Help In Creating a New POI FIle

 

I currently have a list of about 100 addresses for a chain of stores that I would like to use to create a POI file with and eventually upload it here on POI Factory. The addresses are in an Excel spreadsheet with each part of the information in a separate column. By this I mean the columns are name of mall, store name and store number, street address, city and zip code, and phone number. Is it better to leave the information in that format or to have it listed as if it were in an address label? Or possible all in one cell. Not sure which way is best.

Next I will have to cut and paste the address into something like Bing of Google maps to get the longitude and latitude for the POI file. Now from the address it may be the general address of the mall or strip plaza so how should I handle that? I know it would be nice to have the L&L at the front door of the establishment but that is not always possible. Also that may or may not trigger the GPS to sound a notification if it is off the traveled street. I know on a Garmin you can use TourGuide to overcome that but I don't know how to handle it if not using TourGuide.

I would like to get the information as accurate as possible so any help would be appreciated.

Just from the little playing around I have done so far with this idea has given me a lot more respect to those that have created the many POI files here on POI Factory. I don't know how they do it.

Four Fields

Keep in mind that a Garmin POI can only have 4 fields; so, other than the longitude and latitude, you only have 2 fields to work with. Usually field 3 is the name of the POI and field 4 is information about that POI.

Example:
Longitude,Latitude,"Store Name,Store Number","street address,city,zip code,phone number".

Whenever a field contains a comma, that field needs to be enclosed in double-quotes. Also keep in mind that some GPS units have a field character limit; so don't get carried away with too much data in field 4.

RT

--
"Internet: As Yogi Berra would say, "Don't believe 90% of what you read, and verify the other half."

Try this

How about trying EPE, Extra POI Editor, you can take your excel spreadsheet & put it in EPE it will geocode it for you. If you have name, address & phone number. Then you can save it as CSV or GPX file then download it to POI Factory. EPE is located at: http://turboccc.wikispaces.com/Extra_POI_Editor, it also tells you there what this program can do.

And

Most of us will put the marker for the establishment at the entrance to a mall if the building is furthur back. EPE will allow you to move the marker from its default location.

What file are you looking to create? Are you sure it is not already available?

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Nuvi 2460LMT.

it's only true for CSV

retiredtechnician wrote:

Keep in mind that a Garmin POI can only have 4 fields; so, other than the longitude and latitude, you only have 2 fields to work with. Usually field 3 is the name of the POI and field 4 is information about that POI.
RT

CSV files are limited to four fields. GPX files have a lot more fields to draw upon and it is much easier to control how the information is displayed using GPX. But then using GPX requires a smidgen of programming and more than a simple text editor to build the files with any hierarchical layout showing how the elements are grouped.

As others have stated for the OP's benefit, perhaps the best GPX file editor available is Turbo's Extra_POI_Editor which has a bit of a learning curve as the internal setup isn't quite intuitive.

--
"In order to be old and wise, one first must have been young and stupid."

@johnju

I see from your profile that you have been a member for a while, so you should realize that the advice given above by bobinot, RT, pwohlrab and Box Car comes from some of the most knowledgeable of our members.

I add my vote to using EPE because what you have already done can be managed by EPE.

Look at Box Car's FAQ on EPE
http://www.poi-factory.com/node/33782

Please be sure to download the "Help" file for EPE into the same directory in which you place (or already have placed) EPE.

One of the things EPE can do is to combine fields that you already have into one field for the purpose of creating a 4 column .csv file for POI Loader. It may take a little playing around to get the file just as you want it but the knowledge gained will be very helpful to you going forward.

Good Luck.

We will interested in your progress.

Thanks

Thanks guys for the help. This has been a real learning experience to say the least. I think that after the fact I could have saved a lot of time had I known all the capability of EPE. EPE is a very powerful program and I just did not take full advantage of everything it can do.

On the next file I will try thing a little differently and only work with a few addresses to get the hang of things before creating the big master file.

You nay want to look at this

You nay want to look at this to create poi files (link no longer available)

--
Charlie. Nuvi 265 WT and Nuvi 2597 LMT. Android Here WeGo - Offline Maps & GPS.

A little follow-up on my

A little follow-up on my project. I screwed up at the start and forgot that EPE could locate and grab the locations for an address. Well I took my list of addresses and entered them into Bing to get the long and lat. I added them to an Excel spreadsheet and started playing with the file with EPE. It was interesting when I moved the addresses to the proper fields and hit Geocoding sometimes the map would change and sometimes not. I started looking at the satellite I found one location that was in the middle of a canal. Nice. All the addresses were cut and pasted so no fat fingering the entry. Some addresses both Bing and Google were right on while other addresses one or the other was correct and the other was off. Bing had one address on the opposite side of an interstate while Google had the correct location.

Interesting findings to say the least.

You are learning

johnju wrote:

A little follow-up on my project. I screwed up at the start and forgot that EPE could locate and grab the locations for an address. Well I took my list of addresses and entered them into Bing to get the long and lat. I added them to an Excel spreadsheet and started playing with the file with EPE. It was interesting when I moved the addresses to the proper fields and hit Geocoding sometimes the map would change and sometimes not. I started looking at the satellite I found one location that was in the middle of a canal. Nice. All the addresses were cut and pasted so no fat fingering the entry. Some addresses both Bing and Google were right on while other addresses one or the other was correct and the other was off. Bing had one address on the opposite side of an interstate while Google had the correct location.

Interesting findings to say the least.

Don't trust a mass geocode. Try to verify as many as you can. If its a big file you can ask for help from yhe forum. If you are having trouble locating some, then you can ask some local folks from the forum to help.
Best of luck

--
Nuvi 2460LMT.

Yes I am learning a lot and

Yes I am learning a lot and one thing for sure it that this is not a easy as I first though. Every time I think I am ready to upload the file I find something that needs to be changed or verified.

After finding the one address pointed to a canal I decided to try and verify each address again. Some have been fairly easy but others have taken some time. To verify I am using Google street view and also Bings.

Once I find the location I zoom in to confirm the actual location and then drop the marker at the front door.

Now the next and hopefully the final thing to set is the TourGuide setting so the the actual location is picked up from the closest main highway or road as some of the locations may have a setback of over 1/8 of a mile.

Then it is onto the wave file that is very easy and then a BMP icon that will be a challenge.

@johnju

Are you using EPE at all?

Bulk geocodes with EPE are quite accurate and any address that fails to resolve to street level is reported as an error. You only need then to research those reporting as an error. You can correct the location as well by dragging (or recentering) the pointer on the displayed map.

--
"In order to be old and wise, one first must have been young and stupid."

The use of TourGuide is in the file name

For a TourGuide alert the file needs to be named TourGuide. So do the wav and bmp files. Be careful with TourGuide because if your file is a lot of stres like McDonalds you will have the gps constantly going off. Also I believe you need a wav file for it to work so do not expect to get an alert with just the csv file.

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Nuvi 2460LMT.

Yes I am using EPE for the

Yes I am using EPE for the file but even with that some of the addresses I have are off a little. In a few cases the store location is set back almost a quarter mile from the address location.

Wanting to keep everything constant I when I verify the location I place the pointer to the front door of the store.

My concern now is with the proximity distance from the road to make sure the store location announced as it is approached by those that have not renamed it to a TourGuide file.

Pop-up alerts

pwohlrab wrote:

For a TourGuide alert the file needs to be named TourGuide. So do the wav and bmp files. Be careful with TourGuide because if your file is a lot of stres like McDonalds you will have the gps constantly going off. Also I believe you need a wav file for it to work so do not expect to get an alert with just the csv file.

Pop-up alerts are dependent on a sound file. If you want a pop-up alert with no sound, download the silence.wav from this site:

http://www.poi-factory.com/node/36943

Be sure to rename the wav file to the same prefix as your POI file

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NUVI40 Kingsport TN

There is also a feature in

There is also a feature in EPE that allows you to set up a TourGuide for each location in the POI. I am using that feature to make sure the store location is within a proximity distance of the street, highway or road. Some stores are over 1/4 of a mile from the address or the main road.

This file contains only 75 locations within the state of Florida.

The one drawback that I currently have is that I cannot test the file as I am located in Ohio and the file is based on Florida locations.

I may be reading too much into this regarding the point marker, distance from the road and the proximity alert distance used by Garmin.

It goes like this

An "along the route" alert will give an alert up to approximately 95 ft from the center of the road. That means that if you set an alert for 1/2 mile and your marker is 80 ft from the road you will get an alert. If the marker is 100 ft from the road there will be no alert. It seems that most folks use a "along the route" alert.

With a "TourGuide" alert it is a circle that you can set. It can be (as an example) set for any radius distance. If you set it for a mile, as you enter the circle you will get an alert for 1 mile on either side of you.

--
Nuvi 2460LMT.

Simulation

johnju wrote:

This file contains only 75 locations within the state of Florida.

The one drawback that I currently have is that I cannot test the file as I am located in Ohio and the file is based on Florida locations.

It might be more work than you are willing to invest, but you could actually test the alerts from Ohio by putting your GPS in simulation mode.

See http://www.poi-factory.com/node/31482

I always wondered what the

I always wondered what the distance "off the road" needed to be to not be given an alert.

For the addresses I have I am finding that some locations are over a 1/4 mile off from the front door to the store. I am finding to be true for locations that are in a big mall complex or large strip shopping areas that are set back from the road.

I am almost done setting a TourGuide circle for all the locations with EPE and then as another poster recommended I will upload the file and try the simulation. It just may be that I have to go back through and move the marker location from directly in front of the front door to the center of the nearest main road.

What are your needs?

johnju wrote:

I always wondered what the distance "off the road" needed to be to not be given an alert.

I am wondering if you really want every icon of these places to pop up on your maps. For something like McDonald's, I would not want every Golden Arch to pop up while driving. If I want to eat there, it would be easier to do the Where To for it.

Just curious if you've asked yourself this.

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NUVI40 Kingsport TN

what ever works

johnju wrote:

I always wondered what the distance "off the road" needed to be to not be given an alert.

For the addresses I have I am finding that some locations are over a 1/4 mile off from the front door to the store. I am finding to be true for locations that are in a big mall complex or large strip shopping areas that are set back from the road.

I am almost done setting a TourGuide circle for all the locations with EPE and then as another poster recommended I will upload the file and try the simulation. It just may be that I have to go back through and move the marker location from directly in front of the front door to the center of the nearest main road.

Whatever works for you. As many have stated the only thing they need or want for a POI file is to get them close. If it's a strip mall, it normally doesn't take too much cruising through the parking lot to find the store so the main entrance to the parking lot is all I need or want. If it's an enclosed mall, then as long as it's identified as a mall then I know any location is going to be 99% guesswork if it isn't the main mall entrance ff the street.

Personally, I have only one TourGuide file on my unit - and that's probably all I will ever have with the exception of some auto tours which I often make myself. Remember, for a TourGuide to function it MUST have an audio file. A standard POI can alert without an audio file using the default "ding" as its alert. The only way to ensure a TourGuide will work for someone else is to create the file as a GPI which includes the locations, icons/photos and sound files.

In fact, I would be very careful about creating a file that relies on several pieces/parts to function for general distribution. You're better off just creating the POI file, an alert and an icon as separate files and let the end user decide if they want TourGuide functionality.

--
"In order to be old and wise, one first must have been young and stupid."

Deleted as the quote to the

Deleted as the quote to the proper message did not appear. I must have hit reply and not quote.

I agree with you 100% in all

Box Car

I agree with you 100% in all that is needed is to get close but I am finding that using the addresses can be way off, and I am talking over a mile or more, from the exact location of the store.

I also use TourGuide with discretion. For a couple files I use TourGuide but for the majority I use the proximity distance provided by the GPS.

For all the POI that I upload to my units I use the audio files found here on POI Factory or I create my own. A couple I found here on POI Factory I did not care for so I created my own there as well.

So with this project I am using the TourGuide option found within EPE to create a bubble when you approach the location as the location marker is at the front door of the establishment. When I complete going through the file I will test it via simulation, If it is not what I am looking for I will go back and move the marker point to the center of the nearest major road and remove the TourGuide reference within the .GPX file.

For David King

David King wrote:
johnju wrote:

I always wondered what the distance "off the road" needed to be to not be given an alert.

I am wondering if you really want every icon of these places to pop up on your maps. For something like McDonald's, I would not want every Golden Arch to pop up while driving. If I want to eat there, it would be easier to do the Where To for it.

Just curious if you've asked yourself this.

First of all there are only 75 store locations within the state of Florida so it is no where close to the over 15,000 that are found in the Micky D's file.

So yes I do want to be notified when I am driving both with an icon and voice that I am approaching one of their locations. Isn't that what a custom POI is all about?

Not always

johnju wrote:

Isn't that what a custom POI is all about?

Not always. I have several restaurant POI's because they are easier to access through the Extras than the out-of-the-box method. Plus I can limit the restaurants I see to the ones I like via the Extras path.

--
NUVI40 Kingsport TN

different terminology

johnju wrote:

Box Car

I agree with you 100% in all that is needed is to get close but I am finding that using the addresses can be way off, and I am talking over a mile or more, from the exact location of the store.

So with this project I am using the TourGuide option found within EPE to create a bubble when you approach the location as the location marker is at the front door of the establishment. When I complete going through the file I will test it via simulation, If it is not what I am looking for I will go back and move the marker point to the center of the nearest major road and remove the TourGuide reference within the .GPX file.

We are using different terms for the same thing. The 'bubble' displayed in EPE is the radius of the alert distance for that location. It's not a "TourGuide" but just the proximity alert distance displayed as a circle around the point. They would look the same, but the POI file won't be a TourGuide without TourGuide in the name.

As to geocoding the addresses, use EPE to do this. EPE will resolve, or attempt to resolve, all addresses to the street level which is pretty darn close to the actual location. For those locations Google returns a result other than street level EPE will show an error. You only need to research the errors.

There are a lot of geocode programs out there and most of them use either Google or Yahoo. What the other programs don't do is tell you the level of precision returned from the engine, they just take the coordinates period. That's where Turbo shines. If it isn't street level, the highest level of precision, it's an error and you are told "Line XXX did not return ..." or something similar.

One more thing, for single addresses I use itouchmap. It works pretty much the same way EPE does but it just shows the pointer and gives you the coordinates. You can move the pointer just as with EPR and capture the correct coordinates.

--
"In order to be old and wise, one first must have been young and stupid."

Another consideration

johnju wrote:

So yes I do want to be notified when I am driving both with an icon and voice that I am approaching one of their locations. Isn't that what a custom POI is all about?

Most of the custom POIs I have created or downloaded are for when I am traveling. I want to be able to find, say, a Hampton Inn when I am on the road. If I were to have a breakdown, I would want to know where the nearest Subaru dealership was.

Since I cannot rely on the built in POIs (for instance the Subaru dealer in my hometown is not in them), I want a set of POIs that are more reliable.

When I get to some destination, I might want to visit a Dairy Queen in the evening to get a caramel sundae. My GPS will look at my Custom POIs to find the 50 nearest to wherever I am staying. However, I do not want my GPS going off ever time I am close to an Arby's, Crackerbarrel, DQ, FiveGuys, Krystal, McDonalds, PizzaHut, Sticky Fingers, TacoBell, TimHorton or Wendys(just to name my restaurants) when I am driving in an unfamiliar town.

I do want to know - when I am traveling - about the upcoming rest areas; and, I want to know far enough in advance to make a decision as to whether we ought to make a pit stop.

Around home, I use the GPS generally only when I am going to a some new place to sing. I used to have a lot of alerts set but quickly found I was distracted from my driving by hearing the sound files.

Another thing to consider

johnju wrote:

Yes I am using EPE for the file but even with that some of the addresses I have are off a little. In a few cases the store location is set back almost a quarter mile from the address location.

Wanting to keep everything constant I when I verify the location I place the pointer to the front door of the store.

I understand your thinking, but I am not sure that this is a good idea. Most automotive GPS units have "Snap-To" code that attempts to place a location on the nearest street. If you place the location at the front door of the actual store, that may or may not show up on the correct street, depending upon the layout of the parking lot versus a street "behind" the shopping mall. I have seen that happen myself.

As an extreme example, I saw a message thread a couple of months ago on anther GPS web site where the poster was concerned because the GPS was showing that he should access a store directly from an Interstate Highway. (The back of the store was next to the Interstate and there was a large parking lot between the front of the store and the street from which you *really* accessed the shopping mall.)

With best wishes,
- Tom -

--
XXL540, GO LIVE 1535, GO 620

Thinking

-et- wrote:
johnju wrote:

Yes I am using EPE for the file but even with that some of the addresses I have are off a little. In a few cases the store location is set back almost a quarter mile from the address location.

Wanting to keep everything constant I when I verify the location I place the pointer to the front door of the store.

I understand your thinking, but I am not sure that this is a good idea. Most automotive GPS units have "Snap-To" code that attempts to place a location on the nearest street. If you place the location at the front door of the actual store, that may or may not show up on the correct street, depending upon the layout of the parking lot versus a street "behind" the shopping mall. I have seen that happen myself.

With best wishes,
- Tom -

Tom
This is the reason I went back through the file with EPE and added a TourGuide point for each location. I found that in some cases the address was not close to the actual location. Also I made sure that the TourGuide radius covered the closest main road. I think there is only one location that was closer to the interstate than to the fronting road. I will be going back and look at it again.

I have not as yet done the simulation to verify a few things and depending on the outcome I may have to go back and delete the TourGuide settings and move the location points to the nearest road and be done with it. I was trying to get things as accurate as possible.

Different Meanings

Box Car wrote:
johnju wrote:

Box Car

We are using different terms for the same thing. The 'bubble' displayed in EPE is the radius of the alert distance for that location. It's not a "TourGuide" but just the proximity alert distance displayed as a circle around the point. They would look the same, but the POI file won't be a TourGuide without TourGuide in the name.

As to geocoding the addresses, use EPE to do this. EPE will resolve, or attempt to resolve, all addresses to the street level which is pretty darn close to the actual location. For those locations Google returns a result other than street level EPE will show an error. You only need to research the errors.

This is why I went back through the file with EPE and used the TourGuide settings to create the alert distance radius to make sure it included the frontal road.

Also every location was checked with a combination of Bing, Google and or Yahoo. Once I had the correct approximate location I could use Bing to get a tilted aerial view and get the exact location of the front door. This is where I created a marker for the location.

I will try a simulation tomorrow.

Accuracy

[/quote]

Don't trust a mass geocode. Try to verify as many as you can. If its a big file you can ask for help from yhe forum. If you are having trouble locating some, then you can ask some local folks from the forum to help.
Best of luck
[/quote]

Accuracy is very important to me so I have verified all my location with satellite images. I still have to run some more simulations to guarantee that proper notification is given.

I now know exactly what you mean by not trusting a mass geocode. Last winter in Florida my I had the Best Buy POI loaded and was getting a notification when I was a few miles away from the actual location.

Well today I did some playing and entered the address into EPE and did the geocode. The location came out almost exactly as the one used in the POI file. Only problem is that location is in front of a junk yard. I then checked the Best Buy site and they even had the Lat and Long below their address. It was just at the end of the strip of stores so that would actually get you close enough to the location to be almost in front of the store. Now placing the address into Bing put you on the road directly in front of the store. Putting the address into MapQuest puts up about a mile up the road.

I will have to spend some time looking at the Best Buy file and see how the local stores fair using geocoding and compare it to the locations given by Best Buy.

Now with all due respect to the original Best Buy POI poster I would not want to even attempt to try and confirm close to 1400 locations. It would be great to be able to get that information from Best Buy if their locations are accurate.

johnju when ever you find a

johnju when ever you find a "location" that is not correct, from any of you downloaded files from this site, please let the maintainer of the file know so they can correct the file, also get as much info as you can to give to them. This is one of the reasons that makes this site so great.
Thanks Doug

--
All the worlds indeed a stage and we are merely players. Rush

Corrections

d-moo70 wrote:

johnju when ever you find a "location" that is not correct, from any of you downloaded files from this site, please let the maintainer of the file know so they can correct the file, also get as much info as you can to give to them. This is one of the reasons that makes this site so great.
Thanks Doug

Doug

I plan on doing just that. But before I do I want to verify the other 4 or 5 locations in my area to see if they are correct and make any corrections there is needed.

@Johnju

I am the maintainer of Best Buy. I tried to get as close as I could using a couple different geocoding places. Best Buy was not mass coded. Unfortunately we can not verify all of them. If You can get closer locations that would be great. I would need the coordinates and if possible the address for them so I can verify and fix the file. Use my contact tab and I will get to it when I get back from vacation.

--
Nuvi 2460LMT.

Another Question

I checked the POI file that I created for Bealls of Florida department stores and it worked properly so I uploaded it this evening. I guess it takes a couple of days for a review before it is made available to the general public.

How I do have another question for the group and that is how do I go about uploading the WAV file and BMP icon that I created? I was unable to also highlight those and upload all three at once. Is uploading the extras something that only can be done after the GPX file has been approved?

Thanks to all for your help as this has been a true learning experience and now it is off to start on the Bealls Outlet stores in Florida. I am not even going to attempt the other states and their Burkes Outlets. The real problem with this project is getting a list of all their locations and of course the company will not provide it.

Your question on loading the

Your question on loading the bmp and wav. You load them with poiloader.You name them the same as the csv file except the extensions. Example.

Bealls.csv
Bealls.wav
Bealls.bmp

See http://www.poi-factory.com/node/25721 it will cover the process.

--
Charlie. Nuvi 265 WT and Nuvi 2597 LMT. Android Here WeGo - Offline Maps & GPS.

.

johnju wrote:

How I do have another question for the group and that is how do I go about uploading the WAV file and BMP icon that I created? I was unable to also highlight those and upload all three at once. Is uploading the extras something that only can be done after the GPX file has been approved?

http://www.poi-factory.com/node/3099

Uploading

I must have not properly worded something as I was referring to uploading the files to POI Factory and NOT the GPS. Sorry.

Thanks

Motorcycle Mama wrote:
johnju wrote:

How I do have another question for the group and that is how do I go about uploading the WAV file and BMP icon that I created? I was unable to also highlight those and upload all three at once. Is uploading the extras something that only can be done after the GPX file has been approved?

http://www.poi-factory.com/node/3099

Thanks, that is what I was looking for. I will get the e-mail off tonight.

my error

johnju wrote:

I must have not properly worded something as I was referring to uploading the files to POI Factory and NOT the GPS. Sorry.

No my mistake.

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Charlie. Nuvi 265 WT and Nuvi 2597 LMT. Android Here WeGo - Offline Maps & GPS.

Give it time

johnju wrote:

I guess it takes a couple of days for a review before it is made available to the general public.

JM is on the road. He is working as fast as he can.

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NUVI40 Kingsport TN