New Mapping Site for Inmates

Discussion in 'Vendors' started by craftycoder, Oct 29, 2010.

  1. craftycoder

    craftycoder Motobrain PDU

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    Hey, y'all. I've been working on a mapping website called www.dualsportmaps.com for the last month and I'm ready to share it with you guys :cob . The goal was to create a site for storing, sharing, searching, creating, and editing GPS files. I've met those basic goals. I don't want this to be another GPX file warehouse. I would prefer, high quality, annotated tracks, that share important information like danger areas, gas stations, and has actual photos and videos from the road.

    The user interface is like MapSource, only it works from anywhere because it's in your web browser and everyone can see your collection of tracks and you can see everyone else's as well. You can draw a track dot to dot. You can snap a portion of a track to roads in Google's database (make a track "follow the road"). You can split, join, and reverse tracks as well. You can add, delete, or move waypoints. And best of all, it's free to all comers, even inmates. :ricky

    Features not in MapSource but available on my site are the addition of photos which can be uploaded (either singly or in mass in a zip file) and then geocoded (either singly or in mass using a wizard that links the timestamp on the photo with time stamps on the tracks). On my site you can turn a track into route just by checking a box. This is very handy for those of us with Zumos and Nuvis that don't play nice with tracks. It displays current weather radar which is handy also.

    Searching is done in a more obvious way, by drawing a box around the area you want to search. Any tracks in the box will show up. You can share your tracks in ADV by embedding them into a thread. I'll post an example below. I used to use googlemaps to draw maps, download that as a google earth file in one website, convert that to gpx in another website, and then edit it in MapSource on my laptop which is the only PC I have with MapSource on it. It was very tedious. Now, I can draw a track at dualsportmaps.com with the benefit of aerial photos and topographic maps at my finger tips and download it straight into MapSource and onto my Zumo as a route :thumb. I can also search for tracks where I'm going to be riding and get an immediate feel for the terrain with the aerial photos and topo maps. Especially true if there are rider photos attached.

    Still on the list of things to do are: community rating of maps, posting metadata about tracks and maps (difficulty, required range, conditions), community comments (maybe), private maps that only certain users can see, and allowing multiple users to update a map (a group of friends working on one map at the same time). Once the metadata stuff has been done, I'll create a search feature that includes difficulty as a parameter. There are other things on list too I'm sure. One inmate suggested larger photos and a slideshow feature (not a bad idea).

    I am opening up the floor for comments and suggestions. What kind of mapping tools do you wish you had? If I can, I'll try to include them in this site.

    The site is short on documentation at the moment so post your questions here and I'll answer them and create documentation based on what people can't figure out easily.

    You need to Log In to the site to do anything but look at tracks. The Log In button is near the top right corner. The site works well in Google Chrome (best choice), IE8, and updated versions of Firefox. It's doesn't work well in IE7 or earlier.

    You can only edit your own tracks at the moment, so upload a GPX file to see what the site can do for you. In the future, I will remove the need to upload a GPX to create a new map, but I think Active Logs are a great place to start when sharing a map because it means you've been there so you know a thing or two.

    Everything on the map is clickable. If you zoom in far enough the waypoints will tell you their story just mousing over them. If you zoom in farther still the photos will show up as thumbnails on the map but you can click on the camera icon to see the photo. This map is courtesy of an inmate who posted it to the site and then shared in on his Ride Report here on ADV. Thank you dvwalker.

    <IFRAME SRC="http://www.dualsportmaps.com/embedMap.html?id=67FFC0FC-99A2-45E9-910A-4DDFFCF97668" TITLE="Oregon Outback Loop" width="1000" height="800"></IFRAME>

    Download video:
    <iframe title="YouTube video player" class="youtube-player" type="text/html" width="720" height="563" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/z1v-_Gz8V7I?rel=0&amp;hd=1" frameborder="0"></iframe>
    Upload video:
    <iframe title="YouTube video player" class="youtube-player" type="text/html" width="720" height="563" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/umhA_WkqL0o?rel=0&amp;hd=1" frameborder="0"></iframe>
    Embed video:
    <iframe title="YouTube video player" class="youtube-player" type="text/html" width="720" height="563" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/IoLwj_eKqlM?rel=0" frameborder="0"></iframe>
    Edit Waypoint video:
    <iframe title="YouTube video player" class="youtube-player" type="text/html" width="720" height="563" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/o2XZHTmt9dg?rel=0&amp;hd=1" frameborder="0"></iframe>
    Edit Track video:
    <iframe title="YouTube video player" class="youtube-player" type="text/html" width="720" height="563" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/27B5JIRZqJE?rel=0&amp;hd=1" frameborder="0"></iframe>
    #1
  2. AaronK

    AaronK Grumpy Grumperson

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    Very Cool! Thanks!
    #2
  3. SpenserpVT

    SpenserpVT Been here awhile

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    This is a really great idea. Perfect way to organize and share tracks. I am definitely going to put this to use. Bookmarked!:thumb
    Thanks!!
    #3
  4. craftycoder

    craftycoder Motobrain PDU

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    Great! Thank you and welcome to the site. Tracks are editable online so you can clean up the little messes that find there way into Active Logs which is cool.

    Whenever possible, pin photos from the trail to your maps. It really helps other riders planning when they can see the trails and the hazards on the trail.

    #4
  5. craftycoder

    craftycoder Motobrain PDU

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    So, I have a new feature for you guys. The track wizard allows you to upload an active log and then process it so that it is get broken into pieces based on difficulty. I used some calculus and recursion to attempt to figure out the difficulty of portions of tracks based on the info contained in the Active Log track file. Namely, location in 3D space and time. I ran it through some real world tracks that I rode and think it is a good first try. I'm sure as people complain about this or that I'll be able to improve upon it, but for now I'm pretty happy.


    The procedure takes the first track and turns it into the second set below.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    As you can see the first track was one continuous magenta line. After the Wizard ran, it broke the track down into many smaller pieces and color coded them.
    Green means easy.
    Blue means moderate.
    Black means tough.
    Red means really tough.

    You have two options for running the Wizard. Either run it on all Active Logs when you upload a track as shown in the first photo below, or selectively run it on individual tracks at your discretion.

    Using the first option will be a little confusing to the uninitiated because I process the raw track first and return it to you in the program and continue to process the wizard in the background. Within a minute or so, you can reload your map and see the processed tracks. The second option blocks your continued use of the program until the track is processed and then show it to you and allows you to continue. I won't say that one way is better than the other. They are just different.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Please take a look, upload some tracks, run the Wizard and tell me what you think. One thing I've noticed is that it is not super precise in finding the transition. I don't think that is really important but, if it is to you, you can easily fix it by using the split and join tools available to you.
    #5
  6. DangerMoney

    DangerMoney Loud Helmets Save Lives

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    Tried to upload a track. I filled in the dialog box including Map Name and GPX File fields. Every time I hit Create New Map, it put up a box saying:

    You must have a map name and attach a GPX file to create a new map.
    #6
  7. craftycoder

    craftycoder Motobrain PDU

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    I assume you attached the GPX using the file search dialog that pops up when you push the button. If that is true, I am guessing you are no longer logged in but you don't realize it because I'm not checking for it. When I upload changes to the site all the sessions get tossed out and you need to log in again. Refresh the site and try again. I've been doing a lot of updates so it is best that you refresh whenever you come to the site.

    If that isn't it, email me the file and let me look at it. I've uploaded several tracks this morning testing the Track Wizard they all worked great.

    Thanks for being part of the community!
    #7
  8. craftycoder

    craftycoder Motobrain PDU

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    I rode this so I know the ground truth. It is almost all good. The black track at the top right of the map is not accurate, I think it is because I started riding pretty fast in the sand which caused my GPS to fly off the bike which made me stop turn around and get the darn thing. All things considered it's pretty great and and quite easy to fix manually as well.

    <IFRAME SRC="http://www.dualsportmaps.com/embedMap.html?id=997F2890-721B-495F-9F91-EE79E7025E47" TITLE="Apalachicola - Sopchoppy" width="640" height="480"></IFRAME>
    #8
  9. DangerMoney

    DangerMoney Loud Helmets Save Lives

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    Thanks. Got the track up uploaded.

    I tried using the second method to run the track wizard: Clicked on the only track displayed ( the one I just uploaded), clicked on the track wizard button and nothing appeared to happen. Tried several times with the same result.
    #9
  10. craftycoder

    craftycoder Motobrain PDU

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    It looks like you succeeded in running the wizard. I've noticed that when there is a single track and you go to the track edit page and leave it and come back to it, that the system has a difficult time selecting the track as being active. You will know that the track is selected if it is BRIGHT ORANGE. You can only run the Track Wizard on an Active Log, so it verifies that all the track points have a time stamp before it enables the button. One other thing. All the points must be processed before you can run the track wizard. Which means, once you upload the track you must wait about a minute and reload the track to get the button enabled. You will know that that tracks have been processed because each one will display a track length in the tree.

    I am working on this process still. It is not ideal obviously. I can either make the upload and display process slower and wait for all the points to be processed before showing you the map or I can do what I'm doing now and draw the map and then process the points. I'm thinking that I will put newly uploaded maps in a temporary state that tells the software that it is waiting for final processing and then it will update itself automatically. Until then it won't allow you to make any changes. That is probably the best choice. I've already got most of that code written, so I only need to do the UI changes to make it happen. I'm getting there. A lot is going on so keep posting about issues and I'll fix them!
    #10
  11. DangerMoney

    DangerMoney Loud Helmets Save Lives

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    Yup: I never got the bright orange indicator. I went back and now the track is color-coded.

    When the track wizard is processing the user needs some feedback that it's running. It could be as simple as a pop-up that says : Track Wizard processing. Please wait for screen to be redisplayed.

    To stay true to the Windows/Linux/Java/etc paradigm, a realtime progress bar showing percent complete should be displayed. Another website I use that does geographic processing does that.


    Nice job overall on the site. Keep up the good work.
    #11
  12. craftycoder

    craftycoder Motobrain PDU

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    It does have an indicator. It is on the left side of the grey sub menu bar. Left of the Reset Map link. If the Wizard button is active then when you push it you should know what's happening. I'm curious if you checked the box when you uploaded it.

    Upload another good active log, don't check the box for the wizard. Wait a minute, and reload the map by searching for it. The run tje wizard using the second method. That should give you the experience as designed. Ill improve the process soon.
    #12
  13. craftycoder

    craftycoder Motobrain PDU

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    Ok, so I've worked on the user interface a little to clarify whats going on particularly in relation to server side processing. Please try it again and see if it makes more sense to you.

    Thanks.
    #13
  14. craftycoder

    craftycoder Motobrain PDU

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    To change the color of a track or to make it a route, click in the circled area.
    [​IMG]
    #14
  15. Strega

    Strega Black is a color

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    This is working very well in our new site, DualSportMoto.com

    Thanks for all the hard work.
    #15
  16. craftycoder

    craftycoder Motobrain PDU

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    My pleasure Strega. Dualsportmoto is looking great.

    Crawdaddy has tasked me with writing code to crop needless points from tracks. Trigonometry rather than the calculus earlier in the week. I think I like Calculus better. Trig was a really long time ago!!!

    In fact its finished. I just cropped a track log from 28000 points to 172 without loss of precision. Clearly it was a crappy track, but it was informative. I'll post the new code for the rest of y'all soon.
    #16
  17. Strega

    Strega Black is a color

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    That will be great for the devices that can't hold more than 500pts in a track. Kick ass!
    #17
  18. craftycoder

    craftycoder Motobrain PDU

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    Update to Track Wizard.

    The Track Wizard now also cuts unnecessary points out of tracks getting the overall number down without any meaningful loss of precision. This is done to all tracks, not just those that are Active Logs.
    #18
  19. craftycoder

    craftycoder Motobrain PDU

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    I've created a few help videos to get you guys started. They are in the first post.
    #19
  20. DangerMoney

    DangerMoney Loud Helmets Save Lives

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    I upload two new tracks. One invoked the Track Wizard as part of the upload, the other one after the fact. The processing message displayed is a great improvement.


    One suggestion: Display a color codes legend for the computed route difficulty when showing same.
    #20