GPS: First consumer GPS device that solicits feedback on destinations and routes. When the...

...vehicle has supposedly arrived at a business location that the GPS unit says exists, it asks the driver if the business is there ("Yes, it's here.", "Not here.", or "Gone out of business.").  [One of the newest pain-in-the-ass experiences that drivers can "enjoy" is using a GPS' business directory to find a business, driving all the way there, and finding it doesn't exist there anymore, if ever.  This challenge at least allows drivers to inform the GPS company of this fact so it can research it and update their business directory accordingly.]  When the vehicle is supposedly driving where the GPS says there are no roads/highways, it asks the driver to touch anywhere on its screen if he is actually driving on a road.  [One of the newest comical experiences that drivers can "enjoy" is driving where the GPS says there's no road and the GPS then constantly "recalculating" as the driver continues to defy the GPS by driving where it thinks there is no road.]  When a driver puts in a specific street address, the GPS cross-references that address with its database and if its records indicate it is a business address, it asks the driver if the business(es) on record is the one she is wanting to go to.  If there is no business on record at that address, it asks the driver if the address is a business address, residential, or "other."  If it is a business, it asks the business' name.  If the driver doesn't want to go through the hassle of using the touch-screen keyboard, the GPS gives the driver the option of "Yes, but no time to give it." and still records the address as a business address for the GPS company to research.  All of this feedback information is then uploaded to the servers of the GPS company the next time the driver updates their GPS and then the GPS company can use it to improve its maps. 

Future Challenges: First consumer GPS company to:

1) Install a machine learning program into their GPS devices that tracks the movement of the vehicle to determine where stop signs and stop lights are located.  [If all vehicles stop at a certain GPS location on a road or highway, that indicates a stop sign is located there.  If some vehicles stop near a certain location and some don't, that indicates a stop light is located there.  This can then help determine the fastest route by taking into consideration routes that have less stop signs and stop lights than other routes.]  Also, the learning program tracks how the driver gets to their destination in comparison to what it recommends.  [Some GPS programs give elaborate ways to turn one's vehicle around or get to a destination that drivers know is ridiculous, ignore, and take a shorter route to get there.]  Then when the driver updates the GPS' maps, the GPS device sends the stops-and-starts and deviation in driving that the driver has done since the last time its maps were updated so the GPS company's servers can learn from the drivers that use its devices.

2) Have their GPS device ask the driver if they wish to take the fastest or "most scenic" route to their destination.  [There are superhighways, highways and backroads which are registered as "scenic" with US states that GPS units could take advantage of for those drivers who are not in a rush and would enjoy nice scenery along the way.]

3) To provide a "Scenic Drive" option whereby the driver can go for a nice scenic drive with no destination in mind.  When this option is selected, the GPS unit asks how long they'd like the drive to be (possibly giving them choices in hour units) and then uses the scenic road maps in its memory to construct a scenic drive for them.  The GPS device must keep a memory of past scenic drives and ask the driver if they want a new scenic drive or to repeat an older one.  If the driver wants to drive a past scenic route, the GPS lists past scenic routes taken from most recent to oldest.  At the end of the "Scenic Drive", the GPS asks the driver for their input on how scenic the drive was: "great", "good", "fair", "poor", and "not scenic at all."  This feedback then is sent back to the GPS company when the GPS' maps are next updated so better scenic drives can be constructed in the future.  [Some people, especially middle-age and older couples, like to go out for what was once called a "Sunday drive."  No destination really set in mind: more to go and see beautiful scenery.  The "Scenic Drive" option helps such drivers do just that.]

4) Do the same as Future Challenge #3 but also for "Fall Colors."  [Every fall, many people love going out for a drive to see the fall colors.  This future challenge enables their GPS devices to take them on the most scenic routes that are most in color at the time they're wanting to do so.]  If local fall colors are not yet in season or past season, the GPS informs the driver how far they'd have to drive to see such or, if there are no fall colors yet or they're already over within 100 miles, it informs the driver of this too.

5) Coordinate with a local city blog that gives loop driving routes to see the best local holiday yard displays for the next upcoming holiday.  The GPS device then enables drivers to get to and take the loop from wherever they are.  The GPS device telling people where to stop along the route and even which way to look ("Award-winning holiday display on your right.").

6) Build into their GPS devises gyroscopic sensors that can tell when the vehicle is being bounced around by a bad road and this information uploaded to the GPS servers so all future GPS devices can be informed of such bad bumpy roads.  Then GPS owners should be able to also select "Smooth Roads Only" as a map creation criteria for the GPS to take into consideration when developing routes.  [Road and highway maintenance departments will also then be able to tap into this information base to help them identify roads that are in the most need of repair.]

...tap into:

7) A US city's traffic control center and to use that real-time knowledge to direct its user vehicles around traffic jams.  [This should help reduce traffic congestions in cities.]

8) New York City's or City of Los Angeles' traffic control center and to use that real-time knowledge to direct its user vehicles around traffic jams.

9) All city traffic control centers in the USA and use that real-time knowledge to direct its user vehicles around traffic jams.

10) All city traffic control centers in the world and use that real-time knowledge to direct its user vehicles around traffic jams.

11) All city traffic control centers in the world, use that real-time knowledge to direct its user vehicles around traffic jams, and have this program used by an autonomous vehicle to better navigate such cities.  To win this future challenge, the autonomous vehicle must successfully have used the program in at least one city on each of the world's seven continents.  The autonomous vehicle's GPS navigation app must have redirected the vehicle to avoid at least one traffic jam in each of those cities.

First cellphone app to do all of the above and cost:

12) $250 or less.

13) $50 or less.

14) $10 or less.

15) $2 or less.

16) Nothing.  [The free app likely provided by a corporate sponsor (gas station chain, fast food restaurant chain, car insurance company, etc.) that wants to get a plug everytime the GPS device is turned on and the person goes out for a drive.  The plug likely only being a text plug on the smartphone's screen and not an audio plug so not to annoy drivers.]

If you would like to discuss this challenge with others, click here to go to this challenge's discussion forum.

All Rights Reserved