The walking and biking trails of Point Nepean National Park are dotted with stunning vistas, military bunkers, grasslands, beaches, rockly alcoves, and historical curiosities.

As part of the Wilderness Lab creative development, the artists sought to map out the ultimate walking trail to encourage visitors’ exploration of the Point Nepean National Park’s unique features and natural and historical points of interest; key ‘hot spots’ or GPS points that would trigger cinematic content as part of the final downloadable app.


ANITA FONTAINE  / Champagne Valentine

Using Google Maps 

- Using Google Maps on iPhone and smartphone

- Google locks onto the GPS position, this forces the iPhone to grab  the GPS coordinates

- Quit out of the Google Maps application

- Then go to the Camera function and take a digital photo of it on order to take a good position lock . These photos can later be uploaded to Google Maps.


Developed own GPS tracking app – IAtelierGPSTracker

The IAtelierGPSTracker was developed in openFrameworks   http://www.openframeworks.cc/ ).

It records a continuous stream of images, location and force data from an iPhone or iPad. The basic idea was to make an application that let us visualise a path through any terrain, whilst gathering information about GPS position, accelerometer and force sensors.

The IAtelierGPSTracker records GPS and accelerometer data as fast as the phone can generate it, whilst taking a photo every 1 to 1.5 seconds. We also added the ability to ‘tag’ two different kinds of ‘points of interest’ by touching the screen on either the left or right hand side. For developing future applications that use GPS points or accelerometer data to trigger content this gives us a way to identify areas where we thought major visual or audio content could occur.

The main aim of developing IAtelierGPSTracker  was to:

1. to provide detailed data for visualising and mapping the park

2. to allow us to test the application/game off-site by “replaying” the GPS and accelerometer data in the         comfort of our studios!



Using Firepin 

Josh used an app called Firepin on his iPhone that records and trips made with the iPhone. It tracks the GPS coordinates and overlays them on a Google Map, and tracks the phone’s movement in real time.

Josh orignially used it in 2008 for people to follow him on a motobike trip along the East Coast of Australia.

The limitations of this app are  that to track in real time you need network coverage from a cellular provider otherwise it appears as blank spots – ie: no network coverage . Also the accuracy of the reading varies according to terrain – GPS can pinpoint 5 metres maximum accuracy.

Josh would like to see Firepin integrated with live video feeds – so you can not only see live video but also the location from where it is being shot. According to Josh, there is no product out there that can currently stream live video from a given GPS point.


The Firepin app tracks the GPS coordinates and overlays them on a Google Map. The tracking can be viewed live from an iPhone or android.

Here is the link to the Point Nepean Trail mapped with Firepin: http://firepin.com/map/point%2019-12-2011/61f43390-0c01-012f-ebf5-12313a00c1c5


Using Nearmap.com

Josh also tried the nearmap method. He will give us an update on his experience of nearmap very soon.


GIDJA WALKER / Parks Victoria

Using a camera with GPS, Picasa, Google Earth, and a Garmin Extrex

Gidja is a renowned ecologist and member of the Southern Peninsula Indigenous Flora and Fauna Association.  Here is how Gidja undertakes mapping a site:

When mapping a quadrat (a square) – I will use a camera with a GPS and compass direction that has a panorama function in the camera (not an iPhone) … This takes a panoramic shot of the landscape at 270 degrees.

Pictures are then downloaded and then uploaded to a Picasa webalbum (http://picasa.google.com/).  Picasa is a free photographic editing program that can be shared by online communities (communities can include the Department of Sustainability, or Parks VIc).

From Picasa, I then view my photos in Google Earth. a ‘html file’ from Google Earth is downloaded which I then open on my desktop in Google Maps

The second method I use is to walk around with a ‘Garmin etrex GPS’. I then make a ‘way point’ . These are downloaded onto my computer using Map Source program.

These are saved in .klm file which can be opened up by Google Maps or Google Earth”


Gidja will also be sending the Atelier Eden’s artists an LIDAR  (Light Detection and Ranging)  reading of the Point Nepean site and environment. LIDAR uses ultravioliet, or infrared light to create image readings and countour maps of environments.



Thea Baumann.

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