Public: Addressing
Lat/Long Coordinate addressing   (+8, -3)  [vote for, against]
John Smith, Apt. 4., 39.4417º N, 86.1709º W

Replace street addressing with exact latitude / longitude addresses. They will be independent of the street name, the city and even the country. They pinpoint in exact location on the planet and have no other meaning.

Mail and delivery systems could be easily adapted to work with such a system. With the growing use of GPS devices, this will become more and more useful.

In common usage, people would get just as used to it as they are current methods. Denizens of most cities would get by just using the figures right of the decimal point.

This will not adversely affect how postal workers deliver mail. The postal system will know that all letters with a series of addresses are on the same street, just as it does now.
-- waugsqueke, Apr 02 2003

7 numbers - average http://www.cogs.sus...revman/verenah.html
[po, Oct 04 2004, last modified Oct 21 2004]

See annos http://www.halfbake...d_20for_20addresses
[Ling, Oct 04 2004, last modified Oct 05 2004]

NAC Code
Beat you by a year [bdag, Sep 23 2009]
As per [notexactly]'s anno - what3words is a genuinely useful innovation - what3words slices the surface of the earth into 3m-square patches and assigns a unique 3-word code to each one. [zen_tom, Oct 16 2019] Since there are many different reference ellipsoids, the precise latitude of a feature on the surface is not unique: this is stressed in the ISO standard which states that "without the full specification of the coordinate reference system, coordinates (that is latitude and longitude) are ambiguous at best and meaningless at worst". [pocmloc, Oct 16 2019]

https://en.wikipedi...c_coordinate_system [pocmloc, Oct 16 2019]

[pocmloc, Oct 16 2019]

Maybe you should add height over sea level to find people in multi-story buildings.
-- FarmerJohn, Apr 02 2003

Street names will still exist. These addresses would just be independent of them.

FJ, that was mentioned before, but a concern was it might not be accurate enough to distinguish between several apartments on the same floor.
-- waugsqueke, Apr 02 2003

This is to aid those guys in the Pentagon, right? ("DrCurry? Ah yes, his address is 40.7819 North, 73.9507 West." "Lock and load!")

At least until we have all air cars, I'll still be trying to find people using plain old street maps, so fishbone, even though this would actually help my forthcoming idea (*nearly* ready, po).
-- DrCurry, Apr 02 2003

eh? you planning on posting my address again?

hey, doc. you the FBI's most unwanted?
-- po, Apr 02 2003

In the earlier incarnation, it was pointed out that people remember 10-digit phone numbers without difficulty.
-- waugsqueke, Apr 02 2003

If you have ever tried to navigate on foot around a foreign city where you can't read or speak the local language, you'd appreciate the need for street maps with lat/long. I have once even resorted to driving around looking for LAX with a Terminal Area Chart.
-- FloridaManatee, Jun 02 2003

what happends when a satelite crashes and the GPS network breaks? What about the math required to figure out what direction to head in if you have to do it manually, if you know your own cordinate and you need to go to another cordinate the formula to calculate your distance and bearing between waypoints is quite complicated to do while driving, i dont know the exact formula but i'd imagine it'd have to use trig functions and PI to figure out your distance over the arc of the earth, since lat and long is relative to the curvature of the earth and uses a nautical mileage system.
-- JoeLounsbury, Nov 09 2003

Why even use lat and long? Why not just create a more simplistic grid system similar to the grid system that cities are based off of in the western half of the United States. Each state would have its own and each country have its own. So if you want to mail something from California to New York you could just put down 115A 142B of section 23C 3D, New york
-- JoeLounsbury, Nov 09 2003

Heck why not use this for names too, instead of being called John Smith your name could be your DNA code, it maybe long but then you don't have to worry about getting names mixed up with people of the same name. Then when someone murders somone and there is DNA evidence of it they could literally say "his name was written all over it."
-- JoeLounsbury, Nov 09 2003

// what happends when a satelite crashes and the GPS network breaks? //

As near as I am aware, the latitude/longitude system predates GPS by some magnitude of years. Evidently we were able to get along without it, somehow.
-- waugsqueke, Nov 09 2003

[waugsqueke] - can you explain the benefits of this system? I understand the means but what is the end?

The big disadvantage would be the inability of future generations to understand this joke: "where does the policeman live?", "123, letsbie avenue".
-- dobtabulous, Nov 10 2003

I think the benefits are clear. I've been in the unfortunate position of being in a fairly large town with only an address to guide me. After getting several wrong sets of directions from pedestrians it took two stops in pizza places and over an hour to find the house. If I knew I was getting closer or further away by comparing two house coordinates (even without GPS), I would have found the place in 10 minutes.
-- Worldgineer, Nov 10 2003

Why not use the town name "Bud, Indiana 4417-1709? Essentially, an 8-digit zipe code that gives the general location and then the exact location as the Lat-Lon 'zip code'.
-- Klaatu, Nov 10 2003

A rather practical idea, if you cant reduce a sextant sight and do a bit of haversine trig you are note really safe alone outdoors anyway.
-- KiwiJohn, Dec 06 2003

I think it would be very hard to find anything without some sort of GPS/map system for distilling driving driving directions. Everything would have to be cross-referenced from coordinates to named streets in order to actually get to a given address unless you are flying a helicopter.
-- bristolz, Dec 06 2003

How are you supposed to measure your latitude and longitude with sufficient accuracy? Even GPS isn't good enough to distinguish between neighbouring houses. This may point you in the right general direction but no more. With this scheme, you'd need to carry a map and compass anyway, so rather than use 2 addresses why not keep the standard address and bring an A-Z?
-- kropotkin, Mar 22 2004

I'm against simply because it's dull. Names are much nicer than numbers.
-- DrBob, Mar 22 2004

// Even GPS isn't good enough to distinguish between neighbouring houses. //

Most GPS units are accurate to within 10 feet these days. If you need more accuracy than that, you need a bigger house.
-- waugsqueke, Mar 23 2004

They're only that accurate when they are stationary, though.
-- bristolz, Mar 24 2004

I like the zip code idea.
-- rusterkat, Apr 20 2004

If implemented, this idea would greatly lower the amount of confusion caused when the owner of a house decides to split it in two. Instead of creating two properties with hideous pseudo-numbers like 101A and 101B, the new front door would automatically gain a new, distinct address which can be used immediately without having to be added to a database.

This in turn would reduce the incidence of people being woken up by the postman delivering next door's parcel, failing to get back to sleep, and instead logging on to the halfbakery to propose a new postal addressing scheme only to find that somebody already thought of it six years ago.

-- Wrongfellow, Jun 20 2009

He, [Wrongfellow]. Your intent was in the right place. And just so you know, the original author was really quite brilliant. So don't dismay.
-- blissmiss, Jun 20 2009

// postman delivering next door's parcel, //

You say that like it's a bad thing. Much satisfaction may be had from Other People's Parcels. The contents vary from the mundane (but useful) to the valuable, bizarre, entertaining, or all of the above. A basic illuminated fibre optic borescope is the tool of choice, allowing the recipient to make a thorough but discreet examination of the contents before deciding whether to pass on the parcel or retain it and deny all knowledge.
-- 8th of 7, Jun 20 2009

//what happends when a satelite crashes and the GPS network breaks?//

All you need is a current nautical almanack, a good timepiece, and a sextant.

If you lack the timepiece, study of the moons of Jupiter, or the position of the moon relative to other stars can be used instead.

If you lack a sextant, any other device for measuring angles may be used instead, but the results will be significantly less precise.
-- ye_river_xiv, Jun 21 2009

Baked, see [link].
-- bdag, Sep 23 2009

Also since baked by what3words and the Open Location Code system (plus codes).
-- notexactly, Oct 01 2019

This is a very interesting question, and there does not seem to be a simple answer. Latitude and Longitude don't actually seem to work very well because the numbers used for a specific place (e.g. my front door step) vary depending on what reference geoid is used, and no-one seems to be able to agree on which one is best to use.

Other systems linked or mentioned here (3 words, NAC code) seem to be proprietry which doesn't seem to be a very good idea. Also What 3 words seems to be rather Anglo-centric - I can't imagine it being much use in China, for example.

I suppose what this ends up being is, there are a lot of different and non-interoperable standards, so let us create a new universal standard.
-- pocmloc, Oct 16 2019

//depending on what reference geoid is used, and no-one seems to be able to agree on which one is best//

I'd naively assumed that everyone had more-or-less agreed on WGS-84 these days, but Google suggests otherwise.

It seems China, in particular, has made WGS-84 illegal, which seems crazy to me. They use their own system, GCJ-02, which is deliberately obfuscated in the name of "improving national security".

You can even be fined for making your own maps without the permission of the government...
-- Wrongfellow, Oct 16 2019

//made WGS-84 illegal//
They made a co-ordinate system illegal?!
How in the hell does that even work?
What's next, "thou shalt not use odd numbers"?
-- neutrinos_shadow, Oct 16 2019

//China, in particular, has made WGS-84 illegal// That's insane. How do they loosen rusted bolts?
-- MaxwellBuchanan, Oct 16 2019

// How do they loosen rusted bolts?//

If you leave them on the ground they become hard to find very quickly.
-- pocmloc, Oct 16 2019

random, halfbakery