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GPS Homing Device Gets You Back Where You Were, Nowhere Else

By Evan Ackerman

GPS devices are good for three things: telling you where you are, where you’re going, and where you’ve been. Somewhat ironically, using them for the first thing doesn’t really help you out that much… Knowing that your present location is exactly 37.867828° N 122.269488° W won’t make you any less lost. Telling you where you’re going is what most people use GPS devices for these days, but really, it’s far less relevant than getting you back where you came from. So if that’s what you care about most, you’ll be perfectly happy with this GPS homing device. It only does one thing: it takes you back where you were.

There are a grand total of two buttons on the device. One of them turns it on and off, and the other one marks your current position, and if you go somewhere else, it’ll give you a distance and bearing back. It won’t actually give you directions, so if your path involves lots of twists and turns and bottomless pits and fearsome monsters and meteor showers, you’re probably out of luck. I guess it’s a relatively useful enough accessory for people who like to wander about aimlessly with their eyes closed or whatever, but the price tag of $80 puts it far too close to the pricepoint of a fully armed and operational GPS.

The GPS Homing Device will be available January 2 from Hammacher Schlemmagesundheit.

[ Hammacher ] VIA [ Chip Chick ]








  • murrayw76

    The price may be a little steep, but there are plenty of instances where this device would be much more useful than a traditional GPS device. Those devices are great at telling you where you are and (usually) where you are going, but that's assuming they have some way of knowing the latter. Most GPS units lack the key capability that this Homing Device has, which is to tag a location and return to it later. If you're a casual outdoorsman who has wandered away from camp to collect wood for a fire, the ability to return without getting lost is probably worth the $80. I'd much rather pay that sum than foot the bill for a search and rescue effort (or worse, leave a funeral bill in family's hands). Just consider it like a one-time insurance fee! Of course, once you've got a Homing Device in your possession, you can just as easily use it to find your car on the other side of a massive parking lot after that shopping expedition.

  • http://silentdevelopment.blogspot.com/2008/03/locateme-free-j2me-gps-tracking.html Ben

    Actually some time ago I wrote some free software for a bluetooth GPS + mobile phone to do this with a bobbing arrow and its out now ;)

    http://silentdevelopment.blogspot.com/2008/03/l

  • influx

    I too think the price is a little steep. But this would be nice when riding a dirt bike. Something small durable and probably water resistant. The only thing that looks like it might suck is hitting the reset location button accidentally.

  • influx

    I too think the price is a little steep. But this would be nice when riding a dirt bike. Something small durable and probably water resistant. The only thing that looks like it might suck is hitting the reset location button accidentally.

  • http://silentdevelopment.blogspot.com/2008/03/locateme-free-j2me-gps-tracking.html Ben

    Actually some time ago I wrote some free software for a bluetooth GPS + mobile phone to do this with a bobbing arrow and its out now ;)

    http://silentdevelopment.blogspot.com/2008/03/l

  • influx

    I too think the price is a little steep. But this would be nice when riding a dirt bike. Something small durable and probably water resistant. The only thing that looks like it might suck is hitting the reset location button accidentally.