I am a BIG fan of Live Maps.  Since last fall, they have had a feature that Yahoo and Google are still lacking, and that is driving directions that take traffic into account.  I live to the south of Seattle/Redmond, and there are no fewer than 4 major routes I can take to get to work...  I could take I-5 to I-405, or Hwy 167 to I-405, or I-405 to SR900, or Hwy 18 to I-90.

So what to take in the morning?  405 is the most direct route, but half of the people in western Washington are sitting on 405 in the morning.  Driving a stick-shift in traffic, this can be an exercise in road rage.  My commute that is 30-45 minutes without traffic becomes easily 75-90 minutes in traffic.  Yuck.  There is nothing worse than second-guessing myself all the way to work ("I sure wish I had taken alternate route X or Y!  That would have been faster!")  So now, before I head to work, I fire up Live Maps, generate directions for myself, and check the little box that says "Choose route based on traffic".  I will then know what the fastest way to work is, and how long it will take to get there.

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In the past, this has worked great on Internet Explorer and Firefox, but Safari has choked on Live Maps for some reason.  Fortunately, as of last week, Safari 3 is now a supported browser.  No matter what computer happens to be at hand, I can pull up my handy-dandy driving directions and hit the road.  Awesome!

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