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June 20, 2008

Nokia Maps 2.0 tutorial with a Jurassic twist

INTERNATIONAL – Reading the manual is thankfully a dull habit we’re all happy to leave to the fate of extinction. Today’s hardware and software should unwittingly hand-hold us (without patronizing us) through the process of getting the most of our kit, but it goes without saying that there are limits to this, and to our patience for sitting through set-up wizards.

Undoubtedly the creeping death of the user manual, and our shortening attention spans, has fueled the online explosion of bite-size tutorials and instant tips – a resource that has personally become my technology crutch in recent years. Fact is, we demand info to be fed to us faster, in more manageable chunks and preferably with a pinch of entertainment sprinkled on top. So it was cool to see Nokia this week release a tutorial for Nokia Maps 2.0 that actually ticked these boxes… that is if you can stomach a bit of Japanimation-styled-Jurassic-robo-flavoured interaction. Of course you do.

This new interactive tutorial has been dubbed The Mapsters, and while I’m acutely aware that it’s a cute piece of marketing, it remains a stand-up piece of info, that actually taught me a few things about Nokia Maps 2.0 without numbing my senses in the process, which I applaud. covered the launch of the new site explaining what it’s all about:

“With Maps 2.0 all grown up and making its way in the world on its own, Nokia has put together a crack team of animated experts to help show off all its features. Called The Mapsters, this trio of cute and cuddly tour guides can show you the ins and outs of Maps 2.0 so you can make sure you’re using everything it has to offer. First you need to choose your companion – are you going to go with clumsy purple monster Maptor, shy and retiring Kiano or robo-pal 2.0? Once you’ve decided they’ll then take you through the app, making sure you’ve got each feature sussed.”

What do you think of online tutorials, such as The Mapsters effort. Would you rather digest your instructional info in a more traditional format or is this the way forward? Let us know in the comments section below.