You are here: why we can find our way to the moon but get lost in the mall

Book Cover
Average Rating
Pub. Date:

A fascinating exploration of human navigation, both feat and foible, in the age of GPS and GoogleEarthWe live in a world crowded by street signs and arrows. With the click of a computer mouse we can find exact directions to just about anywhere on earth, and with a handheld GPS we can find our precise latitude and longitude, even in the remotest of places. But despite all our advancements, we still get lost in the mall, can’t follow directions to a friend’s house and, on camping expeditions, take wrong turns that can mean the difference between life and death.Many other species, however, have an innate sense of direction. Ants display surprisingly sophisticated behavior, traveling great distances without wasting a step. Monarch butterflies and migrating songbirds pilot even greater expanses, thousands of kilometers in some instances, to targets that they might never even have seen before. A homing pigeon can be driven halfway across a continent in a lightproof box and then, on release, find its way—unerringly-back to its loft. What is truly amazing, though, is that humans, the only animal that has come close to understanding how some of these magnificent navigational feats are performed, are rendered helpless by dense bush or even an unexpected turn in a maze of cubicles.In You Are Here, psychologist Colin Ellard explains how, over centuries of innovation, we have lost our instinctive ability to find our way, as we traverse vast distances in mere hours in luxurious comfort. Some cultures, such as the Inuit, retain the ability to navigate huge expanses of seemingly empty space, as their survival depends on it, but the rest of us have been so conditioned by our built-up world that we don’t really know how to get from point A to point B.Drawing on his exhaustive research, Ellard illuminates this disconnect from our world with great clarity and explains what it means, not just for our forays into the wilderness but for how we construct our cities, our workplaces, and even our homes and virtual worlds. Architects and city planners, he suggests, need to consider human behavior when designing human environments, and we all need to recognize that we are part of, not isolated from, the space around us.

More Details
Also in This Series
More Like This
Reviews from GoodReads
Loading GoodReads Reviews.
Staff View

Grouping Information

Grouped Work IDc6f7c85a-f57e-f38c-2717-8bc207c73114
Grouping Titleyou are here why we can find our way to the moon but get lost in the mall
Grouping Authorellard colin
Grouping Categorybook
Last Grouping Update2020-01-03 16:29:56PM
Last Indexed2020-01-22 04:39:59AM

Solr Details

authorEllard, Colin, 1958-
author_displayEllard, Colin
collection_arlingtonAdult Nonfiction
detailed_location_arlingtonCentral Adult Nonfiction
Bib IdItem IdShelf LocCall NumFormatFormat CategoryNum CopiesIs Order ItemIs eContenteContent SourceeContent FileeContent URLsubformatDetailed StatusLast CheckinLocationSub-location
ils:.b13039581.i14044730Central Adult Nonfiction153.752 ELLAR1falsefalseOn ShelfJan 03, 2020can
literary_formNon Fiction
literary_form_fullNon Fiction
local_callnumber_arlington153.752 ELLAR
owning_library_arlingtonArlington Public Library
Aurora Hills
Columbia Pike
Connection Crystal City
Detention Center
Local History
Bib IdFormatFormat CategoryEditionLanguagePublisherPublication DatePhysical Description
ils:.b13039581BookBooksFirst edition.EnglishDoubleday, [2009]328 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm.
Bib IdItem IdGrouped StatusStatusLocally OwnedAvailableHoldableBookableIn Library Use OnlyLibrary OwnedHoldable PTypesBookable PTypesLocal Url
ils:.b13039581.i14044730On ShelfOn Shelffalsetruetruefalsefalsetrue9999
subject_facetAnimal orientation
Orientation (Physiology)
Orientation (Psychology)
Space perception
title_displayYou are here : why we can find our way to the moon but get lost in the mall
title_fullYou are here : why we can find our way to the moon but get lost in the mall / by Colin Ellard
title_shortYou are here
title_subwhy we can find our way to the moon but get lost in the mall