Monday, January 19, 2015

Maps and communications

If you look to the right on this page, up on top, you'll see an experiment -- following breadcrumbs from one of the folks whose blog I list at the right, I found uMap, which is an open source mapping tool developed in France.  It's WAY complex and I'm only cracking the surface of what's possible, but it seems promising.

Being able to put up maps of where I've been and where I'm headed is a part of the general project of staying in touch while I'm on the road.  This is a simple map of where I am right now.

UPDATE:  It's no longer there, so you're not doing anything wrong. I took down the static map and replaced it with a weather widget. I'll be putting together a large map with records of trips, when there are more trips.

Today I tackled the issue of internet service.  Last year I made a mistake.   I bought a T-Mobile HotSpot so I could have internet access on the road if I wasn't staying in an RV resort or parked outside a Starbucks. T-Mobile has many attractive features, but their network just isn't built out enough.  So today I cancelled that and activated a Verizon "Jetpack" "Mifi" hot spot.  It's as spiffy as a little box the size of a deck of playing cards can be... and has the added feature of a monster battery, which can be used to charge other devices via USB.  Yesterday I charged the JetPack up to 100%, and then used it to recharge an iPhone from53% to 100%.  That took the Jetpack down to 78%, still plenty of juice to run some brief upload/download sessions from my laptop or iPad.

Did I mention I'm looking into ham radio for when there's no cell service at all? :-)


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