I travel almost 100% for my job and therefore one of the perks that I get to enjoy is playing a little Disc Golf in places I probably would not get to enjoy otherwise (i.e. Saskatchewan and the UK). Thus, I have purchased a Garmin Personal Travel assistant (Garmin NUVI 680 pictured above) which is used for navigation and turn by turn directions to various destinations. Garmin (as well as other GPSr assistants) utilize what are known as customizable Points of Interest or POI files for short. These files can be *.csv (comma separated value), *.gpx or other files types per the particular units proprietary formats – examples of these user defined files are: museums, gas stations that sell diesel fuel, and civil war battlefields (several communities on the web create these for free). The primary objective of these files are to group a person’s particular interest into one file in order to expedite the recognition of the points of interest based on the current location of the user and the proximity to those POIs. These units are not only able to route the user turn by turn to the destination; but in some of the more advanced units they can enable Bluetooth hands free dialing of phone numbers contained within the file or photos and rich descriptions of the destinations.
Once these files are loaded into the units the POIs are then marked (push pins) on the maps with a bitmap (*.bmp icon) graphic in order to see the location (very similar to the Google earth files which can be one of the outputs form this effort). A ‘push pin’ *.bmp (Figure 1: Push Pin Icon) has already been created at the POI factory. Thus when a user uploads the POI file to their GPS they will have ‘push pins’ that look like a pole hole where the course is located. As part of this discussion the KC World committee may wish to use its own artists and icons.
Disc golf POI files already exist and are being used by the general public as well as the Disc golf community. This is where I think having one specifically built for the PDGA worlds would be a good idea. These files are very easy to create and maintain. So that is not the hard part..the hard part is the general input to the file..Courses, Hotels, Restaurants, Bars and Clubs etc..
I have talked to Rick about this file and I am willing to be the POC for this effort..again this is very simple to create and the outputs are many (such as a Goggle earth file that can be uploaded to the web site). I will leave it up to you all what, and who gets included in the file. Obviously I think the sponsors (hotels and restaurants would need to be included), but imagine if you just finished up your morning round and needed a place to eat lunch on your way to the next course…if this file were pre-loaded with the closest or the sponsoring restaurants etc that player would have that info at hand.
I already have an Excel Template created for input and the leg work can be done from your home with Google earth or with your own Garmin writing down coordinates etc. So before we get into specifics I’d like to hear your thoughts on this…BTW I already have most of the courses already in my personal file..
Examples of the points of interest for the POI Worlds file:
1. Courses (Parking area and not the first tee) and courses that players coming from out of state will pass by on thier way into KC that they might want to play?
2. Restaurants in and around the course as well as your favorite eateries in the area (I’m thinking BBQ will be a main theme here..LOL)
4. Venues where various happenings will occur
5. Vendors – Disc Golf World, Cabelas, Bass Pro Shops etc…
6. Bars and Night life
7. Tourist attractions (Great wolf Lodge, Water parks etc) These would be for the traveling family while the golfers are golfing..
I look forward to your thoughts and comments..and thank you for your time!
BTW I have an offical proposal into the PDGA for the entire course directory!
I will be creating a test Google earth file when I get back home later this week and would be happy to post it for all to see what a Google earth file would look like!
Scott Holter #3560