eMap Story...

HI -

You never know what the result may be of checking a page for broken links. Two days ago, (3/27/01) I found that a link on my pawpaws page (http://www.fred.net/kathy/pawpaws.html) was not working. The link went to a database on what was formerly known as Sunsite, but is now known as http://www.ibiblio.org. While there trying to see if I could determine the problem, I noticed that the same site also hosted Roger McGuinn's Folk Den (http://www.ibiblio.org/jimmy/folkden/).

So I looked around the McGuinn site a bit and saw a copy of a Dave Barry column from earlier this year. It was the one about handheld GPS devices. Anyway, just the day before I had been at Harpers Ferry where I happened to meet the park GPS guy. I asked him if he had any recommendations for a consumer-type handheld GPS device. He said he was just familiar with the more specialized ones rather than ones for individuals.

The reason the column was there turned out to be that Barry was talking about being on a flight with McGuinn and Stephen King and that both of them were playing with their GPS decices throughout the flight. (Barry immediately wanted one.) So I thought I'd write to McGuinn (he seems to invite email on his site) and ask him what GPS unit he had and whether he liked it. I figured I'd get an eventual reply, and did, a couple of hours later. He said he had and loved the eMap. http://www.garmin.com/products/emap/ I looked around the web and found a website that was offering free overnight FedEx and within 24 hours (i.e. yesterday afternoon) was learning to use my very own eMap!

Some days later, after I had discovered that the firmware for my eMap was rather old compared to what was available at the Garmin site, I upgraded it to the current version. I decided to email McGuinn, and ask him if he had upgraded his. He had not and asked how to do it. So I explained what he needed to do and he did it without any problem.

This, after having just a few days previously gotten an IntelPlay computer microscope. http://micro.magnet.fsu.edu/optics/intelplay/ I had seen it in action out at Blandy (http://www.virginia.edu/~blandy/) and got one the next day at K-Mart for only $60. All this from a non-consumer. :-)

Was at Staples and saw something called Slingshot. It's sort of like a phonecard - but for Internet access. I thought it seemed like a good idea, but didn't think I needed it. But a few days later, I decided to go over to an area of WV where I knew there was no local access number for my provider. I went back to Stpales and asked how people liked this product. They said they had not yet sold one. I got a disk - and it worked great!! You get 200 hours of access via an 800 number for $10. All in all, I used up about half the hours. So I still have the other half left for later use... One person who was also staying where I was said she had been online for an hour to AOL paying them .50/ minute to their 800 number... She was wishing she had heard of Slingshot.

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Created on ... April 25, 2001