Will iPhone apps change the future of city wayfinding?
Exploring unknown cities for business or pleasure, for me, is always a joyful experience, walking around and getting into the city will enlighten your vision and makes you connect to the culture. Visiting the beautiful and exciting elements a city has to offer makes your trip an unforgettable visit. Getting information on how to get around in a city is essential for easy orientation and navigation.
Actually one of the most important factors that you will remember after visiting a city is how did you get around. What items did you use to navigate through a city? How did public transport interacts with the navigation possibilities that you have? What was your feeling and with the items you used to navigate and did you find your way? Where did you get your information from and was it sufficient enough?
Exploring a unknown city
When visiting a city there are different ways you can get there and after arriving you need to know where you are in the spatial environment in order to locate yourself and make decisions on where to go next.
The provided information at that point of entry is critical for easy city exploration, if the provided information is insufficient, you might turn the wrong way and not finding the locations you want or need to visit. Going the wrong way increases feelings of disorientation, distraction and anxiety. The feeling that you are loosing time on exploring a city trip is one of the worst psychological emotions you experience.
When visiting a new city is can be useful to check the cities website and obtain information about:
Public transport and available connections
between the various transportation services
Getting a map of the city and locate your hotel,
maybe even plan a trip
from your city point to
entry to the hotel
Maybe plan your trip via google maps and mark
all the points your want
Opening hours of the facilities you want to visit.
I’m that kind of guy that doesn’t do any of the suggested items as described above… I just try to explore the city using my senses and trying to find where I need to go next. Sometimes this is a great and joyful experience, sometimes it causes disorientation and arguments with the people I travel with at that time.