Tom Curley, Suquamish Tribe

Mobile Mapping
with GPS
and MapInfo
(how we do it at Suquamish)
Mobile Mapping – Suquamish Tribe
The Port Madison Indian
About 7,800 acres
located across Puget Sound from
The Port Madison Indian Reservation
was set aside as part of the Point Elliott
Treaty (1855) and
enlarged by Executive Order in 1864.
900 Tribal members total, about half
living on the reservation.
Total reservation population is about
Point Elliott Treaty document, dated 4 Nov 1886
Mobile Mapping – Suquamish Tribe
The Port Madison Indian Reservation
W a s h i n g t o n
S t a t e
Mobile Mapping – Suquamish Tribe
The Port Madison Indian Reservation
Kitsap County, Washington
Mobile Mapping – Suquamish Tribe
GIS: Geographic Information System
GPS: Global Positioning System
Mobile Mapping – Suquamish Tribe
GPS is a useful tool to:
* build new data in the GIS
- in real time with a laptop
- with just the GPS, download to PC in office
* get the links needed to rubbersheet other imagery
- scanned survey sheets
- historical scanned maps
* obtain precise location data for other projects
- BLM GCDB (post-processed ‘accurate’ GPS)
* real-time navigation
- canoe journeys
- fisheries on-the-water location work
Mobile Mapping – Suquamish Tribe
If you already have a GPS, it costs you nothing (thank you, MapInfo Corp!)
Plug your GPS cable into your PC; in GPS setup, choose NMEA (any version), 9600 baud, then ON
(each GPS will be slightly different; 9600 baud for smoother tracking, especially in a vehicle)
In MapInfo, Tools/Tool Manager, load the free Blue Marble Geotracker utility.
Mobile Mapping – Suquamish Tribe
In GeoTracker, make your settings consistent with the GPS
Mobile Mapping – Suquamish Tribe
Go to GPS/Live GPS Data and you should see yourself onscreen
Pretty amazing - and it’s free!
Mobile Mapping – Suquamish Tribe
We use a table specifically created for the purpose of data collection with GPS,
pre-built with fields in place to hold GPS data. You don’t have to do that, but it allows
you to filter out lesser-quality GPS data, and ‘time-stamp’ your data (for legal use later).
Mobile Mapping – Suquamish Tribe
Build new data in the GIS
- in real time with a laptop
Using MapInfo with BlueMarble
GeoTracker utility (free, included
with MapInfo). Advantages:
* QC your data visually during collection
* Annotate features easily with full keyboard
* Your database/table is DONE by the time
you take the truck out of 4WD
Mapping recently (and barely) opened logging roads
a.k.a. ‘driveby GIS’
Mobile Mapping – Suquamish Tribe
(data collected using GPS with MapInfo and GeoTracker)
Mobile Mapping – Suquamish Tribe
Documenting solid waste
Infractions using the
‘driveby GPS’ method
Mobile Mapping – Suquamish Tribe
How we used to do it, with a laptop, GPS, external amplified
antenna, Differential Beacon Receiver (DBR) and
12v battery, all spaghetti-wired together.
Now: laptop with Ashtech ProMark2 with WAAS
(Hand-me-down P2-600 laptop works great with MapInfo Pro)
Mobile Mapping – Suquamish Tribe
Laptops are fragile - one bad step and it’s gone
(been there, done that)
Laptops are big and bulky
(need a lapboard or somesuch, and it’s clunky)
Laptop batteries don’t last long enough
(carry two - at $100-150 each)
Laptop displays are difficult to read in bright daylight
(a hood helps, but gets in the way)
Laptops are expensive
(can find them for ~$700, TabletPC $1,800-2,500)
Fieldwork will damage the laptop over time
(start with a used one with little residual value,
and consider a three-year lifespan exceptional)
Mobile Mapping – Suquamish Tribe
A Possible Next Step
Pocket PC’s look ideal
Smartphone best of all possible worlds? All in one
Genuinely ruggedized unit like a Trimble GeoXT
or Recon is VERY expensive
OS seems also to be in flux (currently Windows Mobile 2003, soon updated)
Battery run-time and daylight screen readability are issues for all solutions.
GeoXT - about $3,000
Recon - about $6,000
Handheld - about $500
(without GPS)
Laptop - about $800
(without GPS)
Mobile Mapping – Suquamish Tribe
You’ll need to add to your Pocket
Memory - 1gb SD cards cost about $100,
2gb about $200 (very new)
Bluetooth GPS (more on that) ($200)
Software (also more on that)
OtterCase to protect the delicate little thing ($50)
or a drybag:
Mobile Mapping – Suquamish Tribe
So let’s do some math:
$0 (use MapInfo and GeoTracker)
$50 (optional)
$200 (Bluetooth wireless SiRF3)
$30 (for non-Bluetooth laptop)
1gb SD card
ArcPad software:
$500 (most powerful one you can get)
$200 (Bluetooth wireless SiRF3)
Mobile Mapping – Suquamish Tribe
GPS - many improvements!
Bluetooth - wireless connection so you can use the Pocket PC
in it’s OtterBox ($50) and retain protection
Waterproof the GPS with its own OtterBox ($20)
Longer battery life these days (a full day plus on one charge)
and best of all
Much improved sensitivity for urban canyons and under trees
(SiRF Star3 chipset devices)
Track up to 20 satellites simultaneously so you never lose your location
even when you drop multiple satellites
All for about $200 - but no WAAS implementation yet (soon)
Mobile Mapping – Suquamish Tribe
Software options and considerations:
MapTech Outdoor Navigator - $20
free unlimited download of USGS quads and NOAA nautical charts
no easy data transfer ability, no ability to average points or filter for QC
So - not much for GIS functionality but great fun and great value
Mobile Mapping – Suquamish Tribe
Software options and considerations:
OziExplorer - $85 + $30 for PocketPC functionality = $115
Geared for navigation,
not GIS, but you can
collect points and routes
and transfer them to GIS
via comma-delimited and
DXF formats. World
focused, so limited local
projections available.
Can scan your own map
data, reads USGS, NOAA,
MrSID, other formats.
Enthusiastic developer,
‘screw it together’ sort
of feel, but lots of features.
Mobile Mapping – Suquamish Tribe
Software options and considerations:
Fugawi - $100 including PocketPC functionality (as in, “where the fugawi?”)
Can export routes and points, but basically designed for navigation - not GIS
Comes with a data DVD of streets, names, places … reads USGS and NOAA
Good projection options - is GIS-aware, and can export SHP points/polylines
Can read ChartTIFF (use Tony Cooley’s WIN2TAB.MBX in MI) and ECW
Good choice for a hundred bucks, for light GIS data collection and vehicle nav.
Mobile Mapping – Suquamish Tribe
Software options and considerations:
TierraMapper - $100
from Geo-Information Solutions (Tucson, AZ)
Designed for GIS data collection in Pocket Access format, and includes a
tool for converting a MapInfo window to a TierraMapper-compatible file.
Economical pricing and MapInfo
compatibility make TierraMapper
worth considering.
However, no GPS controls to
allow point averaging or PDOP
masking for QC.
Mobile Mapping – Suquamish Tribe
Software options and considerations:
GBM Mobile - $500+
from Exa-Min Technologies (Australia)
Designed for use with MapInfo, strong in forms creation and managing
data return back into MapInfo, even with multiple field users of the same dataset.
GPS integration built-in, but lacking control such as point averaging, PDOP mask.
For serious GIS field data collection,
especially with multiple field crews, this
could be a very worthwhile product due to
the data management controls.
Mobile Mapping – Suquamish Tribe
Software options and considerations:
ESRI ArcPad - $500
True GIS functionality, good control of GPS (average points, limit bad PDOP, etc.)
Have to chop your data on the PC, then tranfer to PPC - uses SHP format.
If you’re doing real GIS work - this is probably your best choice.
Can query parcels in the field and
update databases, etc.- real GIS
Mobile Mapping – Suquamish Tribe
Software options and considerations:
If you do go with ArcPad, you might consider MI2AP from Avantra Geosystems
Cost: about $500
MI2AP works from within MapInfo and converts an entire MapInfo Workspace into
an ArcPad compatible map. Unlike the Universal Translator, the resulting Shape
files retain their symbology (color, shape, symbol, etc.) reducing set up and
configuration time significantly.
MI2AP also provides for the creation of ArcPad forms from within MapInfo
Professional. Employing forms for PDA based data collection and display greatly
increases the efficiency of PDA based field data collection. When ArcPad v7 comes
out in August, forms creation will be possible from the PC element rather than
having to purchase the $1,000 ESRI development tool to do it.
Mobile Mapping – Suquamish Tribe
Getting an accurate acreage for a local wildland fire by walking the perimeter with GPS
Mobile Mapping – Suquamish Tribe
Mobile Mapping – Suquamish Tribe