Geotagging without a dedicated camera gps, part 2

The Garmin Edge 500 cycling computer is a pretty clever unit doing most of what you might want it to, at least if you’re a cyclist.  I would like to use the garmin edge 500 to tag my photos with the location at which they were taken.  This would avoid the need for 1) a dedicated gps tagging thing-a-ma-bob, like the nikon gp-1, and 2) a camera which can interface with the gps tagging thing-a-ma-bob, and at least the nikon d3000 is lacking this capability.  But not to worry a little bit of hacking later and there is a solution.

This solution comes in a few parts, first a class used to parse the garmin .fit file format, second a utility to dump the contents of the .fit file format into a readable format that I could deal with.  Finally a little thing that goes through the gps data, and makes a path and reads the time from the photo and interpolates photo location.  Pretty awesome.  Requires exiftool, which can be found here.  And finally, the goodies can be found here, unzip and drop where you want them.  To run do

./fit_geotag fitfile.fit jpg1.jpg jpg2.jpg …

Please let me know if you have any issues.  It’s quite possible that this is an hour off at the moment due to daylight savings time issues.  Should be ironed out quite soon once I have a chance to do some more testing.

Update: I’ve added the ability to geotag using a csv file generated by the smartphone app mytracks. This is available for both the iphone and android operating systems (and possibly others, I don’t even know if there are others). The method is exactly the same. I find this easier, as often when I’m out taking photos I have my phone, but the gps thing, while small would be just one more thing to remember.

Update 2: If you send me an example trackfile and a photo taken during the trackfile, so long as the trackfile is in some sort of a text format, I should be able to add it to this utility. I see some visitors arriving with search terms of other sorts of devices than the mytracks (android or iphone) or garmin .fit.

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4 Responses to “Geotagging without a dedicated camera gps, part 2”

  1. Seb Says:

    Dear Joseph,

    As you have a Nikon D3000 there is no direct geotagging. This is correct. The interface comes with D3100 (or newer and higher). For those cameras there are far better Geotaggers than Nikon GP-1 adding indor-buffer, tracklogging, compass, … (e.g. Solmeta and Dawntech Geotagger)

    As you seem to work on Linux you should have a look at DigiKam+Kipi-Plugins , geotag, … for more comfortable Geotagging by synchrinizing with GPS-Tracks. On Windows have a look at geosetter.

    Else you will find a lot of information on http://www.gps-camera.eu/component/jtags/Linux (use google translate at the top right corner of the page for your language!)

  2. Joseph Says:

    I’d rather not use digikam+kipi-plugins as I use the gnome desktop and I’m trying to use shotwell. Is geotag another linux utility? Not sure what you mean by “more comfortable”. I can’t imagine anything being easier, it takes one command and maybe 40 seconds to tag as many photos as you’d like,
    ./fit_geotag fitfile.fit *.jpg
    will do all jpg files in the current directory, and then any program I import them into will have this information (flickr, shotwell, but I’m not sure if shotwell supports gps tags yet). Besides even if I tried this I’d be in trouble as I don’t believe digikam+kipi-plugins supports the garmin .fit file format.

    This is actually a decently complete solution, if by indoor buffer you mean tagging photos intelligently when they are taken indoors (without satellite reception), this will average the last known point before losing reception and the first known point after. I.e. it will put all photos taken inside at the building entrance. Which isn’t perfect, but it pretty good. On the other hand, when I’m taking photos inside I tend to know exactly where I was and this isn’t really an issue.

    Unfortunately that page that you linked to is just a custom google search with some terms about gps added.

  3. Joseph Says:

    And now it also tags with the city and state, done by finding the zip code with center closest to the gps coordinates and looking up the name of that city. It adds these as both City and Province-State tag, and Keyword tags.

  4. Geotagging Photos with a Garmin Edge 200 GPS « The Moose and Squirrel Files Says:

    [...] told me that others had attempted this before.  That solution seems to have been designed around linux and while it is all pretty much perl and [...]


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