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Customer Review

70 of 71 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars How to do everything..... BUT NAVIGATE, January 28, 2004
By A Customer
This review is from: How to Do Everything with Your GPS (Paperback)
How to Do Everything with Your GPS leaves out the most critical thing that you might want to do with your GPS - navigate. I admire someone who can explain complicated technical things in laymen's terms, but Broida's idea of simplification is to just skip the fundamental information.
With regard to aviation and marine navigation in Chapter 7: "By far the most valuable (and obvious) advantage to having GPS in the cockpit is its ability to provide course and heading information." Actually, the GPS has no idea what direction the airplane or boat is pointed (heading information), it only knows the direction of travel information (track, never mentioned). This is not a semantic issue, but a fundamental usage issue.
Broida misses some of the better aircraft navigation software for PDA's. The programs that he mentions are not even worth considering in my opinion. He also mentions that the GPS can be used for altitude and this is important because "according to the USA Today, accidentally striking the ground is the most common killer in aviation in aviation" - DUH! What he doesn't mention is how to use GPS to avoid this common killer or how GPS used unwisely can increase this risk.
How do you actually navigate an airplane or a boat using GPS? This information is conspicuously absent. Since I have your attention, my advice is to set the data fields on the map page so that you have TRACK and BEARING or TURN (which is the difference between the two). Steer so that the TRACK matches the BEARING. The same thing can be accomplished with making TURN equal to zero. There is quite a bit more to nautical and aircraft navigation, but even this basic level of technique is not addressed. I was not able to find where any of these navigation terms were even mentioned.
He mentions that GPS can be used for hiking. But he doesn't mention that the GPS direction reference is lost when standing still. This is why many GPS receivers have built in electronic compasses. He neither mentions the availability of this feature or how to use a GPS without this feature while hiking. By the way, you can use an inexpensive compass in conjunction with the GPS generated bearing to get directional information while stopped. The electronic compass feature is nice, but not necessary. None of this information is in the book.
"If you own any GPS that can store external map data, be sure to check out DeLorme Topo USA 4.0. It's extremely versitle and feature-rich program, and at $99 it costs less than the Garmin and Magellan CDs." - p 104. Delorme makes a great product, but it will not and is not designed to load into any of the Garmin, Magellan, or any other brand receivers.
More information that is not in the book- where to get coordinates for waypoints, how to work with coordinates.
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