Tuesday, February 09, 2016

MyTracks might be [DEPRECATED] but still appreciated

[DEPRECATED] in the square brackets is a imageparticular google-ish word, that signifies google considers the software or devices is not longer appreciated, so google seems to have no qualms in killing them off despite a loyal band of users who love and use the applications daily. Unfortunately they have history, remember Google Reader, Wave, Google Buzz, Chrome to Phone and now MyTracks.

I have tried out a quite a few GPS apps for my phone, most have great features but are real battery hogs and many need to be on-line all the time. I had found that tracker was great for capturing my path with the added benefit I could see a map if required or stats on how far I’d walk and time taken (ie how long it might take me to get back to the start). You can also annotate points along the way, a very useful feature when you are scouting for locations or have something important to tag on your photos. It can give synthesized voice reports on progress “you have walked 5 kilometers” etc. and other less than useful "calory counter”, and other “toy” stuff. If you don't want an interactive map and reasonable time between waypoint (eg 5 minutes) you don’t get such dramatic phone battery drain.  It exports the common GPX and KML formats, imagethat can be loaded into a number of photomanagment packages to tag photos taken during that timeframe with their most appropriate geotags (aka location for the apple fan boys). In other words it was a nice little program for a wandering photographer.

After the 30th April the Tracks app will no longer be available on the Google Play Store, but I hope it will still work. However I’m back to looking for a replacement, another google disappointment to erode my trust.

part of my tracksA couple of weeks ago I was walking along the track beside Patterson river to the beach and I lost my lens cap (not an unusual occurrence) I had a good look on the beach but couldn’t see it there, Then I remembered the gps was on so I retraced my steps and in a spot I where had clambered down the rock on the river wall to take a couple of “textures” of the rock work there was my lens cap in a crack between the rocks. Without being able to view the gps I never would have been able to return to that point and even with careful looking from the track would not have been able to recognized the rocks and peer into the gap between them especially with the tide rising.


PS: Join me by doing your own gps doodle #KEEPMyTracks

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