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  1.    #1  
    Hello,

    I'm interested in contributing both to the WebOS community as well as to "Open Street Maps" (OpenStreetMap). The idea behind OSM is that map data from commercial sources have restrictions that limit creative ways to build on that map data. OSM is a worldwide volunteer effort to create original maps of places on the planet Earth under Creative Commons licenses so that others can build derivative works of their choosing. I saw a presentation at a recent developer group meeting here in Cambridge, MA. The project is pretty cool and has lots of areas for people to participate. See this wiki page (http://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Main_Page) for more details on the various aspects of the project.

    One area where I think we can contribute is by using GPS devices to make original traces of information to add to maps that would be of interest to each of us individually. If you already have a GPS, you can start contributing without reading the rest of my post. If you would like to make GPS traces with the Pre, then read on.

    I know there are existing programs (like work out tracker) that seem to have many features we might want for creating GPS traces. That program is closed source and the feature set for workouts might diverge from a feature set desired by mapmakers. I'd like to first identify anyone in this forum who shares similar interests to mine, and secondly I'd like to assemble a small team of people willing to develop tools to make the Pre a great device for recording map features that can be added to OSM.

    I have a basic understanding of web technologies and I know enough about software development to lead and/or contribute/coordinate such a team. I'd like to work with one or more other people who have developed on WebOS to help flesh out a strategy and to determine what is feasible within some agreed upon time frame. I figure we can even just start out using existing tools and add to maps before we need to write anything in WebOS ourselves. The experience we gain and the pain points we encounter will let us know what tools (if any) we need to develop on WebOS.

    If you are interested in joining (or just exploring the idea of) such a project, please comment in this thread with your ideas. Once the discussion gets going, I can add some more links that explain OSM better (including screencasts showing some of the existing map making software in action.

    thanks,
    --
    Bob Clancy (hoping I won't be the only one interested in this idea)
    I'm both super! ... and a doer!
  2. #2  
    I'm not a great programmer Bob, but sign me up to collect map data and alpha test software.
  3.    #3  
    Quote Originally Posted by K4p741nkrunch View Post
    I'm not a great programmer Bob, but sign me up to collect map data and alpha test software.
    Thanks. Your username is making me hungry. (I might have to run to the store now.)
    I'm both super! ... and a doer!
  4.    #4  
    Here is a series of seven screencast introductions to OSM and the various tools:

    OpenStreetMap introduction video tutorial - OpenStreetMap - Learn: osm, wiki, interface, world, openstreetmaposmnewbiebeginnermapsmapmapping, map, mapping, openstreetmap, potlatch, GPS, gpsbabel, gpx, josm, interfaces, maps, trace, introduction, begi

    This is an easy way to see what the project does. There was a guy at our Boston.pm meeting who was developing topographical maps for the United States. So far he has done Massachusetts and Colorado. He developed his own rendering engine for these and the map for Colorado looked really sharp (with shading for mountains, etc.) If I can find a URL, I'll add it here.
    I'm both super! ... and a doer!
  5. #5  
    Took me about an hour to watch all those videos :P

    Looks really cool, I like that there really is complete customization to the map data. Only thing is most of this stuff isn't verified so using it in some sort of Navigation device could lead to you driving down a one way street the wrong way.

    I'll definitely try and contribute, I'm in an Obscure area of MA :P
  6.    #6  
    Quote Originally Posted by K4p741nkrunch View Post
    Took me about an hour to watch all those videos :P
    Then in a way, you are ahead of me. In lieu of watching all the videos, I attended a live presentation. I've watched the first two (and maybe started into the third one) so far. I guess I got a good enough first-hand intro to the project's components.
    I'll definitely try and contribute, I'm in an Obscure area of MA :P[/QUOTE]
    [QUOTE=K4p741nkrunch;1906878]
    One thing that (still another) Boston Perl Mongers member is working on relates to the map data for Massachusetts. They got mapping data from the state census, but since census takers are assigned to citys/towns/counties (or something similar), the map data is currently in a bunch of separately connected islands (like pieces of a jigsaw puzzle). The map features (roads) at the edge of the puzzle pieces have exactly same lat/long data on each of the ajoining puzzle pieces (which is good). The OSM people want the Perl Mongers to develop scripts to make some sort of equivalence points (or links) across the puzzle pieces so that routing will work well across the boundaries of the current map data pieces. That's not a piece of work that we'll probably want to tackle in this forum (but if you know Perl I can connect you with those people). I mentioned it mostly because you live in Massachusetts and I figured you'd want to know why the routing currently behaves the way it does.
    I'm both super! ... and a doer!
  7.    #7  
    I also want to mention that I noticed an open source app called "FitTrack" which seems to have some commonality to what we'd want to do to get GPX route traces from the Pre. We could probably "do nothing" and just wait for them to develop that feature, but of course the nicer thing would be to try and work together (or join) that effort. I'm not sure how the current developer feels about this idea. I posted a note in their thread but they haven't responded yet. They seem like they might have great algorithms for finding not only good ways to space points by time and direction change, but they also seem to have a way of determining vertical movement (ie: up and down hills) too.

    I've downloaded the app, and currently they currently keep trace points in memory and don't seem like they've tackled rendering those points on a map yet. I think the author may have said the current SDK does not allow a way to write the points from memory to a file on the device. I'd consider the possibility of running a small web server on the Pre and sending the trace info to in using http get parameters. That's probably doable using some sort of optware package. I have a good relationship with rwhitby over there so he can probably suggest some strategies for doing this.

    Currently, I'm preparing for a job interview tomorrow so I'm investigating what to do on this possible project a little less than I'd like to be doing.
    I'm both super! ... and a doer!
  8. #8  
    I think the webserver setup would be the best, but wouldn't taking the coordinates from the program and appending them to a txt file be better? That way you could mimmick a GPX format with the file for later conversion, and still feed them into the website with PHP? Would solve both the problems I think.
  9.    #9  
    Quote Originally Posted by K4p741nkrunch View Post
    I think the webserver setup would be the best, but wouldn't taking the coordinates from the program and appending them to a txt file be better? That way you could mimmick a GPX format with the file for later conversion, and still feed them into the website with PHP? Would solve both the problems I think.
    As long as we can find a way to write a text file from a WebOS program, then I agree that writing a text file would be the easiest approach. I'd like to do both. Because FitTrack is only writing to memory, I figured they might have seen an API limitation (ie: a sandbox) which prevents writing text files. This is what led me to the webserver idea. I still will have to investigate the detais to be sure (or you can).
    I'm both super! ... and a doer!
  10. #10  
    Hmm, looks like this thread is just a conversation between you and me Bob :P

    I think a lot of people just don't understand the use behind this idea, and how easily this could be tied to something like an Augmented Reality program for the Pre later on down the road. The more people that aid in this the quicker the map fills and the less work we all have to do.
  11. #11  
    Hi Bob,

    I'm interested in such a tool also. I've been using a Winows Mobile and BTGPS to log tracks for OSM. However this week I started a new job and had to adopt a Palm Pre (great phone, but no GPS Apps).

    I've also downloaded FitTrack, and although I definitely appreciate the efforts of the developer, I admit I'm somewhat underwhelmed by it.

    Although I used to be a software developer, I'm not too hot on Javascript/JSON which is the webOS development environment.

    I have done a bit of research, and it does seem there is no capability to write to files in the SDK. But, one thing that can be done is to create a SQLite database. So we could add GPX tracking data into a tracking table, then upload/convert it later?

    I can't believe we're the only people posing such a question. The Pre has been purchased by hundreds of thousands of people, and there are tens of thousands of people contributing to OSM....

    I'm in the UK btw.
  12. #12  
    count me in too .. i'm based in Switzerland. I have software development experience but just started to muck around with the Mojo SDK
  13. #13  
    Hi,

    OK, after a weekend of learning Javascript & Mojo, I've now written a Pre App that logs GPS tracks, and stores them in a SQLite database. Very crude and basic, but seems to do the job.

    This database stores latitude, longitude, altitude, time, and can be retrieved over USB. I've managed to convert the data into GPX format (using DB elephant SQLite converter --> XML, plus a bit of search/replace!).

    Finally, I've opened the GPX tracks into JOSM successfully.

    So I guess this is proof that we can use a Palm Pre in mapping OpenStreetMap. Not very impressed with the Pre GPS accuracy, but at least it can trace roads & paths.... better than nothing.

    If anyone's interested, let me know, and I'll post the IPK file. I need to look into establishing a project area on this website.
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    #14  
    Hey Wonka,
    I hope you will post your IPK file soon. The Pre awaits a functional program to store GPS tracks. The rudimentary FitTracker shows promise, but has a storage ceiling that keeps me from logging a lengthy bike ride.
  15. #15  
    Hi there,

    I'm interested as well. I did hack a little app for the Pre that fetches your current location and then displays it on an OSM-map. Recoding of GPS-traces would be the next feature - if I somehow manage to find some time ...

    Cheers,

    Donbachi
  16. #16  
    Hi,

    I am the writer of the FitTrack application. I have been working on the app so it could output just about any length of data. The main problem is the WebOS lack of file support. It would be really easy to write the data to a file but there is no such way currently.

    Right now the app modulates the GPX output based on the length of data. This will allow shorter lengths to have a higher resolution then longer routes. This doesnt seems to affect the overall route as that is kept intact. So it would be like having a route with points every 2 or 3 seconds instead of every second.

    My next idea will be to have some kind of web service that can take the GPS data and return a full file with all the points.

    So what else do you need? Does anyone know of an OSM web service that will accept gps data?

    Thanks,
  17. #17  
    Hi

    I've now submitted my attempt at a Palm Pre GPS App, MojoTracker:
    forums.precentral.net/showthread.php?p=2024203#post2024203

    Not sure if it's available to download in the Homebrew Apps yet.

    I'm just wondering right now how much effort would be involved in displaying GPS tracks on top of an OSM map....
  18. #18  
    FreeWeather from the app catalog is using OSM to show weather stations on a map around you. Next weekend I give a speech on a German Palm User Meeting in which I will show the creation of a feature-rich map app, a bit like 2TrackMe for PalmOS but using the easy possibilities of Web OS.
    Check out MapTool Pro the best mapping app for all webOS devices!
    Let your kids practice their math101 Math This!
    Best image processing app for all webOS devices? Try ImageWorker Pro
  19. #19  
    hi metaview,

    Just had a look at Freeweather, it's pretty cool. Very impressed to see an OSM app on Palm Pre.

    I don't suppose you fancy creating a version that logs GPS tracks and/or plots tracks on the OSM map? :-) I'd be happy to share my source code.

    Or conversely, give some technical tips on loading/displaying map tiles in Mojo?

    Thanks, Ian
  20. #20  
    I'm going to create a MapTool with logging tracks, ploting them on an OSM map and try to support gpx upload to OSM (don't know yet, how it might work on the device, maybe as homebrew with own gpx creation service...).

    Loading/Displaying map tiles: I made a canvas 3 * 256 x 3 * 256 for the map tiles (3 x 3 tiles).

    After I get the position I calculate the tile index for the center tile (this is where I am) and then use the url as src for one of my 9 images.

    Then when ever an image is loaded I redraw the map, checking the image.complete property.

    That's it. Not very hard at the end

    Btw, do you have some code to extract the db on a desktop to create a gpx file? Would be good as inbetween solution until we get local file writing support.
    Check out MapTool Pro the best mapping app for all webOS devices!
    Let your kids practice their math101 Math This!
    Best image processing app for all webOS devices? Try ImageWorker Pro
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