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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Location
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Posts
    10,060

    Exclamation Using Waypoints to Make Custom Maps

    This is part of a tutorial that we use to show members how easy it can be to use Waypoints to make Custom RTA maps. After a suggestion by RoadTrip Advisor, Lifemagician, it occurred to me that it might be helpful to post it here....

    Here's a sample route that was created for RTA Member, Natalie....

    The way this is done is through what we call WAYPOINTS. Imagine that the RTA Map Center page is a paper map on the wall. The electronic Waypoints are like darts that you’ve stuck onto the paper map and when you create the route, the mapping program automatically creates a route using your waypoints. The combination of Waypoints, Custom Places and the Route, when saved creates the map that can be shared via e-mail, printed, etc.

    OK, Let’s do a route using the Waypoints….

    Let’s do a route from Cleveland to Milwaukee that will be going through Detroit, Rogers City, Chicago, Rockford… (to see how cool this might be… look at the links below!)

    A. Add the start and End address: Cleveland as the start and Milwaukee as the end.

    B. We need some Custom Places to coincide with the those cities I referenced above, so let’s add them...
    ...........1. You can either use Method 2, if you know the address you want to use as Custom place or…
    ...........2. Method 1. I recommend zooming in so you can see what you’re clicking on
    ..................a. I’ve named the first one Detroit – Natalia #1 – When you fill out your Custom Places there are all sorts of information fields you can fill in

    ...........3. You can go ahead and choose all of your Custom Places than make some of the Waypoints, but let’s do them in order..
    .................a. So, next to “Add Waypoint” click “select marker” --> And then click on the Detroit - Natalia #1
    .................b. As soon as you do that, you’ll see a list of “My Current Waypoints” and that list will grow as we go along.
    .................c. Next, type Rogers City into the box for Method 2 (or you could type in an address) –
    ..............................i. Let’s call this – Rogers City – Natalia #2
    .................d. Next, type in Chicago in Method 2 and let’s say that we want this to actually be Millenium Park, so you can put your cursor on the red marker and move it to Millenium Park, save this as Millenium Park
    .................e. Next let’s add Rockford, Il

    ...........4. And then you think………Duh! I forgot to make those darn waypoints. No worries, scroll out on the map so that they are all visible and make them waypoints in order.
    .................a. So ………Select Marker and click on each of the three Custom places…

    C. So, now you have a start and end and four Wayponts…. You could optimize the route, with that little check box, but you’re smarter than the average computer, and you put them in the order YOU WANTED TO GO IN, so you leave that unchecked.

    D. So, now………… click “Find Route from Addresses”

    E. And wow… there’s a route connecting those places

    F. So for now save this route – let’s call it Natalia -- Cleveland to Milwaukee and you know it is 1036.3 miles, because it is listed on the bottom of the window.

    G. So, now this is listed under “My Routes” under the name Natalia -- Cleveland to Milwaukee

    H. And maybe this is just what you wanted, but let’s see what RTA recommends for attractions along your route within 50 miles…

    I. And the program returns 35 RoadTrip Attractions. – You could save them all or you can look at each one and see which ones appeal to you. You do this by either clicking on the flag or by clicking on the list found on the left-hand column under “RoadTrip Attractions”

    J. You can remove any attractions you don’t want on your eventual map… click “Remove” in each information box

    K. You can also remove any waypoints if you don’t need that info – so in this case I removed the Rogers City waypoint and one up near the end of the upper peninsula of Michigan. And then when you are happy with the map, you name it and save it Gomez Test Map

    L Once saved there are a bunch of options, you can print it, you can share it on e-mail, you can even get a 2-D graphic representation of the elevations of the route.

    Here is a link to your shared map:

    Here’s a link to your print ready map – you’ll see you have a bunch of ways of customizing this!

    ***And if you really want to see some cool possibilities for your personal customized maps, click on "Check All" under print options and click on "Print Set-up" -- That resulting list of attractions can be customized just for you....

    And you can re-open your maps or your routes and make new version – just remember to save them!

    ****Now, you can create Custom Maps just about anywhere in the world, using your Custom Places, but if you want to add any of the RTA Library Road Trip Attractions, your maps need to be located in North America!

    Mark
    Last edited by Mark Sedenquist; 05-27-2011 at 02:15 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    6,936

    Default Making the map

    Mark,

    Thank you very much. It is much appreciated.
    • Is this in the Map Centre or the Map Wizard?
    • If I put in start and end points, it creates a route. I do not want to take this route. How did you get the route from Detroit to Chicago to go all the way up the peninsula? I cannot find a way to change it.
    • If I put in just the first day start and end points, how do I extend that to route for the second day? I can't see which box to type that in either.

    Just for now, attractions, etc. can wait. I just want to lay out the route, the route I want to drive, not the one the map wants me to take. Once I get to master that, then I will look at adding the markers, etc.

    Lifey needs the basics first

    p.s. Can it be changed to kms?
    Last edited by Lifemagician; 05-27-2011 at 04:45 PM. Reason: add p.s.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Location
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Posts
    10,060

    Default Basics Part II

    Quote Originally Posted by Lifemagician View Post
    Is this in the Map Centre or the Map Wizard?
    If I put in start and end points, it creates a route. I do not want to take this route.
    There is relatively little customization on the Map Wizard Map Creation Tool. Map Wizard is probably what you were using...
    How did you get the route from Detroit to Chicago to go all the way up the peninsula? I cannot find a way to change it.
    To create the map shown above...
    1. Go to the Map Center page. and follow that tutorial -- Exactly in the steps I did. Once you can build that map you can create one in Australia or Siberia, it doesn't really matter.
    If I put in just the first day start and end points, how do I extend that to route for the second day? I can't see which box to type that in either.
    See above!
    Just for now, attractions, etc. can wait. I just want to lay out the route, the route I want to drive, not the one the map wants me to take. Once I get to master that, then I will look at adding the markers, etc.
    Ummmmmmmmmm. You need to re-read it, if you're going to make a custom map, using the Map Center tools, you'll need to create waypoints and so you need to create what are called CUSTOM PLACES.

    Its the Custom Places/Waypoints that create the route where you want it to go.

    EXACTLY, like a paper map. The computer program can't draw a route (a blue line) without knowing the points along the map (these don't have to be overnight stops, they are only there to create the route)
    p.s. Can it be changed to kms?
    The program was created for use in North America and so miles was the unit chosen, we might offer a choice later.

    Seriously, if you make a new map, following those instructions -- you'll be able to use it to create what you want.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Location
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Posts
    10,060

    Default An odd little bug....aftecting Australia only

    I was planning on making a quick version of your custom route in Australia to give you further incentive to play with this, but... there's an odd bug that only seems to be affecting routing in Australia. Once the bug is fixed I'll let you know.

    In the meantime, you can create custom routes in North America.

    Mark

  5. #5

    Default

    Lifey-If I can do it, you can too! I had the same issue it sounds like you are having. It took me a little while to understand that the route is created from the waypoints. Once I created those (I just did major towns & cities along the route, generic, no addresses) and clicked optimize, it made my route for me! Sweet!
    Mark - Any chance that the number of waypoints allowed on a single route will be increased?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Location
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Posts
    10,060

    Thumbs up Try it without optimizing too

    Quote Originally Posted by DanaCleg View Post
    Lifey-If I can do it, you can too! I had the same issue it sounds like you are having. It took me a little while to understand that the route is created from the waypoints.
    Yes, that's what I'm trying to convey! Good job.
    Once I created those (I just did major towns & cities along the route, generic, no addresses) and clicked optimize, it made my route for me! Sweet!
    You actually don't need to optimize it, if you click the waypoints in the order you want the road to go, so that they are displayed in the list in the order you want the route to go, you have more control that way.
    Mark - Any chance that the number of waypoints allowed on a single route will be increased?
    In most cases, 8 waypoints + the beginning and ending will make a really custom route. That one I did for the UP required only 3-4 waypoints.

    But, it's entirely possible that we can increase the number of waypoints at some point, but we'd have to change the underlying software to make it all work.

    Thanks for the input!

    Mark

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