[HOT] Tracking vehicle movements

John Whelan jwhelan0112 at gmail.com
Wed Jan 9 19:22:09 UTC 2019

In Windows you can use a script to copy the files, compress them and 
send them.

Android should have something equivalent.  If not Microsoft Visual 
Studio 2017 can build something that will run on android.

We seem to be forever seeing requests from students to write software 
for OSM and HOT as a project.

This one is a natural.

Enabling GPS tracking is heavy on a battery life but you can buy power 
packs quite cheaply to extend the life.  I wouldn't connect it to the 
car battery, the voltage fluctuates to much and it will shorten the 
smartphone life down.

So basically you want a program that will grab the GPS tracks every x 
minutes and compress them.  Technically zip is fine but the problem with 
zips is they can carry malware so use something else and gmail won't 
accept them anyway.

Then it should just email these back to the server. There should be an 
API to allow the software to write to something like Gmail on the 

When gmail finds a connection it will send the messages home.  No 
fingers needed other than to connect to Wifi for gmail.  This one is the 

https://developers.google.com/gmail/api/guides/sending has got the basics.

The other way is to use the signal that the phone uses to connect to the 
mast.  There are 140 / 160 characters at the end of the packet which are 
unused.  This is the basis of SMS text messaging.  In Europe, North 
America phone plans often come with unlimited SMS text messaging, Africa 
maybe different.  The advantage is you can collect the data in real 
time.  The disadvantage is the store and forward method of email is a 
bit more robust.

There are SMS APIs that will run on a smartphone but my impression is 
these vary according to the phone so an SMS based solution that ran on 
any phone might be more difficult to build but someone who knows more 
about SMS might be in a better position to sort something out.

Cheerio John

Jorieke Vyncke wrote on 2019-01-09 10:48 AM:
> Thanks a lot for all your suggestions!
> I suppose easy to use is core, so options with manually copying traces 
> is probably not the best solution.
> However I will forward all your suggestions to Last, and will leave it 
> up to him to decide what is the best option for them on the ground!
> If there are more ideas, they still welcome :)
> Thanks a lot!
> Jorieke
> Op wo 9 jan. 2019 om 14:26 schreef Pierre Béland <pierzenh at yahoo.fr 
> <mailto:pierzenh at yahoo.fr>>:
>     Hi Jorieke
>     There are small vehicule gps logger, some very precise reading
>     various satellite networks. I tried a Columbus. It did work very
>     well but could not replace the battery.
>     Search simply for vehicule gps logger. This Ebay link show various
>     models, some with an USB connection and / or sim card.
>     https://www.ebay.ca/sch/i.html?_nkw=vehicle+gps+data+logger
>     regard
>     Pierre
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