It’s been more than 5 years since I wrote something in my blog. But it is about time to get back to it. One of the things I’ve been playing with off and on in my spare time is location data. This has been a long time interest. As a matter of fact before I worked on WMC I actually wrote a driver for a Garmin GPS that exposed the GPS as a Windows Portable Device. It was a cool. I actually got to demo the work to our corporate VP. The project didn’t turn into anything. But because I did a few interesting white papers I did get called now and then from various teams as they developed the various GPS and Location API’s. I’m sorry to say that I didn’t actually work on any of those projects. But perhaps someday I will.
One of the things that I’ve discovered is that the government is a huge source of free location data. And much of that location data is available in binary form for free. On of my recent finds is http://nationalatlas.gov. There are dozens of map layers available and they are all available in binary form. For example here is the location to download the digital map of the us states. I’ve written a simple viewer for this data that might make for some interesting blog posts. So, stay tuned and over the course of time I’ll share what I found and some of the toys that I’ve written