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Old 04-21-2005, 09:12 PM   #1
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Unhappy DeLorme Street Atlas USA 2005

We just purchased a laptop and the DeLorme Street Atlas USA 2005 GPS Program.
We are having the hardest time with some of its features, in particular, the Routing. Does anyone have this GPS program and can help us.
I was trying to route from New Iberia, La. to Stephenville, Tx. via Shreveport, La. I wanted to stay on the Intersates 20 and 49. I set my preference to National Highways. The program sent me everywhere BUT interstates.
Can anyone give me any insight?
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Old 04-21-2005, 09:53 PM   #2
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I tried your route on MS Streets & Trips, and it went directly via I-49 and I-20. Total was 527.7 miles.

I think you have your route preference set incorrectly. National highways must mean US numbered routes, not Interstates. See if you can set prefs to Interstate or limited access highways.
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Old 04-21-2005, 10:27 PM   #3
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I use both of these programs a lot. You need to set "vias" in DeLorme ("Stops" in MS) to direct it on the route you desire. There is very seldom that I make a long trip that does not require at least a few Via points to get the route I desire.

For instance, with both Delorme nor Microsoft, I can not get across Austin south to north on the best route without setting at least one Via. Remember that the program knows nothing about local traffic conditions, work traffic, number of traffic lights, scenery, hills, condition of roads, and relatively little about construction that may be going on. You know these things and it requires that you direct the program accordingly.

The programs love to send me through Dallas. I know better! I just looked at the route I took from Austin to Claremore, OK. I used 7 Vias to get the best route.
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Old 04-21-2005, 10:34 PM   #4
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Also ...

Both the MS and DeLorme programs have a LOT of coding errors. You will find that both programs here and there will put you off on a frontage road for no apparent reason and right back on the interstate at the next entry. Obviously, they have that portion of the interstate coded as slower than the frontage road. A Via (Stop in MS) at the appropriate spot will keep you on course.

Both programs occasionally will refuse to route you on a particular piece of road, no matter what vias you place. The road is apparently invisibly disconnected at that point. This is usually on secondary roads and can sometimes be fixed in DeLorme by drawing in a link over the road on the screen.

Two years ago, DeLorme had my house about 1/4 mile from the actual location. It has been correct on the last two releases.
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Old 04-21-2005, 11:31 PM   #5
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I have the Garmin IQue 3600 GPS (a CR best buy), which sits on my dash. We call her "Miss Daisy", as her voice is female.....and is always telling me where and when to turn. I love it because she gives me ample time to get into the correct lane, so I can negotiate the turn in time. I also have to use Vias to sometimes get the best route. I like my Garmin because it sits at eye level and is easy to view without taking your eyes completely off the road. It also visually gives me the next upcoming street before I come to it. I have a hard time reading street signs, and find this to be most helpful. With gas prices up, I feel it will save me time and gas, as I enter routes to restaurants, gas stations, quilt stores (my wife), art galleries, CGs, etc. I now drive in commercial and city areas without the tensness and worry I previously had because I am told how to get there! I wholeheartedly recommend these new gadgets! It's a whole new world out there driving.

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Old 04-22-2005, 07:23 AM   #6
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I agree about using the Vias. I set the scale low enough to make sure I'm in the right spot and then I use the "click and drag" procedure to set the via. I tried "writing in" vias several times - but without much success. It can often take several insertions to get the route you want - especially when you're in a very congested area. The other thing that will drive "Mary" nuts is when the highway shown has been re-routed slightly and she thinks you're off route. This was a real problem on Canada 1, crossing New Brunswick last summer. The new Canada 1 is considerably to the South of the old route.

These gadgets have taken all the fun out of getting lost!
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Old 05-26-2005, 07:21 PM   #7
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I bought a copy of DeLorme today. What a piece of crip. Ugliest interface I've ever seen.

But I did figure out how to set the route preferences. If you go to the 'route' tab, then 'advanced', then 'route prefs', you will get to the routing screen. Start at the top, with 'Limited Access Roads', increase the speed to 70 mph, set the 'Routing Preference' to preferred, and click on the 'Done' button.

Do the same with Toll Roads, National Highways, etc. I think that 'out of the box' the National Highways are 'shorter' than the Insterstates, and since they had equal preference they are chosen based on distance.
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Old 05-26-2005, 10:31 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by markdoane
I bought a copy of DeLorme today. What a piece of crip. Ugliest interface I've ever seen.
I'll agree on the "ugly interface" comment. The sad fact is that the earlier Street Atlas had the standard Windows interface and was great to use. Then, some years ago, DeLorme came out with several other packages using the present crappy interface and later changed Street Atlas to use the crappy interface.

However, I don't agree with the "piece of crap" comment. I upgrade both my Microsoft Streets and Trips and my Street Atlas each year because each program has its own different strengths and weaknesses. Very often a trip will route better on one or the other program and the DeLorme "vias" make a lot more sense to me than having to set "stops" everywhere in Microsoft Streets and Trips. OTOH, I like the ability to drag a route in Microsoft. I do like the DeLorme printing options better than Microsoft. One program often has a brand new road that the other does not have yet.

Almost always on longer trips, especially off of the interstates, one or the other program will fail miserably at some point because of a map coding error and will not route correctly. Sometimes this can be fixed with vias or stops; sometimes it can not be fixed and I have to use the other program. Usually the problem is a discontinuity somewhere on a secondary road or an intersection that has not been joined. Both programs are about equally bad in this respect. Microsoft makes it easier to send in corrections.

DeLorme seems to work better with my GPS.

Typically, I route my longer trips using both programs and print out whichever one handles that particular route better. On my one-month trip last year, I took along printouts from both programs for various parts of the route. I take the printouts to Office Depot and have them bound with plastic spines so that they lay flat on the seat beside me.
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Old 05-26-2005, 10:42 PM   #9
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I took DeLorme back to the store. I'm planning a trip from Minneapolis to Washington, and two of the stops I arranged on MS S&T had hotels that DeLorme didn't list. They were a Holiday Inn in Mt Vernon IL, and the Radisson in Alexandria VA. On top of that, DeLorme couldn't find Dollywood!

Also, when I hooked up the DeLorme GPS LT20 receiver, it had the couch I was sitting in, out in the middle of the lake, an error of about 100 ft. The MS Pharos receiver could tell if I was in the kitchen or the batroom.

I also find the MS artwork a lot easier to look at.

I'm just glad Best Buy let me return the opened DeLorme product.
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Old 05-27-2005, 07:50 AM   #10
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I have the DoLorme hooked up to a laptop in the MoHo for navigating en route.

I have found the GPS to be extremely accurate - even to the point of detecting movement when I slowly crept up 3 feet at a stop sign.

The en-route speed and direction indicating functions are also dead on.

User friendly it is not...tried to direct me down a "cowpath" (might have been a road 30 years ago).

It took several hours of "trial and error" (lots of errors) to be able to use it, but I like it well enough now.

I also have the DoLorme TOPO 5.0 (all USA) topo map. For the price, I think the topographic map is a great product.
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Old 05-27-2005, 08:44 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 87MH
User friendly it is not...tried to direct me down a "cowpath" (might have been a road 30 years ago).
Several years ago, DeLorme directed me down "Highline Road" in the Texas panhandle on a rainy day. The road started out as a typical paved county road, then dissolved into a series of mud ruts at an intersection. Fortunately, the gravel cross road was firm enough that I could turn the rig around. The only other option was to back a quarter mile and turn around at a ranch where there were several 18-wheelers in the yard.

Since then, I vet all the unfamiliar off-main-highway routes with an atlas or a state map before deciding to go that way. The same applies to Microsoft Streets and Trips. I think they all use the same national database.

Most non-main-highway routes (Ranch-to Market and the like) in Texas are trailer friendly and better than many state highways in other states. It would be nice if the map programs could indicate non-paved surfaces and make it an option to avoid the same.
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Old 05-27-2005, 09:04 AM   #12
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I have found that for $8.95 I can get Real Oldfashioned Auto Direction Antiquated Textual Layout System (R.O.A.D A.T.L.A.S). Without too much technical knowledge I can find roads, route numbers, exit numbers... etc. I then fire up my computer and use MSWORD to type in salient information as to where I want to go and what routes to take, exit numbers and so on. I find this works very well. AND IT IS CHEAP!!! I don't have to lie to a piece of software that can't find it's way out of a wet paper bag about where I want to go and what route types I want to favor. By the time one gets the kinks out of the route by making adjustments, one is so familiar with the route, one could drive it blindfolded. (probably not a good idea). Just give me the good old Rand McNally and a copilot that can read same and we can go anywhere with little or no problem. It just isn't worth it to me to spend hundreds of dollars to know whether I am 15ft or 100ft from an exit. That's just my opinion... I could be wrong.
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Old 05-27-2005, 09:28 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by startrekker2001
Just give me the good old Rand McNally and a copilot that can read same and we can go anywhere with little or no problem. It just isn't worth it to me to spend hundreds of dollars to know whether I am 15ft or 100ft from an exit. That's just my opinion... I could be wrong.
The divorce to get me a copilot who can read a road atlas is going to cost me a lot more than the program. My current is copilot is just slightly more than useless at navigating or even relaying data from a typed sheet; the little voice telling me in a timely manner that I need to get in the left lane to anticipate a turn is priceless.
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Old 05-27-2005, 09:33 AM   #14
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We've used Travroute's Co-Pilot, Garmin, and Delorme. I still use my Garmin for 4-wheeling in the back country but when we travel its the Delorme we follow. It does take a little time to figure things out, such as using vias to route yourself on the roads you want. I have even occasionally had to manually go in and tell the program that a particular road was closed for construction so it wouldn't pick that road. And yes, it has occasionally taken us on roads we wouldn't have chosen with an atlas. One example ... a couple of years ago we were leaving Casper Wy heading toward Arizona. The Laptop/Delorme directed us to take Poison Spider Road. Long story short, this turned into a two tire track road going across Wyoming ranch land -- it was part of the old Oregon Trail. We were a little concerned about what we had gotten into when we had to wait for cattle to cross mosey across the road before going on. However, the Delorme program guided us through to a State Highway and it is now one of our great traveling memories. I'm sure I wouldn't have trusted an Atlas across this stretch of America and probably wouldn't have gone that way. I did trust the Delorme and have great memories to show for it. One of the great things about a GPS mapping system is that you can "zoom in" to see where it is taking you, even on very back roads, and not worry too much about getting lost.
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