Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Gadget and Toys

I've always been a gadget geek, from a transistor radio as a kid, to the high tech stuff of today, trying the latest and greatest is a passion of mine.  As I expand my motorcycling into long distance riding, of course it's only natural that I include as many high tech gizmos as possible.  Now that winter is here, most days you'll find me right here by the fire in my comfy Ekornes Stressless Recliner with laptop table .
I've been an Apple fanboy for a while now because they make great stuff and it just works but lately I've been branching out some.  Most of the long distance rally info seems better suited for using windows devices for routing and planning.  Garmin Basecamp has versions for both MAC and PC and my new BMW Navigator V connects to my MAC just fine but other tools such as ezBake and Microsoft Streets and Trips run much better on a PC.  I've been looking for a while, and picked up an ASUS Transformer Book T100 yesterday.  This little windows 8.1 machine has a detachable tablet and keyboard combo that should work nicely as a routing computer.  I played around some with it yesterday and here's how it looks in action.

I wish there was an IOS version of Basecamp that I could run on my Apple iPad Mini Retina.  There a couple of apps that are nice, Motion X GPS Drive and Motion X-GPS .  I use both of them on the mini and my iPhone 5s to navigate, store bonus information, etc.  What's really nice about Motion X-GPS is you can associate a picture of the bonus location with the coordinates as well as a note about what is expected to claim the bonus points.  It's very handy to pull up at the bonus location to review quickly.  
I'm entered in the 2014 Big Money Rally and it looks like it will be a lot fun.  As you ride to each bonus location, you submit a picture from your phone at that location.  I like that they've included the use of smartphones into the rally.  From the old days of Polaroid cameras, to the modern times of digital cameras, the next logical step is smartphone use.  I know my iPhone 5s takes better pics than the digital camera I have. Most of the time, great apps come to IOS before there's an Android version.  That's not the case with Bubbler GPS , a tracking program that also includes the ability to send quick OK messages to those who might be concerned about your ride.  Joel Tolbert has also developed an app for the Big Money Rally for android, BMR App that allows easy check in from each bonus location as well as picture submission.  Maybe I need an Android phone to try out.  Hmmm.  
As you can see, I'm definitely a gadgetholic, it's cheaper than crack.....maybe.


  1. Gadgets can be fun. We run all Macs at work and at home we have an iMac, iPad and an older MacBook. I don't know that I'd be able to use a PC after so many years of Mac use.

    It is cool that they have worked smart phones into the rallys, but I wonder what they would do if someone didn't have a smart phone.

  2. I think some rallies are not allowing GPS, computers, or smartphones. Just a good old paper map and some creative thinking. The Poison rally was like that last year I think I read somewhere. Rumor is, Warchild is evil. :)