Introduction to GPSyTM

GPSyTM connects your Macintosh to a broad range of Global Positioning System (GPS) receivers, Loran-C, DECCA, and OMEGA navigational units and displays your current coordinates, altitude, bearing, heading, speed over ground, velocity made good, distance to go, current waypoint, GPS satellite data, and more. GPSyTM can upload and download GPS system data (waypoints; routes; track; almanac) from a variety of GPS manufacturers including Ashtec, Garmin, Eagle, Lowrance, Magellan, Rockwell and Trimble. GPSy is also the only Macintosh program to support the new Internet DGPS-IP services, giving you meter accuracy in real-time through from free, online DGPS-IP servers.

To see what our customers and clients have to say about GPSy, please see our Customer Testimonials Page. The GPSy Screenshots Page gives a good sense of GPSy in operational use while our Compatibility Page lets you know which GPS units we work with (practically any). To download a free demo copy of GPSy, please visit our Download Page. You can purchase GPSy online over the internet or via more traditional means through our Purchase Page.

If you are a boater and want support for BSB (NOAA/NDI) nautical charts, or you work with very large or complex map images, you may be interested in GPSy Pro, the big-sister version of GPSy.

If you are new to GPS technology, you may want to browse our GPS Resource Library which contains FAQs and tutorials on the GPS. If you haven't yet bought a GPS unit, check out our GPS Unit Recommendations in our FAQ.

GPSy 3.3x Feature Table
Feature Description
GPS Communication Protocols
(Real-Time Position)
NMEA-0183; NMEA-0182; Rockwell NavCore; Rockwell Zodiac; Sony IPS; Trimble TSIP; and Garmin Real-Time
GPS Data Transfer Protocols Eagle/Lowrance (LSI-100); Garmin GRMN/GRMN (normal; StreetPilot; extended 12XL and GPS III); and Magellan
DGPS Data Corrections DGPS-IP Service from Internet DGPS-IP Servers
Real-time RTCM data decoding and display
Geodetic Datums 127 including all current NAD, WGS, OSGB, and NTF datums
Coordinate Systems Latitude/Longitude (DMM,DMS,DDD); UTM/UPS; Australian Map Grid (AMG); British Grid (BNG); Dutch Grid (RK); French GRADs; German Grid (Gauss-Krüger); Irish (ITM); Maidenhead Grid; U.S. Military Grid Reference System (MGRS); New Zealand Map Grid (NZMG); Swedish Grid (SWD); Swiss Grid (SUI); ECEF XYZ
Scanned Map Formats GeoTIFF; JPEG+JGW; TIFF; TIFF+TFW; PICT; GIF; BMP; PhotoShop; JPEG; JFIF; and QTIF
Text-to-speech Voice synthesis of current location, bearing and speed, and other navigation data
Date/Time Synchronization Synchronizes Apple system clock and PRAM to current GPS time and location
Track File Formats Extended GPSy Format; GPSy Classic Format; StreetAtlas 4 GPL file; MapFan TRK; DMAPWin POT; MAPGEN; MATLAB; Waypoint+ (MapBlast). Also, track in real-time to NMEA-0183; NMEA-0183 RMC; Tab-Delimited; Raw; and HTML.
Waypoint File Formats Extended GPSy Format; GPSy Classic Format; MapFan SPT; Waypoint+ (MapBlast).
Internet Map Servers GPSyLinks (TM) to Internet Map Servers allow you to instantly view your position with maps updated over the Internet. With Census TIGER, you can also run census data analyses on your local area.
Japan: MapFanWeb and MapFanWeb Route,
U.K.: StreetMap
USA: MapBlast, MapsOnUs, Census Bureau TIGER, and
World: Google Maps
CD-ROM Map Databases Japan: iPC MapFan II;
Japan: Japan Map Center National Digital Maps (1:25000, 1:200000 scale map images);
USA: USGS DRG Topographic Map CD-ROM Databases

GPSy 3.3x Protocol Support
Communications Protocol GPSy Support
NMEA-0182 SupportYes
NMEA-0183 SupportYes
Rockwell Binary Protocol SupportYes (both NavCore & Zodiac)
Sony IPS (3000/5000/etc.) Protocol SupportYes
Trimble (TSIP) Protocol SupportYes
Real-time Garmin ProtocolYes
RTCM-104 DGPS Stream DecodingYes (Real-Time and Logging Suppported)
CTB Serial Port SupportYes (up to 32 PC-Card; PCI; USB-to-Serial Adaptor; PortShare; PortJuggler; Internal PowerBook Ports; and other CTB compliant devices)
Serial BPS RateControllable 150-57600
Bi-direction Computer ControlYes; full featured w/ 69 commands for RTCM, remote modem, DeLorme Tripmate, Garmin GPS 20/25/30/31/35/36, and Ashtec SCA 12 support + extensions

Other Features

  • Compatible with any NMEA-0183, NMEA-0182, Rockwell NavCore V, Rockwell Zodiac Binary, Sony IPS, or Trimble (TSIP) compliant GPS/Loran-C/etc. navigational unit
  • Unique AppleEvent polling of GPS latitude/longitude/speed/track/UTC-time using AppleScript and GPSyLink [NEW]
  • Support for Rockwell NavCore V-based GPS units (DeLorme TrackNGo (TM) and Rockwell NavCard among others) as well as Rockwell Zodiac Binary Protocol (DeLorme Tripmate, among others)
  • Computer-command control of programmable/bi-directional GPS units such as the Ashtec SCA-12/12S; DeLorme TripmateTM; Starlink Differential GPS units; Garmin GPS 20/20SL/30/31/35/36; and remotely configured GPS units.
  • Mac System Time Synchronization to GPS/atomic time
  • Static Position Calculation / SA-cancellation
  • Text-to-speech of locational and navigational information
  • World-map locater
  • SI/Metric and Imperial conversion
  • GPS Satellite Data; extensive almanac data
  • Available maritime data
  • Realtime data logging and playback
  • PowerPC Native "Fat" binaries
  • Support for all CTB compliant serial ports, including PowerBook serials; USB-to-Serial Adaptors (Keyspan; etc.); PortShare; PortJuggler; and PC Card GPS units and serial devices.
  • Secure on-line registration


GPSyTM is a full-featured Macintosh GPS communications software program. GPSyTM connects your Macintosh to virtually any data-output capable GPS unit on the market, collects the GPS system data, and displays your location, speed, heading, bearing, and other information in real-time.

Precision Positional Information: GPSyTM presents positional information in Degrees:Minutes:Seconds (41:18'56"N), decimal degrees (eg. 41.315550N), Degree: Decimal Minutes (41:18.933N); Universal Transverse Mercator (UTM); Universal Polar System (UPS); Maidenhead Grid; U.S. Military Grid Reference System (MGRS); Australian Map Grid (AMG); British National Grid (BNG); Dutch Grid (RK); German Grid (GK); Irish Transverse Mercator; New Zealand Map Grid (NZMG); Swedish Grid; Swiss Grid; and ECEF X, Y, Z systems. You can choose a primary and secondary coordinate system and can select from a list of 127 geodetic datums for automatic translation.

Automapping: GPSyLinkTM connects GPSyTM to USGS topographic maps on CD-ROM. GPSy also includes links to most popular online Internet Map Servers such as GoogleMaps. You can set a continuous update (1, 3, 5, 10, 15, 30, 60 seconds) rate or single location. GPSyLinkTM can display your current waypoint using these map databases as well as your current bearing, heading, distance to go, and speed. This provides a sophisticated auto-mapping solution that rivals some of the more expensive ($3000~) built-in car GPS systems while also giving you the convenience of a hand-held GPS unit.

Clients have also made extensive use of our MapBlast support. MapBlast.COM is an internet map server that also provides door-to-door routing. With GPSy, you can easily upload these map routes to your handheld GPS units, most of which cannot door-to-door route themselves. This is a perfect companion for planning road trips. Just upload your daily route each morning before you head out for the day.

To create a $200-$400 GPS car navigation solution:

With GPSy and a Ricochet radio-internet modem strapped to your PowerBook, not only can you get real-time Internet DGPS-IP data corrections removing SA and giving a real-time <10 meter accuracy; view your location using multiple GPSyLinked Internet Map Servers; but you can also export your current location to a HTML web file. Using Personal Web Sharing, anyone can view your current location. Ideal for vehicle tracking or remote position monitoring.

Selective Availability Cancellation:

GPSy support Internet DGPS-IP data corrections from free DGPS-IP servers for meter-accurate real-time solutions. In addition, if the navigational unit is in a stable location, GPSyTM can calculate the average static position over time. This will cancel the cumulative effects of the government-induced Selective Availability (SA). You will need at least an hour of calculating the average in order to cancel out the effects. You can reach about a 10-meter (30 foot) static solution using this option or meter-accurate combined with DGPS-IP. The length of the data sample; sample size n; standard deviation; and the average dilution of precision (DOP) are also calculated, thus giving you an index into the sample accuracy.

For screenshots of display panels, menus, and so forth, please see our screenshots page.



Copyright (C) 1997-2007 by Karen Nakamura. All rights reserved. GPSy® and GPSy.COM® are registered trademarks and GPSy ProTM and GPSyLinkTM are trademarks of Karen Nakamura. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. Mention of a third-party's product does not represent endorsement of or by that product.

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