Waze 2013 US Meetup Recap
- Ended with 35 million users and 6 billion miles driven
- US drivers are driving approximately 30MPH faster than in 2012. One Wazer in attendance reported the average speed calculated by his car has increased since using Waze.
- 65,000 editors with 500 million edits
- Daily map updates (applause) which updates approximately 20% of the US map tiles
- Tile versioning allows rollbacks when issues are discovered
- Auto-scaling of processing power at Amazon when tile updates or routing requests require it. This required significant changes to code allowing dynamic spinning up of new cores and gracefully shutting them down.
- In-app geographic advertising as a part of monetization
Looking at 2013
- Increasing personalization with features like preferred routes
- Integrating with Events (such as facebook events to start with)
- Changes in the editor and routing engine (see WME section below)
Community recap from Shirli
- Quick review of Waze milestones since 2009
- Graphical overview of community activity in the forums, editor
Ohad on WME
- Working on features to improve client (Wazer) and editor communication
- Want to get more people to enjoy editing maps without sacrificing quality
- Connecting less complex issues (problems) with newer editors so they can work on simple things first (how? not shared)
- Restrictions/closures will be available in the editor which do not require tile builds to take effect (requires linking the editor with the real-time routing servers)
- Time-based turn restrictions coming soon. Screenshots showed interface with ability to specify multiple-day of week and time restrictions with start/end dates.
- Reversible roadways also on the roadmap after time-based turn restrictions.
- Plans slated for map-based comments layer as well as notes available for objects
- List of (nearby?) problems and URs. Possibility of reinstating RSS feeds.
- Editor-editor communication/chat on future roadmap with live view of editors, live chat and offline chat.
- Segment-rank-based locks are still coming, but the actual lock level still needs some adjusting and approval by beta editors.
Noam High-level Thoughts (Noam’s Roams)
- Working with the US government during Sandy emergency
- Finds it interesting there are multiple corporations competitively mapping the world. Is there room for future cooperation?
- Future vehicle integration: looks like MirrorLink could be big with up to 20% of US vehicles using it to integrate smartphones with the vehicle.
- Waze currently has 105 employees.
- "Luckily we still have a lot more to do. It's not going to get boring."
- skbun showed examples of poor routing, where it seems the ratio of the as-the-crow-flies distance to driven-distance is causing Waze routing to fail completely.
- bgodette gave examples of the Waze car position jumping north and south off of east-west running roads onto parallel roads even though the system GPS location shows the position never wavering from the main road.
- bgodette showed examples of the "first leg bug" where Waze's route overview initial dialog shows a route distance which ignores all segments up to the first turn instruction.
- AndyPoms gave a very thorough presentation of functional road classification
- multiple "translations" from DOT classifications to Waze road types
- examples from Connecticut on how this affects the road network
- the lingering question (for Alan) was: "If Waze fixes their routing algorithm to stop favoring roads based on type and switches to more heavily weighting actual speed, does functional classification matter?"
- Remove US Service Road type: routes the same as street and its use is confusing and redundant. Plan is for Waze to identify these segments, prepare the code to do the mass change and get approval from Champs to proceed. To be removed from WME at the same time.
- Rename US "Dirt/4x4" road type to "Unpaved" for clarity.
- Create new US "4x4/Offroad" road type as Waze wants all paths of vehicle traffic, no matter how remote or how its used, to be mapped.
- Continue to improve consistent and reliable communications. All known issues should be immediately posted to status.waze.com and twitter @waze_status.US will move to self-management, which means that all Area Manager approvals will, at a date to be determined, be decided by US Country Managers and/or Champs. This process and how it is administered exactly needs to be determined as well.
- There was a proposal that Area Managers be re-granted full editing rights in their defined area except for user-rank locks. Segment-rank locks would not prevent an AM from updating.
- Waze will get back to the Champs by 02 April 2013 on a decision regarding a bug/request tracking tool which can be available to the "public" to add/update/review.
- Requested the "Missing Road" Map Problem to either be fixed or be turned off.
- Requested ability to add/update/delete primary street shield type and data ASAP.
- The POI database will become part of waze (instead of using bing)
- Ehud said “don’t make map changes to work around bugs”.
- Ehud said he wanted to include all driveable surfaces and annotate all parking lots, no matter how small. He said this would allow waze to tell someone where to park (based on the parking history of folks going to the same destination).
- Anyone can place ads on waze by going to http://biz.waze.com
Nearly everyone made it into the picture. Fej is not in the photo. The photo is cropped on the right by the forum. The missing person to the right is a Waze employee.
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Click the photo for an enlarged version. Also available is the HUGE version.