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Gewitty

Any Linux Users out there?

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It is my experience that "usb:" works for more people with more devices that the kernel driver and ttyUSBx. The permission thing that Yamar mentions varies from distro to distro and version to version and is also documented at the page I mentioned above.

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It is my experience that "usb:" works for more people with more devices that the kernel driver and ttyUSBx. The permission thing that Yamar mentions varies from distro to distro and version to version and is also documented at the page I mentioned above.

 

It can vary, but when I checked the most recent versions of Ubuntu (a year ago) and Fedora they both suffered from the permissions problem. Hence I mentioned it here.

 

(I've actually been meaning to write a check into the geoqo code to specifically check for that issue and post a warning to the user)

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Quote from this thread: ¨I rely on gpsbabel. The author (Robert Lipe) expressed a concern that he wasn't seeing or hearing much from Linux users anymore, but in my case it's because it's packaged in the distro's repository and it just works for my needs. Thanks very much for doing it.¨

 

I don´t have any doubt about why he is not seeing much from Linux users:

 

1) To effectively employ Gpsbabel one needs a substantial knowledge of command line terminology which is arcane, complicated and completely unnecessary to master in the modern world of GUIs. Why do I need to learn a foreign language (use of ¨code¨) to be able to geocache with Linux? Why did people gravitate to Windows from DOS? Duh?

2) Check out the web site for Gebabbel, the supposed GUI for gebabbel. It is also arcane and loaded with warnings about crashes when used with Ubuntu.

3) I have spent hours googling sites for a single place where I could learn how to connect my Garmin eTrex to my computer running Ubuntu and be able to reliably move WPs back and forth. There is no such place, I still can´t do it, and that includes the GPSBabel site which requires more Linux expertise than I have.

4) With all the Linux distros and different ¨kernels¨ floating around somebody´s explanation for Fedora will probably not solve my Ubuntu needs. In order tor it to work for me with the command line I need a ¨recipe¨, a step by step account from start to finish that works, or better, a GUI that both I can understand and works.

Edited by frefel

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1) To effectively employ Gpsbabel one needs a substantial knowledge of command line terminology which is arcane, complicated and completely unnecessary to master in the modern world of GUIs. Why do I need to learn a foreign language (use of ¨code¨) to be able to geocache with Linux? Why did people gravitate to Windows from DOS? Duh?

If copy/pasting single lines of script to transfer your waypoints is a dealbreaker, Linux is going to be a harsh world for you.

2) Check out the web site for Gebabbel, the supposed GUI for gebabbel. It is also arcane and loaded with warnings about crashes when used with Ubuntu.

That's not GPSBabel's "supposed GUI for GPSBabel". That was from some dude that consumed a lot of my time and then refused to cooperate with the GPSBabel project.. If you have a beef with that program, take it up with that developer. GPSBabel has a new GUI in development and it works exactly the same on Mac, Linux, and Windows. It's been well publicized within the GPSBabel project, so the fact that you've chosen to isolate yourself from it only underscores the FAQ referenced below. Lashing out at GPSBabel blecuase Gebabbel doesn't work for you is just uncool.

3) I have spent hours googling sites for a single place where I could learn how to connect my Garmin eTrex to my computer running Ubuntu and be able to reliably move WPs back and forth. There is no such place, I still can´t do it, and that includes the GPSBabel site which requires more Linux expertise than I have.

Search for "worst way" in http://www.gpsbabel.org/FAQ.html. Yeah, it's cranky, but you've come here complaining instead of to the source asking - and providing enough information for someone to actually help.

4) With all the Linux distros and different ¨kernels¨ floating around somebody´s explanation for Fedora will probably not solve my Ubuntu needs. In order tor it to work for me with the command line I need a ¨recipe¨, a step by step account from start to finish that works, or better, a GUI that both I can understand and works.

By the numbers I see on GPSBabel's download page, the user base is close enough to "zero" that it's lost in rounding, though I have a special place for open source in my heart[1][2]. We provide doc for the top couple of distributions, but it's not like like, say, Yellow Dog's market share of Lowrance-owning GPSBabel users is exactly an attention getter. If someone other than the GPSBabel project is providing you with GPSBabel, it's up to them to support it. It's not like some arbitrary dude can port it to MyUberCoolDistro (well, they can....) and then blame GPSBabel for not providing pointy clicky support for it.

 

As a (largely former) use of Linux, I share your frustration at the outdated doc on web. "Why am I finding results for PHP/MySql that were available when Roman numerals were the default and stdout went to clay tablets?" It's very frustrating. But when you have an internet with a long search memory and an OS that replaces much of itself on a regular basis, it's a pitfall.

 

I found many thousands of caches with a variety of GPS receivers using only GPSBabel to load them. Many others have done the same. Lashing out at the project or the developer (oh, look, that would be me) with none of the required info to help with your problem doesn't help your cause.

 

I'm a UNIX guy since the mid 80's and used Linux from the early '90's (pre 1.0 kernel yggdrasil) on through the RedHat and Fedora lineage, so please resist the urge to explain the Linux market to me. As I type this, 17 of my last 1,000 download are either src or rpm, so if you really want to bust my chops be prepared to earn 1.7% of my attention.

 

[1] You can find my name in open source projects from the last three decades that include GCC, binutils, cvs, emacs, and many others. I back my mouth with my time as a developer and have for a Very Long Time.

 

[2] Oh, wait GPSBabel itself is open source?

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I appreciate your reply roberlipe; if you feel I was ¨lashing out¨ at you I apologize since that was not my intention. I know you are a respected contributor to the world of geocaching (and more) with with your GPSBabel. I did not want to be critical of you or your work - that would be nonsense; I simply wanted to express my frustration at not being able to take advantage of programs like GPSBabel because of my inadequacies with terminal commands and I´m convinced there are many more like me. It´s not your responsibility to have to make my life easier but that still doesn´t preclude my right to complain about the fact that after all these years there still isn´t a novice friendly GUI to facilitate a connection between a gpsr and Ubuntu, for example. It wouldn´t even have to be GPSBabel.

 

As for the copy/pasting of lines of script being a ¨dealbreaker¨, you are probably right because that doesn´t sound feasible for use in the field where I spend most of my time geocaching.

 

I´m depressed to hear of the pathetic download numbers you are seeing from Linux users but I reiterate, that may have a lot to do with the complexity of GPSBabel for someone like me who has no problem using Ubuntu for almost every other need but, after multiple attempts including soliciting help on various forums, can´t make it work with my eTrex.

 

You mention the development of a new GUI -great, I can hardly wait; I´m looking forward to using GPSBabel. You might want to ¨beta¨ your work to me first because if there is a weakness I´ll certainly gravitate to it (not by choice) to the point of not being able to make it work.

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By the numbers I see on GPSBabel's download page, the user base is close enough to "zero" that it's lost in rounding, though I have a special place for open source in my heart[1][2]. We provide doc for the top couple of distributions, but it's not like like, say, Yellow Dog's market share of Lowrance-owning GPSBabel users is exactly an attention getter. If someone other than the GPSBabel project is providing you with GPSBabel, it's up to them to support it. It's not like some arbitrary dude can port it to MyUberCoolDistro (well, they can....) and then blame GPSBabel for not providing pointy clicky support for it.l

 

The numbers certainly aren't as high as one would like, but when you start getting included into distributions it gets very hard to measure. As a package author of another heavily used (non-geocaching) piece of software that is included with most major operating systems (except windows of course), I find it very very difficult to get a real perspective on use. The only good true metric is mailing list activity. But if you have mailing list activity you probably don't have perfect software (or else they wouldn't need to write you). Being included in distributions means your download count is close to meaningless. I've continually seen "drops" in downloads right after a package gets included into base OS systems. And since gpsbabel is included in most it would be hard to get a good measure of it's usage.

 

That being said, there is one distribution that offers at least a perspective on how many people are using a package and that's debian. Here's a page showing the usage graph of people using gpsbabel, and as you can see the trend is increasing:

 

http://qa.debian.org/popcon-graph.php?packages=gpsbabel

 

You do need to take the raw number on the left with a grain of salt though, as it's an opt-in counting system so it won't count every user. But it does give a feel for trending that I think is likely accurate.

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I had not seen that graph before, Yamar. Thanx.

 

Even with your recommended "grain of salt", we're looking at an installed base over five years that totals less than two days of direct downloads. (GPSBabel had its first thousand download day - totally organic from what I can tell - last week. It looks like our second may very well be today.)

 

The distros including the software aren't doing me a favor. They're invariably shipping a configuration that doesn't actually work on their distro (by far my #1 Linux question optimizes down to "how do I get the broken kernel driver out of my way for a Garmin device" even though the answer is the second hit of a Google search for "linux gpsbabel - with gpsbabel's home page being the first.), is often out of date, and are circumventing my doc and community by hiding that gpsbabel.org even exists. Yet, my software (and presumably yours) get sucked into their commercial distributions and I don't see any benefit from it. The only "contribution" I can think of that came from a Linux vendor was a lawyer hassling me over license compliance issues, at a cost to me of about 40 hours of development just to avoid me having to hire representation to counter their (misguided, IMO) interpretation of a license after they threatened legal action.

 

Not to be a hater, but offering my view as an industry veteran that understands market shares, I'm trying to answer the question "Why doesn't someone invest the couple hundred grand to make a Really Cool geocaching app for Linux" (and I mean of a GSAK scale, not a minimal "ship waypoints from a PQ to a GPS" type) and my answer is because altruism has limits.

 

I'm seriously considering dropping the binary Linux releases from the upcoming release of GPSBabel. The grief/payoff ratio just isn't there. .deb/.rpm, "hello world" built on one distro crashes on another, kernel randomiztion, etc. have just taken their toll on me and I've *tried* to play this game.

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I'm seriously considering dropping the binary Linux releases from the upcoming release of GPSBabel. The grief/payoff ratio just isn't there. .deb/.rpm, "hello world" built on one distro crashes on another, kernel randomiztion, etc. have just taken their toll on me and I've *tried* to play this game.

 

I wonder if this is potentially going to be the death knell for Linux - over the last 5 years or so the various flavoured distros have become big "brands". And they have started to rely on specific toolsets which differ from distro to distro and have become fundamentally wedded to the nature of that distro. So even though there is (should be?) a common kernel underneath them all, they are starting to be fundamentally different beasts. I know its not quite the same, but its similar to the various flavours of PC OS in the 1990s - there was a common x86 architecture at the bottom, but that doesn't stop OS2 / Windows / Dos from being very different beasts to use. Linux was good when it was consistent - you perhaps had a different suite of applications at the top level, and a different look and feel - but otherwise there were common utilities for installing updates / program management / control of devices etc.

 

Mind you, I'm no expert (far, far from it), so my outsider's view might not be right!

 

Matt

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I had not seen that graph before, Yamar. Thanx.

 

Yeah, I hadn't either until someone recently pointed me at that page. It's certainly a useful system and just darn fun to play with :-)

 

The distros including the software aren't doing me a favor. They're invariably shipping a configuration that doesn't actually work on their distro

 

Actually they are. If you want "more users" and don't care about your "personal download counter" you'll get far more users if it's easy to find in the "add new software" box. Linux has gotten to the point where download and install by running configure is actually above the heads of 50% of the users now. (whether that's a good thing or a bad thing is still subject to debate, but if you want "more users" running linux, it has to be a good thing even though it comes with a lot of negatives).

 

FYI, F10 for me works just fine. The only thing I had to do to make things work out of the box was solve the permissions problem. And yes, they should definitely fix that. But other than that no driver issues need to be solved (which isn't true of previous fedora releases like 8ish I think).

 

Not to be a hater, but offering my view as an industry veteran that understands market shares, I'm trying to answer the question "Why doesn't someone invest the couple hundred grand to make a Really Cool geocaching app for Linux" (and I mean of a GSAK scale, not a minimal "ship waypoints from a PQ to a GPS" type) and my answer is because altruism has limits.

 

That's actually why I created geoqo a while back. I needed something to manage waypoints on linux and nothing existed that even came close to my needs. I spent a lot of time on it while my work hours got slashed a while back and made a lot of progress (I still use it heavily now). But now I'm back at full time and don't have the same amount of time to throw at it. But, by far, the number one thing that makes it difficult is installation (which is why I've been working toward a single download installation executable that includes a packed gpsbabel to avoid all those problems with people that can't handle prerequisites).

 

In the end, anything that involves device polling is a pain portability wise. That "other software" I talked about is heavily kernel tied and is ported to a gazzilion OSes. We've had our fair share of "ifdef hell" because of it and rapidly changing kernels make it a real pain in the neck to write portable always-working code. I understand and feel your pain. But in the end, is it better to be mad at the kernel developers that cause you the pain and take it out on the users by dropping support or is it better to try and do a service to the users? If we want more linux users out there (having just spent an hour on my wife's windows machine yesterday trying to solve her problems, I definitely want more linux users out there) then we need to provide good geocaching software that works around distro problems for them. I know too many people that have bought a windows machine just to run GSAK because they have nothing on OSX or something. That just makes me sick.

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I'm seriously considering dropping the binary Linux releases from the upcoming release of GPSBabel. The grief/payoff ratio just isn't there. .deb/.rpm, "hello world" built on one distro crashes on another, kernel randomiztion, etc. have just taken their toll on me and I've *tried* to play this game.

 

First of all, let me start by saying "Thank You" to you, the GPSBabel team, and all other who provide open source solutions.

 

Not unreasonable for you to drop binary packages. What would be a major blow would be if the source was only available for something like MS Visual Studio or something else very platform-specific (I don't think you'd do this) or an arcane development environment. Having sources prepared for autotools (or jam, in a few cases) has been extremely helpful to me. Another gps-centric project (a completely different project from GPSBabel) has migrated development from the GNU/autotools environment to cmake, and I have not yet been able to get a successful build of any version under the new development environment.

 

I know you cannot possibly build binaries for every (currently under support) release of every distro out there. And even then there are dependency issues that can be difficult to resolve. Having an RPM for one specific release of one distro is less important to me than being able to build on a popular programmers' workbench. If I knew more about packaging software, I'd probably leverage my effort and provide the binaries for the distros I run.

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When a binary built on one distro core dumps on another distro before ever even reaching main() (and we're talking "debian/ubuntu" vs. "fedora" here, and on "hello, world" - hardly esoteric stuff, and the source is open, it seems unreasonable to place the maintenance burden on the software makers. If the OS vendors want to package it and support their gratituous differences, they're free to do so. But the fact that the distros keep taking "my" software, bundling it badly, and then sending the resulting support problems to us while hiding our doc just bugs the crap out of me.

 

I only reluctantly use VS and its mutants. Don't worry about GPSBabel becoming a MS-dominated project. We've shipped several versions that won't even build with our MSVC projects (oops) just because nobody core to the project's development uses it. The number of people that have noticed might take both hands to count. Maybe.

 

In fact, I'm pretty sure the TOT will actually build on Linux. I'm certain it'll build on a Mac - and the resulting binaries will be useful to all 10.4 and 10.5 users. I'm pretty sure it won't build on MSVC express right now. Fixing that is on my list.

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Again, let me start by thanking you for your effort.

 

When a binary built on one distro core dumps on another distro before ever even reaching main() (and we're talking "debian/ubuntu" vs. "fedora" here, and on "hello, world" - hardly esoteric stuff, and the source is open, it seems unreasonable to place the maintenance burden on the software makers.

 

Understood. If I understand correctly, you have assigned yourself the task of producing a source package that's portable enough to be built reasonably easily on a lot of platforms, maintaining that source package, and upgrading it. That sounds like a lot to me. I don't think the "maintenance" portion of it includes having to figure out why some binary package built by someone unknown to you and not connected with your project crashes when run by someone else on a system using the same release of the same distro. Let alone another release or a different distro altogether. Even if it seems as simple as "needs libblahblah version >= 0.0.1" (addressing this issue often leads to another, then another, ...).

 

If the OS vendors want to package it and support their gratituous differences, they're free to do so. But the fact that the distros keep taking "my" software, bundling it badly, and then sending the resulting support problems to us while hiding our doc just bugs the crap out of me.

 

Bugs me, too. I hope you don't resent, per se, the distribution of your software. I imagine it's the rest of what does (and doesn't) happen, starting with a build on the target platform using libraries not typically found on (that release of) that platform, including both arcane and bleeding-edge stuff. I'm saddened if you get a ration of crap because of this. And not always knowing what documentation was installed or where is a problem. A little shell script tells me what files are in an installed package (and where they are), including docs. I wonder how many people check this. Or do they go to the web first and get docs that pertain to a new major release? I'd be sorry if you got grief because of this, too.

 

I only reluctantly use VS and its mutants. Don't worry about GPSBabel becoming a MS-dominated project.

 

I wasn't, as I said in my previous post.

 

In fact, I'm pretty sure the TOT will actually build on Linux. I'm certain it'll build on a Mac - and the resulting binaries will be useful to all 10.4 and 10.5 users.

 

What is "TOT?" Pardon my ignorance....

 

I think I feel your aggravation. I haven't made any binaries available of any of the software (perhaps a dozen or two projects in the past few years) I've built from source because I don't yet know how to do it correctly, and am reluctant cause more trouble than good. I realize I'm not being part of the solution, but I'm trying to not add to the problem....

 

Again, thank you. Know that people care.

 

Prost!

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If the OS vendors want to package it and support their gratituous differences, they're free to do so. But the fact that the distros keep taking "my" software, bundling it badly, and then sending the resulting support problems to us while hiding our doc just bugs the crap out of me.

 

As long as we're ranting, you know what I hate more: to go look into a distro that is repackaging your stuff to find that they're applying like 50 patches for bugs they've never even submitted to the upstream as issues in the first place! This compounded with the problems, all very true, that you mention above is a nightmare.

 

Fortunately, some distros have gotten better about that. But many haven't. And most distros are user driven packaging too which means support varies from packager to packager.

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Fortunately, some distros have gotten better about that. But many haven't. And most distros are user driven packaging too which means support varies from packager to packager.

 

So Yamar how about identifying those good and bad distros from your perspective? That might be helpful to those of us who are trying to make Linux work for geocaching.

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Perhaps I'll get this back on track....

 

Not done too many caches yet, but I'm finding them exclusively using Ubuntu - USB GPS dongle running through gpsd, navit (into which I pre-load cache points) uses the OpenStreetMap project maps to find me a way to the cache, and then tangogps is used for the last few metres (I find it's a little more responsive than navit when walking).

 

So, no problems with GPSr compatibility.

 

However, I do look like a bit of a dick walking round with a netbook (Acer One running Ubuntu, if interested) - luckily the only caches we've found so far are in remote, out of the way places in Canada.

 

So I'm currently thinking of making a very simple script into which a coordinate is placed (or a set of coordinates), and this scripts beeps and makes other noises to tell you which direction to go in and how far away the cache is. This way I can have the netbook in my rucksack and use earphones to get to the cache. We'll see how it goes....!!!

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Not done too many caches yet, but I'm finding them exclusively using Ubuntu - USB GPS dongle running through gpsd, navit (into which I pre-load cache points) uses the OpenStreetMap project maps to find me a way to the cache, and then tangogps is used for the last few metres (I find it's a little more responsive than navit when walking).

 

Cool beans! I've experimented with a setup very much like this: a GTop mouse (MTK chip, Silicon Labs 210X USB to UART bridge) on a laptop running GPSDrive.

 

However, I do look like a bit of a dick walking round with a netbook (Acer One running Ubuntu, if interested) - luckily the only caches we've found so far are in remote, out of the way places in Canada.

 

I'm still experimenting with the mouse, as I said, and have to date gone out twice. First time was with a Satellite 15" laptop running OpenSuse 10.3. (Had 11.1 installed on it for two days, then the keyboard stopped working; regression to 10.3 was not easy.) That was a bit awkward. Second time was with an old G3 iBook running Darwin 8. That was a bit handier. But I'll bet I looked geekier than you, especially with the Rx taped to the top of my hat.... :-b

 

So I'm currently thinking of making a very simple script into which a coordinate is placed (or a set of coordinates), and this scripts beeps and makes other noises to tell you which direction to go in and how far away the cache is. This way I can have the netbook in my rucksack and use earphones to get to the cache. We'll see how it goes....!!!

 

The build of GPSDrive I used on OpenSuse 10.3 had speech support compiled in. Not sure if it was Festival, Flite, or something else. Every few seconds it gave me one of a rotating series of updates: "Destination is ahead and to your left," "Destination is 30 meters ahead," "The time is now 20 hours and 11 minutes," etc. I know I've compiled Navit with speech support, too, but haven't field-tested it. Haven't done much with Tango yet, though your comment tells me I should. Although they're not designed for this purpose, maybe Tango or Navit will say something helpful for cacheseeking?

 

Prost!

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Cool beans! I've experimented with a setup very much like this: a GTop mouse (MTK chip, Silicon Labs 210X USB to UART bridge) on a laptop running GPSDrive.

 

Sounds very similar: my GPS mouse is a Navisys GR-300 with a SiRF III chip and a USB to Serial bridge (very easy for gpsd!).

 

But I'll bet I looked geekier than you, especially with the Rx taped to the top of my hat.... :-b

 

Ha, you have no idea how many times I've thought of doing that to improve the signal - haven't quite got there yet. Here in Canada I get WAAS/DGPS signal too, so it's not been too much of a problem, but when I go back to the UK (dense area) I may struggle - we'll see

 

The build of GPSDrive I used on OpenSuse 10.3 had speech support compiled in. Not sure if it was Festival, Flite, or something else. Every few seconds it gave me one of a rotating series of updates: "Destination is ahead and to your left," "Destination is 30 meters ahead," "The time is now 20 hours and 11 minutes," etc. I know I've compiled Navit with speech support, too, but haven't field-tested it. Haven't done much with Tango yet, though your comment tells me I should. Although they're not designed for this purpose, maybe Tango or Navit will say something helpful for cacheseeking?

 

GPSDrive!! That's the only one I haven't tried yet - looks like it uses festival for speech output, which I've used before so no problems there. I've switched off speech support in Navit as it was driving me mental - note also that the speech support in Navit is for routing (directions), so tells you to go into this street, then that street, then the third exit etc, etc. It doesn't provide useful directions 'off-map' to a single waypoint (i.e. ahead and left a bit, 100 metres), which by the sounds of it GPSDrive can do. I'll have to give it a go when I get home (and can bash my wi-fi into life).

 

As far as I know TangoGPS doesn't have speech support, and the only real reason I use it is that Navit is primarily designed as a sat-nav program, to route from A to B, whilst TangoGPS is a pure GPS program like the handheld GPSr's.

 

One question though (open to anyone) - I mentioned in my previous post that I used TangoGPS because it seemed more responsive. That's rubbish, because both TangoGPS and Navit take data from gpsd. I've noticed that I need to walk about 4.5km/h before gpsd starts registering my movement, after which I can slow down a little (but not much), before it thinks I've stopped again. This is not helpful when scaling steep, crumbly cliffs etc, where horizontal speed is not very high. Is this gpsd's problem, or a problem with the receiver (USB GPS mouse)? Do the handheld's suffer from this too? I'd be very interested to know!!

 

Prost!

 

Cheers!!

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GPSDrive!! That's the only one I haven't tried yet - looks like it uses festival for speech output, which I've used before so no problems there. I've switched off speech support in Navit as it was driving me mental - note also that the speech support in Navit is for routing (directions), so tells you to go into this street, then that street, then the third exit etc, etc. It doesn't provide useful directions 'off-map' to a single waypoint (i.e. ahead and left a bit, 100 metres), which by the sounds of it GPSDrive can do. I'll have to give it a go when I get home (and can bash my wi-fi into life).

 

Navit can do routing because it uses vector maps. The map files tend to be more compact, too, and you can zoom in as much as you wish and still have a crisp display. GPSDrive (and Tangogps, I think) use pixel-mapped maps: lots of files, at least for GPSDrive, to cover a given area. And no real capability to route. Which is both good (because it's in an "off road" mode when you're off road) and bad (because it's still in a off-road mode even when you're on-road).

 

I haven't compiled Navit yet for the Darwin notebook; have you tried the "T&H" display in conjunction with turning off the "lock to road" rule?

 

An annoying thing about the maps for GPSDrive is the coordinate system. It assumes true North is perfectly vertical, while the map servers it uses (all servers of pixel-mapped maps that I have found, in fact) provide UTM or UTM-like coordinates. Not a problem near the middle of a UTM zone, but if your longitude is close to a multiple of 6 degrees and you're not in the tropics the grid North is off enough to result in significant errors in the position GPSDrive displays for you on the map, depending on how far you are from the center of the map. Apparently, GPSDrive was initially developed in Hamburg, approximately 10 degrees E longitude, in the central third of UTM zone 32. So this may have not been a problem for the original developers.

 

One question though (open to anyone) - I mentioned in my previous post that I used TangoGPS because it seemed more responsive. That's rubbish, because both TangoGPS and Navit take data from gpsd. I've noticed that I need to walk about 4.5km/h before gpsd starts registering my movement, after which I can slow down a little (but not much), before it thinks I've stopped again. This is not helpful when scaling steep, crumbly cliffs etc, where horizontal speed is not very high. Is this gpsd's problem, or a problem with the receiver (USB GPS mouse)? Do the handheld's suffer from this too? I'd be very interested to know!!

 

I'm not sure if this is a gpsd issue, an issue peculiar to your GPSr, or is an artifact of how different navigation apps decide whether or not you're moving. Have you examined the GPRMC sentences and the output from gpsd? Your GPSr should provide velocity and track angle estimates and report them in GPRMC sentences. The navigation program may either use this velocity/direction information, or compute its own from a cache of recent position history. I don't know if gpsd also computes its own take on velocity and direction, but I'd tend to suspect one of the other two players.

 

Prost!

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One question though (open to anyone) - I mentioned in my previous post that I used TangoGPS because it seemed more responsive. That's rubbish, because both TangoGPS and Navit take data from gpsd. I've noticed that I need to walk about 4.5km/h before gpsd starts registering my movement, after which I can slow down a little (but not much), before it thinks I've stopped again. This is not helpful when scaling steep, crumbly cliffs etc, where horizontal speed is not very high. Is this gpsd's problem, or a problem with the receiver (USB GPS mouse)? Do the handheld's suffer from this too? I'd be very interested to know!!

 

 

If I am not wrong, this could be due to an option (I believe it is called "Static navigation") which is enabled in the SIRF III. It's purpose is mainly for automotive use and basically disables position updates when the speed is lower than a certain value (which I seem to remember being around 4.5 km/hr). You should disable this function (I do not know which linux software allows you to do it... I have never used a sirf III with linux).

 

Cheers,

 

diber

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I haven't compiled Navit yet for the Darwin notebook; have you tried the "T&H" display in conjunction with turning off the "lock to road" rule?

 

Ahh, I noticed your questions over on the Navit wiki... Yup, I tried the T@H layout, but I think it's pretty crap as it misses out a lot of the stuff which Navit is capable of displaying - I've created my own layout to look more like an OSM render, but the thing is so customizable that you can do what you want!! I usually have the 'lock to road' rule turned off (it is by default on mine) as the position reports I receive tend to be accurate enough to place me on the correct road - I ony tend to get problems when the map (from OSM) is actually wrong, which happens a bit...)

 

If I am not wrong, this could be due to an option (I believe it is called "Static navigation") which is enabled in the SIRF III. It's purpose is mainly for automotive use and basically disables position updates when the speed is lower than a certain value (which I seem to remember being around 4.5 km/hr). You should disable this function (I do not know which linux software allows you to do it... I have never used a sirf III with linux).

 

That'll be it then. Can this function be disabled by software? You mention that you've never used SiRFIII with Linux - how did you do it on Windows/Mac? Time to start hunting, methinks...

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That'll be it then. Can this function be disabled by software? You mention that you've never used SiRFIII with Linux - how did you do it on Windows/Mac? Time to start hunting, methinks...

 

Scrap that, I've found it already: gpsd comes with a program called gpsmon with which you can set (provide the command M1) or clear (M0) the static navigation. I'll give it a go and see what happens: thanks for the info diber!

 

edit: For those using gpsd from the package manager in Ubuntu, the current gpsd (2.38) comes with sirfmon, not gpsmon. The idea is the same, but the commands are now c1 and c0...

Edited by tiiiim

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...I ony tend to get problems when the map (from OSM) is actually wrong, which happens a bit...)

 

I've seen a few errors in a Navit map built from Open Street Map data that didn't appear to be in the OSM data. Like gaps in roads. It may be caused by different segments of the same road being represented with different polylines, and might not show up when the OSM data are viewed directly, but get separated during conversion to Navit's format. Just speculation, though.

 

BTW, yes, I'm the same Biergartler at the Navit wiki.

 

Prost!

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As I noted earlier, I've been using Linux for a long time. I have generally used a Magellan GPS Companion with a Tungsten T or an M 125 running CetusGPS software.

 

On the PC side, I use GPSBabel (thanks for your hard work to provide an excellent format translator, Robert) along with a perl script running on an AMD64 system under Debian Squeeze.

 

I have 7 PQ's defined for the that slightly overlap. After I work a certain area, I only need run the PQ for that area. When I receive the zipped gpx files, I save them in a certain directory. Then I run a perl script.

 

The script extracts the gpx files from the zip files into a temp directory. Next, using GPSBabel, it combines all the gpx files into one gpx file while removing duplicates.

 

It then uses GPSBabel to create an html file for loading on my laptop, a kml file for google earth, a pdb file for the Cetus Palm App, and a custom csv file.

 

The csv file is for an experimental feature I'm toying with. I've been playing with the idea of identifying close groupings of caches so I drive to a centralised parking location and hunt 3 or more on foot. Ultimately, I will create a csv file that will work on a Becker Traffic assist 7934. (It uses a simple csv file for waypoints named favorites.txt) that I will use to direct me to the neighborhood for a group of caches.

 

And the scripts calls another script that generates a vcard file for use on a Garmin iQue 3600.

 

The same script works with the Windows computer at work with the windows binary versions of gpsbabel and perl 5.

 

I recently bought a used Triton 2000 from a pawn shop, and it seems to be Windows centric like every other connectable device. However, someone will work out how to use it from Linux. ( even if I have to do it)

 

Someone commented on the cli nature of many Linux utilities. Many fail to understand a basic problem with GUIs. In order to get eas of use, they become limited in the scope of their abilities. the power of gpsbabel is that it can called from a simple script or batch file, since most peolpe are not likely to need to change the format parameters every time they use it.

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I run linux, and i can't find any problem. GSAK works really good in wine, Cachestats needs a little work but can be used. One thing i like about linux is that everything just works. I recently got a USB bluetooth stick that came with drivers you had to use on windows. On my linux desktop i plugged it in, and a few seconds later i got a small buetooth icon on my panel.

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On my linux desktop i plugged it in, and a few seconds later i got a small buetooth icon on my panel.

 

Bluetooth is definitely one area which 'Just Works ' on Linux - I've had countless problems with bluetooth in Windows: none in Ubuntu.

 

Anyway, back on track, I finally got down to writing the script which I talked about earlier. It takes in a coordinate (or a file of coordinates) and after the user enters an update time (i.e. 5 seconds), it speaks to me using flite every five seconds. It tells me the distance from the coordinate (as the crow flies, of course) and the bearing. This means that I can leave the laptop in my bag and plug in my headphones and go off searching (with the aid of a compass). I found my first audio-guided cache today, and it worked a treat!!

 

Another feature I wrote into the script is that of Ground Zero detection. Once you enter Ground Zero (I think I set it at 20 metres around the destination waypoint), a software flag is set. If you leave Ground Zero, the script assumes you've either found the cache or have given up, and moves onto the next waypoint in the file, or quits if there are no more waypoints.

 

The script is written entirely in PHP, as that's what I'm most comfortable in right now! I know many people in the Linux community don't trust random scripts (me included), and that's why I'm not posting it here. If you want it, just PM me your details and I'll email it over with some instructions on its use - I'm a Linux newbie myself, so I probably won't be able to answer support questions all that well, suffice to say that you need the gpsd, php5-cli and flite packages along with all their dependencies (and probably others which I already had but don't realise are critical).

Edited by tiiiim

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I'm currently using Ubuntu 9.04 and a Garmin eTrex Vista HCx. I've got qLandkarte for uploading my pocket queries which works fine for me to a point. Problem is that I want to go paperless and I haven't been able to figure out how to get a map to work. All I have is the US base map that is built into the device. I downloaded a free Wisconsin map from CloudMade which reads fine in qLandkarte. I've tried using sendmap20 but all it did was recompile the map. I tried manually transferring the map to the sD card but all that loads in the device is the base map, I can't even select a map in my device. So I'm at a loss as to what I'm doing wrong.

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I've been a Debian user for over 10 years.

 

I use primarly Linux and MacOS-X (since I bought a Mac laptop 2 years ago).

 

I curently use an old WinCE PDA with external bluetooth gps for geocaching, but I will get my hands on a friend's openmoko freerunner this week. Any experiences here with openmoko handhelds for geocaching?

 

I'm going to try to install android on the freerunner and see if i can install geobeagle on it too.

 

As for other GC-related software I use GCStatistics for generating my profile webpage on GC.

Edited by bgravato

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I'm primarily a Linux user. I've even converted a few family and friends over. My flavor of Choice is Slackware, though I have Debian installed on an external USB hard-drive and that is what use for most my GPS stuff. I dual-boot to use topo 7.0 and NatGeo Trails Illus 3D ('dacks). But really most of my life is lived on Linux. I wish I could get those two apps to run under Wine then I'd have no need for windows at all.

 

My Desktop, Laptop, Router, NAS, and Phone all run one flavor of Linux or Another.

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I have a Asus Eee PC 901XP, reloaded with EeeBuntu over here.

 

I pulled and built gpsbabel from source. No problems.

 

I have a Lowrance H2O GPS, and regularly record hikes, bikes and runs as tracks, convert them to GPX via gpsbabel, and then upload them to mapmyride.com mapmyrun.com, etc.

 

I'm VERY grateful to have access to gpsbabel on Linux.

 

I write OpenGL engineering graphics software for a living, so dealing with programs and the command line are easy for me. I know I don't represent the average user.

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Latest OpenSuSE here.

Geotoad to download geocaches (what geotoad gets for me is much better than the PQs, IMNSHO).

GSAK ( what a PITA to set up GSAK via WINE) to manage my caches, but recently discovered Cache901 (http://www.cache901.org), so I'm playing with that to see what it's capable of or what it's limitations are.

Now if GSAK's features could be put in a linux native app, I'd happily pay for it.

I take those GPX and just copy them over to my Android-based phone via USB connection.

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I write OpenGL engineering graphics software for a living, so dealing with programs and the command line are easy for me. I know I don't represent the average user.

 

You should definitely check out geoqo then; it's command line interface is significantly better than its GUI interface and lets you do amazingly complex searches and data munging.

 

# geoqo -s cache:state=Maryland -d top10:groundspeak_difficulty
Top 10 'groundspeak_difficulty's
Num	% Value
----------------------------------------------------------------------
180   32 2
105   18 1.5
105   18 2.5
 79   14 1
 61   10 3
 16	2 3.5
  9	1 4
  3	0 5
  1	0 4.5

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Wow; there is a lot of talent out there! I hope some of it will get channeled into writing easy-to-use GUIs for Linux dumbells like me. I have been using Linux for routine web browing for years but without the computational skills background I find command line use more challenging than learning a foreign language; and since I am learning Spanish it would be impossible for me to add another.

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So, if you are a Linux user, maybe you could just reply with a quick post and also state which flavour you use.

My primary computer runs Debian stable.

Eee PC 900ha (netbook) runs Mint 8.

Live CDs I tend to use Slax.

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Wow; there is a lot of talent out there! I hope some of it will get channeled into writing easy-to-use GUIs for Linux dumbells like me. I have been using Linux for routine web browing for years but without the computational skills background I find command line use more challenging than learning a foreign language; and since I am learning Spanish it would be impossible for me to add another.

My sister-in-law has no idea what a console or command line is and between slackware 12.2 and gslapt she never needs one. I did set it up for her though. But with a little googling you can find everything you need to punch into the command line to get through the setup program.

 

Debian is far easier to setup and maintain. If you select to install KDE as the GUI (after setup) then it will feel more like what you'd be used to.

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I know this was an old thread - but wow, it just helped me a good deal. Thank you search function!

 

I'm new and using mint linux. My only reservations about the switch was how it was going to effect my GPS/caching. Some good resources here for figuring things out.

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The question arises from a discussion on another topic thread recently. I'm doing a bit of research to discover how many geocachers users Linux rather than Windows.

...

So, if you are a Linux user, maybe you could just reply with a quick post and also state which flavour you use.

 

Regards,

Dave

 

Fedora and Ubuntu both. I'm looking at the Lowrance Endura units because they claim to be useful with Linux.

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As I stated earlier, I have been a Debian user for many years. However, I work in a Windows-only IT shop. About 7 months ago, I bought a Magellan Triton 2000 at a pawnshop for less that half the retail price, The Triton is Windows PocketPC based and the only way to transfer caches and way-points to the unit is through a dot-net application called Vantagepoint. The installer for Vantagepoint will not work with Wine, and since Vantage Point uses a few narive windows dlls, I have not been able to make it work with Mono under Linux.

I have studied the Triton and I suspect the GPS ldata is being held hostage in a SQL-Server dot Net database on the Triton. If this is the case, it may be possible to access the waypoints, tracks, routes and caches through an ODBC driver.

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My frustration with waypoint transfer tools under UNIX/Linux was the original motivation for GPSBabel. See: http://www.gpsbabel.org/people/robertlipe.html Mac and Windows came later.

 

I used Linux almost exclusively for my geocaching needs (minus the occasional map upload or printing of a big map) for about six years. I still visit it from time to time and keep GPSBabel running there, but it's not my primary platform these days.

 

Contrary to popular press, I'm actually seeing the GPSBabel traffic in Linux shrink over time. Fewer downloads, fewer contributions, fewer code changes.

robertlipe,

 

When I downloaded the VantagePoint software for my Triton 2000, I found it included GPSBabel for Windows, complete with source.I suspect that may be the case with other GPS manufacturers software as well.

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The notebook in the picture is running Windows XP.

 

I just got a Asus EEEpc 900 running Linux on Monday. I have my open-source program GPSTurbo running on it already displaying both Garmin Maps and Google maps. The funny thing is loads GPX files about 3 times as fast as my PC with Windows XP.

I also ordered a USB dongle GPS for it so I hope to have it doing realtime tracking as well as soon as the GPS arrives.

eeepc.jpg

GPSTurbo page

 

Kevin

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Kevin;

What version of Linux are you using and are there any suggestions for someone like me who is not very computer savy, especially regarding the setup and use of GPSTurbo?

Fred

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Actually, it's probably actually Linux. Look at the taskbar and system tray. On the right side is an "Arrow" which collapses the system tray to the right. That's a Linux Gnome panel type feature, not something you see on WinXP.

 

The window minimize, maximize, and close buttons look like XP, but that's easy to do with a UI theme on Linux.

 

 

The notebook in the picture is running Windows XP.

 

I just got a Asus EEEpc 900 running Linux on Monday. I have my open-source program GPSTurbo running on it already displaying both Garmin Maps and Google maps. The funny thing is loads GPX files about 3 times as fast as my PC with Windows XP.

I also ordered a USB dongle GPS for it so I hope to have it doing realtime tracking as well as soon as the GPS arrives.

eeepc.jpg

GPSTurbo page

 

Kevin

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Thought I'd post here to mention OCM again, my own project to develop something GSAK like for Linux users. OCM currently supports both GPX based devices like the Colorado/Oregon/Dakota series and other machines via GPSBabel. I haven't released binary packages yet, but once I do I think I might automatically fix the USB permission issue on install for Ubuntu based distros.

 

http://sourceforge.net/projects/opencachemanage/

Edited by ocm_ott

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k I might automatically fix the USB permission issue on install for Ubuntu based distros.

Bonus points for getting Canonical or Debian to actually fix it. They've shipped it busted for years and the fix seems to be different for every version.

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k I might automatically fix the USB permission issue on install for Ubuntu based distros.

Bonus points for getting Canonical or Debian to actually fix it. They've shipped it busted for years and the fix seems to be different for every version.

 

I'm going to take a two-prong approach. I'll try to contribute the patch to the actual repackage of GPSBabel hosted in the Ubuntu repositories, and then hope someone moves it upstream to Debian. It seems the fix has been the same from 9.04 forwards. The second prong is that the Karmic/Lucid packages for OCM will do the udev patch on install.

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I'm thinking of converting my geoqo application functionality to Qt (from perl) because I really like the power of geoqo's internal architecture but want a new spiffy UI on front of it. Plus Qt runs on pretty much everything and is probably the most portable UI development kit out there...

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I'm thinking of converting my geoqo application functionality to Qt (from perl) because I really like the power of geoqo's internal architecture but want a new spiffy UI on front of it. Plus Qt runs on pretty much everything and is probably the most portable UI development kit out there...

 

You mean versus GTK? I think both QT and GTK are pretty portable these days. I kinda prefer Gnome over KDE, so I went the GTK route. That being said, multiplatform support is a real pain (do that enough in my day job :o ) so I'm not even going to bother. As Robert's pointed out in this thread, just trying to support the various linux distros is enough work.

Edited by ocm_ott

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I'm thinking of converting my geoqo application functionality to Qt (from perl) because I really like the power of geoqo's internal architecture but want a new spiffy UI on front of it. Plus Qt runs on pretty much everything and is probably the most portable UI development kit out there...

 

You mean versus GTK? I think both QT and GTK are pretty portable these days. I kinda prefer Gnome over KDE, so I went the GTK route. That being said, multiplatform support is a real pain (do that enough in my day job :o ) so I'm not even going to bother. As Robert's pointed out in this thread, just trying to support the various linux distros is enough work.

 

I think they're both portable, yes. And in fact geoqo has GTK support now for it's interface (through another abstraction layer).

 

But... I don't think GTK ports or installs as easily as Qt does and I do think that Qt has lately passed GTK in terms of devices it runs on. EG, the other day I wrote a few simple Qt applications and to get it to work on my phone was simply a re-qmake and recompile without a single modification to the source.

 

What I haven't tried yet is installing and compiling under windows. I'm hoping that easy too. But I'm not that naive to believe myself either though.

 

(Qt has ports to androids and Iphones, I don't think GTK does but I could be wrong there)

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Another possibile contributor to reduced usage of GPSBabel these days may be the fact that many new GPS units support the GPX format natively. As a result, I haven't needed a format conversion or loading utility for quite a while.

 

I used to use GPSBabel for converting NMEA logs from an Amod AGL3080 tracker to GPX, but since switching to an i-Blue 747A+, BT747 has built in GPX and KML export.

 

My Oregon 450 accepts GPX natively, so I haven't converted a PQ in ages.

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