BtSt's GPS for Dummies compass hack

GPSD Version 3.4 bb (patched by tablatronix)

Updated on 23 Feb 2015

Document Updated on 30 Mar 2020

The GPS for Dummies explained:

GPS stands for Global Positioning System and allows you to know where on the world you are. With it, you have the ability to know your location on the There globe. Note that on the There islands it is enough to know your X and Y position (Z is somewhat like height but is not too important when racing or geocaching). The point X=0, Y=0 is located near Nene's volcano on Caldera. Positive X values are more to the east, negative X values are more to the west of this centre of the world. The same for the Y values: positive numbers are to the north, negative numbers to the south of this point.
The GPSD compass will point you to any entered X,Y location. It will guide you to the entered target location using a pointing arrow and also shows the remaining distance to that target. For more details, see the description of the controls below.

The controls:

The grey title bar can be used to drag the compass to another location on the screen. It also shows the revision number (currently 3.3).
When the GPSD first comes up it is pointing to the center of There. The three edit boxes show the name, X and Y position of the position you want to go to. When you modify (edit) the X and Y position, the needle will indicate the compass heading to that new X,Y location. In this example to X=400, Y=-100. To avoid confusion, you can also edit the name edit box. The compass remembers the edited values until you close it. New waypoints can be created using the New button. Predefined tracks can be loaded using the Load Track function (see below).
This number shows you the distance to the next waypoint in meters. It will be clear that you have arrived at the next destination when this number is near 0.
Note: your traveling speed is shown in a small red text below the distance. For the speed devils amongst us :-)
This arrow shows you the direction you will have to travel to reach the indicated X,Y position (waypoint). You are heading directly to that waypoint when the arrow is pointing straight up! Note the small indicator on the black background. This indicator shows you the direction of the north pole, so this control can be used as a mini compass as well.

The Track checkbox indicates that a track is loaded. The compass will automatically advance to the next waypoint when approaching the current waypoint (approx. 25 meters proximity detection). It will also play a sound (start, gate or finish) and log your passing to a logging URL for this waypoint in the loaded Track. All this functionality is for guided tours and georacing events.

A number of waypoints along a track can be present in the compass, typically after loading in a track (series of waypoints). Use this button to show the next waypoint from the list. Note that if the (race) track function is enabled, this happens automatically when reaching the waypoint!
And this button is for the previous waypoint in the list.
If you are at waypoint 2 or later, an extra button appears ( circle shape) allowing you to start over at the beginning. This is a convenient way to start over when you don't want to resume a race/tour where you left off the last time.

This button loads the contents of a published track (you have to pick the track name from the appearing list) or the file called "gpsd.xml" (in the same directory as the compass is). The Track mode is switched on by default.
Advanced information about the format of this file is available here. Don't change supplied tracks, any tampering with them will be detected by the creator of that track!

The Information button shows you a web page with information about the currently loaded track. The finishers list including their times is listed on this page also.

The edit button allows you to show/hide other buttons used for editing the list of waypoints.
If the Track checkbox is checked, this button will show the track management page on the gpsd server where you can enter private tracks.

The new button will create a new waypoint AFTER the current waypoint. The name is "CP<nr>" and the X and Y coordinates are filled with the current location in There! So to remember a spot, just click "New" and you will see the coordinates. Give it a name and you can return later using the direction finder.

The compass has its own little clipboard where you can store a waypoint in order to paste it on another location in the list.

This button copies the current list of waypoints to the Windows clipboard so that you can store them in a file. This function is especially handy for track builders.

Minimize the window, also pauses any polling of your position so don't do this during a race :)

Finally, to close the compass window, use this button.

Download and Installation Instructions in detail:

Preparation: Make sure the current compass or gpsd instance is closed (use the x button). It is not necessary to shutdown the There Client.

Install as gpsd.swf to use with launchers
Install Press the button on the left. Download and run the file gpsd_setup_gpsdswf.exe

Install as compass.swf , OVERWRITES EXISTING COMPASS
Install Press the button on the left. Download and run the file gpsd_setup_compassswf.exe


Bedican Compass: If you already have the Bedican Compass version 3.38 or later, make sure your compass is on and type /gpsd.

Click here to download the bedican compass.

BBOY Compass: If you use the Quickbar use the arrows on it to get to the GPSD. Visit here to download the universal installer.

Installation for dummies (recommended): You can do a very simple install by clicking the button above this text.
This setup program will copy all necessary files to the default directory THIS INSTALL WILL OVERWRITE CUSTOM gpsd.xml files, be sure to back yours up first.

The default target is C:/Makena/There/ThereClient/Resources/compass. If you selected another location for There, you can modify the installation target by replacing the first capital C by D or E and continue installation.

Installation for geeks only (always scared to run an installer) : Click here to download a zip file containing the same files as in the setup above.
After that you know what to do ;-)
If not: Choose to save that file on your disk (for instance on your desktop). Open the zip file (with your favorite unzip program or by opening it using the Windows XP explorer). Extract these files to the directory just indicated (C:/Makena/There/ThereClient/Resources/compass). Use the zip program's facilities for this or more easy, drag/drop the files in that directory. Make sure you do not replace a file you want to preserve like Bedican.xml. So backup any file you do not want to overwrite.

Uninstall Instructions:

For dummies: Make sure the compass manager is closed. Then simply use the Control Panel of Windows and uninstall the product called GPSD. This will remove the contents of the compass directory except the configuration files. There will automatically download and re-install the original compass file for you :-) on the next launch of the compass!

For geeks: Well, you made a backup of your original files didn't you? So copy them back.


If you have any further question about the use of the compass manager or the GPSD compass, if you want to give feedback to the use of it, or if you have a good idea for improving it, feel free to mail me. People with questions regarding the Bedican and Myrmex/tablatronix compass are politely referred to the makers of these tools.

Created by BtSt
(Been there, Seen that...)
now maintained by gpsd at