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This is a question Old stuff I still know

Our Ginger Fuhrer says that he could still code up a simple game idea in Amstrad Basic, while I'm your man if you ever need to rebuild the suspension on an Austin Allegro (1750 Equipe version). This stuff doesn't leave your mind - tell us about obsolete talents you still have.

(, Thu 30 Jun 2011, 17:04)
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I can still read a map, which increasingly these days seems a rare skill. I say this because in my work I regularly come across professionals who are required to do so daily and yet seem completely incapable and with our satnav reliant society people seem to be less and less aware of how to properly use a map.

Ok I'm going to go off on one a bit here but what the hell, it seems this weeks question is more a compilation of cheats for old games anyway, what's one more guy nerding out gonna do?

Maps are bloody fantastic things. With a compilation of different data, overlays etc. you can learn everything you ever need to know about a place. As an undergraduate geologist I spent hours pouring over them every single week working out exactly what features I could follow in the field. As a boy scout I carried one with me as I led troops of kids not much younger than myself on epic hikes (or at least they seemed so at the time). I've traveled all over the place using road maps to work out the best routes and sensible diversion (a definite one up on on satnavs) and as I sit at my desk (not working but boring you lot) I have 2 seperate mapping programns open which tell me all kinds of information about land uses, legal notices, development projects and floodplains. I don't even live in this area and most of these places I haven't been to, but if you told me you lived there I'd probably be able to work out exactly what your street looks like in a number of seconds. With next to no effort at all. It's really not that difficult. You can teach kids to do it at school and make it fun and it's not a bad skill to have.

And yet yesterday while walking my Dogs I saw a man driving along an old (heavily) rutted farm track in a vauxhall zafira with 3 children in the back. He had already pulled off a significant amount of body work from his car and as he passed about 100m up the track from me he threw his expensive* TomTom satnav out the window.
Like I say, probably should have looked at a map.

*might have been free, they do seem to give this shite away.
(, Mon 4 Jul 2011, 16:59, 5 replies)
Never leave home without a map! :)
Whenever the family are off exploring you can bet I'll have a map of the place. I love them, they show so much of the place in question.
I even navigated around London with map and compass when I had to pop down there a few years ago.
(, Mon 4 Jul 2011, 17:29, closed)
I'm now doing my dissertation for my masters in renewable energy
but did a BSc in Geography before that. Last week I had a supervisor meeting, but my supervisor was running half an hour late so I was sprawled in the middle of the coffee room with my map of woodland I'm planning to create - great conservation was my map - half an hour well spent
(, Mon 4 Jul 2011, 19:12, closed)
Sat-navs are ace.
And, like any piece of lowest-bidder technology, not to be relied on exclusively. They're best used as a handy aide-mémoire after already working out the route on a map. I've got an atlas of Britain and an A-Z of London in my car, for when the sat-nav inevitably goes tits-up.
(, Tue 5 Jul 2011, 0:10, closed)
He's not wrong
I've got a satnav for work, but when work involves driving a 44 tonne HGV, you take the instructions with a pinch of salt. If the destination is really rural or you can see a railway line across the route, it's good idea to ring them. There's an industrial estate in Kent where if you're over 13' high you need an escort in and out, and if you get the custard powder factory at Knighton (Streetview ST20 OQJ) it's best just to stick a cork up your arse and kiss your loved ones goodbye.
(, Tue 5 Jul 2011, 9:33, closed)

My gran used to have the OS co-ordinates of her house written on the pad next to the phone (house was very rural) so if there were any problems we could give them to the emergency services they would know exactly where you are.

Fast forwaqrd to now, ambulances still get lost in that area and have to ask at farms for directions to houses / other farms where they need to be after the sat-nav lets them down
(, Tue 5 Jul 2011, 20:14, closed)

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