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There are show notes below which document what was covered in the show and include timeline links, so you can watch just the part of the video that you want. If you are not a Geeks on Tour member, you can watch Episode 23 video on YouTube, but you won’t get the show notes. Become a member here. This episode covers:
- Quick Tips: How to reject a phone call and stop it from ringing,
- How to share a Contact’s info
- Beginner’s Lesson: Setting Ringtones and Notification sounds
- App of Week: Google Earth
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We took a day to play tourist the day before we left the Verde Valley in Arizona. We posted a question on the Facebook group “Living the RV Dream” asking for suggestions of what to do. Within the hour we had no less than 20 responses. More came in over the next day. The consensus seemed to be Take the Train! So we did.
We called and made reservations for the Verde Canyon Railroad. We arrived the next day around noon and boarded the train at 1pm. Then I turned on My Tracks on my smartphone. This is so cool. It is GPS aware so it just keeps drawing a line on a map that plots where we are. But, more than that, you can take pictures along the way and they will be added to the correct spot on the map. When your trip is complete you stop the recording. Then you can view the tour or share it.
My Tracks is a Google product, so it integrates with Google Maps, Google Earth, and Google Drive. If you use Google Drive your Tracks are automatically saved there, so you can access them from your computer, or whatever device you like. This also makes them easy to share with others. I tapped the share icon at the top of the screen and chose the option to share publicly with Google Drive.
If you have Google Earth installed on your computer (or whatever you’re using to read this) you can click on this Verde Canyon Track to download it. Then, when you open that .kmz file it will open in Google Earth. You should then see something like the following screenshot. I think the most entertaining way to view it is by double-clicking the Marker labels at the left. So, double-click on Marker 1 and Google Earth will fly you to that point and open up the picture. Then double-click on Marker 2 etc.
After you record a track, you should be able to open your Google Drive and see a folder called My Tracks. This folder can be on your computer as well as in the cloud if you download the Google Drive Desktop.
The one big problem with My Tracks is that there is no App for iPhone, just for Android phones.
I doubt that I’ll use this feature very often, but it sure makes for a ‘gee-whiz, look at that’ way to view some special trips.
For the last several FMCA conventions, Jim has provided computer support for an interactive session named RV Destinations. People attending the sessions share their favorite destinations from their RV travels, and Jim finds those destinations using Google Earth. Now you can have the results! If you click on the map at right, it will take you to Google Maps with all the data as live markers.
If you use Google Earth on your computer, you can download the Google Earth File to your computer, then double-click it to open up Google Earth with all the markers listed in your Temporary Places with a heading of IN12 – for the FMCA Convention in INdiana 2012.
The IN12 destinations recommended by our fellow RVers include: Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore, Cherry Hill Park, Crater of Diamonds State Park, Colorado River State Park, Johnny Appleseed Park, Lost Colony … and many more. Just click on the map above to see them all.
How You Can Share Destinations in a Map Like This
If you use Google Earth, you too can package up all your favorite destinations and share with friends.
First make sure all the placemarks you want to share are being shown in your Google Earth viewer.
Turn off any and all layers that are not necessary
File –>Email –>Email View: This is the step that will package up all your placemarks and create a .kmz file out of them. Use the email dialog box to send it to whoever you want, including yourself.
When your friend receives the email, they can download the .kmz file to their computer, then open it and view your places in Google Earth.
If you want to share it using Google Maps, there’s another step. If you have something like Dropbox, you can save a copy of the .kmz file on the web. Then, give your friend the URL to that file. They can then go to Google Maps and paste the URL to your .kmz file into the Google Maps Search box.
you can paste that URL into a Google Maps Search Box. When you see all the placemarks showing, click the Link icon
at the top of the My Places list and copy the link to your map.
Past FMCA RV Destination Maps:
If you don’t use Google Earth, it’s actually easier. Just go directly to Google Maps, log in with your Google account and create your placemarks in My Places. Save it and then use the link icon to share it.