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Garmin Zumo TourGuides - How to make them !

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Location: Lancashire, England, Great Britain

PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2007 12:06 am    Post subject: Garmin Zumo TourGuides - How to make them ! Reply with quote

Wouldn't it be handy the next time you went sightseeing, but instead of carrying several guide books covering the place, you could switch on your Zumo, and when you got within a preset distance of a tourist attraction your Zumo would show an icon on the map of where it is, guide you there if necessary, would show you a picture of it and would read out aloud some interesting information about it. The Zumo could also be programmed to link all these places together for a walking/driving tour. Welcome to the Garmin Zumo Tourguide !

Not a lot has been mentioned about Garmins TourGuides, there was some info in the Zumo feature list, and couple of websites have a bit of detail about them ..
.. and some are even selling TourGuides ..

To make your own TourGuides you will need to use the new POILoader 2.40 beta

Firstly you will need to rearrange the format of your POI file - thats the one you put your POIs in to download to your Zumo. My layout is like this .. on my desktop I have a folder called 'Garmin POIs' (ignore all quotation marks), in this I have subfolders for other sets of POIs, ie 'Speed Cameras', 'Motorcycle Dealers' etc etc and I also have one called 'Tour Guides'. This is where the new POILoader 2.40 Beta comes in, other versions cannot cope with subfolders.
Just for reference one of my POI folders would contain a .csv file (containing a bunch of POIs) and a .bmp file (for the icon for that particular POI), ie:
Folder called 'Fast Food' contains ..
etc etc.

My 'Tour Guide' folder contains two subfolders called ..
'London attractions'
.. these are two ongoing TourGuides that I am currently working with, looking at 'London attractions' this inturn is full of (currently) 20 subfolders, examples of which are ..
'British Museum'
'Buckingham Palace'
'Greenwich Observatory'
'Hampton Court Palace'
remember the quotes are not part of the name

Within each of the above (sub) sub folders is going to contain our picture (.jpg) and sound file (.mp3), here is an example, the 'Buckingham Palace' folder will contain ..
'TourGuide - Buckingham Palace.jpg'
'TourGuide - Buckingham Palace.mp3'
remember the quotes are not part of the name

Please note the spelling of these files, the word 'TourGuide "space"' precedes the name 'Buckingham Palace' which inturn is identical to the sub folder name 'Buckingham Palace'. This is essential - IT WILL NOT WORK IN ANY OTHER FORMAT!

How do we create our .mp3s and .jpgs, easy, you can take .jpgs with your digital camera or just download them from the internet, look at http://www.visitlondon.com/city_guide/attractions/f_top_attractions.html, this is where I got some of my text and photos from. Resize your photos to something near 320x240 pixels (this is not essential but saves on memory space). Copy and Paste the text into
http://www.research.att.com/~ttsweb/tts/demo.php and save the resultant text-to-speech .wav file (these should work in the Zumo but I prefer to convert them to .mp3 files which are much smaller).

Next we need to create our custom Waypoints using Mapsource, for example .. For Buckingham Palace .. scroll to London and find where Buckingham Palace is (use Mapsource 'Find' function if necessary), go into 'Waypoint' mode (flag icon) and create a Waypoint on the road next to Buckingham Palace. Open 'Waypoint Properties', in the 'Name' box write 'Buckingham Palace' (this will be the displayed name of the waypoint), in the 'Comment' box write say 'The Mall, London' (this info box will pop up when you click on the icon in Mapsource and will be the descriptive comment in Zumo), in 'Proximity' box put in 0.06 (miles) and untick the 'unknown' box ( this is the distance in miles (approx 320 feet) that the 'Tourguide' activates when you approach Buckingham Palace), alter the Symbol to something descent , I picked the blue and yellow horn - ( this will only show up in Mapsource), and finally (and most importantly), in the 'File/URL' box, browse to the 'Buckingham Palace' folder, ie: C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Desktop\Garmin POIs\Tour Guides\London Attractions\Buckingham Palace\. Yours maybe slightly different. This is so that POI Loader 2.40 Beta can find the linked .jpg and .mp3 files.
Repeat the above creating a new Waypoint for every subfolder within the 'London Attractions' folder (in my case).
Next, save all the Waypoints you have just created and save as a .gpx file, in this example the file will be called 'London Attractions.gpx' and will be saved in the 'Tour Guides' folder at the same level as the 'London Attractions' folder, we also need an icon to display in the Zumo for all these TourGuide Waypoints we have just created, so using MS Paint create a 22x22 pixel icon and save it as 'London Attractions.bmp' in the same folder as above. So to clarify in the 'Tour Guides' folder will be ..
'London Attractions' folder
'London Attractions.bmp'
'London Attractions.gpx'
( all without the quotes)
note: here will be any other .bmp and .gpx files for other TourGuides, also note that the only need the one .bmp file (ie: 'London Attractions.bmp') to cover ALL the Waypoints, this is another feature of POI Loader 2,40 Beta.

Right, the next thing to do is to fire up POI Loader, point it at you POI folder, Uninstall the Zumo's existing POI file (another new feature!) and install your new POIs. On installing use Manual Mode, you may have to input Proximity alert (speed cameras) distances, when it installs the TourGuide files input 320 feet as the alert distance. Disconnect the USB, fire up the Zumo, browse to Settings (wrench) / Proximity Points / .. and you should have a 'Tourguide' setting, select 'Autoplay'. If there is no 'Tourguide' setting then you have done something wrong - double check all the folders/ subfolders / spelling and file names .. it is critical that these are correct.
If all is well so far, then browse (from the Menu screen) .. Where To? / Extras / Custom POIs / ... here you will see all your POIs, scroll down to 'Tourguides' / London Attractions (in my case) / select .. Buckingham Palace. The moment of truth, on this screen (in my example) you will see ..
"Buckingham Palace"
"The Mall, London"
There should be a green arrow, press it and you will hear your mp3 file play (when hooked up to bike or car), press 'Map' to see the Waypoints icon, press 'More' / Image to view the jpg. If not check everything as previously mentioned.

Short of driving to London, you can simulate a route by setting a TourGuide icon as the destination, the MP3 file will play as you approach it, a popup box will let you look at the photograph. If you get this far give yourself a pat on the back, it took me 2 weeks of trying different settings, file names and folder configurations till I got it to work, I believe most people got stuck with the jpgs but I don't think these would work without POILoader Beta.

As a further thing to try, in Mapsource, string the Waypoints together to create a Route, download this to the Zumo (still as a .gpx file) and then you will have a continuous driving Route with the TourGuide integrated ( now you know why I said put the Waypoints on the road.

I have created the TourGuide called 'London Attractions', this TourGuide contains sound files (mp3s) and accompanying photographs (jpgs) for 20 of Londons leading sightseeing attractions. I would expect you will need the UK/European maps to be installed in your Zumo to try this out.
The file download is named London Attractions.gdi, it is exactly the same type of file that is already in your Zumo, ie: poi.gdi, this is where all your Custom POIs are kept, did you know you can have more than one Custom POI .gdi file ? After downloading the file , connect your Zumo via the USB connection, use File Explorer to browse to the GARMIN / garmin / poi Folder, then drag and drop 'London Attractions.gdi' into here (next to poi.gdi). Hopefully you will now be able to check it out as explained at the top of this post.


Also posted on Razorbiker Zumo forum http://razorbiker.com/zumo/viewtopic.php?t=383
Aprilia Tuono 1000, Autocom PRO 7 Sport, Kenwood TK3101 transceiver, Ericsson W800i phone, Zumo 550/UK & European maps
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