Moms Columns & Blogs

GPS notifications need to give a little more notice

The GPS lady is talking again …

“Slight right toward I-240 west, use I-70 west, then use the middle lane to take the I-240 west ramp, then merge onto I-240 west ramp.”

At least I think that’s what she said. It’s hard to tell because she always starts talking when somebody in the car is already talking and then I miss the whole first part.

Why is that? Why isn’t there some sort of notification sound to give us all a heads up that we’re about to be given critical driving instructions that are the difference between arriving at our destination and ending up in the wrong county. One of those nice little bells that says, “OK, everybody, pipe down, here it comes, and you don’t wanna miss this.”

The elevator people have that. They make it ding to let you know hey, the elevator’s here, the door’s about to open, everyone face forward and get ready to jump out of the way of the crowd that’s about to pop out.

And the airplane people have it too. That little bing that says, heads up we’re gonna tell you about our beverage service and how to open the door and exit the plane in the event we land in water – better listen.

We have yellow lights before the red light stops traffic. And flashing red lights before the railroad crossing bar comes barreling down.

So why does the GPS lady just start babbling without any notice? Because unless you are just quietly, attentively waiting for the next bit of instruction you’ll ...

“In a half mile keep right at the fork to continue to I-26 east, follow signs for I-240 west and 26 east I-40.”

What’d she say? In a mile fork left? Did anybody hear that? Did we miss the turn, or the fork? What was that? And why is she giving it to us all at once?

“In a quarter mile keep right at the fork to continue to I-26 east, follow signs for I-240 west and 26 east I-40.”

OK, so we haven’t missed the exit. But what I am missing is what everyone else in the car is saying to me. The GPS lady has literally interrupted every conversation we’ve tried to have today. I’m talking to the kids and she’s talking to me. If she could just for once, clear her throat or make a noise, or say, “attention please,” there might be some order to this thing.

If she wants to blurt something out, how about a weather report? Or where the next bathroom is? A Starbucks location would be nice, and much more useful than spewing a garbled set of directions that are a quarter of a mile away!

“Recalculating.”

Well … I heard THAT …

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