VeloViewer Explorer – a GPS Selfie

In August I was contacted by Karl Andersson, an MA student of Visual and Media Anthropology at Freie Unviversität Berlin who was doing a project on the VeloViewer Explorer functionality along with how and why people use it.  The link to his survey was shared and many of the most devoted Explorers responded.  Karl has now published his findings and also produced a lovely video compiled from interviews carried out with a couple of the Explorers.

The paper is available to download for free here.

I like Yorick’s Cluster growth shown in the video so much I’ve converted it to an animated gif (to pre-empt the comments, I’ll take a look at automating the generation of gif’s of your own maps at some point in the future!):

Karl also came up with the initial idea of the “Max Square” which he tweeted about way back in 2015:

0 thoughts on “VeloViewer Explorer – a GPS Selfie

    • Karl was speaking to lots of riders so I guess there would have been a real mix of GPS devices being used. I look at a huge amount of data recorded from various GPS devices and the clear leader right now in terms of accuracy of lat/lng positions and especially elevation are the Wahoo Elemnt devices. The Roam is a great looking bit of kit too.

  • Ben, your pointless tiling widget is the best thig in cycling under lockdown =) Totally addicted to it!

    I recently gave in to temptation and upgraded my Edge800 to a new Explorer just to use the tile hunting app – but can’t for the life of me get the data updated. Do you have any secret insider track on whether it’s because it’s still broken (read about Garmin changing max string to 256 chars and breaking app), or is it just my own fault and I have to persevere?

    All tiles are red, I did manage to get one upload to start on green but they turned all red as soon as I started a ride..

    Have got this far, in case there’s a glaring omission!



  • Ben, I love that animation of the growing tiles over time. And I’ve built a similar animation of my progress. Which begs the question: would this be a good feature for veloviewer? You give it a time window, and a specified map zoom distance, and it cycles the map through that time window.

  • This is great stuff!

    I have completely overlooked the option to select a time frame for the map composition and I started to build the mechanism for computing the tiles for myself (to create my own time lapse visual). This is a fun personal project to work on (besides the tiling itself) and I’m currently posting a series about it on LinkedIn:
    * Project 49
    * Zoom Level 14

    By the way, I’m not making exactly the same calculations as Veloviewer is doing, I’m simply plotting the individual GPS coordinates onto tiles and not using the summary data and line crossing algorithms. In some situations that leads to interesing differences which will be a future topic for me on this series.

    If you’re interested, feel free to contact me on Linkedin or E-mail (I’m not on any social media).

    Shout out to Ben for this great platform and all inspirators that have contributed!

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