GPS Tracking apps for bike tours. Which is best to integrate into WordPress?

Posted: May 9, 2012 in Cycling
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There are lots of apps for tracking a route for running, cycling, hiking etc. Each have different features and with different target users in mind. For tracking my bike trip from Bodø to Nordkapp I am looking for an app that

  • is easily integrated into my wordpress blog and looks good there
  • can be uploaded and inserted into the blog easily from an iphone
  • uses as little battery power as possible (as I will be going long stretches without power)
  • allows photos to be uploaded and tagged en route

I have tested the following tracking apps with my morning run: EveryTrail, Cyclemeter and GPSies, and tried to integrate them into this post. I have written my impressions of each app, and how I incorporated them into the WordPress post.

EveryTrail

Incorporation in WordPress

Link to EveryTrail map

As WordPress does not allow embedding, it is a bit of effort to get this to appear properly on the post. This post tells you how.

In short: on the EveryTrail site, go to the track you want to post on WordPress and copy the text for “Share this trip – Flash map with photos for websites and blogs”. Paste this into the HTML editor of WordPress, and then replace the word embed with gigya and change some brackets in the HTML code.

Impression

I have been using EveryTrail for about 2 years now and have tracked many trips with it. The user interface during running is easy to use. It is possible to take photos while running and have them automatically placed on the resulting map. It is also possible to embed the map into WordPress, even from the iPhone. All the runs/cycles I record can be made searchable and available for the general public.

For training runs where the goal is to improve your time, compare a run with earlier runs in real time, run a particular interval training, or follow lots of data while running, EveryTrail is not the app. There is little real time information in EveryTrail, and it is hidden in a different tab to the map tab. For my Norway cycle trip, these features are not needed. I have decided to use EveryTrail to track my trips in Norway.

Cyclemeter

Incorporation in WordPress

Cyclemeter uses googlemaps and it is possible to incorporate a googlemap into WordPress. It is not done by pasting the googlemap URL address into the code but rather, as explained here. This can be easily done using the web-browser interface of WordPress, but is not easy using the iPhone. (One way of incorporating a googlemap using the iPhone can be done via email postings. Such postings are difficult to edit before publishing.)

Impression

Cyclemeter is very customizable and can display all sorts of interesting data real time. This is ideal when training for a marathon for example. I also like how it puts kilometre markers on the map.

It is, however, not trivial to write a post and incorporate a Cyclemeter map in the post using an iPhone. Also, the maps are not searchable and usable by the general public, which I think is a shame. It is not possible to incorporate photos.

GPSies

Incorporation in WordPress


GPSies uses OpenStreetMaps. There is a plugin that can be used to incorporate the GPSies map onto the WordPress post. Plugins are not allowed on blogs hosted by WordPress (all the free blogs), and so you need to arrange a different blog host in order to use this option.

Alternatively, it is possible to convert the map to KML format on the GPSies site, and import into google maps as described here. The resulting googlemap can then be incorporated into the post as described above for Cyclemeter. My 10km run seemed to be truncated in the resulting googlemap. I am not sure of the cause of this.

Impression

Like Cyclemeter, GPSies can display more real time data than EveryTrail. It is even less trivial than Cyclemeter to incorporate the resulting map into a WordPress blog using the iPhone. The resulting maps are searchable and usable by the general public. It is not possible to incorporate photos.

I found it very irritating with GPSies that it is impossible to scroll away from your current position on the real-time map while you are running. I think it is important to be able to do this to be able to see where you plan to go (cycle/run) next.

Comments
  1. Hi,
    I agree your most of the points.
    I like it too 🙂
    We need GPS for our daily use age.
    I also read another article about this GPS Tracking B-Tracking
    It also lead me to know about this GPS GPSTracking.com

    Thanks,
    Scott

  2. through GPS technology we can get the right direction for our trip.

  3. […] route with the EveryTrail smartphone app, and embedded the track on the wordpress.com blog using a flash workaround. This map often takes a long time to load, and is not visible at all when viewed from a smart […]

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