What maps can be downloaded to Map-n-Compass?

The Map-n-Compass app will stream several varieties of street map, all based on Open Street Map data, and display them provided that Internet connectivity is available (e.g., via cellular network.) The app is also capable of displaying map tile database files, which users can create (using tools like Map Cruncher) and download to the app using iTunes file sharing. This makes it possible to create regulation orienteering maps (an example is provided in the app), or really any kind of map the user wishes. Downloaded maps can be utilized even in locations where Internet connectivity is unavailable. We are happy to provide suggestions and advice on how to accomplish this to any of our customers. Note: there is a learning curve involved in creating ones own map tile database files.

How can bearings be recorded using known-good heading data?

In ARDF mode the app will support bearings. Bearings are taken using the internal digital compass in Apple iOS devices. Sophisticated filtering is applied to the internal compass readings to improve heading accuracy and reliability. In our tests the internal compass works about as well as a standard mechanical orienteering compass – but you do have to keep magnetic objects away from the iPhone/iPad.

The bearings are drawn on the screen, and they are color coded for the fox they correspond to. A “best estimate” location based on those bearings is also shown. When you have more than two bearings there tends to be many crossings, which the app processes to determine the mathematically most likely location for the fox. The bearings are also saved automatically to a standard KML file, which can be emailed (or downloaded using iTunes file sharing) and then loaded directly into Google Earth for further analysis.

The app does not provide a way to edit the bearings by entering your own numerical bearing data by keyboard. Instead it supports what we’ve found to be a more efficient method. You can configure the app to display the numerical heading data its compass is reading. Then simply point the iPhone/iPad in the direction that provides the believed-correct bearing value and take your bearing. If you don’t like the bearing you took, just take another one from the same spot: only the last bearing you take at the same location will be shown or used in fox location calculations. You can also delete the last bearing you took with a single button press-and-hold.