Blog Archives

NEW PATENTS AWARDED TO HEMISPHERE GPS

Canadian-based Hemisphere GPS, manufacturer of advanced GNSS products, has announced they have been awarded a variety of new patents dealing with adaptive machine control and GNSS solutions, the latest advancements in these areas.

 

The Adaptive Machine Control System and Method patent explains the intricate adaptive control methods relied upon to guide vehicles while remaining accurate and efficient. This GPS tracking system consists of a machine controller, GNSS guidance system, and software, and is used most often in precision farming operations. Pre-planned guidance patterns tell the GPS tracking system the optimal pattern adjustments for guidance and steering, and the system takes into account the actual ground conditions as specified by the user including boundary or terrain irregularities, path, and minimum turning radius. The system also provides spray nozzle control, helpful when fertilizing the fields as it helps guard against spraying the same row of crops twice. Farmers rely on this technology to save time and money, while at the same time increasing crop yields. The patent supports both current products offered by Hemisphere GPS as well as new developments within their precision farming lines, such as the Outback Guidance line of products.

 

Other patents awarded to Hemisphere GPS (a grand total of seven) include advanced GNSS solutions dealing with antenna design, an application specific integrated circuit (ASIC), tracking of fixed and slow-moving structures, multiple antenna control system, antenna alignment and monitoring system, augmentation of differential corrections, and vehicle guidance control.

 

Dr. Mike Whitehead, Chief Scientist for Hemisphere GPS, said “Hemisphere GPS’ commitment to innovation has generated over 75 pending and issued patents. Through these inventions and sophisticated new technology, we continuously enhance capability and performance of our positioning, guidance, and machine control solutions in the marketplace.”

 

For more information on the patents granted to Hemisphere GPS, visitwww.HemisphereGPS.com/Patents.

Author: Khristen Foss

Source: www.rmtracking.com

Your one stop for gps tracking needs, contact an experienced GPS Monitoring Specialist to assist you with any GPS situtation.

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NEW MULTI-SENSOR GPS SYSTEM INTRODUCED FOR GIS INDUSTRY

Altus Positioning Systems, based in Torrance, CA, has announced their newly developed GPS-based data acquisition system tailored to the GIS industry, otherwise known as geographic information system or geospatial information studies. A GIS system is designed to record, analyze, manipulate, and manage all kinds of geographical data for a wide range of industries.

 

The new system released by Altus features an ikeGPS multi-sensor data acquisition system along with a collection of built-in software tools for data-collection projects. The ikeGPS device is a GPS receiver, 3-D compass, laser rangefinder, and digital camera, all merged together in one rugged handheld device. This full integration adds up to a low-cost solution for gathering geospatial data and 3-D GIS imagery. The GPS system allows the user to locate objects simply and quickly from a single location thanks to the laser rangefinder and compass, which uses the recorder’s GPS coordinates as a reference point. The camera allows a visual reference for each object recorded in the database, as well as the option to calculate GPS location coordinates for specific objects right from these photographs.

 

Neil Vancans, CEO/president of Altus Positioning Systems, said, “The ikeGPS multi-sensor platform enables the capturing of GIS data in situations that would be otherwise impossible using traditional GIS equipment. The ikeGPS mobile GIS solutions provide unique improvements on conentional GIS data-collection efficiency. It also enables the user to capture accurate measurements of remote objects – for instance, across a busy highway, barbed-wire fence or stream – from safe distances with its point-and-shoot capability, producing verifiable, geo-referenced data collection.”

 

Vancans pointed out that these ikeGPS devices can be interfaced with Altus’ APS-3 GNSS RTK receivers, which are survey-grade, providing accuracy to the centimeter and ensuring high-precision positioning. The ikeGPS and other GPS/GNSS products were showcased in the Altus booth at the ESRI 2012 Users Conference in San Diego in late July.

Author: Khristen Foss

Source: www.rmtracking.com

Your one stop for gps tracking needs, contact an experienced GPS Monitoring Specialist to assist you with any GPS situtation.

EXPLORING EUROPE WITH SMARTPHONE GPS

GPS navigation apps on smartphones have quickly gained popularity, mainly due to their convenience. If you’re already carrying the phone anyway, doesn’t it make sense to use it to guide you around unfamiliar areas? The majority of these apps offer not only United States and North American area maps, but international maps as well. Using your smartphone to navigate near to where you live isn’t a problem at all, and as useful as these GPS navigation apps have become, you’ll want to exercise caution when on your next trip to Dublin lest you end up paying exorbitant roaming charges.

 

Each time you call up a map to guide you to your destination, it must be downloaded to your device which assures that you have the most current and up-to-date map possible. If you don’t have some form of international data plan, you’ll want to restrict your use of the device to wi-fi hotspots. The cost of international data plans is decreasing, so check with your carrier prior to boarding the plane if you’d rather not be tied down to the hotspot. You might be surprised at how affordable the plan really is. If you do choose to add an international data plan to your bill, remember to turn off data roaming when not in use. Otherwise, the maps will continuously update which will lead you closer to using up your precious megabyte limit.

 

If you don’t go the data plan route, there is a way to use these GPS apps without spending a cent. It is important to disable your data roaming completely so the maps will not update continuously while you are using it. Start by finding a hotspot, whether the hotel you are staying at or a coffee shop nearby, and open your GPS navigation app of choice. Enter your start point and destination, and choose the route you wish to take. You can view the map at any time on your journey, zooming in or out when necessary, all without needing a single byte of data.

 

Because the app relies on GPS satellites and cell phone towers to triangulate your location rather than the internet, your movements are displayed on the map regardless of internet connection. However, because the maps are downloaded at a low resolution, you have to watch how far you zoom in as it will become unreadable. You will not be able to change your route without internet connection, either.

 

If you have a hard time navigating around unfamiliar areas and are worried about getting lost even while using the GPS app, you’ll probably want to pick up a hand held GPS device. This remains the best way to assure you find your way in unfamiliar territory. You can rent a car with a built-in GPS device, or bring along your own. However, if you rent one, be sure you start out by setting the language to English, and that it has the area maps you need. If you bring your own, purchase and upload all the proper European maps you’ll need prior to boarding the plane. Above all, remember to have a paper map handy, as the GPS device is not 100% accurate.

 

GPS apps are perfect for exploring a foreign city on foot. Pull up the appropriate town map prior to setting out for the day and refer to it at any point if you need a little directional assistance. It’s typical these days to find hotspots along your journey, which will allow you to modify your route along the way.

 

Some apps, such as the $1 iPhone OffMaps2 app, gives you the power to download maps directly to your device, storing them on your phone until needed. This comes in handy as you only need the internet connection to download the maps. You can also find various maps for some of Europe’s subway systems, such as the Paris Metro, Berlin, U-Bahn, and the London Tube to name a few.

 

With a little preparation, it is easy to navigate your way around a foreign city with ease, without needing to use a bit of your data plan. It is easier than ever to have an enjoyable trip, one without fear of getting lost halfway across the world. Of course, the GPS device isn’t the most accurate option out there when it comes to getting around, but it remains the most convenient. Because who really wants to fumble with a paper map while walking around the streets of Paris?

Author: Khristen Foss

Source: www.rmtracking.com

Your one stop for gps tracking needs, contact an experienced GPS Monitoring Specialist to assist you with any GPS situtation.

GARMIN ANNOUNCES NEW FENIX GPS WATCH

Garmin, a top name in the GPS industry, announced the release of their new Fenix GPS watch earlier this month, designed with the outdoor enthusiast in mind. It is extremely rugged and made for exploring off the beaten path. Priced at $400, it won’t likely attracthikers of all levels, but will certainly appeal to the avid hiker.

 

The watch is designed kind of like Garmin‘s Forerunner GPS watches with its round LCD display and buttons placed on the edge. It doesn’t have a touchscreen like the high-end Forerunner models, but that’s likely because a touchscreen could not be adequately waterproofed or scratch-resistant. This powerhouse of a watch will reach depths of 160 feet under the water, and can handle scratches from branches you might rub against, quite common in off-the-trail hiking. Don’t worry about slipping and falling on the trail either, the Fenix can handle it (whether or not your body can is another question altogether.)

 

The Fenix brings a new feature to the interface which graphically represents the path you are hiking and pinpoints your GPS location on it. You can set this path before you leave the house by creating waypoints, or create your trail as you hike with a GPS breadcrumb trail, making you like a technological Hansel and Gretel. This allows you to explore without worrying about getting lost, or looking for visual landmarks along the way. If you see a nice spot to picnic, you can hike to it and find your way back to the trail with ease. The watch also features built-in barometer, compass, and altimeter so that you always know your bearing and direction.

 

Use Garmin’s software to track all your trips for future reference, as well as managing paths. The software also allows you to send the tracks you’ve hiked or waypoints to the Garmin GPS devices or “select smartphones” of your friends, although Garmin hasn’t said which smartphones will be compatible with this service. Now you can easily have your hiking buddies on the same page, all following the map you’ve created.

 

Pick up a Fenix for about $400 online or at your local sporting goods store. Garmin is estimating the devices will be on store shelves this fall.

Author: Khristen Foss

Source: www.rmtracking.com

Your one stop for gps tracking needs, contact an experienced GPS Monitoring Specialist to assist you with any GPS situtation.

SONY CYBER-SHOT DSC-HX20V FEATURES GPS

Sony has released the Cyber-shot DSC-HX20V, a Nikon Coolpix S9300 and Canon PowerShot SX260 HS rival due to its compact size and range of features. It is strikingly similar to Sony’s HX30V, the difference being the lack of Wi-Fi support.

 

Although it is a bit larger and heavier than the Canon Powershot SX260 HS (2.5 X 4.25 X 1.4 in, 9 oz compared to 2.4 X 4.2 X 1.3 in, 8.2 oz, respectively), it is still extremely lightweight considering it includes a 20X (25-500mm) zoom lens. If you know more than the average person when it comes to photography, this camera has you covered: manually adjust EV Compensation, ISO, Metering, and White Balance with the touch of the Custom button. The camera will also record video. The 3-inch 921k-dot resolution is crisp and clear, and when in menu mode, offers three different color schemes: black, white, and pink.

 

The GPS device built in to the camera is a handy addition, not uncommon in many models on the market. The GPS device searches for location data, which is added to each picture for future reference. This is great for long trips where a large amount of pictures are taken in a wide range of similar-looking areas, like mountains or canyons. There is no more “I wonder where this one was taken?” Now, you simply upload the photos to your computer, and see on a map exactly where you were at that point in time. Software and web services such as Lightroom, Picasa, Flickr, and Aperture support these GPS location tags.

 

The only downfall with the DSC-HX20V when compared to other cameras: it took PC Magazine testers over 3 minutes to acquire GPS satellite signal. Compare this to the Nikon Coolpix S9300, which locks on to the signal in less than a minute. In certain situations, faster is better. This must be taken into consideration when choosing the right camera for you, so if built-in, fast GPS is important to you the DSC-HX20V might not be the best option.

 

If GPS location technology isn’t important to you, the camera is one of the best compact options. It is fast and responsive, shooting in about 1.5 seconds and offering shutter lag at almost zero. Images are sharp with low noise (under 1.5 percent at ISO 800), even when increasing ISO (1.8 percent at ISO 1600.) The video camera isn’t the greatest out there for capturing HD, but still captures decent footage.

 

Check out what this little powerhouse has to offer at select retailers, and expect to pay about $360. If the price scares you, Check out the Canon PowerShot SX260 HS which is comparable in size and features.

Author: Khristen Foss

Source: www.rmtracking.com

Your one stop for gps tracking needs, contact an experienced GPS Monitoring Specialist to assist you with any GPS situtation.

GPS LOCATION TECHNOLOGY ABSENT FROM FUJIFILM FINEPIX F770EXR

Yet another 20x zoom compact camera has come out to play among the likes ofcameras such as the Sony Cyber-shot HX20V, Canon PowerShot SX260 HS, and Nikon Coolpix S9300, offering a host of high-end features in a tiny little package. At a mere 2.4 X 4.1 X 1.4 in and weighing 8 oz, it is offered in white, red, or black.

 

The F770EXR comes with a wide range of controls, as well as a user-customized Function button, which can be programmed to whatever function you find yourself using most often. There are special buttons for EV Compensation, flash control, macro, the self timer, and movie recording which saves you from searching the menu, which is divided into two parts. There is a smaller menu launched with the F-Mode button, allowing you to adjust ISO, Drive Mode, Image Size, and Film Simulation effects. If you need something further, the full menu is available at the touch of the Menu/OK button.

 

The F770EXR’s 3-inch LCD display isn’t the best out there at 460k-dot resolution, but it is still quite sharp. The Nikon Coolpix S9300 puts the Fujifilm’s display to shame at a 921k-dot resolution. The F770EXR will do the job in terms of image framing and review, despite it’s poor resolution. It’s the zoom factor of 20X that really makes it desirable, covering a 25-100mm range.

 

The camera starts up and shoots in roughly 2.2 seconds and features a .3 second shutter lag. This is pretty decent for a camera of its size, but the crown for best response time goes to the Sony HX30V, which starts and shoots in 1.5 seconds and has a shutter lag close to zero.

 

As for photo quality, PC Magazine found that the images were quite sharp when compared to other cameras like it. As for noise, the camera performs best at ISO 400, delivering detailed photos without a problem. ISO 800 produces images that are a bit grainier, but detail is captured without a problem. Compare this to the Nikon Coolpix S9300, which was able to keep noise to a minimum all the way to ISO 1600. Video quality is just ok, recording QuickTime videos at 1080p30 resolution. The colors are great, but the detail is lacking when compared to other cameras like it.

 

The F770EXR, unlike it’s rivals, does not offer GPS location technology to make pinpointing where each picture was taken a breeze. Basically, the camera uses the GPS device built in to the camera to locate the place the image was taken. Later on, after you’ve uploaded the images to your PC, the GPS location is tagged to each image taking the guesswork out of decided what lake is featured behind the picture of your kids, for example. This GPS functionality is offered on many models of digital cameras today, but there are some consumers out there that frankly could live without it. If this is the case for you, this camera is perfect. Otherwise, look elsewhere.

 

Author: Khristen Foss

Source: www.rmtracking.com

Your one stop for gps tracking needs, contact an experienced GPS Monitoring Specialist to assist you with any GPS situtation.

UPGRADES FOR NAVIGON APP FOR IOS

Garmin has announced their Navigon GPS app for iOS will be receiving some upgrades after Apple and Google both announced their plans to upgrade their own standard GPS apps, as well as Microsoft announcing their new Windows Phone 8OS will include free GPS navigation and onboard maps. Navigon version 2.1 adds Google Street View and Cockpit, which displays driving data, available as an in-app purchase. The Navigon GPS app will still offer a routing algorithm and onboard maps.

 

Garmin has also made a few improvements, such as the amount of time the app takes to start as well as map-rendering speed. Zooming and panning are much quicker, and graphics look sharper when viewed on the iPad’s amazing Retina display. If there are specific roads you wish to avoid, use the manual road blocking feature, where you can let the app know which roads you’d rather not travel on.

 

Use Google Street View to see a street-level image of your destination before you even head out on the road, which is helpful for finding a building you are unfamiliar with. Anyone who’s used a GPS app knows it isn’t exactly precise when it comes to locating a specific address, sometimes driving past your destination without even realizing it, or seeing your destination down the block while your GPS device or app is telling you to “Turn left!” While going along the route the app has calculated for you, the Street View image of the building appears again when you are almost there.

 

The Cockpit function, brand new to the Navigon app, brings real-time driving data to the screen in a cockpit-style display: gForce, speed, adjustable speed and altitude graph, and horizontal and vertical position. There is also an off-road screen, which displays altitude and a compass for your off-roading adventures. This feature is available for $5.99 as an in app purchase.

 

Garmin decided to withhold comment on the upcoming upgraded maps to be offered by Apple and Google. “There is just not enough information available at this point to provide a qualified evaluation of the new navigation feature for iOS 6,” said a Garmin spokesman. He said the Garmin apps are able to successfully compete with the free apps included with the phones because “we’re able to provide navigation products that offer a wide range of unique features to provide highly accurate and reliable road guidance. We provide a wide range of other premium features [compared to current navigation apps], such as comprehensive lane guidance with actual road signs, spoken directions that include street names, top-notch routing technology based on our 20 years of experience, speed warnings, parking information, safety camera warnings, among many others.”

 

Current Navigon GPS app users will receive the upgrades for free.

Author: Khristen Foss

Source: www.rmtracking.com

Your one stop for gps tracking needs, contact an experienced GPS Monitoring Specialist to assist you with any GPS situtation.

BANNING: Hospital takes step to prevent infant abductions

Babies born at San Gorgonio Memorial Hospital will be extra secure, thanks to a new, state-of-the-art infant monitoring system that safeguards against infant abduction.

The “Safe Place” infant security system, from RF Technologies, is the latest security measure San Gorgonio Memorial Hospital has taken to prevent a “Code Pink,” or infant abduction. This new system uses soft bands placed on the baby’s ankle right after birth to track the baby’s movements.

The new system was installed Thursday, July 26, and is an upgrade from San Gorgonio Memorial Hospital’s previous infant security system. The “Safe Place” system has more alarm sensors around the Maternity Ward, particularly near doors, and greater tracking capabilities. Any time a baby is taken near an exit, the doors lock automatically and an alarm is sounded, alerting nurses to a possible infant abduction.

“This is one more step in protecting our kids from a Code Pink,” said Janis Jacobson, Registered Nurse.

According to RF Technologies, the “Safe Place” system uses “smart sense” technology, with an intuitive sensory band that uses a small transmitter to detect changes in the infant’s movement, cut or removed bands, and movement of the infant throughout the Maternity Ward.

The device was developed by nurses, and uses a flexible cloth band that won’t harm the baby’s sensitive skin, replacing the plastic bands used by the old system. In addition, the system allows for several types of alarms and notifications, and can be easily adjusted to meet the needs of San Gorgonio Memorial Hospital’s popular Maternity Ward.

“These are great features for the future,” said Dan Mares, director of engineering.

This new system “gives us one more sense of security,” Jacobson said, noting that the OB Department has taken several measures to increase security, including specific uniforms and identification badges.

“It gives people peace of mind, that there’s a safe hospital here in town,” Jacobson said. “We have all these safeguards to keep their babies protected.”

Earlier this year, San Gorgonio Memorial Hospital Associates participated in a Code Pink drill. With cooperation from Banning Police Department, several staff members practiced how to respond to a potential infant abduction.

San Gorgonio Memorial Hospital’s safety measures have given new mothers more peace of mind than ever.

Valerie Ramirez, who gave birth to her son, David, on July 24, was happy to have her son wear the Safe Place monitor.

“I had my first baby here,” Ramirez said. “I wish my first baby had had this monitor.”

Ramirez said she would recommend San Gorgonio Memorial Hospital to mothers-to-be, because of the sense of security San Gorgonio Memorial Hospital offers.

“It’s comforting,” knowing that so many security measures are in place, she said. “It’s a relief.”

San Gorgonio Memorial Hospital is located at 600 North Highland Springs Ave. in Banning. For more information about the hospital and its services, call 951-845-1121 or visit sgmh.org.

Author: SAN GORGONIO MEMORIAL HOSPITAL

Source: www.pe.com

Your one stop for gps tracking needs, contact an experienced GPS Monitoring Specialist to assist you with any GPS situtation.

SMARTPHONE AND CLOUD-BASED GPS TRACKING SOLUTION SMARTTRACK ANNOUNCED BY MOBIWORK

MobiWork, based in Boca Raton, FL, announced at the end of June a new smartphone and cloud-based GPS tracking solution for businesses with a mobile workforce or resources, SmartTrack. Use any smartphone or tablet and install the application. Within minutes, you are ready to track not only your company vehicles, but the driver of that vehicle as well.

 

I can see those privacy flags waving out there. MobiWork has addressed this by allowing SmartTrack to be configured using geofencing, which will calculate the amount of time each worker spends at predetermined locations, like project sites or customer locations, rather than tracking every GPS location the worker may visit throughout the day.

 

Possible Uses of SmartTrack

Use SmartTrack to keep tabs on your mobile customer service staff. Customize the app to track either the time a worker spends at each and every customer site they visit throughout the day, or track how much time a group of workers spends at the site. Set it up to alert via SMS or email whenever the phones or tablets enter or exit a specific GPS location as well.

 

SmartTrack is also handy for monitoring vehicles or workers. Use it to follow the movement of vehicles in your company’s fleet or the workers themselves throughout the work day, week, and even month with SmartTrack’s fully automated timesheets. This will allow you to track behavior, travel patterns, and efficiencies.

 

It is also a handy way to track and validate time and expenses. With travel times and distances recorded, as well as all time spent on-site, it is a snap to validate actual working hours, generate and validate expense reports, as well as customer invoices.

 

Founder and CEO of MobiWork, Hervé Rivère, said, “We have spent three years developing a portfolio of patented software components that form the operating baseline for MobiWork’s solutions. SmartTrack has been designed from the ground up to be a high value tracking solution that extends the realm of traditional GPS trackingusage.”

 

Additional Information

If your business requires a little more than location tracking, simply upgrade to MobiWork MWS. This is everything you need to manage your mobile workforce, empowering your workforce while improving visibility, productivity, and the overall quality of the customer experience.

 

All MobiWork solutions are offered in four languages: English, Spanish, French and Portuguese. There are many installations successfully being used in the USA, South America, Argentina, India, France, and Autralia.

Author: Author: Khristen Foss

Source: www.rmtracking.com

Your one stop for gps tracking needs, contact an experienced GPS Monitoring Specialist to assist you with any GPS situtation.

WAZE: COMING TO VEHICLE NAVIGATION SYSTEMS LATE 2012

With the rise of smartphones came the rise of GPS navigational apps. Whether using the free maps app available with most smartphones out of the box or an app from one of the big names in the GPS industry, like Garmin or TomTom, people use this convenient feature more and more each day. It’s a way to reach those that may see no need to own a handheld GPS device, or buy a car with built-in GPS navigation. But what makes one app better than another? That all depends on what you are using it for, and also how much you are willing to share of your location data, such as when using the popular crowd-sourcing navigation app Waze.

 

Waze is available for both Android and iPhone platforms, and boasts over 19 million users. This unique app uses the power of social networking to make getting around less of a hassle, and offers users much more than your standard map app or GPS device. Drivers not only get free turn-by-turn directions to a destination, but also updates regarding road and traffic conditions as shared by their peers.

 

How Does It Work?

Waze uses GPS and cell-tower triangulation from other users of the app, which determines traffic flow and offers server-side processing of an ideal route. Drivers can add information on routes as well, whether a picture of a traffic nightmare, where to find speed traps, gas prices along your route, where to park, and where any accidents have taken place. It also includes Twitter integration.

 

How is this free? It’s simple: there is no need to license mapping data as it relies on government street map templates. No one is paid by the company to update maps as the users take care of this for them. Users are given “Waze Points” if they contribute to map updates in any way, such as driving down a road that is unmarked on the map.

 

The Next Step

The company imagines so many great things for the future, and plans to take the next big logical step at the end of this year: in-vehicle GPS navigation integration. Waze has announced deals have been secured with automakers who are at this time undisclosed.

 

Vice President of Waze, Di-Ann Eisnor said in a statement, “This is clearly the wave of the future. Connected cars allow us to share information seamlessly between the application and the sensors of the car. Imagine being offered a route to the cheapest fuel based on your fuel levels, or given cautions when windshield wipers are in use or even taking pictures of incidents right from your vehicles cameras.”

 

The first vehicles offering the Waze-connected GPS navigation devices are slated to be available later this year.

Author: Marisa O’Connor

Source: www.rmtracking.com

Your one stop for gps tracking needs, contact an experienced GPS Monitoring Specialist to assist you with any GPS situtation.