Since this discussion has been going on for a long time (probably since before I joined Waze in various threads) and as I stated in an earlier post, with the forthcoming release of Waze for Android v3.0, I think it’s important that we try and draw a line under this iteration of it.
I’ve thought long and hard about this. I’ve even implemented some of Tim’s ideas along the M42 (which have now been removed pending update of the live map). Anyway I hopefully aim to set out below a compromise to give both sides of the argument something to take home.
The issue is, of course, balancing traffic report text with text/speech (including TTS) for navigation. The current solution leans more for road reports and seems to be leaving those who feel it should be biased for navigation wanting more.
Let’s start by looking at what a “paid for” navigation system gives in the way of ramp information, with some screenshots from the latest TomTom for iPhone.
For Junctions with a number it says “<Current Road Number><Junction Number>”
For Junctions without a number it says “<New Road Number><New Road Name>”
Pretty much what we have in Waze right now …
This isn’t the whole story though as modern iterations of TomTom have the lane assist feature which shows:
For Junctions with a number it says “<Junction Number><Exit City Name>” (from signage)
For Junctions without a number it says “<New Road Number>< Exit City Name>” (from signage)
What is interesting is TomTom only gives information on the main turn from the signage (I guess a balance of biggest vs closest)
I realise that we don’t have anything like lane assist (yet) but we could add a little text to the Ramp text to give us some destination clues.
Just for completeness, here are some screenshots of the same bit of the A46 in portrait mode:
As Tim pointed out yesterday from an old thread, it was discussed but never added to the wiki
Timbones wrote:dmcconachie once wrote: My proposal would be:
<Number> (<direction>) <optional junction name> <Entry/Exit> <optional road name/number>
This is something that can be used for the basis of a compromise.
Some of the other items that have been discussed on this thread:
• Keep the junction landmark as it is now for junctions with numbers or named junctions, perhaps the wiki could be extended to note that any junction with a name (even if it’s a small roundabout) can optionally have a landmark assigned.
• Using the city name as the junction number – Definitely a no-no in my option.
• Keep roundabouts un-named
So having carefully considered every argument and point that has so far been presented, here’s my take on Ramps/Sliproads as a compromise to traffic reports and navigation (Text and Speech):
• Keep the road and junction number as an aide to live traffic reports.
• Add “Entry”/”Exit” so we know if we are leaving or joining at the ramp and for live traffic reports.
• Add just a little information where we are headed after we get on the exit ramp. This is the tricky one as we only have a small amount of screen space especially when Wazing in portrait mode (as I’m guessing most do) so I think only adding onward road number(s) is the way to go.
• Onward road number(s) should be taken from the road signs when approaching from that direction (Streetview is our friend here for research purposes).
• Tailor it for when we get TTS so it does not sound wrong and need changing again.
• Make as small a change as possible so that existing ramps do not look out of place until renamed.
So that gives us the following:
<Road Number> <Optional Direction> <Optional Junction Number> “Exit” <” to” Optional Onward Road Number 1, Road Number 2 …>
M54 (E) J4 Exit to A464
A46 (N) Exit to A6
M1 (S) J24 Exit to A453, A6
M1 (N) J24 Exit to A453
I chose the last one deliberately, as although the junction’s roundabout has exits to the A50 and A6 the signage only lists the A453.
1. The “Exit” in the ramp name is superfluous for navigation but makes the ramp unique for live traffic reports.
2. There’s no need to put a direction the onward road number as this would only be possible if there’s no choice (e.g. M1 (S) J23A to A42) and then there’s no point.
TTS would pronounce the first example above as:
In nought point five miles exit left at M fifty-four, East, J Four Exit to A Four Six Four
You can try the speech here: http://www.nuance.com/vocalizer5/flash/index.html
“Entry to” <Road Number> <Optional Direction> <Optional Junction Number>
Entry to M54 (E) J4
Entry to A46 (N)
Entry to M1 (S) J24
Entry to M1 (N) J24
1. The “Entry” in the ramp name is superfluous for navigation but makes the ramp unique for live traffic reports.
2. There’s no need for onward road numbers as there could be any number of them and typically signage lists a city (which would take up too much space).
TTS would pronounce the first example above as:
At the roundabout take the third exit at Entry to M fifty-four, East, J Four