[Geowanking] Experience with bluetooth GPS?
andyrew at blartwendo.com
Sun Oct 31 02:45:36 PST 2004
On Fri, Oct 29, 2004 at 12:58:08PM -0700, Dav Coleman wrote:
> I wrote some J2ME code that connects to my Belkin BT GPS on a Nokia
> 6600 and 7610 at least. It's not ready for distribution yet but I'll
> probably get it there shortly if you're interested.
> see http://www.akuaku.org/archives/2004/10/bluetooth_gps_m.shtml
Hurrah for you guys! This is something I want to see happening. I've
been fiddling with similar stuff for ages, but not got anything
significant to show for it. I would really love to get the whole
GPS->GPRS->Server thing working.
Here's what I've done so far. Some of it is almost in a presentable
state, so as soon as possible I'll try to share with the world.
I started by getting a Palm Tungsten T, with the intention of getting it
to grab data from the GPS and send it to a Bluetooth phone. After a bit
of playing, I found that Palm OS doesn't allow an app to use Bluetooth
for its own purposes at the same time as the IP stack is using it. I
also didn't have a Bluetooth/GPRS phone, so couldn't really play very
much. However, I do have a very basic Palm GPS capture/plotting/logging
app to show for it.
Then I get a Nokia 6600. I've managed to get the MIDP dev stuff working
on Mac OS, and I've knocked up an app that connects to the GPS and logs
stuff using a J2ME RecordStore. I've not got any networking stuff working
yet, but it looks like it should be feasible.
I've got a proof-of-concept server, based on a hacked version of a MUD
server called UberMUD (a fairly simple but flexible C-based server written
in 1992 by Marcus J. Ranum). My server accepts NMEA strings as player
commands, so instead of typing 'go north', you can type
'$GPGGA,,5211.2,N,00011.1,E,...' and it'll update your position. Normal
player commands are also accepted, so you can find out where other
players are in relation to you. It can do something like this:
You are 54.9m SW of GeoCache A.
I've tested this server by using the PowerBook to connect to the BTGPS,
and using netcat and expect to link the NMEA stream to the server. It
was fun seeing it working, but it'll be more fun with more than one
Things I'd love to be able to do with this:
- Avoid ever having to phone friends up to say 'I'm on my way' or 'I'm
stuck in traffic' again.
- Link with route planning software so that two people on the road can
find the shortest route to meet each other. (Or the nearest pub to
both of them).
- Have thousands of users, and have client software warn you when you're
about to pass another geowanker, so you can wave at each other.
- Have hundreds of thousands of users, and collect really useful real-time
traffic flow data.
I'd love to get together with everyone else who's interested in working
on this, share code, and may be set up a communcal CVS repository.
Please can lots of people pester me to give me enough of an incentive to
get my server back up and running and to write enough documentation that
other people can understand and build my existing code?
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