From reading the web site, as I understand it, they have chosen the words from
a big dictionary file. The interesting points were that they deliberately
choose smaller words for built up areas, going to larger words elsewhere on
landmass and the biggest words out to sea. This was to make the most likely
to be used combinations shorter and more memorable. They also filtered out all
the rude words. They have also taken the trouble to ensure that similar
groups of words are no where near each other. If you try hovering over the map
and looking at each square the words from one square to the next are quite
different. If you go to their map and type in two or two and a half words till
the suggestions come up you will see that similar suggestions (maybe one ends
in a plural) are nowhere near each other to make typos obvious. Another
feature is that different languages are not just translations of the base
English, in case words are longer or more easily confused on the other
languages. I haven't seen what grid the system is based on ,though i presume
standard 1984 Sat nav.
Why? Will their main aim was to give accurate easy mapping to places without
road names or post codes. Even our post codes are only accurate to 100 m or so
but the situation is worse in less developed places. If you live in an over
crowded place you can still give an accurate address really easily. If your
delivery driver was using free open source map from Navmii (sp?) , formerly
Open Street Map he should be able to find you to 3m. It's free mapping on your
phone that understands w3w. Also the web site streetmap.co uk does.
This is their target market. They don't expect you to radio the coast guard
with your coordinates in this format!
It's more accurate than a post code , and easy to remember compared to lat and
long to the same accuracy.
Get Outlook for Android<https://aka.ms/ghei36>
From: Michael Ossipoff
Sent: 7:34PM, Monday, 26 December
Subject: Re: Precise locations
To: Ian Maddocks
Cc: Douglas Bateman, Sundial list
Two things that I ask someone to explain:
1. How does the 3-word position-designation work? Aside from the names of the
positions, what is the co-ordinate system? Latitude & longitude? How are the 3
words chosen for each of the 3 meter by 3-meter locations?
2. What's wrong with latitude & longitude?
...or, if preferred, some widely-used plane-coordinate system?
On Sun, Oct 16, 2016 at 1:35 PM, Ian Maddocks
If you haven't been concentrating I added the W3W address to my signature a few
Given the 3 m resolution you actually get a few choices of what address to pick
for any given plot of land. frog.happy.froze is actually more my living room
than front door. I wandered the cursor around till I found the most memorable
At the moment if you want to navigate by W3W the NavMii free mobile sat nav app
(using OpenStreetMap data) understands the addresses.
in the descriptions says "Local Place search (powered by TripAdvisor,
Foursquare and What3Words)"
The other site that uses them is
www.streetmap.co.uk<http://www.streetmap.co.uk>. For those of us dial
recorders who want to have a location converted to multiple formats as easily
as possible the "Click here to convert coordinates" under the maps is
invaluable, and includes the W3W reference on the last line see
http://www.streetmap.co.uk/idgc.srf?x=538955&y=177217 for example
<sundial-boun...@uni-koeln.de<mailto:sundial-boun...@uni-koeln.de>> on behalf
of Douglas Bateman
Sent: 16 October 2016 15:58
To: Sundial list
Subject: Re: Precise locations
I have been told of another method called what3words.com<http://what3words.com>
Designed in 2013 and developed since then, it uses a grid of the world made up
of 57 trillion squares of 3 metres by 3 metres. Each square has been given a
3-word address. what3words has named the 17 trillion squares on land with 3
words in 10 other languages in addition to English. Of potential value to less
developed countries. My contact says: "A very good idea I think as it is
easier than numbers and covers the whole globe (dependent of course on the w3w
database continuing to exist, which let's hope it does) to give e.g. addresses
in African shanty towns or remote villages in India as well as where there are
An intriguing system, based on the fact that three words, however unrelated,
are rather more memorable than a latitude/longitude. Typing Greenwich
Observatory comes up with oval.blast.improving. My house has a similar unique
set of words.
Well worth a look.
On 16 Oct 2016, at 11:39, Martina Addiscott
Sundiallers like to give precise locations for dials, but (a little off-list) I
have a bottle of Campo Viejo Rioja 2014 wine in front of me which gives at the
top of the label N 42Âº 28â€™ 48â€ W 02Âº 29â€™ 08â€ . Although in a small
font it is clearly printed above the brand name.
Google Earth shows a large vineyard, and indeed the brand, at this location.
This is a new one on me, and I wonder how many products are giving their source
location in geographical coordinates.
Open for discussion!
As far as physical 'products' are concerned, these days they would
probably have a "QRcode" - you know, one of those small square blocks
which just seem to contain a 'jumble' of black and white pixels.
Those are mainly used to direct people straight to a website, but
they can contain a lot more information (if you needed to do so).
If you want to include an actual geographical location, then one of
the best ways is to use a "NAC code" - which stands for 'Natural Area
Coding' also known as Universal Map Coding, or a Universal Address).
It is usually included as a 'meta', within any website design coding.
For sundial-related subjects, the only people I know that use these
methods are "Modern Sunclocks" - and (if anyone is interested), I
have 'attached' the QRcode they use to drive people to their website.
Within the 'meta' code of that website they also display a NAC code,
so that any people can find-out their exact Latitude and Longitude.