Time based turn restrictions

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Re: Time based turn restrictions

Postby kentsmith9 » Fri Nov 02, 2012 5:04 pm

{I separated my response from my post above to not confuse the question.}

On #1, I understand most Waze users are commuters. As commuters they are generally on the road in the mornings and evenings. If turn restrictions are set to control and prevent commuters from using certain roads during their commute, then we should consider having Waze "restrict" the turn for the majority of the traffic. Having the route enabled for the majority of most users that cannot take the route does not make sense to me.

If that particular turn is for another reason not based on commuter traffic or it is a very short period of time, I would say to allow the turn. Either way I recommend the editor will need to decide, but I think we should give some kind of guidelines.

San Francisco is full of hundreds of URs mostly made up of complaints that turns are not possible (time based) when Waze recommends them. For the time-based turns set to disallow always, during the times those turns are are not allowed the URs pop up that the wrong driving direction was given. Either way SF is screwed for proper navigation without a Waze solution for this problem.

For #2 I disagree with the wording "to err on the side of caution". If we keep this basic recommendation to always allow the turn, then I propose we not use those particular words. If we all get to that point I can certainly make some proposals based on the final desire for this "best practice" recommendation.
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Re: Time based turn restrictions

Postby kentsmith9 » Tue Dec 18, 2012 5:16 am

Whatever we do we can create a template with the instructions on a single page.

Go to this Wiki page on Your Rank and Points. Inside when you edit the page you will find a template entry "{{Points collecting}}". The entry {{TEMPLATE}} enables a single page to have a single description, images, headings, etc. that can be embedded into other pages as necessary with only a single source page to update. Saves a bunch of time and ensures 100% consistency. We just need to limit the details of the template to what is common to all places it would be used and then deviations on the topic/entry would be added before or after the template inline on the final page showing the template.

The template can be found under Template:Points collecting.

If someone wants to go to the Wiki and enter "Template:Time-based Turn Details" (or something like that) in the search box you will see a red link at the top of the page. Hit that red link and you will create the template. Just enter the text as if you are on a regular page, but generally you don't have headings on a template to prevent problems with the template is used in different heading levels. Then on the pages that talk about turn restrictions just add {{Time-based Turn Details}} in the body of the page you are updating.
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Re: Time based turn restrictions

Postby Mike-1323 » Fri Nov 02, 2012 4:51 pm

The lack of time-based restrictions on both turns and direction, as well as the lack of HOV support make Waze much less useful around here. The DC area is full of such restrictions and failing to recognize them mean that Waze can't be trusted to route through certain areas.

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Re: Time based turn restrictions

Postby therubinator » Fri Nov 02, 2012 3:51 pm

kaeoboy wrote:The wiki post that I've been following for turn restrictions guidelines is:

http://www.waze.com/wiki/index.php/Best ... cted_Turns


That guideline is interesting in that it says "best to err on the side of caution and allow the turn" - which I somewhat question. Recently, I've been caught out by several of these time-based restrictions and waste minutes doing U-turns and re-routing back into traffic against Waze because this "side of caution" thought it was something I could have figured out. The end result is I've wasted time, become supremely annoyed at the app and lost some confidence that it really knows what's best (and even figure it out after giving it some guidance by avoiding that turn).

Futhermore, if these turns are restricted for 12 hours a day (and the 12 hours of the day I'm likely to be driving) it seems that Waze should be able to figure it out...but it doesn't.

Until Waze can handle these time-based restrictions, my confidence is always going to be in question.
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Re: Time based turn restrictions

Postby therubinator » Fri Nov 02, 2012 5:14 pm

kentsmith9 wrote:This change was noticed in October and Jhfronz responded for the motivation in this thread. It appears there was no resolution as to how to update the wording to recognize the group consensus.


Wow, that turned a little ugly, didn't it.

From earlier in that thread, jhfronz says

jhfronz wrote:Here in the US we have remote-controlled animated signs that can suddenly say "no turns" (when traffic gets weird and the traffic control operations folks want to optimize things), but allow turns the rest of the time.


So I think there's room for improvement. This approach is black-and-white whereas some amount of discretion could be used. jhfronz's example points out a short-term restriction which, in that case, perhaps makes sense. However, if a more nuanced approach were taken say, given certain conditions then it might avoid confusion (and also make Waze more useful, rather than less, in those situations). For instance, what if the recommendation were to allow the turn if the restriction were:

  • not during rush hour (defining rush hour being slightly fuzzy, but based on the area and the volume of traffic - assumes the editor knows the area well)
  • not more than 4 hours long (for example)
  • not cumulatively more than 12 hours of the day
  • not a turn on a single-lane road (just spitballing now)

...and then disallow the turn if any (?) of those conditions are met.

Previewing your new post, kentsmith9, I agree on both #1 & #2:
kentsmith9 wrote:1. Does the group generally agree with the philosophy of the statement that Waze should give the best route and let the user decide if it is legal?


Waze preferably wouldn't direct you into a gaping canyon based on incomplete map information, and shouldn't direct you the wrong way down a one-way street. So why should it direct you into a turn that is illegal 50% of the day and 100% during rush hour?

kentsmith9 wrote:2. Is the specific wording "to err on the side of caution is to sometimes recommend an illegal turn"?


I agree those words are not necessary and I think the best practice recommendation should allow for editor knowledge of the area as well as some of that fuzzy logic suggested above...
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Re: Time based turn restrictions

Postby therubinator » Fri Nov 02, 2012 5:41 pm

One further point which may be useful to consider: the whole point of time-based restrictions from the point of view of urban traffic management is to control traffic flow and ease congestion (ideally). That said, from Waze's perspective it should already be rated a less than ideal route (assuming the AI is working properly). Blocking it outright wouldn't be the worst thing and would certainly eliminate the possibility of directing the user into an illegal route.
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Re: Time based turn restrictions

Postby therubinator » Fri Nov 02, 2012 6:15 pm

CBenson wrote:Huh? Waze will route you many many crazy ways based on incomplete map information.


I did say "preferably" :)

CBenson wrote:In other words, you can make the determination on your own that waze is routing through an illegal turn and ask for alternative routes. There is no way to look at route that doesn't go through a legal turn and determine whether the route that goes through the turn is actually currently faster. I'm not saying that this reason is stronger than the reasons for restricting the turns. I'm just pointing out that a reason does exist.


I disagree - I don't think you can always make the determination before it's too late. I have a good example but it's going to take me a moment to dig it up.

CBenson wrote:But the decision to restrict a turn from the perspective of urban traffic management is to improve the collective traffic flow. Waze should be attempting to provide the best route for a specific individual.


As a pithy ad I saw recently said, "you're not stuck in traffic: you are traffic." The best route might for the individual might not actually be valid (hence, my canyon example). Again, until Waze can actually make the most informed decision possible (i.e. time-base restriction handling), we're kind of hacking now, aren't we?

I'll be honest: my motivation for discussing this is purely because I've been repeatedly directed down bad-advice turns and would really rather be sent down the "next best" route than the "best route" that's wrong/illegal.
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Re: Time based turn restrictions

Postby therubinator » Fri Nov 02, 2012 6:22 pm

Here's my example:

https://www.waze.com/editor/?lon=-79.43 ... s=60499843

Going south on Marlee at Eglinton, the most direct (and always legal) route is to turn right and go south on Oakwood. However, Waze continually tells me to turn left and then right down Winona (and then wrap around on Lanark back to Oakwood). However, Winona turns 1-way 38 metres down the street from 7am-7pm. So I learned the lesson once and haven't followed that advice since...despite Waze continuing to offer it.

In this example, there's no way for the driver to know a priori that this left turn at Marlee and Eglinton is illegal from 7am-7pm. He's then forced to do a u-turn and make a left turn back onto Eglinton into busy traffic.
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Re: Time based turn restrictions

Postby therubinator » Fri Nov 02, 2012 7:36 pm

CBenson wrote:Sure if the turn is illegal from 7am-7pm, it should likely be marked as restricted. But the counter point is that waze is a commuting app. You don't know a priori that the left turn is illegal, you know from experience that it is illegal.


If Waze is strictly a commuting app, then I wasn't aware. You're saying then that we should damn the inexperience non-commuters and let them figure this out on their own?

CBenson wrote:Say the turn was only illegal from 7am-9am.


Then I would say leave it open and not restricted.
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Re: Time based turn restrictions

Postby therubinator » Fri Nov 02, 2012 9:52 pm

Okay, CBenson, I understand where you're coming from. I'm not completely convinced that the interests of commuters are at odds with non-commuters, though. Everyone on the road is Traffic and having confused and wrong-turning, etc., drivers on the road affects everyone.

Anyway...I think when/if Waze supports time-based restrictions, it's going to have a significant impact on the routes offered in the app (for the better). These restrictions can have far reaching effects on the efficiency of the routes sometimes.
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