Microsoft adds cabbies' knowledge to maps
Microsoft researchers designing personal taxi driver for future GPS
Researchers working for Microsoft in Beijing are working on incorporating the fabled knowledge of local taxi drivers into a future GPS mapping service.
The problem Microsoft are trying to overcome is that the shortest route from point A to B in a city is not always the quickest. The scheme works by tracking some 33,000 of Beijing's cabs and recording when they deviate from the course with the shortest distance, as when avoiding congested areas, for instance. The software, which Microsoft are calling "T-Drive", then merges this information with GPS data to calculate routes that are not necessarily shorter, but quicker for the motorist all the same.