And perhaps those most recently in the throes of a GPS mishap realize that better than anyone.
"Mishaps with GPS are human error," said Angelique Stokes, a 54-year-old from Coos Bay, Ore.
Stokes and her husband Jack, 55, spent the night in their Nissan Xterra Sunday after following GPS directions on to an unplowed forest service road. They were trying to visit their son in Hood River, about two hours away from their starting point.
With their car stuck in the snow and their cell phones without signals, the couple decided to stay the night in the car. The next morning, after hiking four miles, they were able to receive a strong enough signal to communicate their location to their son.
But Stokes doesn't blame the Garmin for the experience. She blames herself and her husband.
"We made a wrong choice," she said. "We made the choice to go over the mountain in the snow ... and it didn't work."
"It's not GPS' fault. They're strictly a tool to travel by," Stokes said. "[They're] not any different from using a paper map. So take a paper map and your Garmin and use them both."