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How Steve Killed Apple (Page 3)
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subego  (op)
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Jun 18, 2013, 10:36 PM
 
Originally Posted by Spheric Harlot View Post
Google Maps suffers from many of the same issues as Apple Maps did/does.
Now that's a mischaracterization.
     
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Jun 19, 2013, 12:54 AM
 
Really? How so?
     
subego  (op)
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Jun 19, 2013, 02:33 AM
 
Google maps does not suffer from lacking public transportation.
Google maps does not suffer from a search function which sucks a giant bag of dicks.
Google maps does not suffer from tiling.
Google maps does not suffer from a lack of contrast.
Google maps does not suffer from big blank areas without data.
Google maps does not suffer from listing Cook County Jail four miles away from its actual location.
Google maps does not suffer from the impression convienence stores are gas stations.
     
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Jun 19, 2013, 02:42 AM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
Google maps does not suffer from lacking public transportation.
The quality of Google Maps depends strongly on where you are.
Here in Fukuoka (a city of 1.4 million), I cannot use Google Maps to reliably get from A to B, because there are several companies in public transport which have not shared their data with Google. Also last time I was living in Munich, it did not get the public transportation part right (although that may have changed since).

Nobody is arguing that Apple Maps is better, but depending on where you are, also Google Maps has errors (just like any map). One of the differences is that Google has had years to incorporate improvements, but fundamentally, they're faced with the same problems.
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Jun 19, 2013, 02:49 AM
 
^ pre-empted.

subego: You are wrong. All of those things DO affect Google Maps — perhaps not the specific examples you happen to be aware of, but in general, Google Maps are far from perfect.

I have found Apple Maps quite reliable, and search seems to have improved substantially over the past year or so.

Google never offered public transport directions here.

No, Apple Maps are not as good or comprehensive as Google's, but at least where I've been using them (urban and rural Northern Germany), they are FAR better than I'd think from all the bullshit I read. And I remember Google Maps being off on occasion (been using Apple Maps pretty much exclusively since iOS 6).
     
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Jun 19, 2013, 03:39 AM
 
Also, it's worth noting that one of the reasons Google's maps are better is because they had five years of exclusive on-the-ground support from iOS users.
     
subego  (op)
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Jun 19, 2013, 03:54 PM
 
Originally Posted by Spheric Harlot View Post
subego: You are wrong. All of those things DO affect Google Maps — perhaps not the specific examples you happen to be aware of, but in general...
Extraordinary claims require at least a shred of proof.

Let's start with some softballs:

What do I have to do to get Google Maps to tile?
Take a screenie displaying how Google maps has low contrast.
Take a screenie or two of Google putting a little gas symbol over a place which sells no gas. I could provide over 100 examples from Apple Maps with almost zero effort. I'm feeling generous. Show me three from Google Maps.
     
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Jun 19, 2013, 09:10 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
Extraordinary claims require at least a shred of proof.
What do you mean, extraordinary? The fact that Google's support for features outside the US is lagging behind is well-known. For instance, transit information for the German railway (Deutsche Bahn) was added September last year, but is still missing other regional train companies, support for Munich was supposedly added in November 2012. (I moved to Japan in July 2012, so I'm glad my memory wasn't off.)

It shows that Apple has a very long way to go, too, because reaching agreements with all these companies to share data takes time. But it also goes to show that outside of the US, your mileage (rather kilometerorage) with Google Maps can vary depending on what you want to do and where you want to go.
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subego  (op)
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Jun 19, 2013, 09:56 PM
 
The claim was Google suffered from all these issues.

I picked three (I can pick whichever ones I want since the claim is ALL) and asked for evidence of of that claim.

Can you provide the evidence? Your previous post did not address either of the three examples I asked for.


Just to jump to the end, I'm going to say you (or Spheric) cannot provide examples because Google Maps does not in fact suffer from these three issues.

I also need to point out I'm not talking about public transportation directions, I'm talking about whether Apple Maps even represents its existence.
     
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Jun 19, 2013, 10:27 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
The claim was Google suffered from all these issues.

I picked three (I can pick whichever ones I want since the claim is ALL) and asked for evidence of of that claim.
In this post your list has more than three items. Both Spheric and me homed in on the first item (public transport) since it is what I need most often (looking up public transit schedules and routes). And then you posted a second list omitting this item and ignoring our posts on that subject. I don't enjoy being made to shoot on moving targets.
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Jun 20, 2013, 06:27 AM
 
No. This is incorrect.

What Spheric did is claimed is they were all wrong. That's not homing in on the first item, that's homing in on all the items. If one of my claims is correct, then his claim is incorrect.

That said, I have since addressed the rough structure of my public transportation argument, and shall repeat it again. I'm not talking about directions, I'm talking about the public transportation even being marked on the map as existing. Where you live, does Apple Maps provide the location of public transportation stops? In Chicago, Google Maps lists the location of every bus stop. Apple Maps lists no bus stops.

To repeat, this is the meaning of "lacks public transportation", what you are discussing is "lacks public transportation directions".

Is it fair I get some of the points which were claimed to be all wrong addressed now?
     
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Jun 20, 2013, 07:18 AM
 
I am also curious how you can quote me to bitch me out for not addressing your point, moving targets, etc., and then snip the part where I remark upon exactly the point you're talking about.

WTF?
     
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Jun 20, 2013, 08:25 AM
 
I wonder how much I would have gotten bitched out if I hadn't at the last moment thought to myself "I better give a quick shout-out to the public transportation lest I be thought of as dodging the issue".
     
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Jun 20, 2013, 09:46 AM
 
I HAVE had misplaced locators on Google Maps in the past.
I HAVE had low-quality/low-contrast images on Google Maps in the past.
I HAVE had "WTF?" moments with Google, and if you claim you haven't, I'm disinclined to believe you.

If you want or need to get specific and argue individual proof, you're on your own.

I'm interested in conversation, and am making the point that Google Maps is not perfect, and that the issues plaguing Apple Maps are fundamentally the same that affect every mapmaker. Google has had a couple years longer to fix them.

From here:
The Map Room: Mapping Errors
Google Hiring Workers to Fix Map Errors
Wednesday, May 19, 2010 at 12:35 PM • Mapping Errors, Online Maps

TechFlash: “Google is hiring an army of 300 temporary workers in Kirkland as part of a yearlong campaign to improve the accuracy of Google Maps. … The workers will be part of a one-year initiative to correct mistakes in Google…
Now doesn't that sound familiar…

Oh wait, from 2009:
The Map Room: 'A Significant Step Down in Quality'
the new Google dataset in the U.S. is a significant step down in quality from what they had before, and from what Microsoft, Yahoo and MapQuest have (via Tele Atlas or NAVTEQ).Google clearly hopes to clean up the data fairly quickly by having users notify them of errors. But looking at the situation, I think that they may have a few challenges with this. One is just that the number of errors seems to be pretty large. But more importantly, I think the question for Google is whether consumers will be motivated to help them fix up the data, when there are plenty of good free alternatives available.
I wasn't aware of this, and find it tremendously amusing.



Interesting to see what kind of stuff gets reported, and fixed (most of these are from 2007, and long since fixed):
MapOfStrange.com - Strange things in Google Maps
     
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Jun 20, 2013, 10:03 AM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
That said, I have since addressed the rough structure of my public transportation argument, and shall repeat it again. I'm not talking about directions, I'm talking about the public transportation even being marked on the map as existing. Where you live, does Apple Maps provide the location of public transportation stops? In Chicago, Google Maps lists the location of every bus stop. Apple Maps lists no bus stops.
In Hamburg, Google Maps lists no bus stops.

It does show train and subway stations.

I assumed that you meant directions including public transport, since that was what was widely discussed as a big change when Apple replaced their on-board map service.

It made no difference here, except that the local public transport company's app now actually has a hook into the system, so the net advantage to me is that when I ask for directions using public transport, I actually GET directions, since the Maps app can now automatically open the corresponding app and pass on the direction request.
     
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Jun 20, 2013, 01:51 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
Then we had the combo of Glass going "live" and the 2013 I/O conference, and I realized that view of Google from the video was wrong.

It's actually a little frightening how wrong that was.
So wait, what is their scary master plan, and what's so scary/different about it, compared with what you thought Goog was beforehand? I know, I'm bad at reading between the lines, can you clue me in anyway?
     
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Jun 20, 2013, 05:44 PM
 
Their entire existence to this point has just been an elaborate plot to make Hamburgers miss the bus.
( Last edited by ort888; Jun 20, 2013 at 11:57 PM. )

My sig is 1 pixel too big.
     
subego  (op)
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Jun 20, 2013, 10:57 PM
 
Originally Posted by Spheric Harlot View Post
I'm interested in conversation, and am making the point that Google Maps is not perfect, and that the issues plaguing Apple Maps are fundamentally the same that affect every mapmaker. Google has had a couple years longer to fix them.
Ahem... why didn't you just say that then?

You said Google suffers from what Apple Maps does/did.

If Apple Maps did suffer (past tense), you imply issues which can be (and have been) solved by Apple. If Google Maps suffers (present tense) these problems, this implies Google Maps has not solved those problems.

Right Now, the render engine in Google Maps runs like greased lightning, the Apple Maps render engine is pokey. Right now, the Google Maps render engine draws streets with more than ample contrast between them and the surrounding environment, Apple Maps draws them so they're hardly visible:





Apple Maps suffers (present tense) from a contrast problem which plagues the whole app. When Apple Maps is borked on such a fundamental level, yes, I think it's a mischaracterization to say Google Maps suffers (present tense) from the same problems.

I stand corrected on the public transportation. Kinda sad Google hasn't whipped that up considering the time they've had. That said, Chicago is in Apple's home country.
     
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Jun 20, 2013, 11:09 PM
 
Originally Posted by Uncle Skeleton View Post
So wait, what is their scary master plan, and what's so scary/different about it, compared with what you thought Goog was beforehand? I know, I'm bad at reading between the lines, can you clue me in anyway?
In that post I claimed Google wants to algorithmically read your mind, and seems to have the big data guns to make that start happening sooner rather than later.

Is this old hat already?
     
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Jun 21, 2013, 09:39 AM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
In that post I claimed Google wants to algorithmically read your mind, and seems to have the big data guns to make that start happening sooner rather than later.

Is this old hat already?
Not so much old hat as ambiguous. We throw around the term mind reading pretty loosely (mainly because there has not been a lot of real-world examples forcing us to decide on precision... yet?). You could be talking about the card guessing game (from Ghostbusters) or you could be talking about the choosing of global destruction game (from Ghostbusters, of course). There's a pretty big gulf between the two, namely that the first is only a simulation of mind reading (it's just informed guessing) while the latter is the real thing (actually extracting something from the mind (one presumes; it's just fiction (one presumes))). I understand why I should be concerned about the extraction version. I don't really get why I should be concerned about the informed guessing version.

Another way to say what I'm trying to say, is to declare that mind-reading is not itself a goal, but a method of achieving a goal. Is the goal to steal our secrets, the secrets stored exclusively in meat memory? Or is it to do more of what they already do, provide search results and ads? Or is it to deny us access to the Hamburgerian public transit? The reason I ask is not just to fish for ideas for my MacNN fan fiction, it's because some of these goals are achievable through this kind of "algorithmic" mind reading, and others simply aren't.

Then again, the whole google glass thing could be a way for them to trick us into wearing one of these:

Mind-Reading Experiment Reconstructs Movies in Our Mind | Fox News

^ that's the kind of mind reading I worry about, the extraction kind
     
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Jun 21, 2013, 04:04 PM
 
"Algorithmic" was meant as shorthand for it not being the extraction type. It's purely predictive.

It would also probably be best for you to substitute "frightening" in the original quote with "shocking and surprising".
     
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Jun 21, 2013, 05:22 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
Ahem... why didn't you just say that then?

You said Google suffers from what Apple Maps does/did.

If Apple Maps did suffer (past tense), you imply issues which can be (and have been) solved by Apple. If Google Maps suffers (present tense) these problems, this implies Google Maps has not solved those problems.
I did say that. And yes, I mean to imply that Google Map has not entirely solved their problems.

I'm not going to scour 500 million square kilometers of material to prove that point, though.

Here's what I said:
Originally Posted by Spheric Harlot View Post
All of those things DO affect Google Maps — perhaps not the specific examples you happen to be aware of, but in general, Google Maps are far from perfect.

[….] I remember Google Maps being off on occasion (been using Apple Maps pretty much exclusively since iOS 6).
Yes, I referenced your specific points, but the basic gist of my posts isn't tied to being able to find three instances globally of incorrectly mapped locations.

I also mentioned:
Originally Posted by Spheric Harlot View Post
Also, it's worth noting that one of the reasons Google's maps are better is because they had five years of exclusive on-the-ground support from iOS users.
And I posted a link showing that a mere four years ago, people were massively criticising Google for exactly the kind of issues plaguing Apple Maps last October (except for "low-contrast" maps, which I've personally never had a problem with. I'm a little surprised occasionally by which information Apple Maps chooses to omit when you're zoomed out) and, in fact, hired a crack team in 2010 to help deal with the flood of error reports.

So if Google Maps are actually perfect now and completely devoid of issues (yeah right), this is something that has happened within the last three years, and it is probably not beyond the realm of possibility for a company like Apple.
     
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Jun 21, 2013, 06:27 PM
 
Calling your claim a mischaracterization is not equivalent to saying Google is perfect, or even close to perfect.

My argument for why this is a mischaracterization is Apple Maps falls down on things so basic, focusing on the things which they both fall down on is ignoring the forest for the trees.

I listed a bunch of basic, pretty much unforgivable things which Apple screwed up as evidence for that argument. I fully admit every single piece of evidence didn't pass muster. You corrected me, and FWIW, I honestly appreciate that. You also displayed no desire to run data comparisons on the two apps. I'm fine with that. In fact I'm so fine with it I decided to respect it 100% and bring up the pieces which have nothing to do with data comparisons.

The problem (as I see it) is having respected your desire, I'm still getting slammed for asking you to make data comparisons. That's not what my last post did, it was specifically about how Apple and Google present their data.

Google presents the data in a way which is, for lack of a better term, visible. Compare the visibility of the streets in the two screen grabs I provided. This has nothing to do with their data, it's how they chose to write the respective apps.

Being able to clearly see streets is the fundamental building block of a map for Pete's sake.

I think even looking at it as them suffering the same data problems requires overlooking one of them has massive issues even displaying the data in a usable form in the first place.
     
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Jun 21, 2013, 07:01 PM
 
I've switched over entirely to Apple Maps, I'm quite satisfied with it now. It even worked well in Italy, which was surprising.
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Jun 21, 2013, 07:59 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
The problem (as I see it) is having respected your desire, I'm still getting slammed for asking you to make data comparisons. That's not what my last post did, it was specifically about how Apple and Google present their data.
Fair enough.

Originally Posted by subego View Post
Google presents the data in a way which is, for lack of a better term, visible. Compare the visibility of the streets in the two screen grabs I provided. This has nothing to do with their data, it's how they chose to write the respective apps.
Exactly. It's a CHOICE Apple made. They don't use color, they use thickness of the streets to signify importance. And in doing so, they remove a whole bunch of clutter by reducing unimportant side streets to simple lines (incidentally, there's an extra street marked in the Apple map that's not on Google, at top center).

I'm not entirely sure it's the best choice they could have made, but it certainly isn't due to incompetence or lack of proficiency at being an information service company.

Also, did you catch that there's a number of locations in Apple's maps that are missing in Google's (and vice versa)?

Originally Posted by subego View Post
Being able to clearly see streets is the fundamental building block of a map for Pete's sake.
But being able to see relevant information at a glance is the fundamental function of a map.

I agree that Google shows MORE info at a glance; the question is whether that's actually better.

I think I'd prefer something halfway in-between, but I do like Google's yellow-marked main roads. Apple reserves that for highways.


Originally Posted by subego View Post
I think even looking at it as them suffering the same data problems requires overlooking one of them has massive issues even displaying the data in a usable form in the first place.
Again, I'm not sure if a conscious choice on how to focus information qualifies as a "massive issue". If it presents grave problems, it was probably not so good a choice, and will/must be corrected.

I'm not really having any problems — though I'll certainly be paying a lot more attention in the near future, thanks to this thread.
     
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Jun 21, 2013, 08:03 PM
 
Originally Posted by Shaddim View Post
I've switched over entirely to Apple Maps, I'm quite satisfied with it now. It even worked well in Italy, which was surprising.
That's because Apple Maps was *telling* you it was Italy. It was actually directing you around Near West Side in Chicago.
     
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Jun 22, 2013, 12:49 AM
 
Originally Posted by Spheric Harlot View Post
incidentally, there's an extra street marked in the Apple map that's not on Google, at top center
There's one on the bottom right too...

However, Apple Maps is too dunb to realize these are alleys.
     
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Jun 23, 2013, 12:41 PM
 
testing
     
 
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