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What is missing from current GPS software?

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  • What is missing from current GPS software?

    Alright, so I've gotten my hands on a toolkit that allows me to write my own GPS navigation application (the toolkit takes care of routing/drawing the map etc). Live-download while connected to the Internet is supported, but offline OSM map support is planned in the near future, so I'm writing anyway with the assumption that the change in backend won't affect the frontend all too much.

    I've gotten a very basic interface written, put in your destination, and it'll route you there as you drive... but I was wondering as far as interfaces going... what is missing? I'm looking at a couple of different GPS packages such as iGuidance, Garmin's and tomtom handheld gps devices for inspiration as to the GUI and choosing the best features from each for this. Just wanted to get the forums opinion on what priority features are that are missing from the mainstream GPS applications.
    "stop with the REINSTALLS, what do you think we got some lame-o installer!!!" - mitchjs
    RevFE
    My Shop

  • #2
    Many GPS systems do not have traffic information integration and rerouting. Either from the Internet or through the Radio RDS/TMC system.

    In my experience this is very useful

    Also not to be missed features are (importable) PoI's and speedcam support.

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    • #3
      The one feature I keep looking for is for traffic and routing to work together. It would be great if the routing suggested changed based on traffic conditions (ie: if there is an accident on the primary route suggest using the alternate route).

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      • #4
        Sdk! Sdk! Sdk! Sdk!

        I'm still using Destinator 3 cause it has an SDK to send and receive data between the GPS program and RR.
        HARDWARE: Fujitsu Stylistic ST5111w/WiFi and dock, internal Hitachi 500G HD, external 1TB HD, Sierra Wireless Aircard 550, DVD-RW, BoomzBox HD radio, XM Commander, Delorme GPS, Saitek X-52 Pro joystick, BluSoleil Bluetooth, TPMS, FB, Elm327

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        • #5
          Traffic probably will not be a high priority, due to the fact that it requires both an Internet connection (Which I don't have in my car, so I can't easily test), and some sort of way to GET traffic information. If anyone knows any free traffic information services with a backend that I can access, I'll look into it.

          Importable POI's and the ability to add notifications to the map by location such as upcoming speed traps is an excellent idea, and not difficult to implement.

          Gizmo: What kind of interface does that provide? I had not even thought about any kind of interface other than hotkeys, but this also brings up another possibility to allow frontends to place spots on the map such as from a POI search, or the aforementioned speed-trap case.
          "stop with the REINSTALLS, what do you think we got some lame-o installer!!!" - mitchjs
          RevFE
          My Shop

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          • #6
            Originally posted by malcom2073 View Post
            Gizmo: What kind of interface does that provide? I had not even thought about any kind of interface other than hotkeys, but this also brings up another possibility to allow frontends to place spots on the map such as from a POI search, or the aforementioned speed-trap case.
            I'm hooked on Enforcer's Updated FreeDrive. I have both flash arrows w/distance to turn and text for status and next turn data integrated into every page of my skins. I've integrated red light cams, speed traps, and mobile radars with voice and audible popups from anywhere in RR and can update the data on the fly. Enforcer also built a script that sends the GPS coordinates form RRGas to the GPS program for 1-click routing to selected gas station.
            HARDWARE: Fujitsu Stylistic ST5111w/WiFi and dock, internal Hitachi 500G HD, external 1TB HD, Sierra Wireless Aircard 550, DVD-RW, BoomzBox HD radio, XM Commander, Delorme GPS, Saitek X-52 Pro joystick, BluSoleil Bluetooth, TPMS, FB, Elm327

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            • #7
              ^^^ I'm with Gizmo and the rerouting integrated with traffic. I would think that there's no free traffic info out there, but I'd be willing to pay for that IF there were integrated rerouting - I figure this is very difficult to implement reliably.

              I would like to see integration with apps like my phone desktop/dropbox, where you can send tel/address/contact info just by selecting text and copying to a dropbox which would then sync all devices (phone, tablet, and possibly carputer software).
              Worklogs: 08 Sequoia Platinum Carputer (In Progress!)
              Skin: MetroSex on the Beach preview

              07 Infiniti Fx35 (done!) & 06 Infiniti M35 (gone...)

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              • #8
                If you can get me traffic info, I can re-route around it by placing a "no-go" zone around the affected area. The backend that I'm using is very flexible. It would also be fairly easy to provide some kind of an interface to input addresses (either from clipboard, or from another application).


                Something of interest: My old handheld GPS (Navigon) got traffic updates for free, so the services are out there it's just a matter of finding them.
                "stop with the REINSTALLS, what do you think we got some lame-o installer!!!" - mitchjs
                RevFE
                My Shop

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                • #9
                  Some traffic data is transmitted over FM. I had (was stolen) a Garmin GPS in my wife's van that had that ability.

                  It would be nice to have a decent GPS system for PC. It seems that all the GPS companies are steering away from the PC and dedicating all resources to mobile devices. Sygic, Igo (not sure there was ever really an official PC version other than the Demo that has been hacked), Garmin, etc.

                  Here's what I'd like to see...

                  TTS
                  Lane Guidance
                  Traffic (paid service or not, or option for either one or both)
                  The ability to use maps from Telatlas, NavTeq, OpenStreetMap, etc
                  Map overlays (say from Google maps or other sources)
                  3d buildings for landmarks
                  2d/3d mode
                  the display of surrounding street names and not just the current route.
                  fast map updates - preferably an update rate that matches what the GPS receiver has
                  gpu accelerated graphics (not a necessity though, but for those that have GPU's with that ability it could reduce system resources)
                  Mark current location as a favorite.
                  tracking
                  destination history
                  route history
                  route shaping (click and drag on the map similar to what Garmin Mobile PC has)
                  customizable routing options (fastest time, shortest distance, scenic, average speed, etc)
                  SDK
                  easily embedded into other apps/frontends

                  that's just a short list

                  It seems that many of the gps software come close...but still fall short. GMPC - their development team just seemed to have given up and refused to acknowledge their software had some bugs after version 5.6. Destinator...while I like it and is great...the fact that you have to switch map sets in the middle of setting an origin and destination is absurd. IGuidance has their crackhead activation (not that Garmin's was any different) and many people seem to have problems with. Sygic...well, they just plain gave up on the PC market. Mapfactor - I haven't tried their paid version, but the free version doesn't do door to door - which really sux if you don't know a cross-street near your destination. And the list goes on. I really hope this endeavor goes somewhere.

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