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Old September 28th, 2016, 12:17 PM   #34601
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An unusual elevator in Italy

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Old September 28th, 2016, 02:28 PM   #34602
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
I don't see why people should be upset about government surveillance when corporate surveillance (Google, Facebook, etc.) is just as or even more intrusive.

Yesterday I went to a household appliance store called 'Blokker'. An hour later on Facebook I get a Blokker ad for the first time. My GPS was off, but the Facebook app probably sent data over the wifi connection, linking my visit to Blokker to Facebook advertising.
This kind of corporate surveillance is what allows companies like Google and Facebook to remain on the market without charging users for services they provide. Businesses pay a lot of money to Facebook and Google for their customized ads that show to users.
Moreover, corporate surveillance, unlike regime surveillance, is only interested in commercial interests of users, not in their political or religious backgrounds, that are much more sensitive things in many parts of the world, and that many authoritarian and corrupt regimes try to control.
In democracies, government surveillance may actually protect honest people, as it helps to fight crime, although there's always some risk of abuse of power and corruption.
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In real life, electronic toll collection was first introduced in Bergen, Norway in 1986, and well into the 21th century many countries still struggle to implement it.
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Old September 28th, 2016, 02:58 PM   #34603
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Quote:
Originally Posted by italystf View Post
Better the departure port time.
There are several strategies in place to cope with that issue. All have their pros and cons, and none of them are clearly better than the others.

My favorite strategy is to display all opening and event times in both Finnish and Swedish time, and having twin-time clocks:

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Old September 28th, 2016, 03:23 PM   #34604
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I'm thinking of making a clock with only the minute hand . But then, it would be impractical in all those countries with an x:30 offset from UTC (Including North Korea) as well as Nepal and its crazy UTC+5:45 offset.
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Old September 28th, 2016, 03:26 PM   #34605
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Quote:
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Google Maps algorithms already route drivers through major/rural roads, instead of minor/urban ones, even if the latters are slighty shorter. I've no much experience with other route planning software, but I think they work pretty much the same.
The basics of the route optimization is easy: For each leg and node, there is a delay involved. The route finding engine tries to predict that delay as accurately as possible. The final choice is the route having smallest sum of delays (or meters to travel if finding the shortest route). The route finding algorithm itself is quite simple in its basic form.

The prediction is the sexy part of the game leading to differentiation. It is more or less about heuristics (in plain English: guessing). Left turns cause more delay than right turns, a priority road is faster than a no-priority one, etc. Small differences in guesses may cause big differences in the route calculation. That delay-based calculation automatically leads to favoring main roads, if the road data is accurate enough.

The basic problem is that the traffic flow is usually unpredictable, and a function of time and weekday. The more there is unpredictability, the higher the risk for bad routing is.

TomTom is a pioneer in better prediction. Several years ago, the company announced a feature called IQroutes. It basically is about using the real delay data which millions of devices collect and send to TomTom. The travel time estimation of TomTom is amazingly accurate. During a 500 km ride, the error might be less than 10 minutes.
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Old September 28th, 2016, 09:22 PM   #34606
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MattiG View Post
The basics of the route optimization is easy: For each leg and node, there is a delay involved. The route finding engine tries to predict that delay as accurately as possible. The final choice is the route having smallest sum of delays (or meters to travel if finding the shortest route). The route finding algorithm itself is quite simple in its basic form.

The prediction is the sexy part of the game leading to differentiation. It is more or less about heuristics (in plain English: guessing). Left turns cause more delay than right turns, a priority road is faster than a no-priority one, etc. Small differences in guesses may cause big differences in the route calculation. That delay-based calculation automatically leads to favoring main roads, if the road data is accurate enough.

The basic problem is that the traffic flow is usually unpredictable, and a function of time and weekday. The more there is unpredictability, the higher the risk for bad routing is.

TomTom is a pioneer in better prediction. Several years ago, the company announced a feature called IQroutes. It basically is about using the real delay data which millions of devices collect and send to TomTom. The travel time estimation of TomTom is amazingly accurate. During a 500 km ride, the error might be less than 10 minutes.
That explains some weird cases, where A>B route suggested by the software differs from B>A route, even in absence of one-way streets or forbidden turns.
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“The transponder’s personalised signal would be picked up when the car passed through an intersection, and then relayed to a central computer which would calculate the charge according to the intersection and the time of day and add it to the car’s bill” - Nobel Economics Prize winner William Vickrey, proposing a system of electronic tolling for the Washington metropolitan area, 1959
In real life, electronic toll collection was first introduced in Bergen, Norway in 1986, and well into the 21th century many countries still struggle to implement it.
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Old September 28th, 2016, 09:57 PM   #34607
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Look at this picture and guess:



a) the (approximate) distance between the photographer and the metal cabin
b) the (approximate) distance between the metal cabin and the bell tower and other buildings
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“The transponder’s personalised signal would be picked up when the car passed through an intersection, and then relayed to a central computer which would calculate the charge according to the intersection and the time of day and add it to the car’s bill” - Nobel Economics Prize winner William Vickrey, proposing a system of electronic tolling for the Washington metropolitan area, 1959
In real life, electronic toll collection was first introduced in Bergen, Norway in 1986, and well into the 21th century many countries still struggle to implement it.
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Old September 28th, 2016, 11:27 PM   #34608
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Suburbanist View Post
Are you driving back same way or through the "Northern route" (San Sebastian, Bordeaux, Clemont-Ferrand, Lyon, Modane/Frejus)?
It's 100+ km longer, so I don't think that's gonna happen.
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Old September 29th, 2016, 12:08 AM   #34609
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Quote:
Originally Posted by italystf View Post
That explains some weird cases, where A>B route suggested by the software differs from B>A route, even in absence of one-way streets or forbidden turns.
The length of the route from A to B can also differ from the route in the opposite direction. If there is a turn in a large cloverleaf junction or similar, the route via the loop ramp might be a kilometer longer.

In longer routes, the routing may turn quite surprising. One acid test in my test case box is the route between the cities of Turku and Oulu in Finland. There are two main choices of almost equal length: The road 8/E8 via Vaasa 649 km and 9/E63+4/E74 via Jyväskylä 651 km. The latter one is about 20 minutes faster due to more motorway legs. In the east-west direction, these routes are 200+ kilometers apart, even if they are almost equal.

The driving time estimates vary a lot. Five routing applications gave the following driving times via Jyväskylä:

- TomTom 7:51 hours
- Google Maps 7:17
- Here 8:06
- Fonecta 8:14
- ViaMichelin 9:21

Thus, ViaMichelin seems to not know the characteristics on the Finnish roads quite well. The TomTom's estimate is the baseline because of the real data. Google tends to favor speeding.

Fonecta was the only one to fail to find the fastest route. Instead, it found a route which it says to be six minutes faster. However, in the real life that route is 60-90 minutes slower than the fastest one. I know it by experience. That route uses main roads, too, but lower grade ones. Thus, Fonecta is not aware of the real characteristics of the roads but relies on the official classification.
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Old September 29th, 2016, 12:40 AM   #34610
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ViaMichelin used to be really good for directions in Italy, France, Switzerland, Germany. 8 years ago, Google Maps was still rather unreliable. I also liked their online cartographic style. Pity it seems they completely abandoned any updates.
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Old September 29th, 2016, 01:00 AM   #34611
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Suburbanist View Post
ViaMichelin used to be really good for directions in Italy, France, Switzerland, Germany. 8 years ago, Google Maps was still rather unreliable. I also liked their online cartographic style. Pity it seems they completely abandoned any updates.
I've just opened Viamichelin for the first time in several years, and I see that it shows some recently-opened roads in Italy, so updates aren't abandoned. Also Italian motorway tolls are updated as of 2016.
However, it's still a very basic route planner, as it lacks advanced options. You cannot change route manually with drag and drop like in Google, you don't have live traffic info, satellite images, street view, location of businesses and other point of interests.
While it could be competitive with Google in the 2000s, obviously it's not anymore.

As mapping quality (not as route planner), I now like OSM the best (it used to be crap until not so long ago). It includes many non-driving-related details, such as cycleways, hiking trails, agricultural paths, PT stops, municipal borders, power lines, small streams and agricultural canals, all sort of point of interests, etc...
When I virtually explore an area I often have two browser tabs open, one with GM (for satellite, street view and driving directions) and another with OSM (for detailed maps).
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“The transponder’s personalised signal would be picked up when the car passed through an intersection, and then relayed to a central computer which would calculate the charge according to the intersection and the time of day and add it to the car’s bill” - Nobel Economics Prize winner William Vickrey, proposing a system of electronic tolling for the Washington metropolitan area, 1959
In real life, electronic toll collection was first introduced in Bergen, Norway in 1986, and well into the 21th century many countries still struggle to implement it.
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Old September 29th, 2016, 01:06 AM   #34612
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Quote:
Originally Posted by italystf View Post
I've just opened Viamichelin for the first time in several years, and I see that it shows some recently-opened roads in Italy, so updates aren't abandoned. Also Italian motorway tolls are updated as of 2016.
However, it's still a very basic route planner, as it lacks advanced options. You cannot change route manually with drag and drop like in Google, you don't have live traffic info, satellite images, street view, location of businesses and other point of interests.
While it could be competitive with Google in the 2000s, obviously it's not anymore.

As mapping quality (not as route planner), I now like OSM the best (it used to be crap until not so long ago). It includes many non-driving-related details, such as cycleways, hiking trails, agricultural paths, PT stops, municipal borders, power lines, small streams and agricultural canals, all sort of point of interests, etc...
When I virtually explore an area I often have two browser tabs open, one with GM (for satellite, street view and driving directions) and another with OSM (for detailed maps).
I'm not referring to the main map interface, but to the detailed and neat version (click on the map icon and then, bottom right, on 'Michelin Map' right next to the robot icon.
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Old September 29th, 2016, 01:40 AM   #34613
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Ha, I walked "on the banner" a few hours ago.
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Old September 29th, 2016, 03:09 PM   #34614
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
I don't see why people should be upset about government surveillance when corporate surveillance (Google, Facebook, etc.) is just as or even more intrusive.
Corporate data collection is there just to make money. They have automated systems in place and don't really care who you are or what you do, as long as they can earn money by selling that data.

Government surveillace is there because 'everybody is a potential criminal/terrorist'. I think that's not a very good relationship to have between the government and the people. If the government doesn't trust its people then why should the people trust the government?

What's more, you will be put on 'the list' if you internet behaviour isn't 100% normal. This means you become a suspect before anyone has even commited a crime. Minority Report isn't far off from here.
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Old September 29th, 2016, 03:10 PM   #34615
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Google Maps tends to take the speed limit as the average speed you can drive on motorways, which in reality is unrealistic due to passing trucks, left lane slowdowns, etc.

I did some testing with 120 km long routes in Belgium and the Netherlands. It pretty much takes exactly one hour to drive such a distance which in reality may only be possible at night.
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Old September 29th, 2016, 03:18 PM   #34616
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From my experience, the best ETA in a navigation app is in Waze, though it depends on how many users are using it in each country. It usually calculates my ETA almost spot on even in rush hour, when the traffic is unpredictable.
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Old September 29th, 2016, 03:21 PM   #34617
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
Google Maps tends to take the speed limit as the average speed you can drive on motorways, which in reality is unrealistic due to passing trucks, left lane slowdowns, etc.

I did some testing with 120 km long routes in Belgium and the Netherlands. It pretty much takes exactly one hour to drive such a distance which in reality may only be possible at night.
That's very weird, that's the opposite of what my experience is with Google Maps. A 120km stretch of A7 for example now takes 1 hour and 7 minutes at an 130km/h limit (106-107 km/h average). And it's not the only example I've seen.
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Old September 29th, 2016, 03:37 PM   #34618
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You're referring to 'now'. I was referring to the 'without traffic' scenario by Google. The latter is used by people who want to plan a route in advance.
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Old September 29th, 2016, 03:40 PM   #34619
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The latter is used by people who want to plan a route in advance.
Well, not me. I always use current traffic and just ignore the traffic part, mainly because I can't be arsed to turn the traffic-tab off.

But especially for you I turned it off and checked again. 111 km in 1 hour on the same stretch with a 130km/h limit. Sorry, still not seeing it.
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Old September 29th, 2016, 03:51 PM   #34620
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