birdblogwhichisforbirds asked: How would you suggest replacing apps that require gps to work? Before smartphones I never went anywhere by myself unless I’d been shown the route multiple times by someone else. (This is due to Brain Problems, which I can explain more if necessary.) “learn to read paper map” is not workable advice for me. Should I get a gps that’s compatible w walking (do those exist)? Or do I just have to accept being spied on if I ever want to go anywhere alone (still better than being dependent real ppl imo)


No need to explain more, brain problems is brain problems and sometimes you need a particular tool to get around them. It’s not your fault for needing the tool and that’s part of why I’m so angry that protecting your privacy falls so heavily on the users instead of the manufacturers (my beef with smart homes: let me show you it – smart home devices are incredible for lots of disability reasons but not a one of them is really secure, so if you require smart home devices to improve your quality of life or make you more independent you’re forced to allow these invasions to your privacy)

So some GPSs do have good routing stuff that works with walking – Garmin comes to mind, and I know there’s stuff that’s a bit more “users shared this” than “google is watching you” out there among sporting/adventure/outdoor users.

But what you’re describing is a legitimate problem with mapping software that has to check back in with cell service or internet service instead of using simple GPS – it’s something that has really irritated me about using google maps over the years: I should be able to load a map then turn off my cell service and have it run along on GPS only (see many trips I’ve taken that have cell service for 98% of the drive then I have to rely on guessing for the last 2% because the gps isn’t updating because I’m out of cell tower range).

I think your best bet if you keep using your phone is probably to do something like disable location on most of your apps and then only enable your mapping app when you’re using it (and make sure that ad locations is off and don’t use the highly specific locations). Strangle the permissions as much as you can.

HOWEVER this ask got me to do some research and it looks like OsmAnd might be a good solution – it has offline maps for drivers and for pedestrians and the description of it includes some of my favorite tech-related words: “robust open-source” – the maps are totally open source though the app is not so keep an eye on those permissions too but at the very least any info collected doesn’t go straight to google.

(navigating offline maps is good though, this is super good, I’m going to install and test this app because I WANT THIS.)


#yes this #OSMAnd is so good #the interface is kind of a Lot sometimes but you can pretty much just ignore bits you don’t want to deal with #and I love having offline maps that *don’t fucking expire WTF Google* #and! if you run into a problem with the map data‚ you can just *go on OpenStreetMap and fix it* and it’ll be in the monthly map updates #I’ve also heard some praise for Organic Maps‚ though I haven’t tried it myself #I used MapFactor’s OSM-based version for a while and it was fine #so if you’re not particularly seeking open-source apps and don’t like the other two maybe try that #recs #Brin owns *two* 2010’s computers now #101 Uses for Infrastructureless Computers #maps

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