What is positive about independence? The supportive Observations and surveys

An observation based primary research for the essay “what is positive about  independence? a comparison to maps and GPS” the lifestyle of users who are self sufficient without the aid of advanced technology.

This can be seen as an observation about how the user goes about their daily life, cataloguing their activities over the course of a day. Life of the user, may apply to identifying what activities the user makes use of, out of their need to navigate with/without assistive technology method


Use of map for distanceThe user begins with finding destination, understanding where it is, calculates distance and puts the collective information together to determine the best route. From this the user will continue on a journey, however if there is a change in the plan, the user will stop on the side of the road, consult the map and determine a new route.

The user believes that the use of maps allows him to maintain control without the need for assistive technology, however this needs time and effort and without it the user wont understand.



Vehicle observations


The user makes use of GPS, however when navigating he will apply the same process for navigating from his use of traditional maps.

The user applies his Cartography and maps skills, which involve analysing the surrounding routes and creates a plan, a method the user applies to GPS , considering it as a virtual tool.


A day in the life of the user observation video

(Use the video as reference to the UCD Essay)

This follows a observational video of the user, to understand routines and interactions, Highlighting his methods and routines when navigating within a mobile vehicle.

Personal Inventory

Documents objects of important (treasures) as evidence as their way of life in regards to how the user demonstrates independence in navigation. Maps, will remain event after the technology has lost its charge the map will still remain reliable with cartography skills. Binoculars provide sharper eyes that allow him to use his observational skills more effectively without technology. There is joy in being able to control your situation to find your own solutions using practical tools.

The user Survey Sound Recording

(Follow the time code of the user survey sound recording as referenced in the UCD Essay)

This sound recording  follows an survey interview with the view, discussing questions raised after the observations were made, in order to understand the users opinion.


Samples of Questions and answers raised in sound recording

Q.1: What would you say your process of using maps is?

“Well if you got a destination to got to, first of all work out where it is, work out the distance, how long its going to take and the best route”

Q.2: What does GPS bring to this process?

“I guess what GPS brings to the party is the system understands where there has been accidents and things like congestions, road works, and things that you generally wouldn’t be knowledgeable of.”

“The route that you probably have in mind, may change if you’re on the road, that’s one big thing that GPS brings to the party”

Q.3: Would you say you use the same method with traditional maps like the Street maps?

“Yeah you work out what the best route is, I’m not suggesting you work out an alternative route from looking at the map”

“If you come to an issue where you have to divert, best thing is to stop and check the map again”

“one drawback of maps is you cant possible drive and read a map and drive at the same time and then you got to stop,

“but with GPS and the navigation system can cope with that because generally will give you full warning of an issue, or even plan the route differently to what you would expect”

Q.4: What would you say your experience with maps before GPS is, like how did you use maps before GPS allowed you to access a map while your driving?

“I came from a cartography background, I understand the topography of the land, reading a map, using the map has a layout how steep the road is, you can read that if your knowledgeable about that”

Q.5: A comparison of not always being in control, would you say that compared to you use of maps you had control of where you wanted to go?

“Yeah you have ability to read the map and understand the features from the map expecting to come across, but again down to time and effort that you put into reading the map, you can understand what routes to run on.

Q.6: Can you think of similar technology that puts the user in control to find their own solution?

“People that use system for when they’re climbing, they can see the gradient steepness of what’s ahead of them” (5:20.00)

Q.7 Would you admit the technology taking control to provide solutions is more efficient?

Any system that takes away human error is a good thing but I think you lose enjoyment, you just let the equipment do the work and you sit and do something else, read the newspapers.

(Essay attached below)