[Loadstone] Loadstone PointShare/gRoute and databases

Gemma Hoath gemma at ratbaggy.net
Tue Jul 20 02:10:13 BST 2010


HI Sean and Jerry,

I have found when talking to people about getting started with Loadstone is 
the thing they struggle with the most is the distinction between the 
database and checkpoints. So I was talking to someone who said they had 
given up on Loadstone because they couldn't get it to auto announce. He said 
he had loaded up the database, and had turned auto announce on, but it still 
didn't talk so he gave up.

I think of Databases and checkpoitns as follows:

A database is a repository of all the points you have entered. So when you 
enter a point, it goes into the database.

A checkpoint list, is a subset of points, which you have "checked" in your 
database. This can be done either on the phone in Exploration Mode, or on 
the Online Database Explration Tools. Personally, I find it easier to use 
the online tools than it is to fiddle about in Exploration Mode.

So you need a Checkpoints list if you want a specific route, such as bus 
stops on a bus route, or train station stops. you can load each list of 
checkpoints as you move to each mode of transport if you wish.

I aim this message at Sean Randall, to say rather than having different 
databases for your different modes of transport, you can have one database, 
the default database loading all the time, and just loade up different 
chekpoint files, depending on what you want to do. This way, you can use the 
auto announce feature as well, and it means all your points are still there 
when you go from mode to mode. For example, if you are riding on a bus and 
then are transferring to a train, you could still locate the point for the 
train station.

In this way, you can eliminate the problem of finding points that are not 
relevant to your current situation. You change the context in which you are 
working by changing the checkpoints you load.

Jerry: I hope this clears things up and explains them for you.

Regards

Gemma

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Sean Randall" <seanr at randylaptop.com>
To: <loadstone at loadstone-gps.com>
Sent: Monday, July 19, 2010 8:44 PM
Subject: Re: [Loadstone] Loadstone PointShare/gRoute and databases


Monty,

One of the things that puts me off about the point share is the fact that
it's so overwhelmingly huge, I think.  I use 3 databases with my loadstone,
at the moment.

My default is the local walking one, as it were.  I haven't shared this with
the community because unless anyone wants to come walk to my house it's of
no use to anyone.  In fact there are only three or four points, but our gate
is one of them and it's very useful to know when to stop jogging if I'm out
for a run.

The second database is my local bus stops.  I used the PSE to get some, but
others are almost spontaneous - we're quite rural, the drivers tend to stop
when they're flagged down and so I've had to put in more landmarks than
stops, to be able to ring the bell to get off. Of course as I use more local
services I add more points.

Third is my UK Railway stations, to which I linked ages ago on the list.
The share has most if not all of these too.

This keeps things quite modular for me.  I load up loadstone, walk to the
bus stop, load the bus database, if I then catch a train I switch that one
in. I have a "Hereford" point in the railway station database, but also a
"Hereford" for the bus stop I use most often.  Because they're separate, the
names don't conflict.

If I had all the points I used loaded all of the time, Loadstone would
respond quite slowly when searching.  If I named the points more exactly,
it'd take so much longer to read the names of them that I may well end up
missing a stop.  This is why I like having discrete places for each type of
point that I want to use.

Everyone's different, of course - people have been posting here about having
state-wide databases with all the streets and intersections.  I'm sure that
works well for some, it's just not the way I like to do things.

What is the policy with the point share.  Should I upload my bus stops as
they are? "Memorial, Whitecross" is not a very descriptive name - if it
wasn't in a "bus" database you'd have no way of knowing what it represented.
Similarly, you could go too far the other way - "Memorial bus stop,
Whitecross, Herefordshire,, UK" seems a tad too verbose. I suppose my
question really relates to categorisation and taxonomy, but as it's very
much a personal preference as to how people want to sort things, it's a
difficult one to answer.

Am I being thick?  Should I not segment things in such a way? Am I the only
person who thinks downloads of databases as well as individual points or
searches is beneficial?

Sean.

-----Original Message-----
From: loadstone-bounces at loadstone-gps.com
[mailto:loadstone-bounces at loadstone-gps.com] On Behalf Of
monty at loadstone-gps.com
Sent: Monday, July 19, 2010. 10:39 AM
To: loadstone at loadstone-gps.com
Subject: [Loadstone] Loadstone PointShare/gRoute and databases

Hello All,

While I was away it seems like there has been a lot of chatter regarding
sources of Loadstone-compatible point resources and I thought I would
clarify a few things - clearing up misinformation that I often see on this
list.

There is only 1 officially supported points repository for Loadstone and
it  is called the Loadstone PointShare.

There are two ways of accessing the Loadstone PointShare:

1.  Visit: http://www.pse.loadstone-gps.com

2.  Access via the Loadstone-GPS web site

The Loadstone PointShare contains points of interest from around the
world.  It is populated by you the users ((if nobody shares then nobody
benefits).  Some users (including members of the Loadstone development
team) have supplied large datasets of points.  These include all road
intersections in Canada and the USA, all transportation stops in the
United Kingdom and thousands of personally created points.  I happen to
know that most of you (yes, even some of you that periotically complain
have not been good little boys and girls and have not shared your points)
- I can include myself in this category at times too!

Is there room for improvement on the Loadstone PointShare?  Yes, there's
loads of room for improvement.  A group of volunteers has been setup to
deal with this but lacks leadership and direction at the moment so if
anyone would like to help then please let me know.

gRoute and Open StreetMap are not officially supported at this time and
officially have nothing to do with Loadstone.  This might change in the
future but this is the way it is for now.

It very much surprises me that so many people over-look the points
available to them  from the Loadstone PointShare.  I realise information
is a bit thin on the ground in most areas of the world  (I myself live in
a country that isn't well-served by the PointShare) but many Loadstone
users live in Canada and the USA and have access to very good information.

Remember that Loadstone does not replace good mobility skills.  The
original intended purpose was for you to mark points along a route when
going somewhere for the first time and then using Loadstone to help during
subsequent trips.

Now, with the Internet users can acquire the coordinates for an intended
destination  (on their PC or through Loadstone's newly supported onLine
tool  menu) and plan a route prior to going on it.  In fact to prove how
well this works, last week I was in London (a city that I don't live in
and am not hugely familiar with the streets/areas etc) and I spent the day
independantly wandering around - using Loadstone to guide me with the help
of some points of interest from GoogleMaps.  It was a pleasant experience
and I'm still here to write about it!

We continue to put effort into the Online tools area in Loadstone and I
hope to  get time in the near future to continue working on scripts that
can be used in the OnLine tool menu.

Thanks, and I hope this clears up some confusio.

Monty

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