Sparks Tracker

Thanks to the magic of GPS, you can now see where we are in near real time!

The Sparks Tracker

The Sparks Tracker

One of Jen’s co-workers generously loaned us his SPOT GPS beacon. It’s intended for backcountry travellers to use as an emergency notificaiton system. It also has the ability to send an “OK” message, which includes the user’s location. We’ve been pushing the OK button every day, usually when we pull in at a camp site.

The SPOT website has the ability to create “adventure pages” and embed them, but it doesn’t seem well suited to long term adventures – if you want to keep a trail of locations that spans more than 30 days, you have to periodically save the points off by hand.

Fortunately, SPOT does provide a handy API. Using a simple PHP script that transfers data from SPOT to Cartodb provides an easy and automated way to keep track of our location. Check out the Sparks Tracker page on our site!

6 Responses to 'Sparks Tracker'

  1. Marcia says:

    It’s Connect the Dots for grown ups. Love it!

  2. Polly Chike says:

    Or, you can just put a giant map on the wall with a sign that says “Where’s Jennifer?” and stick a new pin in it every day 🙂

    • Jennifer Sparks says:

      Sweet! Thanks for doing that, Polly! What a project to undertake!

      • Polly Chike says:

        it’s in the hallway between Alan’s office and the kitchen. Everyone stops to see where you are. It’s fun

  3. Trish Cozart says:

    You just couldn’t stay away from Cartodb and APIs. I knew you missed NREL!

    • Witt says:

      Yep! I learned lots of great stuff at NREL. Just glad I have a chance to keep using it!