Thursday, April 8, 2010

Techy Thursday

INSTAMAPPER ~ Real time GPS tracking

Thought I would post a link to a free service that allows real time tracking from your iphone via the Internet. Yes it is free and yes it works. You can download the free app from itunes then access Instamapper and register your device. Instamapper will then give you a access code to enter on your iphone in the installed app. Once you have this all set to go you can track the phone from any Internet connection.

There are a few things to be aware of.

1. Don't use this without a unlimited data plan or your bills will be high ( see their FAQ page for more info on this )

2. The app must be running in the foreground for it to work.

3. If you have people that worry about your whereabouts when your cycling alone they can use this to see your travels as frequently as a 3 second refresh rate.

This will work in a car as well and they have a demo to check out.

GOOGLE MAPS ~ Directions by bike

This is about time and it works well. I used this recently in Asheville to get a good bike route to the Blue Ridge Parkway and it is a great feature that actually works. I do not know how extensive this will be in Canada but it is coming. What is actually really good about this is it has Google street view as well so you can get a visual of the route before hopping on the bike. It also does off road trail routes in certain cities. I can see why this is Google's most requested feature.

They use a average persons BMI to calculate time and try to avoid large elevation gains and traffic routes. If your seeking hills you can easily click drag the suggested route path on the hill of choice and suffer away.

Here is a snapshot of what the feature looks like. This is from Liberty Bikes Asheville to Mount Pisgah Inn via the Blue ridge Parkway.