Monday, September 08, 2008

Walk, ride, drive?

Another location-based post.

Yesterday, as I was looking for information about Zevia, I went to their website, and asked where I could buy it locally. The closest store, I was told, is 5.76 miles away. I was unaware of the location, so I went to Google and asked for directions. As I plugged in the necessary information, I was astonished to see a new option I had never seen before on Google Maps: "By car."

"What's this?" I thought. "What other options do they offer me?"

Amazing! One of the options is "Public transportation."

What are the differences between the two maps?

Well, here is the first map:

And here is the "Public transportation" map:

Okay. Beyond the map itself, what other information do they give me?

Oh! This is interesting!

"Suggested trips with upcoming departures." And then detailed instructions.

Click on one of the symbols . . .

. . . and find the same kind of information as is in the left-hand column.

But what other alternatives do they offer?

"Walking"? What will that show?

Well, I get the map . . .

. . . and I get all the detailed directions:

And then something jumps out at me: the time.

Walking: three hours and 19 minutes. Wow!

How long would public transportation take?

Somewhere between about an hour and 15 minutes and an hour and 45 minutes.

And by car?

About 15 minutes!

And people wonder why we prefer our private cars to public transportation . . . or walking? How much is your time worth?
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