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Garmin Oregon, Dakota, Colorado -- Custom Raster Map support!


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It's one click of a profile button to change the set of maps you want showing.

 

Setting up custom maps is easy. To use someone else's custom map is even easier. I had one made for state park set of trails in less than 15 minutes. To share and load to unit? One drag.

 

And this is still early days. Gonna see some even cooler things soon, and hopefully community libraries. Love seeing Garmin add features to an existing, already flexible unit.

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One last thought...it appears many of you are what I would consider techy (or at least knowing your way around a GPS AND maps), so hearing you guys say it's easy just doesn't instill that warm and fuzzy feeling for me. Not badmouthing, but wondering aloud here, would the common user find this as easy as you guys do?

 

My main concern is that I am telling friends about this and I am not even sure how to get the maps myself. Seems this new tool makes it easier, but easier for a techy person...or for a common user?

 

Maybe I'll get with a friend soon and see how easy it is??

 

This is a Beta update and not an official stable release. It would seem to me that typically the type of person that would run Beta software, has at least a clue of how to perform such a simple task as creating these raster maps, especially when it is spelled out so simply in the instructions from Garmin. Its not rocket science, it just takes 15 minutes of your time to make a map tile (manually).

 

Once it is an official stable point release, there will likely be many automated tools so the "common user" will have no issues.

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One last thought...it appears many of you are what I would consider techy (or at least knowing your way around a GPS AND maps), so hearing you guys say it's easy just doesn't instill that warm and fuzzy feeling for me. Not badmouthing, but wondering aloud here, would the common user find this as easy as you guys do?

 

My main concern is that I am telling friends about this and I am not even sure how to get the maps myself. Seems this new tool makes it easier, but easier for a techy person...or for a common user?

 

Maybe I'll get with a friend soon and see how easy it is??

 

This is a Beta update and not an official stable release. It would seem to me that typically the type of person that would run Beta software, has at least a clue of how to perform such a simple task as creating these raster maps, especially when it is spelled out so simply in the instructions from Garmin. Its not rocket science, it just takes 15 minutes of your time to make a map tile (manually).

 

Once it is an official stable point release, there will likely be many automated tools so the "common user" will have no issues.

 

Apparently, it IS rocket science considering the people I have spoke to all say they'll pass, it may help you to know I'm not the one you need to convince, I'm a DeLorme user! :) Spelled out? I wonder then, why so many seemed to be having troubles in the first place? :) And, yes, I do realize this is a beta.

 

I mean you nor anyone else any hardships here, I am merely stating the positions of several of my friends...and yes, MOST of them are the "common user". And, whether you see this as helpful or not, I am learning here as well as offering insight.

 

As for the thought that the typical beta downloader is techy...guess I must be the exception to this rule? I used the beta DeLorme put out awhile back as did a few of my non-techy friends. I wouldn't stake my life on that statement, my friend! :o

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... Having to turn one off to use the other is my memory of it. ...

The Oregons have profiles so you can set up different profiles with different maps and simply switch profiles. Hardly a PITA.

 

I still don't understand why you keep putting your $0.02 in when you don't even own the unit thats being discussed here.

 

JetSkier

 

If my posts bother you, please disregard them. :) They are there for reasons which I have already stated....and all would be about the topic at hand even if "drifting" a tad? As for the PITA, you may think otherwise, but I was not impressed. While I understand I may be in the minority here, it doesn't nullify my opinion, does it? :o

 

Now, back on topic? :)

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It's one click of a profile button to change the set of maps you want showing.

 

Setting up custom maps is easy. To use someone else's custom map is even easier. I had one made for state park set of trails in less than 15 minutes. To share and load to unit? One drag.

 

And this is still early days. Gonna see some even cooler things soon, and hopefully community libraries. Love seeing Garmin add features to an existing, already flexible unit.

 

I'm certain that, had I owned it longer, I would have succeeded in figuring out all the tricks to setting it up to better suit my needs! Truthfully, I was tempted to keep the unit and may have, had it worked properly. An upcoming chance to travel might even bring me back to owning one! :)

 

I really like the idea of being able to make custom maps like state parks and such, I could see that as a HUGE bonus!! Especially if they are accurate!! Just hoping to see this is made easier and you're given the ability to use larger maps without problem! I could see great potential if given the ability to load large sections of a state... :o:)

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Thank you Scott, and a huge thank you to Leszek Pawlowicz at Free Geography Tools for this program called G-Raster! I just had the chance to download G-Raster and read thru the information. I grabbed a sample geotiff from the USGS Seamless site (True color, one-foot resolution, projected NYS Plane East NAD 83) and it worked perfectly. (Our NYS GIS site is currently offering ortho images in .jpg2 format so I couldn't use those).

 

My sample image is about 0.5 mi x 0.5 mi and G-Raster knew to create 6 separate tiles to create the single .kmz. I dragged it to my SD card, turned it one, and it displays accurately and clearly down to the 30 ft zoom level. I walked outside moments ago and my CO 300 put me on the sidewalk as I took a walk down the street.

 

For a first test I am absolutely impressed. G-Raster just made it possible to utilize the free georeferenced ortho photos widely available to the public. I know many states offer this imagery on their GIS websites, and the USGS Seamless site is nation-wide source. I will play with it more tomorrow and see what the area or image limits are using this res ortho imagery. This is getting better by the day!

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Let's not forget that to the rest of the World (yes there is such a place) the concept of raster maps on a Garmin touchscreen is a welcome free addition. Some areas are spoilt by endless free maps and this update is great for those who are less fortunate in this regard and gives them the opportunity to place a little slice of paradise on their GPSr. :)

 

Happy to push several touchscreen buttons to choose mapsets..... :o

 

mm

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Apparently, it IS rocket science considering the people I have spoke to all say they'll pass, it may help you to know I'm not the one you need to convince, I'm a DeLorme user! :) Spelled out? I wonder then, why so many seemed to be having troubles in the first place? :o And, yes, I do realize this is a beta.

 

 

View this link that was posted on the very first post of this thread.

 

http://garmin.blogs.com/softwareupdates/20...easy-steps.html

 

I call that spelled out. :)

 

As for why someone would still have problems after following that, I cannot answer.

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Only it doesn't mention anything about the size restrictions, which I think some are having problems with.

 

Yes, I saw that as well...and other problems. I guess he's saying if we just say there shouldn't be a problem, it'll be true. The DeLorme instructions were well spelled out also, but many had problems, it's no big deal, but I won't pretend it isn't happening either. :o

 

Carry on all, can't wait to see this progress!

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Utilizing the raster maps for topos and things like state park maps is pretty sweet.

 

But unless/until we have the option of turning on/off individual KMZ files, the 100 jpg image limit coupled with the 1 megapixel image size limit is way too restrictive to allow any real coverage of aerial imagery.

 

I put one 2.5 mile x 2.5 mile ortho tile (from MassGIS) into g-raster, and it properly generated 64 1 megapixel jpg files inside the KMZ file - that means I can only one 6.25 sq. mile tile on the unit at one time.

 

Admittedly, that's resolution dependent, but it's very restrictive (perhaps purposefully so).

 

Hopefully Garmin will rectify this, so we can utilize the storage capacity of the SD slot - though they haven't bothered to do so on the GPX end of things yet (giving us the option to store many 2k geocache files, and select them individually)

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Well stated Dosido. I agree with all points. I also have found the raster Trail, Topo, and Parks maps to be very useful and the aerial imagery sweet, if not limited. One big point is this beta shows the possibilities of what may be coming with future improvements. This beta shows it works.

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Well stated Dosido. I agree with all points. I also have found the raster Trail, Topo, and Parks maps to be very useful and the aerial imagery sweet, if not limited. One big point is this beta shows the possibilities of what may be coming with future improvements. This beta shows it works.

 

Now to make it work productively! :o

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A technical question for those "in the know".

 

I'm using GPSvisualizer to generate multiple tiles in an area. I overlap each tile slightly to ensure a seamless coverage. Do I have to change the view order to something different for each tile so my unit won't skitz out or will it be fine to have overlapping tiles with the same view order (1 is default). I know that 25 and under will show under vectors and 26-50 shows above vector layers. My tiles are also all under 1MB.

 

The reason I ask is that I've been having mixed unit stability. Sometimes the unit crashes whilst panning or scrolling over the raster tiles and I'm wondering if it has trouble with two tiles having the same draw order.

 

Thanks in advance.

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I think the stability issues might not have anything to do with overlapping maps (I've tested with 3-4 overlapping maps). I see the panning/zooming problem more frequently if I'm zoomed in and if I have larger/more images loaded.

 

In other news, Topofusion released a beta today (registered users only) with Garmin KMZ support (via GPS Tracklog).

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I also see my 400t shut down consistently when panning a large part of the screen, at once. If I only pan a 1/4 to 1/2 the screen at a time and give the screen time to fully refreash then it doesn't shut down. The closer I'm zoomed in the worse the shut down becomes and the slower I have to pan across the screen. I have 20 custom map tiles loaded and 17 of this 20 are in 3 maps where the tiles overlap. I had played around with the draw orders, setting the overlapping map tiles to different draw orders and it doesn't seem to make any difference.

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Thank you for the G-raster tool it will make it easier to use alot of good data I found on the seamless server.I downloaded some data and tested it out.I converted 5 tiff images.4 of them were a local park and one was in front of my house to test out.The accuracy and detail is very good.It showed me on the sidewalk in front of my house and always seemed to be within a couple of feet of where I am at.the problem I am having is with the maps in the park.The data supplied by the seamless server was 4 seperate geotiff files.I converted each one of them and copied all 4 kmz files to my Oregon.When I open them on my oregon or on google earth there is some black borders where the tiles merge.Is there a way to fix this by either joining the kmx files or by joining the geotiffs somehow first?

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When I had a Magellan Triton 400, I discovered tritonforums.com. One of the forum topics is custom maps. In this forum, some folks a lot smarter than I am came up with a way to extract all kinds of map images and convert them into raster maps to upload on the Triton. The process uses two programs, gmapmaker, and tritonRMP. The first program may be useful in grabbing jpeg images for use in the Garmin. It can access Google, Yahoo, and MSN sites, as well as some I am not familiar with. It's an easy program to operate, and even automatically tiles the image you select, as well as provides you a zoom option. If this could be helpful, you can google gmapmaker, or gmapmaker utek. Here is a direct link to the triton forum topic that includes a reference to the free download: http://www.tritonforum.com/forum/viewtopic...690&p=14327

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As for the detail on GE, my area is nowhere near as detailed and you can't zoom in nearly as far... The detail is no better than what I currently have with DeLorme.
Yeah, Google Earth's imagery is really good in some places and not so hot in others. It's spot-on where I live, and I can see 6" details in my back yard. Yet I can bicycle out of the range of that high-resolution coverage in just a few hours.

 

But the coolest thing (well, one of the coolest) about what Garmin is doing here though is that you don't have to use Google's data*. Use imagery from ANY source you can get your hands on.

 

You just need Google Earth to calibrate your images. I think most people will find GE a lot easier to work with - and cheaper - than any verison of DeLorme's XMap for this task.

 

---

* Edit to add: Pay heed to Robert Lipe's notes about licensing. You really shouldn't be using Google's imagery. His GPSBabel is built into Google Earth, so I expect he knows a bit more about Google Earth and licensing arrangements than anyone else in this forum. Sorry if I'm pointing out the obvious Robert, but you shouldn't be trying to get anyone to take sucker bets :rolleyes:

Yup. It really depends on your area.

 

In New York State, there has been an effort at the state government level (NY GIS) to provide public domain aerial imagery. The NYGIS imagery is VERY good and is what Google Earth uses.

 

At least as of this summer when I had my brief misadventure with a PN-40, the best DeLorme had was USGS aerial imagery at a much lower resolution than NYGIS.

 

Edit: As to ease of use -

The GPSVisualizer network link makes generating raster maps of supported GPSVisualizer data sources VERY easy. This provides similar functionality to DeLorme's precut maps.

 

Doing a large tiled area of a dataset not supported by GPSVisualizer - Royal pain in the #%@*)#@*$. There's a tool called MapTiler that can probably change this, IF your input source data already is georeferenced properly.

 

Doing a small area where coverage can be handled with a single 1 Mpixel tile, like the trails at my local university's nature preserves - A bit annoying but not too difficult. Google Earth could use some improvement to their georeferencing UI, specifically a lot of images DON'T have a good reference point at the center so it would be useful to pan/stretch around an arbitrary anchor point not at the center/corner of an image. That said, every other georeferencing tool I've tried has failed to properly georeference that trailmap despite an (in theory) simpler UI, or at least one that involves less trial and error (give lat/long of 3 points on the image).

 

Biggest improvements to Garmin rastermap functionality I'd like to see:

1) (Google) - Above stated improvements to the georeferencing UI in Earth

2) (Garmin) - Support for PNG images with transparency

Edited by Entropy512
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The black edges come from re-projecting the map to a different coordinate system, and there's currently no way to get rid of them in G-Raster. You would need to combine the GeoTiffs in a different program. Suggestions:

 

1. Global Mapper - Fantastic program, but expensive ($300).

 

2. TatukGIS Viewer - Free, although it does stick a watermark on the bottom of the output image. You'd need to load in all the images, then export them as a TIFF with a worldfile. You'd then need to open that image in G-Raster as an image with worldfile, then specify the coordinate system (UTM, whatever).

 

Thank you for the G-raster tool it will make it easier to use alot of good data I found on the seamless server.I downloaded some data and tested it out.I converted 5 tiff images.4 of them were a local park and one was in front of my house to test out.The accuracy and detail is very good.It showed me on the sidewalk in front of my house and always seemed to be within a couple of feet of where I am at.the problem I am having is with the maps in the park.The data supplied by the seamless server was 4 seperate geotiff files.I converted each one of them and copied all 4 kmz files to my Oregon.When I open them on my oregon or on google earth there is some black borders where the tiles merge.Is there a way to fix this by either joining the kmx files or by joining the geotiffs somehow first?

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