Meet Earl... The Next Gen GPS?

Discussion in 'GPS 101 - Which GPS For Me' started by btao, Aug 12, 2013.

  1. worwig

    worwig Long timer

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    While it is not 'dead', the handwriting was on the wall long long ago.

    In today's market, a device like that needs to be released quickly. There was never anything 'quick' about that unit. In fact, the market has changed enough that it needed to be release years ago to be profitable, IMHO.

    Too bad, it had some interesting points.
    EmmEff and ohgood like this.
  2. ohgood

    ohgood Just givver tha berries !!!

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    it's time for the once-a-quarter thread bump. i think it might be a good idea to start steering people towards the folks at trail-tech, and PUSHING THEM to make a similar product.

    hey, i took a bad thing and made it positive/ hopeful .... that was fun :)
  3. gpsdualsport

    gpsdualsport former mid life crisis motorcycle owner

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    For you folks that are following the MeetEarl Saga. The website meetearl.com is blank today, 22 March.
    The forum is still active at http://forum.meetearl.com/ but there is no news on what going on with website.
    Could it be Jon has thrown in the towel?
  4. ohgood

    ohgood Just givver tha berries !!!

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    that's probably just a glitch in the dns registration, our the server not being maintained. Jon ran off with the money a long time ago. there are so many options that are better today, it wouldn't matter anyway.
  5. gpsdualsport

    gpsdualsport former mid life crisis motorcycle owner

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    MeetEarl.com website is working again. But nothing new about product launch dates.
    While I'm waiting to meet Earl I have ebay'd a $18 smartphone and will venture into the world of Android flavor GPS.
    Hey, Ohgood.
    I have been following that train wreck of a post on the District 37 Dual Sport message board. Thanks for your input and attempting to educate some of our more colorful players about smartphone tech and apps. There are great backstories on the Countdown/Kieth feud you saw a bit of in those posts. Dual Dog is also a District 37 event promoter and not just another rider.
    Send me a PM if you want details.
    Sincerely,
    GPSdualsport: Former GPS geek for District 37 Dual Sport
  6. ohgood

    ohgood Just givver tha berries !!!

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    I'm sorry man,but it got my goat ... after trying to be positive over and over... and finally instead of any experimentation or learning, it was all dismissed. I felt like it was a waste and unless a Garmin 67 was the subject, it would fall on deaf ears.

    please be very wary of the meet earl project, not one unit had shipped, ave a lot of people are still waiting on refunds.
  7. ohgood

    ohgood Just givver tha berries !!!

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    cdn_wolf likes this.
  8. ohgood

    ohgood Just givver tha berries !!!

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    this just gets more and more weird. they've changed the website so that only people who have registered email addresses can receive 'updates', for a product whose development process has not been updated in over a year.

    interesting.

    which one of you folks is going to be the first sucker for round 2 of fundraising for this guys next couple years of travel ?

    c'mon baby, it's just the tip ! ;-)
  9. scootertrog

    scootertrog Jedi Fart Master

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    Hmmm.....Skully anyone? lol

    I've NEVER been in favor of "donating" money to a crowd-funding or kick-starter type of internet venture. Maybe at first, these were a genuine way of starting something good - but there's just too much walking scum on this planet to not take advantage of people.
    ohgood likes this.
  10. StuInFH

    StuInFH Been here awhile

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    I was quick to get in and even quicker to get out, lol.
    Received this em this a.m.
    Funniest lines at end: We have an obligation to keep backers informed and deliver on what we promised. This may not be the device you signed up for, so we need to figure out an acceptable compensation.

    To our supporters,

    Backpacking taught me many things about the bare essentials and traveling light. Tearing out relevant sections of guidebooks was common, but it was crushing my phone's display hiking that had me question the needs of technology in tough environments.

    Earl started life as a keyboard that changed characters dynamically with Eink. Over time, sensors and radios were added, and my focus switched to developing a device tailored for the outdoors. We envisioned a two-way radio as easy to use as your smartphone, but we didn’t anticipate the complexities of integrating components largely absent from today’s electronics. I made it my objective to make sure every feature functioned as promised, but it wasn’t until the momentum slowed that it became clear we had wasted resources and overshot our runway. If we do not simplify, Earl will fail, so we are pivoting our efforts to focus on the features that actually worked. Aside from wifi and bluetooth, all other radios have been removed from our design.

    We assume combining multiple functions into a single product makes it more efficient, but should leading functions fail, reliant functions do as well. Nice-to-have features better work as expected if they’re ever needed. Design should improve functionality, but also have a clear purpose. Earl’s purpose is about improving guidebooks and navigation.

    Their simplicity makes printed books and maps ideal for the outdoors, but digital content allows users the flexibility to carry entire collections anywhere they go. By adding dynamic elements, Earl can bring tremendous value to print. We had already been working on a platform for publishers to adapt their content to Earl, so this is not an entirely new direction. Guidebooks and maps should be one and the same. Imagine being able to search for trails, plants, animals or even survival methods relevant to your location based on the books in your library. Guidebooks can pull real-time data regarding trail conditions or closures, and when offline can accurately assist in navigation or alert users to an approaching storm. And as more users interact, content progressively improves.

    While it’s becoming more common to download guides to a phone before heading outdoors, there are still drawbacks. Traditional devices are difficult to view in direct sunlight and can require a significant amount of energy to operate, especially when triangulating your position outside of your network. Eink displays are bi-stable; micro-beads of black and white pigments physically change orientation when charged by the circuit beneath, thus reflecting light similar to print. This provides users with a more comfortable reading experience compared to lcds. Additionally, constant power is not required to display static images, so an Eink system can sleep to conserve it’s battery. Combined with low-power, but highly accurate GPS, motion and environmental sensors, Earl becomes a valuable tool for a wide array of outdoor activities.

    Earl’s remaining hardware, applications and interface are being adapted. Additional tools will be built as we grow, but what we release needs to work as expected, so we must focus on one feature at a time. This idea is still great and it is something we can actually build. Simplifying will lower production costs and allow for a single device to be offered in multiple markets, minimizing risk. But additional capital and market validation will be necessary to proceed, so we must refine our plan to encourage investors to look past the mud and fund our next approach.

    We have an obligation to keep backers informed and deliver on what we promised. This may not be the device you signed up for, so we need to figure out an acceptable compensation. It will take time, but we will push forward until every backer is satisfied with the outcome. In the meantime, please take a moment to give us your feedback by filling out the survey at the link below.

    Survey

    Thank you for your continued patience and support,

    Jon + Team Earl
  11. ohgood

    ohgood Just givver tha berries !!!

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    I'm glad you got out while you could.

    Holy shit, he's actually starting over with the brain storming stage again, and trying to tie in a social networking /plant guide book aspect to trail users?

    Has not produced a 1.0 version hardware, but still reinventing the wheel before he spins it the first time ?

    Wow. I need a start-up!