juliansean wrote:...if a person searches for an airport in the middle of nowhere are they really expecting a Chicago ORD some 300 miles away, or are they expecting a general aviation airport? I would venture they are expecting a general aviation airport.
Since MacroNav's post about the unknown backyard airstrips in Alaska, this thread has not been about general aviation airports. There's no disagreement about how to map those.
juliansean wrote: So, while I agree that a purely private strip, made by Joe Bob for his Ag-Cat is not a benefit to the general public, most other airports are in fact useful. And, I think airports should be area [...]
Right, the question originally raised by MacroNav was explicitly confined to the question of private airports that are (1) invisible from the road, (2) most likely unknown to all but a handful of people, and therefore (3) serve no orientation function for drivers. At least, no orientation function that could not also be equally or better served by Waze displaying latitude and longitude lines.
juliansean wrote:If I'm following correctly, this really boils down to how our RC/ARC feel about AP's. In one area, having a little more depth to the app is our new marching orders.
What exactly does "a little more depth to the app" mean?
Let's look again at the airstrip I referred to on the "Lost Coast" of California
. This airfield is several miles from any road; as I said, it is used to my knowledge only by a few members of a family that inherited a private inholding among public lands. Nobody else is welcome to use it. Driving Wazers, or even those previewing a route, will never see it, and even if they happen to scroll by it at a zoom level where it will appear, it will mean nothing to them for orientation that the Pacific Ocean(!) does not already provide.
I don't think even the most contorted argument can be made that mapping this private airstrip as an Area Place somehow benefits drivers. So why do we want to display it? What is our "second mandate" besides helping drivers? Saying that "it doesn't hurt drivers, so why not" does not answer that question. Why do we want it on the display in the first place?
To ask this question again in a different way...
Our USA Wazeopedia says that the "Campground/RV Park" category may be mapped as an Area Place. Well, what if I know a family that owns a remote campground. It is in the mountains two days' ride from the nearest trailhead. It is private and only for use by family and friends. It goes without saying that it's almost completely unknown, even to locals, and is invisible from any road. But it is visible from space, due to some structures, picnic tables, and a big meadow with ample grazing. Are we saying the campground in this hypothetical example should be mapped as an Area Place?
Again, there can't be any argument that doing so benefits drivers. There can only be an argument that it doesn't hurt them, but again, that's besides the point. Why do we want to add it?
Is it time for us to start mapping as Area Places all the creeks and ponds throughout the US that are invisible from roads? I have seen people who wanted to do that in Europe discouraged by leading editors there, because doing so didn't help drivers and Waze was not a hydrography app.
But that was a few years ago, and times change. So is Waze now an airstrip app? A campground app? A hydrography app? What is our new "second mandate" beyond helping drivers?
If we as a community are deciding that we now have an additional mandate beyond helping drivers, I think that needs to be very clear, because a lot of people still think that helping drivers get where they need to go as quickly as possible and with the least amount of confusion is our one and only mission.