VIDEO: GPS Frustration

STARKVILLE, Miss. (WCBI) – Maps and atlas’ are a resource of the past. The majority of us depend on our GPS to get from point A to point B.

“I mean it’s hard, it’s hard to find different places if you’ve never been there before,” says Andrew Vasser.

We’ve all been there before. Lost and no clue where to go; when the device we depend on takes us to unknown places.

Rent-A-Center delivery Specialist, Andrew Vasser, has had this happen more than once.

“Well when you go out to like rural areas like in Macon and Brooksville or Caledonia and New Hope, the addresses are always different and we always somehow get lost,” says Vasser.

And he’s not alone.

Professors at Mississippi State do research in Geo-location sciences.

“GPS is a timing system, okay, it’s an arranging system. That means it has accurate automatic clocks. There are 31 satellites orbiting the Earth, just for GPS and they basically triangulate to find your location,” says Dr. Shrinidhi Ambinakudige.

There are many reasons your device could be giving you an invalid reading.

“It depends on the hardware, the map and there are several errors because the satellite signal has to pass through that mobile piece and for example if your driving through an area where you have these sky scrapers, at that time what can happen is the signal can hit those buildings and change the direction. It can give you wrong locational information,” says Ambinakudige.

Another interference could be areas that are heavily congested with mountains and trees. There are more precise devices available, if you’re willing to pay the price.

“This is like 90 bucks, but this is very very accurate, like centimeters away accurate,” says Ambinakudige.

Other devices can use up to 6 satellites at once to pull location information. Utility workers depend on more rigid instruments, like this, because they are almost always correct.

The best thing to do is regularly update your equipment and devices.

“You have to update the maps very frequently. They say about 40 percent of the roads will be updated every year so there will be new roads and new paths and things like that. So that can create problems, keep updating the maps,” says Ambinakudige.


Categories: Local News

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