Vehicle types/ Navigation types

These forums are specific to the Waze mobile app. Post here if you experienced a problem while using the app, have a question about the app functionality or a feature such as navigation or search.

Moderators: krankyd, Unholy

Re: Vehicle types/ Navigation types

Postby Riamus » Thu May 16, 2013 3:16 pm

There are a lot of good ideas in there. I just finished reading them all. One thing I noticed people comment on relates to trucks and buses and such causing slow traffic notifications for other drivers. It seems like everyone commenting is saying that these slow vehicles shouldn't create those notifications. There is a problem with that which may be being overlooked. It's one thing if you're on a multi-lane road because people can go around those slow vehicles and then it doesn't actually slow down the traffic. But when you're on a one lane road and get behind a slow vehicle, you could be stuck there and end up with a huge backup behind them. Not all slow vehicles are kind enough to move out of the way to let people around them and will just let the backup grow. It's a tricky situation because there are pros and cons no matter how you handle it. Do you ignore their data so they don't make the road slow and then people get stuck behind them or do you use their data so people hopefully don't get stuck behind them, but then you may slow down a road with multiple lanes that easily allows people to pass the slow vehicle. I'm not sure the best way to handle that, but I think it needs to be considered when making that decision. If we could set how many lanes each way there is on a road, then that could be used to handle this situation very well. I know we can't really show the location on multiple lanes due to limitations in GPS accuracy and it wouldn't even have to show in the client, but to be able to say how many lanes (allow different numbers for each direction) would allow the routing to handle certain issues like this more easily. Basically, if there is more than one lane in the given direction, the truck/bus/etc. either doesn't affect traffic speeds or else is has a low effect on the speeds. For example, one truck might count as 1/10 of a normal car for speed calculations. If there is only one lane, it counts equally because it would affect anyone behind it.

Different kinds of restrictions such as height, weight, and width can be useful. If you let the user create a profile for each of their vehicles that includes those numbers, then the user can be routed around any areas that aren't acceptable. Let's say someone just bought an RV and had never paid any attention to bridge heights before. Waze can be used for routing after the person sets up their profile and it will route around any low bridges. These types of restrictions are useful for more than just semis. Yes, it would take a lot of work to get set up, but I think it's worthwhile. I would recommend setting "unlimited" to these values for all streets by default and then let people edit them as needed (probably only through the editor).

I'm not sure if this counts as a navigation type, but including some extra road design hazards (set us as properties for road segments) could be useful, such as steep grade. Long, steep grades can be dangerous for large vehicles like semis. Others can include things like No Shoulder and Narrow Road. For example, in Dexter, MI there is a bridge over a road. If you go under the bridge, it allows 2-way traffic, but you'd be hard pressed to fit two cars side-by-side in there at a time. Drivers have to be careful of traffic coming the other direction when going through there. The No Shoulder option is mostly useful for areas where you might be driving on the edge of a mountain and only a guardrail is between you and the edge or between you and the cliff rising up on the side. It's a good warning to let drivers know that stopping isn't going to be possible without blocking traffic.

And I think the best way to handle people using Waze while walking, biking, etc. is to have an option easily accessed to disable saving your speed. That or as others said, have profile types to indicate what you're doing and those types don't save your speed. I would *not* set an "Other" profile type to not save your speed. "Other" should save speed because it could be a valid type for speed. We should just have the various types that we don't want added and let those not track speed.

I don't know how many emergency vehicles would use Waze, but perhaps they would in more undeveloped countries. If there appears to be enough use, then I agree that those items in a profile should also not save speed or generate any form of map errors as they can drive ways that are not normally allowed and bypass stopped traffic.

For tow trucks, if they enough also use Waze, or if you want to just add a profile type for it since that would be easy to set up if profile types are added, I would have those save speeds only while moving. Most would likely not stop Waze when they stop to pick up a vehicle and that would cause traffic problems. Let them record speeds as they do a lot of traveling and that is helpful, but just don't record them when stopped. Yes, that means they don't show slowdowns at lights or stop signs, but that's what other Wazers are for. I might also suggest automatically generating a "vehicle stopped" warning if the tow truck is fully stopped with Waze running for > 3 minutes. That should be enough time to avoid showing it at an intersection while showing it when they are picking up a broken down vehicle. The warning should go away immediately when the tow truck starts moving rather than on a timer (though there could be a max time). That part is optional because the tow truck driver could just enter a stopped vehicle warning when they arrive. I just am not sure if they would do that and an automatic option would help.

It would be useful for people in cities to have an option for routing using public transportation. This would make use of data (not yet available) from taxi profiles, bus profiles, and train profiles. I would include subways, but GPS isn't going to work there so you'd have to either use average speeds of subways or something to figure out routing. Note that subways could just be designated as points with an "underground" layer connecting them that is only shown in the editor and doesn't have to be accurate other than to connect the points in the right order (yes, that's getting really far afield). Anyhow, the way it would work would be to determine the quickest way from point A to point B using the various types of public transportation including walking (just use an average walking speed for calculating that; don't track it). It would also need to keep current schedules and routes (users can adjust those themselves and maybe we could get that from some third party that maintains the information). This is definitely something that would take a lot of work to get right, but we are already tracking data and it would just need some extra effort for that. As far as tracking speeds, I would suggest that if someone is using routing, that it automatically changes over from one transportation type to another if the person follows the route provided so they don't have to change it themselves. Then you can more accurately obtain public transportation speeds. I'm not sure the best way to handle them going a different way... maybe leave them on the previous type with a warning on the screen of that? Anyhow, it's a lot of work and I wouldn't put it ahead of other more important features. But I would consider it and if it sounds like something we'd like to do in the future, I'd keep it in mind when designing features so that those features can support that whenever it does get added.

And I absolutely support the idea of multiple new car icons. I think I'd do it in one of two ways:

If profiles are added:
Allow the user to select the color of the vehicle icon where you currently select your icon. Then, on the new profile screen, you select what kind of vehicle you are using and your icon will match that type using the color chosen. So if I choose Silver and Car, I get a silver car. If I choose black and truck, I get a black truck. This allows for multiple colors for multiple vehicle types without cluttering the interface.

If profiles aren't added:
Put a color selection dropdown and a vehicle selection dropdown where the current icon selection is. Based on the combination of those two dropdowns, you'll get an icon to match. This prevents having to display a lot of different icons in the interface while still offering some nice customization.

In either option, I'd include the following vehicle types: Car, Pickup truck, Semi without trailer, Semi with trailer, Commercial style box truck, Police car, Ambulance, Fire truck, Tow truck, Motorcycle, Bus, Taxi, Train*, Bicycle**, and Pedestrian**.

* - Trains only if we start showing train tracks.
** - Bicycles and pedestrians are there only if we have profiles and those two items would be set to never save speeds.
ImageImage
Area Manager: Michigan - Northern LP.
Waze running on Samsung Galaxy S3.
Riamus
 
Posts: 1043
Joined: Sun May 05, 2013 7:34 pm
Location: Summerfield, NC
Has thanked: 66 times
Been thanked: 218 times

Re: Vehicle types/ Navigation types

Postby Riamus » Thu Jun 06, 2013 7:36 pm

I think crosswalks are a bad idea overall. The main reason is that you'd be getting warnings constantly in a large city that has crosswalks at every intersection. Can you imagine driving through someplace like New York City? "Warning, warning, warning, warning..." People would just get annoyed. And suggesting to use it only in certain cases wouldn't work either. People would add one everywhere if it was allowed. I can see where certain ones may be dangerous and you might want a warning for those. But I think those need to be set as something else if anything. As far as police ticketing for those, I don't think that's a good reason for them either. If police are there, mark them. No need to mark the crosswalk for that.
ImageImage
Area Manager: Michigan - Northern LP.
Waze running on Samsung Galaxy S3.
Riamus
 
Posts: 1043
Joined: Sun May 05, 2013 7:34 pm
Location: Summerfield, NC
Has thanked: 66 times
Been thanked: 218 times

Re: Vehicle types/ Navigation types

Postby Riamus » Sat Jun 15, 2013 1:02 am

Special modes for emergency personnel sound great, but how do you determine if someone is really supposed to have access to it? It's one thing if you can't do anything special beyond perhaps seeing additional information. It's something else to be able to do something not normally allowed, such as blocking off an entire section of streets (something that could be severely abused). If there's a good way to give emergency personnel what they can use without it becoming a problem, then I'm all for it.

Regarding the initial question about being able to see where the emergency is on a divided road, I wonder if there can just be a note on the hazard that says what direction the road is going? It doesn't have to be a perfect mechanism, but basically 8 cardinal directions. N, S, E, W, NW, SW, NE, SE. It can be based solely on the direction of travel at that exact point and determined by the angle of the road at that point and whether it's on the right or left side of the road (different countries need to of course handle it differently depending on which side the cars drive on). You could probably get by with 4 directions instead of 8, but it could be confusing if you're right at a center division. That could be tested to see if it's a problem or not. If not, I'd just use the 4 major directions.

E.g.
Minor accident
Main St (westbound)
ImageImage
Area Manager: Michigan - Northern LP.
Waze running on Samsung Galaxy S3.
Riamus
 
Posts: 1043
Joined: Sun May 05, 2013 7:34 pm
Location: Summerfield, NC
Has thanked: 66 times
Been thanked: 218 times

Re: Vehicle types/ Navigation types

Postby Riamus » Mon Jun 17, 2013 9:18 pm

goimir wrote:Now that I've done some map editing, here's an idea for "truck mode"

Favor major roads. Don't use a road of a lower classification to get between two of a higher classification.

Also, maybe this belongs in the map editing forum, and maybe it's already addressed in the wiki, but there are lots of alleys given the same weight as actual streets. There are some alleys in Pittsburgh that are all of 10 feet wide. They're meant for wheeling your garbage can into and maybe dropping your groceries at the back door.


Similar to your suggestion about truck routes, I think having a routing option of "fewer turns" would be of benefit not just to cars, but especially to trucks as they probably don't like having to make a lot of turns if they can avoid it. Someone suggesting a slider option for choosing what kind of routing to use and I think that's a good option. With the current 2 options and then a fewer turns option, you would have 3 sliders that are locked to equal 100% so that if you move one, the others adjust with it so the total is always 100%. If you wanted to have fewer turns and still wanted fast, but didn't care at all about distance, you might adjust them to 50/50/0 and it would find a route that is fast with few turns, no matter the distance.

And you're right about some alleys being very narrow. That really isn't limited only to alleys, though. For example, some old underpasses can't easily be navigated by vehicles from both directions at the same time. A narrow road option that could be applied to a segment may be valuable and could even be set to automatically place a warning icon as you come up to it. From what I hear, they are shrinking the width of parking lot roads, so they could do the same for any segment marked as narrow so it's also visual. I'd limit such an option to not allow it on major highways or freeways. Probably also prevent it on minor highways as well, but that depends on whether or not you can find narrow sections on minor highways.
ImageImage
Area Manager: Michigan - Northern LP.
Waze running on Samsung Galaxy S3.
Riamus
 
Posts: 1043
Joined: Sun May 05, 2013 7:34 pm
Location: Summerfield, NC
Has thanked: 66 times
Been thanked: 218 times

Re: Vehicle types/ Navigation types

Postby Riamus » Mon Jun 24, 2013 10:14 am

That would be where you'd select fewer turns + fastest, without regard to distance. In most cases, that would take you down the highway instead of through a town. I'm sure there could be some tweaking to make it work in at least most situations and each user can choose how to use it. If someone wanted just 100% fastest (the checkbox setting we have now), they could still do that. I think this would just add more options for those who could use some more options in how it calculates the route.
ImageImage
Area Manager: Michigan - Northern LP.
Waze running on Samsung Galaxy S3.
Riamus
 
Posts: 1043
Joined: Sun May 05, 2013 7:34 pm
Location: Summerfield, NC
Has thanked: 66 times
Been thanked: 218 times

Re: Vehicle types/ Navigation types

Postby Riamus » Thu Jul 04, 2013 1:43 am

Yeah, I support biking and walking options that don't contribute speed data. From the Google acquisition, biking is coming, so chances are that walking will also. I can see GPS marks in local parks already where there aren't any roads.
ImageImage
Area Manager: Michigan - Northern LP.
Waze running on Samsung Galaxy S3.
Riamus
 
Posts: 1043
Joined: Sun May 05, 2013 7:34 pm
Location: Summerfield, NC
Has thanked: 66 times
Been thanked: 218 times

Re: Vehicle types/ Navigation types

Postby Riamus » Mon Jul 29, 2013 3:58 pm

Gas Savings (or an Economy Route) would be great for many users. Unfortunately, that's not really possible without a lot of work. Yes, you can limit turns, but that's about all. Because there aren't stop lights or stop signs shown, you don't really get any indication whether you are stopping or just driving slowly through that section of road into the next. So you can't really determine how economical it is. Also, there isn't any way to indicate hills and grade of hills to determine what is most economical.

So although that would be a great feature, I don't see it ever happening. However, we can provide a least turns routing option fairly easily and that would at least help some people at least a little. As I mentioned earlier in the thread, I think if we add another option like that, we should consider a set of sliders with a 100% maximum to help indicate what you prefer. People might prefer few turns, but aren't willing to drive 2-3 times further or longer to avoid a few turns. Having the slider would let us set something like - 50% time, 0% distance, 50% turns. In that case, you care equally about time and turns, but don't care at all about distance. So routing will allow you to drive any distance, but will equally limit time and turns. That would take some work to get working well, but I think it would be a good option to provide good control over how you are routed.
ImageImage
Area Manager: Michigan - Northern LP.
Waze running on Samsung Galaxy S3.
Riamus
 
Posts: 1043
Joined: Sun May 05, 2013 7:34 pm
Location: Summerfield, NC
Has thanked: 66 times
Been thanked: 218 times

Re: Vehicle types/ Navigation types

Postby Riamus » Mon Aug 26, 2013 3:01 pm

Lol. Well, there are a few options. 1) Allow those modes for everyone and not treat them as anything special, 2) Don't add those moods at all, or 3) Add the moods, but require some special flag to use them. A special flag would require that emergency services who want to make use of those moods would need to request a flag to be added to their employees so they can use the moods but no one else can. The biggest problem there is that the emergency services would have to want their employees to use Waze and to use those moods in order to get support from them for something like that. In the US, I don't really see that happening, though maybe I'm wrong.
ImageImage
Area Manager: Michigan - Northern LP.
Waze running on Samsung Galaxy S3.
Riamus
 
Posts: 1043
Joined: Sun May 05, 2013 7:34 pm
Location: Summerfield, NC
Has thanked: 66 times
Been thanked: 218 times

Re: Vehicle types/ Navigation types

Postby Riamus » Mon Aug 26, 2013 5:25 pm

I agree about where you are likely to see the interest and where you are not likely to see it. And the suggestion of having the champs manage that is a good idea if they'd be willing. Of course, that would all depend on Waze being willing to implement it in the first place.

Having separate routing, real-time map positions, etc. could definitely be valuable, but would require significantly more work. But it does open some possibilities such as notifying ERVs of accidents or other issues directly. The issue there is accuracy. Would they be willing to trust that over a phone call? Not everywhere has 911 and not everyone probably has the phone number(s) for emergencies with them on the road, so calling isn't always an option. But when you call, you are providing information that can be acted on if you file an invalid report (at least in the US). If it's sent from Waze, will Waze need to send your phone number with the report so they know how to find someone who is entering invalid reports? With that issue, I'm not sure if it would ever be accepted, but there may be countries that are more willing to accept that kind of thing.

And I see similar value for other services such as tow trucks. Not everywhere will tow a broken down vehicle right away (I've seen broken down vehicles on state highways in MA for 1-2 weeks before being removed), but others don't allow them to sit there more than 24 hours. For such locations, marking it on the map lets towing companies know where to go to pick the vehicles up. You still run into issues with people marking things that aren't there, though.

There are just so many possibilities if you can work out the kinks. But whether or not there is interest and whether or not the problems can be worked out satisfactorily is the question.
ImageImage
Area Manager: Michigan - Northern LP.
Waze running on Samsung Galaxy S3.
Riamus
 
Posts: 1043
Joined: Sun May 05, 2013 7:34 pm
Location: Summerfield, NC
Has thanked: 66 times
Been thanked: 218 times

Re: Vehicle types/ Navigation types

Postby Riamus » Mon Sep 09, 2013 6:46 pm

If a road isn't allowed for normal traffic, it generally shouldn't be added (at least, not connected to the main roads). I'm not sure if there is something different in the Netherlands, but that seems to be pretty standard everywhere. Adding routes that normal drivers can't use can lead to routing problems for those drivers. And at this time, those are the people Waze is catering to. Eventually, Waze will start adding other methods of transportation that can include such special routes. Until then, they are probably not a good idea to add.
ImageImage
Area Manager: Michigan - Northern LP.
Waze running on Samsung Galaxy S3.
Riamus
 
Posts: 1043
Joined: Sun May 05, 2013 7:34 pm
Location: Summerfield, NC
Has thanked: 66 times
Been thanked: 218 times

PreviousNext

Return to Waze App

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google Feedfetcher