Can You imagine Japan?
What is first to appear in Your mind? Is it a pale pink tree with its petals flying in the air? Or maybe it is a magnificent mountain, the slopes of which are covered with peculiar plants. A mesmerizing sunset on the ocean? Social media tend to paint a picture with pastel colors, describing the nature of this country as tender and fragile. And while there is some truth in this idyll, deep under the surface the anger and power of volcanoes awaits for its hour. Sounds overly dramatic; however, there are more than a hundred of active volcanoes on the islands. In fact, Japan is also known for the largest earthquake activity in the world. But for the sake of this interview let’s settle with the image of one gorgeous Japanese spring.
Today we will chat with a man from this amazing country. Rogatka enjoys cycling in Tokyo with his wife. When they go for longer distances, for instance, sightseeing around Japan, they use a car or a train.
“Recently, my friend and I have gone cycling to Kujukuri beach in Chiba. It was one of the most comfortable trips I have ever had. We used bicycles and a train.”
Rogatka refers to B.B.BASE trains. These give new opportunities for cyclists, providing them with a quick and convenient way of getting to the ideal location, from where they can continue their journey by bike. Rogatka and his wife started travelling about 3 years ago. Their first trip a group cycling event at the foot of Mount Fuji was in 2017. Rogatka only started using OsmAnd last year.
“I tried various applications, but I think only OsmAnd supports voice navigation of my own route, this function is the most important to me. When cycling through a tourist destination for the first time, I always create a new cycling route in advance. My prep routine looks like this: I start with STRAVA to create a route beforehand, then, I convert the created route to GPX file and import it into OsmAnd. When the app performs all the navigation, it is much easier for us to follow the route smoothly. It is very helpful, I am able to lead my companion without using hands or staring at the screen of my smartphone.”
However, Rogatka says that there are some aspects of navigation that are not perfect. When the app uses a custom route, Y-intersections are not read properly, so the app leads You straight.
“In such a case, it is necessary to devise a way to add a stop to the self-made route. To make sure, you can check the final edited track by using the simulation function. The difficulty is that the simulation takes a long time.”
On OSM website You can find loads of guidelines and helping tips for travelers, especially on the most confusing and demanding subjects, such as Y intersections.
“I use bone conduction headphones for voice navigation, because Japanese municipal ordinances prohibit using ones that cover ears. Voice navigation by OsmAnd is so useful, it is indispensable when cycling in unknown lands!”
Rogatka says that if he uses only voice navigation, OsmAnd will not consume sufficient amount of battery on his device.
“Since navigation is possible without displaying the screen, the battery consumption is about 70% when launched in parallel with other applications, even if you use it all day.”
We want to be better for You that is why we appreciate all the feedback we receive. The data of the app is gradually getting bigger, so it can be hard to control it. Never hesitate to contact us in case You find a flaw that needs fixing.
“The simulation function of OsmAnd is extremely interesting, but I think it will be more convenient if a user is able to adjust the speed. Currently, simulations of long distance routes take far too long. Also, I am not sure whether it is due to my misconfiguration or the app, the automatic navigation with normal navigation features is not very reliable. We hope that OsmAnd will develop in the future!”
One of the greatests aspects of our interviews is the chance to see the world through the pictures of fellow travelers. The photos You have just seen depict Japan in its peace and grace. Maybe social media are not wrong after all - positive image cheers us up and nudges us to travel to those fairytale places, to see the beauty of nature, to breathe the fresh air of the mountains, and to listen to the song of the ocean.
Have a great time. See You in the next interview! Sayōnara!