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Tuesday
Aug092011

Nuvinator

If you're like me, you have a Nuvi 500/550.  If you're like me further still, you've tried to take a track file that someone created on one of their rides, load it on to your Nuvi and then follow the track only to realize that the Nuvi doesn't handle track files.  "No sweat, you probably told yourself, I'll just convert this to a route and then load it on...."....WTF, the Nuvi can only handle routes with up to 200ish points in it? Damn this track file has like 5000 points...

What I've been doing with tracks that I create on Google maps is breaking them into separate files by hand and then using gpsbabel to convert them to routes and then simplify them.  This works great, and I just load 3 or 4 route files for a given track and follow them.  It works surprisingly well, but it takes some time to get the route files created.  Because I got tired of doing it by hand, today I decided to write a perl script to do it.  I call it nuvinator.pl.

All you do is feed the script your full blown track file, and optionally give it a number of routes to be created, and it will make route files each with 200 route points (that's as many as I could get my Nuvi to load).  I just wrote it today, and have only tried it on a few track files, but her is the output from a 7k point track file converted to two routes:

Track:

 

Route:

 

Here are the requirements to run the file:

1. Perl

2. gpsbabel

3. The perl script relies on XML::Simple and Getopt::Long, so you may need to install them.  On Linux it's just sudo cpan XML::Simple Getop::Long.  If you're using Activestate on Windows, I think it has these installed, but if not, check out the command line utility ppm.

 

You can download the script here: nuvinator.pl

I've only run the script on Windows, but it should run just fine on Linux/Mac.  If you don't have gpsbabel in your path, make sure to edit the script and set the $gpsbabel to the path of your gpsbabel executable.

 

I hope this helps a lot of people, because it makes it dead simple to convert tracks to Nuvi ready routes.

 

--Rob

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