Occassional thoughts about orienteering

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Get smarter?


In the last couple of years I've done some experiments with armchair orienteering. Bascially, I've tested various ways of studying maps and various amounts of map study. I've tried to figure out what works for me. By "works" I mean what sort of map study seems to allow me to orienteer well without having done much in-the-forest technique training. I'm completely sold on the value of armchair orienteering.

Now, why might it work? I don't really know. But, I guess that studying a map can trick you brain into thinking your are actually orienteering. I understand that sports psychology-types think "visualization" is important and, obviously, looking at an O' map is a way to do that (and without having to listen to any relaxation tapes or go through any of the stuff like, "tense your muscles...now exhale and feel the muscle relax...").

Another thing that map study might do is exercise your brain. Which, I suppose, can't be a bad thing.

I was thinking of all this after reading a newspaper story about a BBC program (or I guess if it is BBC it'd be a "programme") called "Get Smarter in a Week." The Get Smarter in a Week web page has lots of little brain exercises, like: use your computer mouse with your wrong hand; take a shower with your eyes closed (?); memorize your shopping list; and navigate around your house blindfolded.

Comparing Maps

Thierry Gueorgiou posted a comparison of two maps of the same area. Comparing the two maps is intersting:

Check out the 1982 map
Now look at the 2006 map

My M40 eyes sure like the old map. But, that's old history and the new map would probably be a more fun to use as long as I had a magnifier. I'm glad to say that I'm not yet old and cranky enough to claim that the 1982 map is better and that things were better before.

posted by Michael | 8:03 PM


Comments: Post a Comment
March 2002April 2002May 2002June 2002July 2002August 2002September 2002October 2002November 2002December 2002January 2003February 2003March 2003April 2003May 2003June 2003July 2003August 2003September 2003October 2003November 2003December 2003January 2004February 2004March 2004April 2004May 2004June 2004July 2004August 2004September 2004October 2004November 2004December 2004January 2005February 2005March 2005April 2005May 2005June 2005July 2005August 2005September 2005October 2005November 2005December 2005January 2006February 2006March 2006April 2006May 2006June 2006July 2006August 2006September 2006October 2006November 2006December 2006January 2007February 2007March 2007April 2007May 2007June 2007July 2007August 2007September 2007October 2007November 2007December 2007January 2008February 2008March 2008April 2008May 2008June 2008July 2008August 2008September 2008October 2008November 2008December 2008January 2009February 2009March 2009April 2009May 2009June 2009July 2009August 2009September 2009October 2009November 2009December 2009January 2010February 2010March 2010April 2010May 2010June 2010July 2010August 2010September 2010October 2010November 2010December 2010January 2011February 2011March 2011April 2011May 2011June 2011July 2011August 2011September 2011October 2011November 2011December 2011January 2012February 2012March 2012April 2012May 2012June 2012July 2012August 2012September 2012October 2012November 2012December 2012January 2013March 2013April 2013May 2013July 2013September 2013