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Generally working on the Nottingham area, Berlin, and London. Large-scale infrastructure projects and research in preparation for "special projects" where regular above-ground surveying is not available: London Underground, Berlin S-Bahn/U-Bahn, Derwent Aqueduct relation 2734272, international rail projects, …


  • IRC: sladen
  • Email:
  • OSM internal mail: sladen

Personal interests

  • Jubilee narrowboat (10.5m/35ft ex-trippy)
  • Bromptons (x 2)
  • Sigmatel 236B SlimGPS (Bluetooth, SIRF-III) logging
  • Pen, paper, A6-size notebook
  • JOSM, Potlatch, WhereAmI¹
¹ No more... One icy night, mapping a roundabout in Finland on the bicycle. I got a large bruise, but the Nokia 9300 Communicator didn't come off so well.
  • Nottingham
  • Helsinki
  • London

Drive-by mapping

  1. Grab a car lift, or Rail Replacement Bus Service (it doesn't work when you are driving)
  2. Place GPS/data logger under front window
  3. Use pen+paper or laptop
  4. Note down: (on-side only)
    • Street end names
      • (This street name)
    • Over bridges
    • Under bridges
    • Roundabouts
    • Street furniture
      • Bus Stops
      • Post boxes
      • Public telephones
    • Traffic lights
    • Speed limits
  5. Occasionally, if the speed is slow enough, I do log the occasional point on the opposite side; I write it down with an additional arrow.
    • Something

This seems to generate ~300 waypoints / hour. If you (if" I") try to do both sides there isn't time and things get missed. With a BGT-31 GPS you will need to use manual "Mark" mode (enter, cancel, enter) as there isn't time to hold the "quick mark" button down for 5 seconds! (Logging at 120km/h (70mph) your waypoint will now be over 150m too far ahead!). With the BGT-31 you need to add about 0.75seconds delay before marking, to ensure the mark ends up in the right place. Practice marking again known data to "calibrate" yourself first.


hcitool scan
sudo rfcomm -A bind rfcomm0 00:0B:0D:85:31:3F
cat /dev/rfcomm0 >> log-`date --rfc-3339=date`.nmea.txt
Quick and dirty timestamped drive-by waypoints
#!/usr/bin/env python
import readline
import time

f = open('output.txt', 'a') 

while True:
    s = raw_input()
    t = time.time()
    f.write(str(t) + ' ' + s + '\n')

(decode later at your leisure).