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CoPilot Live v8 Suggestions
malaki86
I don't think I've ever used the avoid road feature in anything after v9. With that one, you could save everything in a map file - worked really nice.
GoneNomad
I didn't realize they had eliminated the Favor & Avoid Roads feature in v8.

But it didn't always work all that well in the version I tried (10), and the designations made with that feature were a preference for the program rather that being saved with the trip file. I think it would be better in most cases if it was saved with the trip file. That way a base trip file could be saved with just the Favored & Avoided roads, which could be loaded if you wanted to use those settings. That way you could use or not use the Favored & Avoided roads as the need arose. I found that I used that feature to make the routing go what I wanted it to go, and I would not necessarily always want to favor or avoid certain roads on different routes.

But I think the best way to change a route is to drag it to a different road, the way Google maps works. S&T works almost the same way. Delorme does this by the insertion of "via points" that aren't listed as separate waypoints or stops, which is a more cumbersome way to do it (requires switching back & forth to that specific "via point" tool a lot).

Another feature that CoPilot v8 apparently doesn't do is allow insertion of points merely by clicking on the map, requiring instead that an address be entered. While that's OK in most cases, in other circumstances it is much slower than being able to insert a waypoint or stop merely by clicking to a spot on the map.
DieselBoss
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoneNomad
I didn't realize they had eliminated the Favor & Avoid Roads feature in v8.

But it didn't always work all that well in the version I tried (10), and the designations made with that feature were a preference for the program rather that being saved with the trip file. I think it would be better in most cases if it was saved with the trip file. That way a base trip file could be saved with just the Favored & Avoided roads, which could be loaded if you wanted to use those settings. That way you could use or not use the Favored & Avoided roads as the need arose. I found that I used that feature to make the routing go what I wanted it to go, and I would not necessarily always want to favor or avoid certain roads on different routes.

But I think the best way to change a route is to drag it to a different road, the way Google maps works. S&T works almost the same way. Delorme does this by the insertion of "via points" that aren't listed as separate waypoints or stops, which is a more cumbersome way to do it (requires switching back & forth to that specific "via point" tool a lot).

Another feature that CoPilot v8 apparently doesn't do is allow insertion of points merely by clicking on the map, requiring instead that an address be entered. While that's OK in most cases, in other circumstances it is much slower than being able to insert a waypoint or stop merely by clicking to a spot on the map.
Some clarifications to your post.

- You are correct that V8 does not have the "favor/avoid" system any more. I liked it, and maybe it will return in a future rev.

- "Dragging the route" has been suggested many times. Perhaps it too may show up. However, ALK is trying to keep the program as similar as possible across all platforms (Windows, Android, Apple) so adding a huge program change like "dragging the map" poses a large coding and interface challenge. We shall see...

- And you certainly can insert points by clicking the map. If you are on the main navigation screen then it will give you the choice to simply add that point as a destination. If you are in the "Plan or Edit Trip" screen then it will allow you to modify a current trip to force it on particular roads or to add stops into that tip by clicking the map.
GoneNomad
In the latest version of CoPilot, when viewing POI search results on the map, there needs to be a way to toggle on/off all the informational flags for all the POIs that are displayed on the map.

For many category searches (like restaurants) there are a lot of POIs displayed, and they all look the same on the map. Also there can be more than one POI stacked almost exactly on top of one another, making it difficult to turn on the flag. Without the ability to see the flags, you have no way to know which POI is which (e.g.: which restaurant is which) on the map.

Also, after choosing a specific POI from the list of results, then go through the two steps required to display it on a map, the other nearby POIs in the list also show up, but you can close the flag for the specific POI you previously chose (but not by clicking off of it as normal, instead you have to click ON it, and you cannot re-open it), and you cannot open the flag for any of those other POIs. Also, if you turn off the flag for the POI you chose from the list, the flags for any subsequent POIs from that list do not show up on the map. You have to start all over again with a new search to get it to work the same as it does the first time. The only workaround I've found for this is to back up to the page that shows the "Info" on the chosen POI (which is itself a redundant step) and then press the "Show Map" button again.

In this mode, the POIs on the map do not work the same as they do on a map pulled up without having chosen one from that list first. And now I see that it has more problems that those described above. It sometimes does not display the correct results from the latest search at all, showing me a list of places with a name I chose (e.g.: "Taco Bell") but showing no POIs at all, or showing the POIs from the the previous search, when I press the "Show Map" button. Most of the time it shows all the POIs (which all look alike), but without the flag showing for the POI chosen from the list. When I search for gas stations, after it (eventually) showed me the gas station POI icons on the map, then I backed up to the "Find POIs" screen, chose "Restaurant" and then chose one from the list, then hit the "Map" button, it still showed me the Gas Staion POI icons instead of the "Restaurant POI icons. I had to back all the way up to the main menu and start all over to clear up this problem.

This software has some nice features (or they would be nice, if they worked), but also plenty of bugs that cause the user's experience to be inconsistent from one time to the next.

There also needs to be sub-categories (something pretty standard on any standalone GPS Nav unit), so that, for example, you can see just the "Fast Food" restaurants. A text search in the "Restaurants" category for "Fast Food" returns only the (very few) results that actually have "Fast Food" in their name.

Also, the searches I've just done in the restaurant category return a lot of results that aren't actually restaurants, too. They seem to be the mailing addresses or corporate office locations, not actual restaurants. Somehow those need to be weeded out of the search results.
GoneNomad
There needs to be a way to make CoPilot "Search nearby" for POIs farther out than what is apparently the current (unadjustable) limit, which at first I thought was 1.5 miles. By searching another category, I see it is not limited by the distance, but by the number of results. In the restaurant category, it only showed results within 1.5 miles because that's when it reached its limit of 50 results. That may seem like a lot, but it really isn't in the case of "restaurants" especially considering that some are listed twice in the search results, and some aren't restaurants at all, but just a mailing address for a corporate office. In the area I searched, all of those 50 results were within 1.5 miles.
malaki86
When you do a local search, you can make the results search further by searching for a specific restaurant name, such as 'taco', which would list places with 'taco' in their name. I do this with truckstops all the time and if I'm searching for a specific truckstop, such as 'flying j', it will list 50 of them, no matter what the distance.
GoneNomad
And that limit of 50 is a significant drawback if searching for nearby restaurants (for example), where you don't really care which restaurant it is, as long as it's a particular type of restaurant (e.g.: fast food),

For example, in the case of a search from a location in the 63129 ZIP code, all 50 that CoPilot finds are within 1.5 miles, it omits several others that are also actually within 1.5 miles right next to others that it does show (because it reached the limit of 50), and it doesn't differentiate one from another on the map.


As I mentioned, that may seem like a lot, but it really isn't if you're searching for a category or sub-category. What compounds the problem is that CoPilot has NO sub-categories - e.g.: no "Fast Food" restaurants.
This is something my 4-year old Magellan 1412 has:


(and Magellan was smart enough to list the sub-categories of restaurants in a prioritized order rather than alphabetical order, which they foolishly did on newer models), and ANY decent Nav unit or software should have. In a laptop version of software like this, there absolutely MUST be a way to customize what shows up in lists like these, so you can turn off the ones you will never want, and the sort order. This should be a no-brainer for anyone creating any software for a Windows PC, rather than the much more limited version you might settle for on a smartphone of standalone Nav unit.

To summarize, if you search for nearby restaurants in CoPilot, you get a list that includes some that aren't actually restaurants, and you can't broaden the search to include more than the first 50 (which is enough if search for a specific name, but woefully inadequate if searching for all nearby restaurants), and although it does show you all of the locations on a map at once (unlike most standalone GPS nav units) In CoPilot you are presented with a bunch of small icons that all look the same, like this:

But it gets even worse - the above screen does doesn't even show all the results at once.
The search results are split up into five different map sections,
presumably with only 10 restaurants shown on each.
Here's the second section:


(previous/next buttons circled in pink)

Here's how google maps handles that:


Each icon on the map has a letter that relates to a text list.

Another way would be to show all the info flags at once, or at least just a nametag (which would be better than what google does IF the flags/tags did not overlap each other), but you can't do that in CoPilot; you have to click on each icon to bring up the info flags one at a time, and if they're real close together, that can be very difficult to do, especially using a touch-screen. It's even worse on a super-high pixel density smartphone touchscreen.

As I mentioned in my earlier post, there are significant flaws in the functionality too. Picking one of the restaurants from the list and choosing to display it on the map will already have its info flag displayed, like this:

and this:

...but on this map, although you can see the icons for other restaurants, you cannot open their info flags to see which one is which (for example, to see what other restaurants are near the first one you chose). And BTW, NEITHER of the two shown above is actually a restaurant; both locations are in residential neighborhoods where there are NO commercial buildings of any kind. Luckily I'm familiar with the area, so I know this, but if I was out of town, it adds to the confusion that "Nav" systems like CoPilot are supposed to nearly eliminate.

And, to top it off, if you zoom out or in using the "-" or "+" buttons, the info flag closes and cannot be reopened, so you end up with this:

Geeee... I guess that when I'm in an unfamiliar city looking for a place to eat, I'm just going to have to remember which restaurant is which.

There is NO WAY they needed to make it work this way. This is a flaw in their programming. As usual, I found it right away

I've had this operational for only three days now, and I've found a lot of other problems too. But my assessment is that ALK isn't particularly interested in learning what they are from an outsider, much less fixing them. It's part of the same mindset that forces the map to be downloaded ONLY via a Wi-Fi connection... and refuses to even answer you, Malaki86, when you offer to beta test their software. They'd probably want you to pay them for that!
Attached Images
google-search-example.jpg   copilot-screenshot_2012-08-19-10-50-14.jpg   copilot-screenshot_2012-08-19-10-50-41.jpg   copilot-screenshot_2012-08-19-10-50-58.jpg   copilot-screenshot_2012-08-19-10-22-38-1.jpg  

copilot-screenshot_2012-08-19-10-24-14-1.jpg   magellan-img_2711.jpg   magellan-img_2712.jpg  
GoneNomad
Also, if you have an SD card (even a completely blank one) inserted, you may get this error message:


You will always get this message if you take the card out while CoPilot is running
(like I did here when I was trying to get these screen captures off the Thrive):



Evidently ALK assumes any SD card must have CoPilot data on it. Bad assumption.

This effectively locks up CoPilot because reinserting the card does not clear this error message. You have to go into Settings and force CoPilot to quit.
Attached Images
copilot-screenshot_2012-08-19-10-19-14.jpg   copilot-screenshot_2012-08-19-10-24-56.jpg  
GoneNomad
CoPilot does not announce an upcoming turn if it is within its minimum distance of 0.3 miles from the previous turn. In that case, CoPilot will not give ANY upcoming turn announcement at all, and though you might think 0.3 miles is seem so close you should be able to see the turn, in fact it can be a serious drawback in cases where the turns are close together. (CoPilot does have a minimum 50 yard setting for its "Turn Now" announcement, but that's not what I'm referring to here). It would be better if instead of being able to chose fixed distances of 2 miles, 1 mile & 0.3 mile, there would be a setting to dynamically adjust the upcoming turn announcement based on how far away the next turn is (my 4 year old Magellan 1412 works this way, an Sygic: GPS Navigation seems to do that too), while also allowing (for example) a setting like 2 miles to be the maximum distance.
DieselBoss
Just a note for clarity here.

This thread is getting convoluted because its topic is CoPilot Laptop version 8. The last several screenshots and comments do not pertain to this thread.

Actually they do not look like the Laptop version at all, but more like CoPilot Live Mobile version for iOS and Android.
GoneNomad
Yep, that is my mistake. Sorry about that. I overlooked the "v8" part in the title. But I guess that v8 laptop works the same way as shown above, even if it looks different?

Marvin - maybe you can split off my recent posts here about CoPilot v9 Android into a new thread?
DieselBoss
Narrowing result search by restaurant type:

On version 8 Laptop: Destination / POI / Nearby / Restaurant / Select Type of Restaurant.

On Live Mobile: Destination / POI / More Categories / Restaurant / Select Type of restaurant.
GoneNomad
That helps. Thanks.

Too bad they have another (subcategorized) "Restaurants" is tucked away bin the "Other" section when they also have "Restaurants" front and center. Even worse is they have no "Fast Food" category. But they do have all sorts of other incredibly obscure sub-categories, though, including Vietnamese, Thai, Swiss, Jamaican, etc., I mean, really, "Swiss" restaurants?! What were they thinking? The answer is, they were not thinking about details like this.

I harp on fast food because odds are, any traveler on a road trip (i.e.: the likely user of software like this) in an unfamiliar area is FAR more likely to be looking for fast food than anything else. I'd say that is normally should be about an 80%-90% priority. Everything else combined is the other 10%-20%. This is exactly the type of lack of common sense that I've seen before. Too many uncommon choices (with no way to turn them off) and not prioritizing - or as in this case, omitting - the most common ones. Magellan did the former in their newer GPS units, by arranging the subcategories strictly in alphabetical order, placing all sorts of obscure categories ahead of "fast Food" (at least they do still have it). My Magellan 1412 has the subcategories in a reasonable prioritization order. If they can't figure out the need for listing things in a reasonable priority order instead of a simple alpha order, it is ridiculous that they provide no way to customize lists like these, especially on a laptop version of software like this.
DieselBoss
They put fast food lumped in with the "American" category. I don't know if that is irony or not because 99% of American food is fast food.
GoneNomad
...along with a whole LOT of other restaurants that aren't fast food. From a message I got from ALK tech support (in response to my inquiry about incorrect POI addresses), they just punted, explaining that they use POI data from "InfoUSA" - so in effect, they implied that makes it not ALK's problem. Right...
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