GPS units are loads of fun for geocaching, turn by turn directions and all sorts of outdoors type of activities. At least this is what I’ve heard. But to be honest, I never was sure how much I would actually use one. Thus, I set out to find the cheapest GPS “mouse” I could. This led me to Page Computers (good prices, but don’t expect your items to get to you before a weekend rollover. Great prices but slow as dirt). I ended up spending $40 US on a Ambicom USB GPS mouse.
So, I got the drivers installed, found some freebie map software and setup where the puck had southern exposure.
Then, with the help of a friend, we set out to find out where I was in the wide world. I am pretty sure it was the blind leading the blind, but we did find out the max theoretical speed of a dining room table.
For the sake of this exercise, I will be North and my knowledgeable friend will be South. Some sanitation of the conversation has taken place. We wouldn’t want to offend! (too much anyway)
North: well, that and my new GPS mouse showed up today finally
South: Ooo. So you’ll always have GPS coordinates for where your mouse is, eh?
North: either my mapping software is jacked up (most likely) or this gps is about 3 city blocks off
North: says its at ### Some Street and Im at ### Some Street
South: Imma bet the software too
South: What coordinates are you reading?
North: by the software, Im sitting in the cemetary at the end of the road
North: ##d ##’ ##.#” N, ##d ##’ ##.#” W
North: so my guess is that NOAA uses city center, which is about ## blocks from my house
North: which would point at the software being dicked up
South: lol I’m not doing this right. mapquest has you in China. ^_^
North: thats ##.# degrees N and ##.# degrees W
South: oh oh I thought it was minutes and seconds
North: might be
North: this is my first GPS
North: but ya know…
North: gimme a link to where you are at in mapquest
South: it’s wierd tho.. even with the decimal values you’re in china or the arctic ocean ;p
South: It’s actually -##.#
North: wtf am I doing in china?
North: and now I got the software reporting in the correct order too
North: freakin OSS software
North: hmm, and its also not listing the “-” either
North: that must be assumed
North: same, when I get MS maps on here, Ill know better
South: Hope you don’t end up dropped off somewhere where you don’t know if it’s +/- ;p
North: you know, MS taking care of the idiot
North: ahh, figured it out
South: lol Stop N Rob.
South: Is that fast food?
North: N+, S- E+ W- ?
North: stop and rob convenience store
North: and we dont have one here
North: so yer lost
North: we have 3 others
North: which are all stop and robs too
South: This has you someplace in SomeCity around E Street. ;p
North: thats about 3-4 miles away
North: this is some accurate shizzle yo
South: Very near the intersection of E Street and Route 66.
North: 66 is a stones throw from us
South: It says there’s a Stop N Rob at the intersection of E Street and Ne 66
North: yep, there is
North: this proves one thing
South: lol u got haxed
North: that my parents werent BSing about me digging to china when I was a kid
North: teh H4X!
North: someone installed a Stop N Rob in my house!
North: My gps is accurate to 2 meters and my software is accurate to about 5 miles
North: road trip!
North: think I will shoot myself in the leg and use this system to find the nearest hospital
South: Yeah, i see where you are in comparison. that’s pretty damn sad
North: and its sitting on the dining room table. It appears my table is heading 40deg NE at 4mph
South: SWEET EARTHQUAKE
North: either that or the hoodlums of the neighborhood boosted it
South: I think your shit is broke
North: Im betting when I have the known good software installed, it tightens right up (ed: or I figure out what I am doing)
North: my table just got on the interstate
North: jumped up to 60mph
North: well, I guess one of the cats could be batting it about the floor
South: Your software is telling you this or the unit itself?
South: oh okay
North: if I look at the raw NMEA output from the gps monitor window, I am getting a speed and heading of what one would expect of a table
South: 0.0 mph [wink]
North: yep and a heading of 0
South: I think your usb cable has some problems. ;p
North: what can ya expect for a 40 dolla gps
North: to get lost in east st louis, thats what