GpsTracker has now been downloaded over 2 million times on SourceForge. It’s also very popular on Github. I’ve been working on GpsTracker for about 10 years. I’m doing much less software work right now for several reasons. The first is I’ve been writing software for 20 years and I’m now 55 and writing software just isn’t as fun as it used to be and I’m no longer interested in dealing with all the stress.
So I decided it was time for a change. The first thing I did was
The next version of Gps Tracker comes with a WordPress plugin and also an Android client. The plugin is available on the WordPress plugin website and you can install it directly from your WordPress install. The source code for the plugin is also now available in the Gps Tracker Github repo and Sourceforge download. The […]
I’m happy to report that the latest version of GpsTracker now supports SQLite and PostgreSQL. This is all due to Brent Fraser, a fellow developer. One of Brent’s areas of expertise is working with databases and he has put quite a lot of work into porting GpsTracker over to these two databases. Brent has also […]
When the phone clients send gps data to the website to be stored in the database, you’ll notice that all of the clients use the Http GET method instead of POST. Most experienced developers would look at that and immediately think it was a mistake and I am one of them. GET is used to get data such as getting a list or getting user data and POST is used to add a new item to a collection or in the case of Gps Tracker, adding a new row of gps data to the database.
But there’s one important difference between GET and POST that I am taking advantage of.
It took me six months of hard work to make the Gps Tracker plugin. I had to teach myself how to create wordpress plugins and that’s no easy task. I’m very excited about this because it’s the only gps tracking plugin on wordpress. Currently, I have it set up to track only one Android cell phone. My plan is to upsell a five and ten pack here on websmithing for $29 and $49 respectively.
My next task is to set up the easy digital downloads plugin and get stripe integration going so that I can do sales directly from my website.
If you want to check out the plugin, you can download it directly from WordPress.
And from your Android phone, you can download the client from Google Play.
I would like to ask any visitors and fellow developers to please help me test the new plugin. My main reason for building this plugin is that a lot of people were having difficulty installing the open source version of Gps Tracker and by creating a wordpress plugin, it takes away all that pain.
Also, wordpress now runs 22% of the world’s websites. That is a huge market and I have the only gps tracker on wordpress (did I already say that?). Anyway, I’m pleased to have this behind me, it was an immense amount of work to get to this point. Try it out and let me know how it works for you!
And what a whopper it is! This has been the second biggest change to Gps Tracker since it was first created. The design of the app has totally changed. It’s now using twitter bootstrap which has a style sheet that allows people to create responsive webpages. This means that it looks right on any size device such as a cell phone, tablet or desktop.
Not only that but Gps Tracker is now themed using bootswatch. This allows you to choose 17 different themes. You can switch themes by changing one single word. Here are 3 examples of the new theme, a light one:
a dark one:
and a cool blue one:
On the clients, I have switched back to using a GET request instead of a POST request. It’s just much easier for people to troubleshoot when they can paste a URL in the browser to test out the application.
Lastly, the actual functionality of the app has changed. When you first load the app, you will see all devices displayed. The one with the red marker is the most recent gps location. When you click on a marker or select a route from the dropdown box below the map, then you will be taken to that particular route and will be able to see the route’s history on the map. Clicking on a marker will allow you to see total distance traveled and speed.
Clicking on the Auto Refresh button will update the map once a minute automatically. That will work whe viewing all the devices or when viewing a single route. To get back to viewing all the devices, tap on the View All button and you’ll be back to the main view. You can see that the two views have a parent-child relationship.
If you want to see the live test version of Gps Tracker, go here:
If you want to try it out on your android phone, download it from google play and then check it out on the display map above. I hope you enjoy the app, it’s a significant improvement over the past design.
I’m in the process of getting ready for the next major update of Gps Tracker and one of the things I’ve decided to do was to move back to using GET instead of POST with the phones. It’s just much easier to troubleshoot using GET. But, since the app in Google Play now uses GET, any old installations will not work.
I am providing here an apk file that will work with your old installations. Here is how to install it.
- Delete the old app from the phone.
- Email this apk to the user.
- Go to Settings > Security and check “Unknown Sources”
- Open the apk attachment in the email
That will reinstall the old version of the program. Here is the apk file. You may need to right click on it to download it. If you have an problem downloading it, leave a comment here and I will email it to you. I apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused you.
I’ve finally begun building the Gps Tracker Wordpress plugin and it is a lot of fun. The way that I’m doing this is by breaking down the functionality into separate plugins and then adding the plugins together at various stages in the build process. It’s kind of like continuous integration, for a one person team, kind of… I think it’s a really good idea to create small plugins that do just one thing, especially when you are just starting off in Wordpress plugin development (like I am). I’ve already built the first three plugins, which is the map plugin, the route plugin and the database plugin. I’m currently working on the fourth plugin which is the updater plugin. The first three plugins are standalone plugins but the fourth requires two of the previous plugins (database and route) and therefor will be the first integration point.
I’m pleased to announce that I have created the first video in my new series explaining how the Gps Tracker application works. This first video focuses on the android client since that is by far the most popular platform. The series is going to comprise both a written tutorial and a video tutorial. All of the video tutorials will be on my youtube channel. You can subscribe to my channel to get notified when I create a new tutorial. The android video tutorial is here:
How the Android Gps Tracker Client Works Video on Youtube
and the written tutorial is here:
I finally had the time to rewrite the android client and to get the background service working as I’ve wanted to for a long time. GpsTracker is now based on work I had done previously on my other website, mycelltracker.com. The big difference between the old mycelltracker app and the new GpsTracker is the introduction of Google Play location services.
With that I want to go into an in-depth discussion of how GpsTracker now works on Android devices. We’ll start by looking at the structure of the application beginning with the five classes used in the app. I’ll first give a brief description of each. Here are the class files on github if you want to follow along:
GpsTracker android client class files on github