Until cars drive themselves and we absolutely can't get lost, automakers and sat nav companies are steadily enhancing the graphics of navigation systems to make it easier to find the next right turn. Navigation systems in Renaults, for instance, provide a graphic representation of buildings that you'll see as you drive along, and now Microsoft, working with researchers at the University of Konstanz in Germany, have added video to navigational maps.
The project took the snapshots of cities collected by mapping companies (like Google Streetview does) and 'plays' them like video at important sections of the route. The text route and route overview are still provided, the video simply aids in noting or remembering where you need to remember a crucial direction.
You can watch the video before you actually get in your car so that, like cheating for an exam, you'll visually recognize the turn or a landmark when the time comes. The photographs are also skewed as necessary to create the right perspective, and when you get to a turn, the video will look in the proper direction beforehand so that you can note specific features. It's currently still in trial phase, but during the first study it improved people's ability to follow direction by 20 percent. Follow the jump to watch the video, and here's to no more getting lost. Soon.
[Source: Microsoft and MIT]