This chapter reviews the evidence on the human capacity for finding one's way. Early studies suggested that, when blindfolded, people veer. Such veering ultimately may lead to walking in circles, one of the traditional definitions of being lost. Humans also are limited in terms of their ability to walk accurately to a previously seen location after a short delay. In reproducing routes or completing the last leg of a triangular route, people show considerable error. Given these limits, it's unsurprising that the use of visual landmarks is the preferred as most accurate means of navigation. An alternative means of orientation, the use of a magnetic sense, has found little experimental support. There is evidence, however, that sense of direction varies between individuals, and can affect spatial learning. One re-conceptualisation of navigation is that spatial updating occurs egocentrically, as opposed to within an allocentric cognitive map.
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