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View Full Version : Using Touch Screen display - any ideas?



glids
13th November 2005, 09:18 AM
Hi Guys:

I am working through various options for setting up GPS in a 4WD, and one I am seriously considering is to use a touch screen (around 5" to 6") to display the GPS details and allow operation from screen 'buttons'.

Have any of you set up or seen such a configuration? I am after suggestions, pro's & con's etc.

I see (some of) the pro's as:
* larger display than either normal GPS or PDA - therefore do not need to put on my glasses to read, and allows better zoom or greater display range
* more rugged than using laptop, and easier to mount on dash
* may also configure the touch screen for rear view / reversing camera - will be towing a 'van much of the time.

One con:
* need a separate GPS 'driver'. However, this may not be such a problem as I will probably have a laptop on the trip for saving photos, major trip planning etc, and the laptop could operate from the safety of the back seat, or pocket on the back of a front seat. It may also operate via BT from the 'van.

As a separate but related question, is it possible to operate a laptop with the screen (lid) closed, and have it running programs? Ipresume that if I configured the touch screen with the necessary buttons for GPS, the laptop would only provide the moving map functionality.

I would most likely get a small / simple GPS unit for walk-about use, but I am not sure if they can be used to drive the display. I expect it would be better to keep the functions separate. The small unit may not be mapping type.

I expect this is just the start of the questions, but I have not read anything about using touch screens in other threads.

cheers all,

Ian

arthurking83
13th November 2005, 09:24 AM
Hey Ian,

seek and you shall find :D

Craigus has a really cool setup here (http://www.gpsaustralia.net/forums/showthread.php?t=397) .
Probably the kind of thing you're after??


cheers.

festy
13th November 2005, 11:10 AM
Hi Guys:

I am working through various options for setting up GPS in a 4WD, and one I am seriously considering is to use a touch screen (around 5" to 6") to display the GPS details and allow operation from screen 'buttons'.


Most people seem to think that a 7" screen is a good size, too much smaller and you can't read your maps etc.




As a separate but related question, is it possible to operate a laptop with the screen (lid) closed, and have it running programs? Ipresume that if I configured the touch screen with the necessary buttons for GPS, the laptop would only provide the moving map functionality.

Yes, laptops once set up correctly have no problem working while the lid is closed. It's just power managment that normally shuts them down when you close the lid, to conserve batteries.
Also, XP has a utility called 'on-screen keyboard' - so with a touchscreen or mouse you have the full use of a 'virtual' keyboard for word processing or whatever.


I would most likely get a small / simple GPS unit for walk-about use, but I am not sure if they can be used to drive the display. I expect it would be better to keep the functions separate. The small unit may not be mapping type.

The laptop will 'drive' the screen, the GPSr just supplies the laptop with position information. Any GPS will work the same for this. The exception are units like the Garmin Geko 101 and the cheaper Magellan Explorists, purely because they don't have a computer interface.

There are a few people on this forum who have done what you're talking about, and are very happy with their results. Have a look in the 'show off your project' forum for some, and also have a look at www.mp3car.com (http://www.mp3car.com/) for more ideas.

Craigus
13th November 2005, 12:49 PM
I'd go for a 10.2" screen if I have the choice over.

glids
13th November 2005, 04:35 PM
Thanks Guys.

I will follow up your leads.

At this stage I think I will limit the screen size - will check out the 7". Doubt that I would go too big as it could become cumbersome.

cheers,

Ian

Rob Dobson
14th November 2005, 05:49 PM
The size of screen needed will depend on how you want to operate. I use Oziexplorer on my notebook computer to plan each trip and then download the waypoints onto my VGA Pocket PC. I have a Garmin GPS10 which is bluetooth enabled and will connect to either my notebook or the VGA Pocket PC. This works fine for most of my trips. If I just go exploring then I will take the notebook PC with me as well as hard copy maps.

happpyg
15th November 2005, 09:01 PM
I originally used a 7" lilliput but changed to a Xenarc 10.2", much brighter & heaps better for offroad navigation.

http://www.happyg.mine.nu/carpc/img_2453.jpg

More details here : http://www.happyg.mine.nu/carpc/index.html

Craigus
16th November 2005, 04:37 AM
Can I ask where you got your 10.2 Happy?

happpyg
16th November 2005, 07:51 AM
Can I ask where you got your 10.2 Happy?

Sure, from the US, website here : http://www.customcarputers.com/xenarc_1020yv_1020tsv.htm

Just make sure it's the 10.2" widescreen, not the 10.4" as it is nowhere near as bright (even less than the lilliput last time I checked).

michaelm
16th November 2005, 09:28 AM
happyg,

Just checked out your pictures.....I love your setup! :)

vincentvega
16th November 2005, 12:44 PM
happyg: how do you find ozi embedded in roadrunner?

Craig and myself are playing with it at the moment, and cant seem to get around the problem of roadrunner forcing itself on top of the open map, save track etc dialogs.

happpyg
16th November 2005, 03:32 PM
happyg,

Just checked out your pictures.....I love your setup! :)

Thanks, it's taken a while to get it to this stage but worth it. Wouldn't have a car without it now.

Nicko
18th November 2005, 09:26 AM
I don't understand why you would have a keyboard way up there? Another option people may want to consider is a gamberjohnson (versatrue) keyboard. Craigus (GPS Australia) can supply them if you want.

http://www.versatrue.com/control/product/~product_id=2-1010-1

They are about half size keyboard and are supplied on their own without the PDA cradle. RRP in AU is $370. May sound expensive but the keyboard is extremely rugged with various ports built in to communicate directly to a laptop.

happpyg
18th November 2005, 01:11 PM
happyg: how do you find ozi embedded in roadrunner?

Craig and myself are playing with it at the moment, and cant seem to get around the problem of roadrunner forcing itself on top of the open map, save track etc dialogs.

Here is my config, took a bit of mucking around & I am no expert but it seems to work fine, just every now & then the ozi screen area will go black but just touching the screen brings it back.

In the file are my menu.skin files so you can see how I launch ozi, my ozi.skin files for the buttons in RR and the Oziexplorer folder that needs to be in roadrunner\launch

http://www.happyg.mine.nu/carpc/ozistuff.rar

Seems to be working ok for the last 4 months or so, if anyone can find a better way of doing it let me know :)

EDIT: I found the same problem with ozi going over the top of the track logs etc, if you use skinbedder to add buttons I found all sorts of strange things to happen. I have emailed guino about this (road runner developer) and he says it is due to the way oziexplorer is written. The way mine is setup (same as in the link above) I can have all those little ozi extra windows open, still go back into RR's main menu & then back into Ozi, the extra windows will still be underneath RR but as soon as I click on the map they will come back to the top. There are a couple of things I found that play up, if you go to save or load a file, don't leave that dialog open, ie don't go to save a track & then go back to RR's main menu (or any other screen) - save the track then when it's done it will be OK and the other thing I do is never close OZI with the "X" in the RR bar up the top, I always quit Ozi, then press the "X" button. I found that if I don't multiple instances of oziexp.exe sometimes get left running in the background causing upredictable results when starting ozi again later.

Hope that makes sense, let me know if not & i'll try to word it better :)

happpyg
18th November 2005, 01:12 PM
I don't understand why you would have a keyboard way up there? Another option people may want to consider is a gamberjohnson (versatrue) keyboard. Craigus (GPS Australia) can supply them if you want.

http://www.versatrue.com/control/product/~product_id=2-1010-1

They are about half size keyboard and are supplied on their own without the PDA cradle. RRP in AU is $370. May sound expensive but the keyboard is extremely rugged with various ports built in to communicate directly to a laptop.

The keyboard actually very rarely gets used. I wanted a permanent one somewhere so I can still get into BIOS or use keyboard shortcuts if I ever need to but I didn't want a big bulky one hanging around or stuffing one under a seat etc, hence the small one up in the console. Easy to get to when I need it & never in the way :)

Craigus
18th November 2005, 02:51 PM
I agree, you realy do need a keyboard in the car permanently.. Where did you get that little one from Happy? Is it USB or PS2? sorry about all the ****** question!

Cheers.

happpyg
18th November 2005, 02:59 PM
I agree, you realy do need a keyboard in the car permanently.. Where did you get that little one from Happy? Is it USB or PS2? sorry about all the ****** question!

Cheers.

Mine is PS2 as my mainboard doesn't support Legacy USB devices but they are available in USB as well (second reason I went PS2 was I can run a much longer extension cable up the A-Pillar into the roof console, USB is not so tolerant with long cables).

Got mine from EBay (shipped from the US from memory), took months to find one this small for what I wanted, there doesn't seem to be a lot of them this size out there (or wasn't when I was looking).

http://cgi.ebay.com.au/PSK3100-Supermini-keyboard-Siver-Black-USB_W0QQitemZ5830083301QQcategoryZ4706QQssPageName ZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

or

http://www.directron.com/psk3100u.html

No probs with the questions, don't mind at all.

Craigus
18th November 2005, 03:16 PM
Thanks for that, I have one almost exactly the same in PS2 from an old server (rack mounted) I'd like a USB as I already have USB in my glove-box. I'm really trying to avoid running more cable through the car as I hate pulling it appart! :o I know, I'm just slack!

happpyg
18th November 2005, 03:22 PM
Thanks for that, I have one almost exactly the same in PS2 from an old server (rack mounted) I'd like a USB as I already have USB in my glove-box. I'm really trying to avoid running more cable through the car as I hate pulling it appart! :o I know, I'm just slack!

haha, I know how you feel! :)