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Where should the GPS navigation screen go in a car? Drivers put them in all kinds of places, trying to find a spot where they can see the screen quickly and easily, without blocking too much of the window. Mounting the display on the dash (near the radio controls, for example) takes the eyes too far from the road when viewing. Mounting it on the windshield creates forward blind spots.
Where “should” the display be? As a projection superimposed on the view in the windshield, seems to me. Especially if it could be quick enough to superimpose the information right onto your view of the real world in realtime.
Other random thoughts about in-car GPS devices:
Here’s a view of the dashboard of a Tokyo taxi:
Is there never a point at which one says “enough”? It sure looks as though there is way too much going on within the driver’s field of view. Worse, look at the GPS control:
Yeah, that’s a remote control you see there. A remote control for the dash-mounted GPS. Now is there enough going on for you? (If there isn’t, try sympathizing with the little cartoon character in the seatback ad just visible in the bottom left-hand corner of the picture. But I digress.)
In contrast, here’s a super low-tech taxi dash in Kyoto:
The messages appear to be printed onto pieces of paper and stuck into place.
Here’s one just for you nervous people out there:
The other day, the driver of the taxi I was in was playing solitaire on his windshield-mounted GPS. He mostly played while idling at traffic lights, but I did notice that the occasional move input while driving was also registered. (For you touch-screen usability obsessives — like me — note that it was a resistive touch layer, and he was pressing the cards using the earpiece of his sunglasses.) This did not inspire confidence.
What was the manufacturer thinking?