Waze Happening?


A few weeks back I wrote about a late night 65 mile tow from the “grapevine” to Bakersfield. Information about that post is HERE.

One of the things that happened during the conversation between Mario, the tow truck driver, and me was about his navigational tools.

As we rode the highway I would hear a female voice through his speaker say things like, “Watch out, vehicle on road shoulder.”  And, “Police at side of rode ahead.”  And “Police hidden at next exit.” And, “Be careful, accident ahead, traffic slowing.”

I was enamored, especially when I heard the “Police spotted ahead.”

Who was that voice and how could I get her to talk to me?

Mario told me he couldn’t get by without his driving app called “WAZE.” (wah zee)

So I checked it out and Amy downloaded it on her phone before we made a San Diego road trip.  The passenger in your car can have a ball with it, almost like playing one of those stupid Facebook games.
Waze

When you see a cop, a car on the side of the road, a road hazard, a wreck, slow traffic, etc. you can report it. Text or microphone. You are then thanked by hundreds of other “waze” users and you are awarded points.

Obviously don’t even look at the thing if you’re driving alone. Just let the  waze-gal tell you about upcoming problems.

I was low on petrol and thinking I better stop in the next five or ten miles when traffic in “North County” started to slow down. At the same exact moment, the “waze-girl” said there was an accident five miles ahead that had just happened. I moved over to the exit lane and was going to exit at Del Mar Heights Road. My mate, Amy, said, “No, go to the next exit. The Chevron station on Del Mar Heights is $3.59 a gallon. Next exit on Via de la Valle has a Mobil station charging $2.79.”  YES!

Another great feature of Waze is their road mapping system which beats Google or any other system I’ve seen.

Then I found out Google OWNS Waze.  They bought it in 2013.

The maps are colorful, easy to follow and tens of thousands of drivers are reporting everything from road conditions to gas prices.
Waze Report

Try it, you’ll like it.

One caution. We did not connect our Facebook Friends, Our Twitter Feed, Our phone connections, etc.  It is a huge social media thing that I’m not interested in. However, I can see the value of friends in separate vehicles being able to always know where the other person is on the road. Waze will do that for your friends, if you let it. At this point, I’d rather be a loner.

One other amazing thing:  When we were around L.A. we clicked on the “waze” count to see how many other Waze drivers were in the immediate vicinity. The number was 18,500.

Check it out if you’re on the road frequently:

https://www.waze.com/

About bakoheat

Writer/Musician
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