[aprssig] Waypoint retrieval

scott at opentrac.org scott at opentrac.org
Wed Jun 21 22:25:02 CDT 2006

A big problem for search and rescue, and probably a lot of other potential
APRS applications, has been getting APRS data into your mapping program of
choice.  Around here, for SAR it's Terrain Navigator Pro, and DMAPPER just
didn't cut it as an interface.

But while I was working on the Tracker2, it occurred to me that even with a
Kenwood there could be a way around that for some users.  My GPSmap 60CS has
both serial and USB interfaces, and you should be able to connect a Kenwood
in NMEA mode to receive stations as waypoints, and then use the Garmin
waypoint download function of your favorite mapping program to download them
through USB.

Has anyone tried this before?  I've done it in Garmin mode with the T2 and
it seems to work fine.  It's not automated, but it beats having to switch
back and forth between two applications, which is what a lot of people seem
to wind up doing.

I noticed that TNP and a couple of other programs I tried didn't preserve
the waypoint symbols, though they did mostly keep the comments.  Garmin
Mapsource pulled down everything, of course.  And with a Kenwood it wouldn't
matter anyway, since you're not getting symbols or comments.

For the T2, I'm working on a function that'll use the optional memory
expansion to do the same sort of thing, but without a GPS receiver.  It'll
just save waypoints internally, and emulate a Garmin GPS receiver to the
host.  It's worked for most applications so far.  Google Earth wouldn't take
it, though.  Apparently getting the protocol capabilities string wasn't good
enough - it got that and didn't even try to start a transfer.  I think it
must be looking for the text string with the model information, or possibly
specific device and version codes.  That means other programs might do the
same.  Might have to impersonate an eTrex or something to get it to work
with everything.

Anyway, just curious if it's been done already...


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