Polaroid MGX-0550 GPS Unit with DVD Player

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Yes, you read that right, a Polaroid GPS that plays DVD's - and you thought the only thing that Polaroid did was to push out those instant pictures from years ago? Shame on you. Polaroid has been pushing into a lot of consumer goods lately, should it be a surprise that they got into one the hottest electronics categories – the land of the GPS? I have to admit I was surprised to see this, but even more surprised to see DVD playback. My kids have been bugging me for a DVD player in the car, and they know I love GPS’s, but could we both be happy with this? When I told them about the DVD player, all that they could say was "Whoa". Can I navigate and play a movie at the same time? Will they still say "Whoa" if I can get my hands on one?

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Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (7) | social bookmarking

Basics on the GPS Market

There's a pretty good article in today's Boston Globe that talks about the basics of GPS. Not a bad read if you are just getting into the GPS world, as it briefly covers the major points like what to shop for in a mobile GPS for the car, a handheld, and what's going on in the marketplace for the US. If you've been hanging out at the GPS Lodge for a while you probably already know a lot of this, but you may find it interesting to hear from another source.

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Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

May 23, 2006

Boy Scouts Use Celestron SkyScout - GPS Equipped Star Finder

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Celestron and the Boy Scouts of America have announced that Celestron will donate 200 GPS Equipped SkyScout units to the astronomy programs run by the Boy Scouts. About the size of a camcorder and weighing less than 16 ounces, the SkyScout utilizes a consumer-friendly "point and shoot" GPS technology that enables stargazers to instantly identify and/or locate over 6,000 celestial objects in the sky with the press of a button and listen to commentary on the object and its history. The SkyScout also has a "locate" feature that allows users to select an object they wish to view (i.e. Mars) and the SkyScout, using illuminated arrows in the viewfinder, will point the user to the object. Wow, when I was in Boy Scouts, we have dots with lines drawn between them on flash cards. This sounds like a nice step up!

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Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

Inrix Secures $10 Million in Oversubscribed Series B Round

Industry-leading traffic information company Inrix Inc. today announced it has secured $10 million in Series B funding, in an oversubscribed round led by Boston-based Bain Capital Ventures, with participation from existing investors Venrock Associates and August Capital. They started in 2004 and with about $6 million in first round funding. So with $6 million, they are now hitting national press, are a Red Herring top 100 start up in North America, and look like they are set to turn the navigation and traffic world on its head. Not bad for a 2 year old start-up.

Inrix is the first company to successfully transform a large volume of anonymous real-time GPS vehicle probe data into nationwide traffic information. Only Inrix's proprietary Traffic Fusion Engine incorporates the power of advanced Bayesian analytics to combine GPS probe data with hundreds of other market-specific data sources enabling the most accurate real-time and predictive traffic information and broadest coverage available.

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Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

Inrix Receives Red Herring Top 100 Award

Signaling the promise that Inrix holds, Red Herring awarded Inrix mention on their Top 100 list of promising companies. Red Herring is all about “delivering informed coverage not on what’s hot and already widely reported, but on what is new and promising, on what’s risky and potentially rewarding. In short, Red Herring reports on what’s new and worth getting in a sweat about—the thrill of innovation and the courage to finance it. It’s the difference between being ahead of the curve and riding it.”

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Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

May 21, 2006

Hacking Magellan eXplorist 100, 200 and 300 GPS Receivers

A lot of people have been asking about hacking Magellan eXplorist handheld GPS units. Well, since there is an interface spot on the back of the units that occupies the battery compartment, it’s feasible, just not easy to do. PC-Mobile.net, has posted some directions on how to get around this problem, by creating a PC interface cable for the Magellan eXplorist 100, 200 and 300 GPS receivers. They are retailers of cables, and are happy to help out in this area. There is also a Russian site that has a few tips on hacking the Magellan Units, as well as accessing some secret menus that appear to be used for diagnostics functions.

Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

May 14, 2006

Happy Mothers Day from the GPS Lodge

What better gift to give to mom than her independence? She may not know it, but she would really love one of the easy to use GPS units that helps her get anywhere she wants to go with ease. Two units in particula, that are particularly easy to use and powerful, would be the Garmin StreetPilot C330 and the TomTom GO 300. Both have high quality maps, touchscreen ease of use and outright reliable in terms of navigation quality and trustworthiness of operation.

Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

May 12, 2006

Biking Across the Country with your GPS?

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Just in case you were planning on biking across the country this summer, you can buy your maps at Adventure Cycling and get your waypoints there too! Adventure Cycling has maps available for you to criss-cross the country in many different routes that will have you in shape in not time. I used some of their maps when I biked across New England a few years ago, and found them pretty good. We used their maps to create routes on the computer and then downloaded the routes onto our Garmin eTrex units that guided us on the road. Well Adventure Cycling has done the work for you and created what they call companion GPS coordinates to be used with their maps.

The route that we used was the Northern Tier route where we met more than one rider who had started in Anacortes Washington about 7 weeks before and biked across the whole country. After the stories of sleeping in the woods, barns and in spare bedrooms of kind strangers, the funniest story was about going into the post office about a week into the ride to mail home extra (heavy) equipment. The postal worker immediately knew that the person was biking across the country, as this particular town was a well known place to mail home any equipment you thought you would need, but after a week had gotten tired of dragging around on your bike.

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Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

NAVTEQ maps Poland

NAVTEQ says that it has reached another milestone in Eastern Europe by providing a full coverage map of Poland. Included in the data set is over 600,000 km of roads. Not bad; don't know that I'll ever get there, but here you go. I am sure it will help someone out there.

“Achieving this goal affirms NAVTEQ’s commitment to our customers to provide robust map coverage of Eastern Europe”, stated George Filley, Vice President of Product Management, for NAVTEQ. “Our commitment to this region is further reinforced by the presence of two local offices in Poland that will continue to maintain and update the map.”

Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

May 8, 2006

TeleAtlas and Inrix Expand Partnership

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Tele Atlas and Inrix, Inc. announced today at ITS America that the companies are significantly extending their collaboration to deliver next-generation traffic services in North America. Under the new agreement, Inrix and Tele Atlas will form joint operations to optimally collect, integrate and deliver enhanced Tele Atlas traffic solutions and related map information within wireless applications and personal and in-car navigation systems. Tele Atlas customers will immediately benefit from the expanded partnership through access to Inrix’s industry-leading real-time and predictive traffic information and the ability to develop next generation navigation solutions featuring applications such as traffic-influenced dynamic routing.

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Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking

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