Parametric mapping (PM) lies midway between older and proven artificial landmark based guidance systems and yet to be realized vision based guidance systems. It is a simple yet effective natural landmark recognition system offering freedom from the need for enhancements to the environment. Development of PM systems can be inexpensive and rapid and they are starting to appear in commercial and industrial applications. Together with a description of the structural framework developed to generically describe robot mobility, this paper illustrates clearly the parts of any mobile robot navigation and guidance system and their interrelationships. Among other things, the importance of the richness of the reference map, and not necessarily the sensor map, is introduced, the benefits of dynamic path planners to alleviate the need for separate object avoidance, and the independence of the PM system to the type of sensor input is shown.