Indeed, not so long ago, one lady sued Google because the directions its map offered led her (she believed) to be struck by a car.

Now Microsoft has been granted a patent that is designed to make its maps more pedestrian-friendly.

Somehow, this patent has immediately been dubbed the avoid ghetto feature.

The gist of it seems to be that Microsoft’s GPS–that allows you to reportedly be inserted into home windows phones in the future–will use enter from extra varied and up to date assets with a view to create instructed routes.

Among these sources are crime statistics. Which has led some to the thought that this will somehow be an insult to poor neighborhoods.

What is uncertain, a minimum of from my reading of the patent–which isn’t written through anything akin to a human hand or thoughts–is what kind of crime facts the GPS might make a selection to use.

It’s one thing to avoid areas where there might have occurred physical assaults and gunfire. It’s another to avoid, say, places where burglaries are popular, as one suspects quite a few allegedly nice areas are subject to burglars’ desires.

With a few spaces, past performance isn’t a ensure of long run effects. What if any individual the use of a course from this system does get mugged, shot, assaulted, or robbed? may they really feel entitled to sue Microsoft for the reason that direction was supposed to be ghetto-free?

The patent talks about the quality of the information. But quality is a subjective notion, so one wonders just whose assessment of quality will be deemed significant.

The patent also holds inside it any other little gemstones. It seeks to assist the pedestrian avoid harsh temperatures. a few people like harsh temperatures, however this system can even store other folks’s pedestrian knowledge to provide, one assumes, a extra customized heat-level for the direction.

How personalized should it be, though? My eyes perform slightly odd twitches when I read this sentence from the patent: Various features can integrate with route presentment, such as integrating an advertisement targeted to a pedestrian with a direction set.

Is this suggesting that Windows Phones will give pedestrians a route that will take them past specific ads? What a curious and slightly mind-altering thought.

One wonders whether those who use the system might also be offered an avoid ads option.