This is a rare moment. In the following post there may be some content that looks vaguely like IT. Since I pretend to know what IT is at work, it was only going to be a matter of time before work and petrol head obsessions converge.
I have been hatching a cunning plan over the past week to dynamically plot our location during the Scumball Rally in April.
Fact: I am basically tight when it comes to spending money on IT hardware and I hate gadgets that don’t work
Fact: What ever we take on the Rally runs a high risk of being broken, stolen, lost, soaked in beer or just left somewhere in Europe since it is too heavy to carry.
Combine these two facts and you can see that some imagination is required when developing a Global Tracking System. Anyway here is my Scumball Tracking Device (STD), codename the “HackaTracka”.
Basically I have a laptop running FC8 which grabs the GPS Coordinates from a Bluetooth GPS device with perl script. This then sends the GPS output via Bluetooth to my old faithful Nokia 6310i (probably the best mobile phone ever) which SMS’s them off to Twitter. Twitter kindly converts my SMS to an RSS feed for free 😉 thank you twitter. I then grab the output from the RSS feed with a bit of PHP and parse out the GPS coordinates passing them to Google Maps API and BINGO! A map with our current location.
A little refinement is required but HackaTracka 2.0 should be operational before we leave in April. Hopefully is will track us round Europe for 4 days and not stuck in Dover for 4 days.