Forget Dad's old road atlas and wobbly dashboard compass. Etak's SkyMap Pro ($260) turns your notebook PC into a high-powered navigator that tracks your position in real time.
SkyMap uses a 12-channel Global Positioning System (GPS) device to pinpoint your position and destination on detailed road maps that cover all 50 states.
And I do mean detailed: At a map's highest magnification, you can click on any point to see its address and latitude and longitude. You can selectively display points of interest such as restaurants, hotels and service stations.
Want to call ahead to reserve a room or a table? You can get a phone number by clicking on any hotel or restaurant icon.
Setup is painless. After you've installed the software, insert the GPS card into your computer's PCMCIA slot and attach the antenna to the dashboard. The device receives data from satellites and calculates your position, heading, speed and elevation. The easy-to-read maps pan seamlessly and redraw quickly.
Because of national security restrictions on civilian GPS, the position can be off by as much as 100 meters, but it's usually right on the money.
The package includes some great features:
Some elements need work:
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