Sometimes we find
ourselves lost while travelling. Right? But have you really tried to
leverage some of the modern technology on your mobile phones to avoid
trouble while navigating? Thanks to technology as of now, some of the
things we wished for before are a reality. We can utilize powerful
mapping apps effectively and for free over various platforms such as
Android OS. Over the weekend, I travelled from the Nairobi (Capital)
to the far West of Kenya. As I planned for this journey, I decided to
use GPS Essentials (OpenStreetMap-Based navigation app for Android)
on my Samsung mobile Phone to track my travel way.
offered a very good interface with many tools for use such as the
Compass, Portable maps, Google Maps, Camera, Satellite viewer and
many more. It also offered a way of measuring altitude, time, sunrise
and moonrise, temperature etc.
I needed to use
this app so much in order to validate it’s capabilities for working
on some small scale projects that am involved in during my
day-in-day-out operations. So, just as you would do, I put a reminder
on my mobile to remind me on departure to set tracking on.
Fortunately, all went well and the track was being recorded
throughout the journey.
The result was;
|Route on GPS Essentials|
|Data format selection|
The benefit of
using the GPS Essentials is that it gave the option to export my
layer as either KML or GPX.
Then I loaded my .gpx layer in QGIS to do
some more analysis on it such as to know the counties that we had
passed through ,the towns that we passed and also confirm that the
projection I used was correct and accurate compared to the roads
layer I had on my computer.
|Track layer loaded in QGIS|
|Using Identify tool on Track Layer|
|Map showing the counties covered by track|
The results after
I had an accurate layer of a route from Nairobi to somewhere in
Nyamira County (Where my phone went off due to low battery)
- My layer passed
through Seven (7) counties.
- The layer has a
network feature where I can tell the start and end of the track
(includes direction aspect)
In conclusion, there exist various free GPS tools thats are robust and effective in their working while still being cheap or cost free.GPS Essentials is one of them.Lets map for our society.