ToughBooks and GPS software

Discussion in 'Panasonic' started by Wyrm73, Mar 12, 2009.

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  1. Wyrm73

    Wyrm73 Notebook Consultant

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    My CF-29 came with internal GPS, but now I need to find some navigation software that meets my needs. I would like something that can be used for car navigation, but I also need something for off road/ marine navigation as I plan to take this with me on military duty and also on my boat (once I can afford one that is ;) ).

    So I thought I would ask here and find out what everyone else around here was using. I found threads covering testing software, but couldn't find much for the navigation software itself. I am even willing to run multiple software solutions for on and off road if necessary. Lower cost is always better, but so far the free solutions I have tried don't seem to be doing what I want.
     
  2. Alex

    Alex Super Moderator

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  3. Toughbook

    Toughbook Drop and Give Me 20!

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    Alex... Can you edit that and/or give us a brief description to what each is or does? I'm kind of curious about this too.
     
  4. sunrk

    sunrk Notebook Evangelist

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    I have tried Visual GPS with the GPS engine in my CF28 and apart from problems relating to the engine itself and not the software talking to it, the software is very extensive in scope. it is NOT a replacement for a wanky Nokia with inbuilt GPS or a Tomtom, Navman, etc, but an excellent use of GPS all the same.

    http://www.visualgps.net/VisualGPS/

    Craig.
     
  5. Toughbook

    Toughbook Drop and Give Me 20!

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    Yeah... Cap posted that a while back... I tried it but it is more for testing isn't it? Maybe a little more advanced than WinFast and the like?
     
  6. 9nine9

    9nine9 Notebook Geek

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    For in-car navigation, it's really hard to beat Garmin Mobile PC

    https://buy.garmin.com/shop/shop.do?cID=139&pID=13484

    It gives you essentially the same interface as the nuvi series of in-car GPS navigators, but on your laptop. It's really designed to be used with a touchscreen, and you can access almost all of the functionality that way.

    The software-only version, which will work with any NMEA compliant GPS, runs $50-60, including street-level maps of the entire US. For around $100, you can get a version that includes a garmin USB gps receiver. The software is the same in both cases, and I'd really recommend getting the software-only version, and a US Globalsat bu-353 or other GPS receiver, as the garmin model is not NMEA, and has compatibility issues with some non-garmin software.

    About the only drawback is Garmins annoying licensing, as the software-only version is locked to an individual PC. This may be the one advantage of the version with the Garmin GPS receiver, as the software is locked to the receiver, so you can move it around more easily between laptops.

    There's a good review with screen captures and the like here:
    http://www.laptopgpsworld.com/garmin-mobile-pc/432-review-garmin-mobile-pc.html

    nine
     
  7. Toughbook

    Toughbook Drop and Give Me 20!

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    We may have discussed this before... But what about freeware applications? Are there any freeware street navigation programs? We should have a sticky about that to... Or put it inside one of the stickys... I need to thin out the sticky's actually... Consolidate them a little.
     
  8. capt.dogfish

    capt.dogfish The Curmudgeon

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    OK, I'll jump in again.
    Street navigation: M$ Streets and Trips, iGuidance, DeLorme Street Atlas; all have their proponents and detractors. I personally use S&T primarily because I spend 3 or 4 months planning our annual trips out West and prefer the planning and scheduling I can do. I don't know if the others have the live link feature which lets me set a push pin and link it to web sites which I can access from the screen as long as I have an air card signal. I have not used iGuidance since Ver. 3.0, for me, I didn't like the front end. DeLorme seems to be only interested in designing for their hand held GPS and I think laptop users suffer as a result.
    Off Highway: Easiest is DeLorme Topo, works very well. Much better if you want to work at it a little is OziExplorer as you can load any map and find most of them free. Garmin Topo software is junk.
    Marine: Nobeltec is very good, also very expensive! I can't find any aspect to Nobeltec that is also not available in Maptech Offshore Navigator which seems to come and go as to availability but only costs $100+/-. Free is SeaClear which is pretty good. All will use charts which can be downloaded for free from NOAA. SeaClear is generally available on eBay bundled with all US Charts for around $16 which is not a bad deal as they download all the charts for you.
    GPS viewer: I like Visual GPS because it lets you see much more info than WinFast. I don't need the graphic dashboard. You don't need to put all of the info from Visual GPS on your screen, you can pick the windows you want, set them up once, and they will load that way every time.
    Nice add-ins: Corpscon 6, free from the US Army Corps of Engineers,lets you change the map datum from Lat.Long to any internationally accepted datum. You might run into this on National Geo. paper maps for instance which are marked in UTM not L-L. If you're that into maps you'll love it. Franson GPS Gate; costs about $40, lets you create as many virtual com ports as you like, all of which will have the data from your GPS available. Lets you run as many GPS apps. as you like at the same time. Toggle between your topo software and your street software instantly.
    All of my computers are loaded with; M$ S&T, current version of DeLorme Topo USA, Maptech Offshore Navigator, Visual GPS, Corpscon 6, and Franson Gate. For me its very personal, I have been seriously using maps for over 50 years and I prefer traditional maps and charts to the new style "video game look". My major gripe with Garmin is their insistence on proprietary maps and GPS protocols to force you to buy more of their stuff. Their topo map packages have the National Parks blocked out, forcing you to buy another $75 worth of disks x 3 or 4 if you want country wide coverage. You should try different programs out to see which you prefer. I repeat, this is a very personal choice and you need to decide for yourself.
    CAP
     
  9. Toughbook

    Toughbook Drop and Give Me 20!

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    Well put, clear and concise... As usual... Thanks... THAT is what I was looking for... Personally! ;)
     
  10. capt.dogfish

    capt.dogfish The Curmudgeon

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    Here's a list to get you started:
    http://www.maps-gps-info.com/fgpfw.html#Windows
    When you're through with that let me know and I'll get you some more.
    CAP
     
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