently too much for the masses to ignore. The paper map will soon join its outdated kin, if it has not already done so. The future of The Global Positioning System and its corresponding tech is a bright and expanding one.

Specialized in: Gps Devices
URL: http://www.gpsdevice.com
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