GPSyTM allows you to create and upload waypoints to your handheld GPS unit. MapBlast is a good source for automatically creating waypoints and routes; given two addresses it will calculate the waypoints along the route. This is useful, for example, if you want to take a road trip and have your GPS navigate you to your destination.
As of 99/7/5 the MapBlast site no longer offers GPS directions due to a contractual change with their data provider. We are working with Vicinity (the operators of MapBlast) to come to an acceptable solution or alternative. Please stay tuned for updates. We encourage all users of the MapBlast/GPS directions to contact Vicinity and suggest that they return this useful feature. Vicinity has placed a special GPS FeedBack section on their contact page specifically for this request.
This tutorial will show you how to create a route in MapBlast and upload it to your GPS unit. Please note that while MapBlast has recently (99/5/16) changed the look of their home page, the instructions below remain basically the same. We will update this page with new screenshots shortly.
IMPORTANT: GPSy v3.30 or GPSy Pro v1.10 is required for this tutorial.
MapBlast Home Page
Beginning on the MapBlast home page <http://www.mapblast.com>, click "Drive" to begin.
Fill in the desired starting point and destination, click Get Directions.
The driving directions will be shown. Directly below these click on the Show GPS Info link. [Click image to view at full size]
The Waypoint data will be shown: Datum, WGS84 (NAD83); Waypoint,D,Step 1, etc. Copy and Paste this data into a text file (ie.TextEdit, SimpleText, BBEdit) and save. [Click image to view at full size]
In the text editor, you'll want to edit the file slightly. MapBlast does not format the file properly as a route but as a series of waypoints. By adding a route header, you can tell GPSy that this is a route file:
Datum, WGS84 (NAD83) RouteName,0,MYROUTE Waypoint,D,Step 1,40.071697,-75.127295,,,Begin at 7900 High School Rd on High School Rd and go West for less than 100 feet Waypoint,D,Step 2,40.07166,-75.127489,,,Continue on Park Ave and go West for about 200 feet Waypoint,D,Step 3,40.071519,-75.128389,,,Turn right on Spring Ave and go Northwest for 0.2 miles Waypoint,D,Step 4,40.07317,-75.131709,,,Turn left on PA-611Old York Rd and go South for 0.8 miles Waypoint,D,Step 5,40.061969,-75.136659,,,Turn right on W Cheltenham Ave and go Northwest for 1.4 miles Waypoint,D,Step 6,40.074159,-75.15834,,,Turn right on PA-309 and go Northwest for 39.1 miles Waypoint,D,Step 7,40.556399,-75.434269,,,Continue on ramp at sign reading "I-78 West PA-309 North to Harrisburg/Tamaqua" and go West for 0.6 miles Waypoint,D,Step 8,40.559099,-75.44405,,,Continue on I-78PA-309 and go West for 5.2 miles Waypoint,D,Step 9,40.572429,-75.540019,,,Continue on ramp at sign reading "Exit 16A US-222 South Hamilton Boulevard" and go Southeast for 0.2 miles Waypoint,D,Step 10,40.572299,-75.539719,,,Bear right on US-222Hamilton Blvd and go Southwest for 1.8 miles to 5900 Hamilton Blvd Waypoint,D,Step 11,40.559455,-75.569899,,,5900 Hamilton Blvd Allentown PA 18106-9773
The format is RouteName,RouteNumber,NameOfRoute. RouteNumber should be 0 unless you have multiple routes in the same file, then it should increase 0, 1, 2, 3...
Save the file in TEXT (ASCII) format. This file can then be uploaded to the GPS with GPSy by using command D and selecting the file.
You can also use MapBlast to give you the latitude and longitude of any location or address in the United States and Canada. You can use these to program waypoints into your GPS unit. GPSy also supports a number of other street databases in addition to MapBlast. See our Feature Page for details or the Maps Page for information on maps on CD-ROM that you can use.
High-Tech: Rename the marker waypoints that MapBlast assigns from the generic "Step 1", "Step 2", "Step 3" to something more useful like "I-78EXIT".
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