When bbTracker is started the first time it brings up the options screen.
Here bbTracker can be customized to your needs. The most important setting is the track directory. This is the directory where bbTracker will save your tracks (in files called *.bbt) and where it will put exported tracks (*.gpx and *.kml). Setting the sample interval influences how detailed your track will be and how much points it will have (and how big the files will be).
After the setup screen bbTracker will show an almost empty screen with some information on the bottom. This is the track screen. Since there is no track beeing recorded or displayed the top part (where the track would be shown) is currently empty and only the bottom part shows some information (your current position, if there is GPS reception).
The information at the bottom is
- longitude and latitude in the first line
- speed, orientation and elevation on the second line
- length of the track, current track point and number of track points in the third line
When the font is small enough and/or the display large enough then the information from the third line will be displays right of line 1 and 2 instead.
Recording a track
When you are ready to record a new track, select "Start Track" from the menu. This will ask for a name for the track and start recording. The current progress will be visible on screen. There are currently four views available while tracking (switching between views can be done either by the "Switch Screen" Menu Option or by the '0' or 'Space' keys):
- track view
- This view shows the path taken in a top-down view. It is usefull to get a quick overview over the path you've taken, the distance you've traveled and so on.
- elevation view
- This view shows the elevation of your track over time. Note that elevation in a GPS world is not given relative to the sea level, as most of us are used to. GPS measures the elevation above the World Geodetic System (revision 84). A nice overview of the problem can be found at The Theory and Practice of GPS.
- speed view
- This view is similar to the elevation view, but shows the speed of your track over time. This can be used to verify if you want a constant pace, for example when running.
- details view
- This view shows some detailed information about the current point (what the current point is, will be explained later on).
The current Point
The status tile (the small text area at the bottom of the track, elevation and speed view) and the details view always show the information of the currently selected track point. When recording a new track, that is usually the last track point recorded, but you can navigate to different points to inspect the information stored about them. When pressing left on your phone (or scrolling left in the case of a BlackBerry) then the previous track point will be selected. Pressing/scrolling right selects the next track point and up/down jumps forward/backward by 10 track points at once (which is usefull when navigating bigger tracks). When recording new track points will only be selected, when the last track point was selected before, otherwise the current selection will stay unchanged.
The Track Manager
On the track manager you can see a list of all tracks you've recorded already. Each track can be displayed, deleted or exported.
- Displaying a track simply loads it and displays it the same way as if it was just beeing recorded (no new track points will be added 'though).
- Deleting a track does just that, remove the .bbt file from the track directory. This does not delete exported versions of the track (*.kml and *.gpx)
- Exporting will export the selected track to each format selected in the options. The .kml file can be loaded by Google Earth to get a nice view of the track, for example.
The Debug Log
There's a somewhat hidden option for debugging, should it ever be necessary. On the About screen select "Activate Debug Log" to create a file called debug.txt in your track directory. As long as this file exists bbTracker will write debug information to it, which can be usefull when finding and fixing a bug. To stop logging to this file select "Deactivate Debug Log" from the same screen. Note that this will delete the file, so be sure to copy it before, if you plan on using it.