[Loadstone] Fundraising, GPS Receiver, and Cell Phone Questions

Shawn Kirkpatrick shawn at odyssey.cm.nu
Sat Dec 9 00:52:39 GMT 2006


The best way to test how long your system will run on a charge is to charge 
the phone and gps up to full and just let the system run and see how long it 
goes. The more the system talks the more battery power it draws. This is 
also true for beeps, vibrate etc. You should be able to get higher capacity 
batteries for the phone and gps. Just look for batteries with the highest 
mah rating.
Any kind of charger that can charge your phone would probably work for the 
gps you'd just have to have the right end on the charger.
If your gps worked well in the fall then it'll probably work even better in 
clearer weather. You'd probably want to put the system thrue lots of 
different tests before taking it on a hike like this thoe.

On Fri, 8 Dec 2006, Michael O. Hanson wrote:

> Dear Fellow Loadstone Users:
>
> Please accept my apologies for the length and off-topic nature of this
> message.  I will not post a similar message again.  Off-list email responses
> are fine with me.  My email address is mhanson at winternet.com in case it does
> not show up.
>
> I am blind.  I am considering using Loadstone to solo-hike the Appalachian
> Trail, starting in March, 2007, depending on how a job-search and some other
> planning-related issues go.  The Appalachian Trail is a wilderness trail
> running from Georgia to Maine.  I wanted to solo-hike for years but never
> did because of the lack of two peaces of information.  I did not know how I
> would locate landmarks and points of interest, including but not limited to
> access points, campsites, difficult or important topographical features,
> forks, intersections, turns, and water sources.   I did not know how I would
> accurately determine my position relative to such points of interest.  GPS
> will potentially allow me to do both of those things.
>
> As you know, locating landmarks with or without GPS is possible in urban
> settings, where there are people to ask for directions.  It can be more
> difficult in wilderness settings, where there are fewer people.
>
>   I selected Loadstone as my primary GPS program because of the portability
> of equipment and its relative cost.  Loadstone is free to download.  The
> only cost is the equipment, which is less expensive than equipment used by
> comparable GPS programs I am aware of.  Since Loadstone requires a cell
> phone and a GPS receiver, it is more portable than comparable systems I know
> about.  Equipment Loadstone uses seems no more or less water and
> weather-resistant than equipment used by other adapted GPS programs.
>
> Loadstone is not web-based.  This makes it more practical than Wayfinder and
> similar programs, because of my ability to create and store maps and the
> fact that Loadstone does not require cell phone reception.
>
> I will probably use Wayfinder to find points of interest in towns along the
> trail.  Such a hike can take six months or longer.  I will not be able to
> carry food for that length of time.  I will need to resupply along the way.
> I will probably also need to replace some equipment.  Boots are one item I
> can count on having to replace.
>
> GPS data are available for such a hike.  Files can be converted into formats
> Loadstone can use.  I will get trail guides in an accessible format and
> carry a Braille compos as a backup to Loadstone.
>
> Bill Irwin hiked the Appalachian Trail using a guide dog in 1990.
> Therefore, I do not consider such a hike impossible.  GPS was not available
> to or usable by Mr. Irwin to the best of my knowledge.
>
> I have a good deal of outdoor experience, including backpacking, camping,
> canoeing, hiking, hunting, and fishing.  I believe I have the experience and
> skills necessary to plan and attempt such a hike.
>
> I am in contact with the Appalachian Trail Conservancy and several
> through-hikers, including Mr. Irwin.  I am in contact with the National
> Federation of the Blind and the American Counsel of the Blind.  Both
> organizations seem relatively unfamiliar with adapted GPS technology and
> programs.
>
> I want to publicize the use of adapted GPS.  I believe it is one of the more
> underutilized navigation aids available to blind people.  It will not
> replace guide dogs or white canes.  Having said that, it will provide
> information they do not.
>
> Now for my questions.  First, I want to use this hike to raise money for
> Loadstone.  I believe it is one of the better and more flexible adapted GPS
> programs available at this time.  If I complete such a hike, I want to give
> credit where credit is due.  If I am successful, I will owe much of my
> success to Loadstone and its creators.
>
> I know how to plan such a hike.  I know less about potential publicity and
> fundraising options.  I can fund the actual hike myself.
>
> First, I intend to ask people to make donations directly to Loadstone.  I am
> considering asking people to donate a specific amount per mile.  The
> Appalachian Trail is over two thousand miles long.  I will probably ask for
> ten or twenty-five cents per mile.  Do you have any thoughts on how I might
> publicize and raise money for Loadstone through such a hike?  Do you have
> any thoughts on the amount I should request per mile?  Any such information
> would be appreciated.
>
> Second, battery life is a consideration for both a cellular phone and a GPS
> receiver.  I currently use a Royaltec RBT2000.  How long can that receiver
> run on a fully charged battery?  Do any of you know of good GPS receivers
> that will run longer?
>
> Third, I use a Nokea 6680 cellular phone.  How long will that phone run on
> one battery?  Do any of you know of a battery with a longer running time
> than the standard battery?
>
> I have Loadstone installed on a memory card.  I do not have in the phone
> memory because of possible problems if the battery dies while the phone is
> in use.
>
> Fourth, do any of you have experience with solar chargers for GPS receivers
> or cellular phones?  I believe solar chargers exist for cellular phones.  I
> do not know if they exist for GPS receivers.
>
> Fifth, do any of you have experience using Loadstone in dense tree cover?  I
> got my system last August.  It worked well during hunting season and seems
> to work well in downtown settings and inside some buildings.  I believe it
> will perform adequately in dense tree cover but have not tested it in spring
> or most of summer.
>
> Sincerely,
>
>
> Mike Hanson
>
>
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>


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