I would choose a map over a sat nav any day – Blaise Tapp

Blaise Tapp fears our map reading skills will be lost forever because of our reliance on sat navs.
Blaise Tapp fears our map reading skills will be lost forever because of our reliance on sat navs.

We all have our pet hates, things that make us as hot under the collar as a Jeremy Corbyn disciple watching BBC Question Time. 

I have a long list of them which, among others, includes Audi drivers; teenagers or anybody that doesn’t remember Top of the Pops; those who use the phrase ‘back in the day’; and people I don’t know who address me as ‘mate’. ‘Sir’ will do.

But right at the very top of my own Room 101 wishlist comes the dreaded sat nav, a device that has reduced the car driving population to a mere shadow of its former self.

For many years I refused to get one, regarding it as an assault on my masculinity.

Like all issues of any significance in our house, I was eventually overruled and we became the not-so-proud owners of what has to be the smuggest sounding piece of equipment ever invented.

Call it looking at life through rose-tinted specs but before sat navs most drivers felt in control because at least one person in the car knew how to read maps but this is a skill which has, pretty much, been rendered redundant by the advances of technology.

Don’t take my word for it, ask Bradford Parkinson.

He is the leading engineer who headed the team that pioneered GPS technology for military purposes some 40 years ago.

Parkinson now decries society’s inability to map read.

He is right as being able to follow basic directions means that motorists are not slaves to a device, which can easily lead to them becoming distracted.

There have long been concerns that drivers are too busy looking at their intended direction of travel, rather than paying attention to potential hazards on the road.

There was a time that if you had gone out of your way, you would simply scour the streets, looking for somebody sensible to ask for directions.

The sat nav has also put paid to that, which is a shame as nobody really talks to strangers anymore as we are all to busy looking at Twitter or laughing at singing cats on YouTube.

We might not get lost any more, but do we really know where we are going?