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Old January 13th, 2009, 03:41 PM   #1
Regular Crew
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Kerrville, Texas
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Interesting Request... Need Advice Please

Greetings all,

I have been contacted by a local government agency and have a strange question. The agency wants to document the use of the river that runs through our property. They want to video the river corridor from beginning to end to be able to see things like land use, quarries, etc. along the route. This sounds simple enough... we'll hire a helicopter and fly the river low enough to get decent shots (about ten miles maybe). We'll use some sort of stabilization system depending on the helicopter.

The interesting part is that the client wants to know if there is any way to "sync" the video with a GPS tracker so that at any point in the video, the viewer can tell where the chopper is located and where it's looking.

I got to thinking about some types of GPS software that allow you to track a route that you've traveled and model it on a map so that you can "play" the route in real time and see the speed, direction, route traveled on the computer screen. I've seen this used for commercial vehicle tracking, etc.

So, do you guys know of any way to use this in cooperation with a video? I envisioned a video version of Google Maps Streetview with the little vicinity map in the lower right corner, only the view would be aerial, looking down, instead of at street level.

Any ideas?

Thanks, and I'll keep the thread posted as we gather more info.
Photo & Video specializing in real estate and events
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Old January 13th, 2009, 04:27 PM   #2
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Location: Memphis, TN
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If the GPS you have as some type of output you could connect that to a 2nd camera and record the GPS readings. You can then sync up in post and picture in picture the GPS onto the main video.
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Old January 13th, 2009, 05:15 PM   #3
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The new Sony consumer minicams have built in GPS, believe it or not...
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Old January 13th, 2009, 06:02 PM   #4
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Location: North Conway, NH
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You could get some PC GPS software with an externally mounted GPS antenna. You could use a product like Camtasia or even whatever the free Microsoft Windows software that lets you record the screen to capture the plot. It's not Windows Movie Maker but a companion piece, the name of which escapes me.

And the Sony cams might have a hard time getting a sat signal through the metal skin of the helo.
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Old January 16th, 2009, 12:56 AM   #5
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Location: Honolulu, HI
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There are some very compact systems that allow radio controlled "first person view" aircraft to provide the remote pilot an on-screen display. That includes airspeed, altitude, compass heading and GPS data.

They can be quite sophisticated and the prices are usually fairly reasonable.

And this is for model airplanes... !

Here's a good place to start:

BLACKSTORK OSD GPS WITH NAVIGATION SYSTEM [BSTORK] - $199.95 :: Hobby Wireless - Super Store - The Best in Wireless System
Eagle Tree – R/C eLogger Telemetry OSD FPV UAV RC Aircraft data logger RC Model Airplane Telemetry Wireless Telemetry RC data logger Flight Data Recorder Model Boat Recorder Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Telemetry Boat Data Recorder Car Data Recorder
Intuitive Circuits, LLC. - Text Inserters and Video Overlay Products
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