Which software accepts, via API, a set of lat/long coordinates and plots a route?
Lee L
Hello folks, I'm new to GPS type stuff. But I would like to extend software which already geocodes addresses and creates routes. i would love to take the geocode data and send it to a GPS system/software for "activating" the pre-planned route. So, I'm trying to find software which will accept, via api, a set of lat/long coordinates and plot a route. Can anyone make any recommendations to software that you know of which could do this? I'm specifically interested in only North America Routes.

Hi Lee,

Have you looked into Microsoft MapPoint? It has an object model that can do the tasks you've mentioned.

You can download a free 60 day trial of MapPoint and try it out.
Lee L
Hi Larry, I was aware only by store packaging that MapPoint might have this capability, but I my understanding is that MapPoint does not directly drive GPS devices, but forwards the map coordinates to another (ie. Garmin, etc.), which is kind of duplicate effort since my data is already geocoded. Thank you for the suggestion and I will download the trial to in-/validate my assumption.
Ken in Regina
There may be some confusion with terminology, Lee.

None of the GPS navigation software available will "directly drive GPS devices".

GPS devices supply satellite data to the navigation software. Period. It's a one-way deal. Think of a GPS receiver like your stereo receiver. You can listen to what's coming in to it but you cannot broadcast from it.

Most navigation software does not have an API to allow other software to interact with it programmatically. Mappoint does.

Mappoint has all the same navigation features that Streets&Trips and the other major navigation programs have. It can read incoming satellite data from a GPS receiver and do realtime navigation using that data.

You can do all the trip planning things, like creating complex multistop routes with it.

The big difference between Mappoint and all the others is that it has an API that lets other programs feed information to it, like waypoint data such as you have described. And the API will allow other programs to instruct Mappoint what to do with that waypoint data, like create a route with it.

Lee L
Ken, Wow I obviously was not aware of the facts that you point out. Thanks so much for your informative post. I will definately check out MapPoint as I previously mentioned. Is it fair to say then MapPoint + Laptop + gps receiver = a fully "active" gps system. (Hopefully that's clear?). What I'm trying to describe is a parellel setup to say purchasing TomTom, Garmin, etc?
Ken in Regina
Originally Posted by Lee L
Is it fair to say then MapPoint + Laptop + gps receiver = a fully "active" gps system.
Yep, that's exactly what you will have.

What I'm trying to describe is a parellel setup to say purchasing TomTom, Garmin, etc?
If you're referring to things like the Garmin Nuvi models or TomTom One, etc. you will have so much more.

You will have the realtime nav functions. Plus, you will have superior trip planning if you want to do complex multiday and/or multipoint trip routes.

You would get all that with Streets&Trips.

With Mappoint you get all that plus integration with Microsoft Office and an API.

How good is that?!

Ken in Regina
Do you really need an API to do what you want?

Streets&Trips has the ability to import waypoints, including waypoints that are already geocoded, from an Excel spreadsheet. You can't automate it but it's dead simple to do the import and then one click and you've got a route calculated.

I've used an online batch geocoding site to batch geocode lists of addresses, imported the CSV file into Excel and then imported the Excel file into Streets&Trips (it's been a few months ... it's possible I imported the CSV file directly into Streets&Trips). This is for a friend with a snow removal business who wanted me to calculate an optimized route for a few dozen residences.

...ken... About