If Garmin’s like Apple, will the next Capt. Cook be a geocacher?
Speaking about how terrestrial navigation, at least in some ways, is now informing marine navigation, the big kahuna of non-marine GPS yesterday opened a fantastic looking flagship store on Michigan Ave in Chicago. It looks like Garmin took a cue from Apple—not a bad idea—creating many thousand elegant square feet where you can try all their gizmos, ask questions, take seminars, etc. Shoppers as passionate about GPSs as they are about iPods? Yeah, man!
Which is interesting. When I bought my Garmin 45 in, what, 1993 (when did that beauty arrive?), I already knew a lot about navigation, like most every other fool who’d ventured over the horizon. Boaters broke GPS! There were years there where I was proselytizing handheld plotters first to my hiking friends, then to my long distance driving friends. But the shoe may soon change feet.
I’m not sure that our children—weaned on geocaching, location-aware cell phones, arm bands that plot their jogs on Google Earth, who knows what—are going to sit on our knee for a nav lesson. “Hey, pops, do you mean to say that box you paid so much for won’t figure out your route, show hi res photo maps, or connect to the Web for user dock’n’dine recommendations?”
At any rate, I was honored to be invited by Garmin to the store opening—as a representative of old guard, I guess—but I already had other plans. I just arrived in Amsterdam for METS (starts Tuesday). In fact, I’m looking forward to seeing some new marine machines that Garmin is supposed to preview, but am also hoping to check out the POI advances on their car navigators and PNDs (Personal Navigation Device). I too just recently heard the term “PND”, but I’ll bet it’s not the last time.