What is a good alert distance from a school zone? I set mine at 1000 ft........to great or not enough?
Since Most school zones are inside city limits you will most likely be going 35 anyway...so slowing to 20 should be fine..in 1000 ft
the school zones on my SD card, in addition to the RedL Cameras, I checked my Custom POI's, and the RedL Cameras no longer show up. Are they hidden, or did they get over written with the school zones?
Did you create a new POI file from ALL the CSV files at once? You can't add CSV files, you have to create the POI file from ALL the CSV files at once. Each time you load the POI file onto the GPS unit the OLD ONE is OVER WRITTEN.
a RedL Camera file (.csv) and loaded it. After it was loaded and finished, I then loaded the School Zone (.csv) file right after it. They were two separate files.
Per this FAQ, you can add Custom POIs without overwriting those on your GPS:
Oh got ya! I was informed you couldn't do it that way. I stand corrected! But what would be the advantage of that? Seems like more work.
I'll give that a try. Then I rename my mp3 files the same way. Like the other two? But on the SD card you don't see both the RL file and the Mp3 file.
RT, I did what you pointed out and it worked. I just named my Mp3 files the same as the other PRIOR to using the POI Loader.
Open the files on my SD card I now have two....(1)Redlight and (2)School. They now show up as 2 different Custom POI's in my GPS along with of course Fordor.
Thanks for the help. I'll know tomorrow if it works real time.
Although the school zone custom POI is very beneficial, two things come to mind.
First, the file isn't conducive to alerts. All school zone speed limits aren't the same. In Iowa many are 25 mph with flashing warning lights; in AZ there are 15 mph zones marked with portable signs in the middle of the road, and some 35 mph zones with no warning except the signs on the roadside, many difficult to see. Each line of the POI should have their own speed alert by using [POI Name]@[mph]; example: Johnson Elementary@15
Secondly, many, if not most, of the POIs in the file don't give an alert because their coordinates are not on the road you're driving. For each school, there should be an alert for every street surrounding the school that has a school zone speed limit. Maybe the 'Tour Guide' method would work better for this.
Those who have used the 'Combined Rest Area' file can see what a lot of hard work can do to ensure the alerts will sound. (Thanks, MrKenFL) But with 170,000+ entries in the Combined School POI, this would be far beyond a 'one-person' job.
Miss POI, do you think a project of this magnitude is feasible? Maybe it could be divided with volunteers assigned areas. I'd volunteer to do the east side of Mesa, AZ, if we get started before we head home. After all, what's more important than saving a child's life or limb? And on the plus side, it may just save us a speeding ticket. (In Mesa they're planting 'Mobile Radar Vans' for school zone speed checks.)
Just a suggestion. Comments please!
It's more work ONCE; after that, it's less work.
If I rename the files, I can have all my permanent POIs (rest areas, Flying J, etc) always on the GPS and only have to redo the red light POI every week. In addition, when I'm checking a file for someone, I load it onto my GPS to test it. This method keeps all of my POIs intact while helping someone out.
Another possibility is you may traveling and are away from your main computer where you store your POI folders for the 'one-time' upload. Now you see POI Factory has just posted a new POI you need. Unless you use the 'file rename' method, you can't use the new file ... all of the other POIs will go bye-bye.
One method isn't always the best for everyone. I find a combination of the two works best for me.
How do you set the distance? (1000 feet)
I set mine at a quarter mile (1320 ft).
When you load the file with POI loader use the manual setting then you can set the distances for each individual file that you want and check the box for proximity alerts on that file.
my memory, all the school zones in this area are 20 MPH. I set mine at 1000 ft., but in retrospect, I think I should have gone the quarter mile. Even though the schools are not on cross streets, if you get with in a 1000 ft. or quarter mile of the school coordinate in any direction, wouldn't it sound an alert? I thought that was the way a GPS worked. One thing for certain. It's easy to delete off the SD card if not wanted.
Even though the schools are not on cross streets, if you get with in a 1000 ft. or quarter mile of the school coordinate in any direction, wouldn't it sound an alert?
The short answer is no, unless you use the 'Tour Guide' alert method. This alert problem has been discussed in several threads. Just do a search.
'Red Light Camera' file locations sound an alert because the coordinates are at the intersection. The Combined Rest Areas sound an alert because MrKenFL went through every entry in the file and moved the coordinates from the actual Rest Area location to the 'Interstate Entrance' to the rest area.
This would be a huge project, lets watch this thread and see how many other people in the community would be interested in helping with this process.
Secondly, many, if not most, of the POIs in the file don't give an alert because their coordinates are not on the road you're driving. ... Maybe the 'Tour Guide' method would work better for this.
TourGuide works well.
I have my school file renamed "Schools_TourGuide_20." It alerts me whenever I'm within 1/4 mile of the school coordinates, regardless of which road I'm on.
Even though the schools are not on cross streets, if you get with in a 1000 ft. or quarter mile of the school coordinate in any direction, wouldn't it sound an alert? I thought that was the way a GPS worked. One thing for certain.
does the 20 in your file name have any significance? It appears I need to change my school files to a TourGuide type file. I have one school that isn't announcing at the correct time. Maybe this will solve that problem
does the 20 in your file name have any significance?
Numbers in the file name set Speed alerts. The phrase TourGuide (in the mp3 filename) sets TourGuide Proximity Alerts. TourGuide alerts are never speed related.
When both numbers and TourGuide appear - the TourGuide phrase appears to win! (Probably best not to rely on this though!)
In other words, if I understand you correctly, the number 20, could be 30,50, or even 80. Makes no difference. I'll get it worked out yet, even if I do run everybody crazy on here.
The School file really needs redoing with 'eyeball' verification if it's going to be used for alerts.
Reason 1: The file contains 'Historical' entries. These entries will give an alert along with the open schools; and therefore, should be deleted.
Reason 2: There are many duplicate coordinates specified for different schools; i.e. High School, Elementary, etc. These should be condensed into one coordinate entry for all schools with the same coordinates so only one alert will be created.
Reason 3: There are schools in the file which are no longer open. Within one 30 mile radius in rural Iowa there are at least 5 schools in the file which are closed.
Reason 4: Not all schools have the same speed limit. If each school entry was verified and speed alerted with @mph, each school could be alerted with its own specific speed limit. This can NOT be done with Tour-Guides.
While driving around East Mesa, every time I come upon a school, I save the coordinates with mph; then enter them into a 'Mesa' file I'm creating for myself.
Let's volunteer to get this file corrected. For as much as each of us has received from POI Factory, we could all contribute just a little time to get this job done.
When I load by manual, it shows the greyed-out default speed of 20 mph. I always pick the default distance selection of a quarter mile, and ignore the 20 mph.
It does give me the warning at the "wakeless speed," so the 20 doesn't seem to matter. But I wouldn't be surprised if this determines the default alert distance.
I'm too lazy to try, however.
Where shall we post the additions/deletions/corrections?
Let me know who is doing the update and where to send. I have updated and verified all but 2 in the county. I only have two alerts when there are two entrances to a single school or two schools with separate entrances close together.
I have henrico county, va that I know are correct. Will post tomorrow.
It does give me the warning at the "wakeless speed," so the 20 doesn't seem to matter. But I wouldn't be surprised if this determines the default alert distance
Yes - you're right. I've tried so many of these, I've forgotten what does what
Putting a speed in, alters the TourGuide alert radius (using the '36 second' formula). However, the minimum is 1/4 mile (402m) - so the numbers only start to have bearing, when > 25(mph).
I am new to the board and am looking for a school zone poi for Houston Texas, including the Spring and Tomball areas. Does anyone know if this file exists? I did a search but was unable to find anything. Thanks for the help!
I have read this thread and because we only have approx. 100 schools in our city in Canada there was no free school zone file for me to upload I made my own. The premise was to find the exact location of each school zone (obtained info from our city as they are responsible) I then went to google and put placemarks for the start on each street. Using that information (I think Hornby helped me with this)I made a file http://www.poi-factory.com/node/9388
which gives an alert every time you enter or exit the zone. Our speeds are consistent for each so I set a proximity alert instead of a speed alert. I find it very useful because I am most likely to forget to slow down in the schools most frequented on my daily trips. Other find it annoying but I'd rather be safe than sorry. I think this should be the way all school zones are derived.
Since the response to redo the School file was not overwhelming, I decided to do the next best thing and make it more 'alert friendly'. I removed all of the 'Historical' entries from the file and removed all duplicate coordinates. This was no easy task; but reduced the number of POIs from over 170,000 to just over 123,000. I don't know how many of these schools are closed. With this many POIs, it would be near impossible for one person to verify. If anyone wants at it, go for it!
Legal or not, I don't believe it right to modify someone elses hard work and post it without the author's permission. I'll leave that up to you, Miss POI. I'll still continue with my 'eyeball' verfication school-list for East Mesa, AZ.
that school locations, especially new schools are the most easy poi's to get. At least they are in my area.
The problem with the addresses from a published school list is geocoding them with something like 'http://gpsvisualizer.com/' just isn't accurate enough if one wants to count on the alerts sounding. I believe the two best ways to do this is like The_Grizz did or with an 'eyeball' verfication, the 'eyeball' being more accurate plus you will know the speed limit setting required for a particular school. Even using The_Grizz's method is near impossible with 123,000 entries to verify, especially for one person.
mine are all now working ok. I only had 23 of them to spot. I have one more district to go to then I will be finished with them. Using the school district's web site they gave the address of all schools plus the ones now under construction due to open next year. All our school speed limits are 20 MPH.
Can anyone help me out?
And remember that you can always look at the category list.
And at the alphabetical list.
Have you verified that the Houston schools are or are not in the file of schools for the western US available at: http://www.poi-factory.com/poifiles/us/schools ? It would be a significant job to try to break out the Houston schools since the files don't show city and state of the various schools, but who cares whether you get a few tens of thousands of extra schools.
If you are saying your schools are not in that file, I think it is doubtful that anybody has an extensive file of Houston schools that they have not uploaded for inclusion in this file.
Thank you Motorcycle Mama and bentbiker. That link was exactly what I was looking for. Being new to the site I did not realize it was at the bottom of the second page for schools. That direct link was very helpful! Can I configure the distance from the school that I will be notified?
Yes. Run POI Loader in Manual Mode and you can set the alert distance at whatever you want.
If you want alerts on that file, you must set them. Regular POIs don't alert by default.
But remember that since the alerts are set on a priority basis, the 'Manual Mode' of POI Loader will not override any alerts already set within the csv Custom POI file; i.e. the name line (field 3) containing [Name]@20 will set an alert for that POI at 20 mph regardless of the Manual Mode setting. See POI Loader Help:
For example, a POI named "SpeedZone@30" will have an alert speed of 30 regardless of the speed information specified in Manual mode or in the file name.
If you decide to break it up, say by state, I could do Missouri. As I see it, that would involve adding an @25 (or whatever) to each line. Take a lot of research, for sure.
Thanks that worked great. I went into manual mode and set it for 1000 feet and 20mph. Does that seem about right for a school zone?
A 1000 foot alert at 20 mph corresponds to an approximately 34 second warning in advance of the location. This may or may not achieve your desired results.
Hmm, I recently moved and am not familiar with where all the school zones are. What would you recommend for a distance and speed to be notified well in advance as to not get any tickets
Well, first of all ... slow down. : ) That should help so you don't get any tickets.
I would think that a quarter mile (1394 feet) would be the minimum that I would set. Maybe 2000 or 3000 feet would be good for me. Of course this will depend upon the speed you are traveling.
Assuming that the speed limit on the roads on which you will be traveling that the schools are on have an average speed limit of 35 mph and assume that your average speed on these roads is 40 mph, then a 3000 foot alert would give you an alert at about 51 seconds out. 2000 feet at that speed gives you an alert about 34 seconds out.
2000 feet at 30 mph yields approx 45 seconds.
3000 feet at 30 mph yields approx 68 seconds.
Assuming that the speed limit on the roads on which you will be traveling that the schools are on have an average speed limit of 35 mph and assume that your average speed on these roads is 40 mph,.....
Alert accuracy leaves a lot to be desired if one assumes the road speed limit is 40 mph because most city streets in Iowa are 35 mph; and many main streets in Mesa, AZ, are 50 mph ... and, yes, there are schools off of these 50 mph streets. That's why I created my own school zone poi for East Mesa, AZ. I also believe a good school zone POI file is imperative ... not to stop from getting a speeding ticket, but, as I stated earlier in this tread, "After all, what's more important than saving a child's life or limb?"
Or you could just rename the poi.gpi file to Schools.gpi and then recreate your redlight file and rename it to RedLights.gpi then you don't have to remember to recreate everything, just the files that you've changed.
Don't know which post you're referring to, but yes, that can be done. More info at:
terms | privacy | contactCopyright © 2006 - 2013