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September 30, 2008

California Lifts Ban on Windshield-Mounted GPS. Driving Like a Dope Still Illegal

Distracted driver

Governator Arnold Schwarzenegger has re-legalized the use of windshield-mounted GPS systems in California. Effective January 1st, 2009, Californians will once again be legally allowed to mount a GPS on the windshield glass (today it's only legal to mount things on the dashboard, not the glass).

But you might not want to throw away that adhesive mounting disc or beanbag friction mount just yet -- the new law specifically says you can only mount a GPS in the lower left or right corners of the glass -- not in the lower center, which is where most drivers like to mount their GPS (including myself).

I've spent years driving in California with a GPS mounted right smack in the center of my windshield and never once had a policeman question it, so I'm not sure how aggressively enforced this archaic law was in the first place.

After January 1st 2009, Minnesota will be the only remaining State in the US that still outlaws the mounting of GPS units on the windshield.

GPS-Equipped Camcorder Knows Where You've Been

DXG HD Cam with GPS

Camera manufacturer DXG has announced what the company believes to be the world's first geotagging video camera. Equipped with an on-board GPS from Geotate, the "DXG HD Cam" records GPS location information as well as HD Video. From what I can tell, it sounds like basic GPS location information is stored while recording, and then processed when video is imported onto a computer.

I can't imagine anyone is in a huge rush to score an otherwise crappy camcorder from DXG, but it's probably a sign of things to come.

September 26, 2008

New GPSmagazine Feature: Threaded Comments and Subscriptions

Threaded Comments & Subscriptions

I'm pleased to announce two important new enhancements to GPSmagazine.com: threaded comments and subscriptions. That means comment threads will no longer appear as one long chronological list of comments. Instead, when you reply to a comment, the response will appear indented below the original comment.

Also new is the ability to subscribe to a specific comment thread. That means you can now sign up to be notified if anyone replies to your comment, or if new comments appear on a post you're interested in.

September 18, 2008

Trimble Outdoors Review

Trimble Outdoors

Compass Map Radar

The Trimble Outdoors family of GPS-on-cellular applications converts your GPS-equipped cell phone into a navigator that can be used for biking, running, walking, skiing, Geocaching and more.

Complimented by an extensive online portal that lets you plan trips and routes, and track fitness goals, Trimble Outdoors is an excellent, cost effective co-pilot for all your outdoor adventures.

Continue reading "Trimble Outdoors Review" »

September 16, 2008

MyAthlete Real-Time GPS Athlete Tracking System A Hit at Ironman Triathlon

MyAthlete Real-Time GPS Athlete Trackin System

Athletes competing at Ironman Wisconsin on September 7th had high praise for the MyAthlete real-time live tracking system, with many saying they would continue to use the system for training and safety purposes. Triathletes wore the small tracking device during their 140.6 mile journey, which allowed friends and family to track their progress in real-time via the web.

MyAthlete Real-Time GPS Athlete Trackin SystemThe device utilizes GTZ Corp's 2-way GPS/PLS technology (gtxcorp.com). Battery life is said to run around 17 hours. My Athlete (www.MyAthleteGPS.com) says the tracking units will be available for rent starting at the end of September, with prices ranging from $20 for a half marathon to $50 for a multi-day sporting event.

Yahoo! Builds Fleet of Purple Bicycles, Complete With On-Board GPS & Digital Cameras

Yahoo's "Start Wearing Purple" Bicycles

Yahoo!'s new GPS and geotagging-equipped, wired, solar-powered, photo-sharing purple bikes are part of the company's new "Start Wearing Purple" marketing campaign, designed to highlight innovation and creativity as a core Yahoo! belief.

Solar-powered digital camera Yahoo! Purple Bike Solar-powered Battery Unit

Continue reading "Yahoo! Builds Fleet of Purple Bicycles, Complete With On-Board GPS & Digital Cameras" »

September 15, 2008

Garmin Confirms Coated Windshields Can Block GPS Reception

I've been hearing reports of poor GPS reception in some newer vehicles for some time, but until now it was more rumor than fact. Garmin has now confirmed that coated windshields, found on some newer Volvo, Toyota, and Nissan models, can block GPS reception.

The issue isn't unique to Garmin, and is a function of the coating on the windshield preventing GPS signals from passing through. According to Garmin, customers experiencing this issue are encouraged to make sure the GPS is positioned so it has a clear view of the sky.

Some newer vehicles also have a small area of the windshield that is not coated, typically in the bottom-center area, to allow for the use of radar detectors, GPS devices, and portable satellite radios. Another option is to purchase an external antenna.

Specific performance details seem to vary from vehicle to vehicle, and between the various GPS makes and models. Are you experiencing this issue? Know of a workaround? Post a comment and let us know.

September 6, 2008

Testing Garmin's nuvi 500 Waterproof Capabilities

Testing Garmin's nuvi 500 Waterproofness

Sure, Garmin says the new on/off-road nuvi 500 is waterproof, but is it really? Read on to watch the video test and see the results.

Continue reading "Testing Garmin's nuvi 500 Waterproof Capabilities" »