It is more natural and effective to include a variety of landmarks when providing route directions. Many of the existing solutions, however, behave like car navigation systems and do not include references to such landmarks. This research provides empirical evidence to identify the information requirements for an automated pedestrian navigation system. The two experiments discussed within this article helped identify the criteria that govern the relative saliency of features of interest within an urban environment. There are a large variety of features of interest that can be used as directional aids within route descriptions (buildings, statues, monuments, hills, roads, etc). Different measures are therefore required in order to calculate the saliency of the different classes of features. The research revealed that the most important measures of saliency include name, size, age, and colour. The research confirmed that that relative visibility and the direction of approach to the feature also affect a landmark's saliency. The research also highlighted the role that features of interest play in reorientation, confirmatory, and direction-giving tasks.
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