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Press Reviews and Customer Testimonials

We've received very positive reviews and feedback from the trade press and our users about GPSy and GPSy Pro. While most of our clients use GPSy for trip navigation, backpacking, RVing, and other routing, positioning, and navigation purposes, several of our clients are doing some unexpected things:

We have registered users from all fifty of the United States as well as international users from the Argentina; Australia; Austria; Belgium; Bermuda; Bolivia; Canada; Canary Islands; Chile; Denmark; Finland; France; French Polynesia (Taihiti); Germany; Ghana; Greece; Hong Kong; Ireland; Italy; Japan; Kuwait; Liechtenstein; Luxembourg; Mexico, Netherlands; New Caledonia; New Zealand; Norway; Oman; Portugal; Puerto Rico; Saipan; Scotland; Singapore; South Africa; Spain; Sweden; Switzerland; Taiwan; United Arab Emirates; United Kingdom/Britain; and Venezuela.

Employees of the US Geological Service; EPA; NIH; US Army and US Navy as well as the national geological services of several other countries have purchased licenses for GPSy and GPSy pro.

Global Mapping Systems is proud to sponsor:

We will gladly sponsor your favorite Mac-friendly, non-profit organization or event. Please contact for more details. Sponsorships usually consist free copies of our software products, consulting, and technical support, and we can also loan some of our test GPS units for short periods of time.

Press Reviews

GPSy has been reviewed in the press:

Our GPS Resource Library also has been mentioned in the press:

We welcome reviews of GPSy from established Macintosh journals and magazines. We will provide an evaluation copy of GPSy as well as loaner GPS unit and data cable. Please contact for more information.

Letters from Customers

Here are some letters and newsgroup postings from satisfied customers (from most recent to oldest):

To:  Karen Nakamura (
From: Kelly Armstrong
Subject: GPSy Comments


It just dawned on me that I have never stopped to thank you for the truly
fine work you've done.

I just wander out on my lake, navigationally empowered, thinking the whole
world operates in the same care-free way I do. I run GPSyPro on my Mac
PowerBook with a little Garmin hand-held GPS receiver. My charts of Lake of
the Woods come from NDI in Newfoundland. Like the software, I bought some of
them from the web; others I purchased on CD.

I take this all to be normal until I talk to other boaters who are either
struggling with proprietary GPS systems or worse, unaware that the
technology exists.

I just started boating last year when my wife and I bought a 34-foot house
cruiser. You and GPSyPro have made the whole experience safe and enjoyable.
If you ever find yourself anywhere close to Lake of the Woods when ice is 
off the lake ... please look us up on the Otter B. We'll take you out to 
see some of the most gorgeous country on the continent ... the least we can do.


Kelly Armstrong
Manitoba, Canada

Subject: Re: GPSy-Need Help
Newsgroup: sci.geo.satellite-nav


I've yet to hear of a disgruntled GPSy customer. It is simply unthinkable
to use a GPS and a Mac without it. Just when you think you've hit the
limits of this program you will find another feature you overlooked. I
probably only use 50-60% of the capability and still don't feel
shortchanged. It is reasonably priced and the author supports it totally.

But why not just see for yourself? Go to:

and download the demo. It runs for 15 minutes at a time with some features
disabled. Also go to:

if you have more generic question after that.

As far as what I use it for:

1) Uploading and downloading waypoints and routes for backup and storage
2) Moving routes and waypoints among different receivers
3) Hot-linking into StreetAtlas, Internet Map pages and user maps
4) Downloading Topo maps from the Internet and having GPSy index them
5) Using DGPS to increase accuracy (most useful on Powerbook w/wireless connection)
6) Learning, playing and experimentation!

I'm just a casual user and not versed in the technicalities of either the
GPS system, the receiver or the software, so someone else might provide
more 'useful' uses for this software.

Just go to the GPSy page and work your way through the documentation. I
can assure you that all the features work for me with a Beige G3, a Garmin
G3+ (I've also used a 12, a II, a II+, a III and a StreetPilot). The cable
the author sells is also of good quality, although the strain relief on
the GPS end on mine finally let go after 2 years of use, more the fault of
Garmin design than anything else since the angle at which the plug enters
the body keeps the cable at a strained angle and rubs it against the
underlying surface. I just wrapped it with electrical tape.

Good luck,


Guy Teague  73 de KG5VT  
Watch out where the huskies go-donŐt you eat that yellow snow -FZappa

To:  Karen Nakamura (
From: Anonymous in the Yukon
Subject: GPSy Comments

Karen, I'm a proud owner of GPSy, a PowerBook G3 and a Garmin GPS III; I
use them to go four-wheeling either in my Yukon or my ATVs.

The link with Street Atlas works great!

I just want to thank you for what you've done, and am extremely
impressed by how sharp you are, and appreciate your sense of humor, too!

Thanks again!

[Karen: Phew! Glad someone gets my weird sense of humor. :)]

From: Andrew Highberger
To: Karen Nakamura 

Subject: GPSy Saved My Data!

 Dear Karen,
 I have been so happy with my GPSy software that I can hardly stand it. I
 have been a user since V3.16 and I love it. Today I was getting ready to
 transfer a route created in SA4.0 for a trip to Washington DC and got a
 very disconcerting message from my Garmin GPS III. It woke up and said
 "Warning! Data Lost!" and all of my waypoints and routes had been erased
 (about 200). Fortunately, I had been using GPSy to create and manage my
 data, and in a few minutes I was able to restore all of the data.
 Without GPSy  I would literally have been lost. Thanks for such a great
 Navigationally yours,
 Andrew Highberger

To:  Karen Nakamura (
From: Suha Ulgen

Hi Karen,

Once again congratulations on an excellent job done! Finally we have a 
powerful MacOS-based GPS software that really shines as a native 
Macintosh application as well.

I tried GPSyLink with the Xerox Map Server recently. It was wonderful to 
see my whereabouts by the Bosphorus in Istanbul, Turkey. 

We used a SiRFstar GPS engine in differential mode taking advantage of 
the DCI dGPS broadcast we operate in Istanbul. Positional accuracy was 
less than 5 meters, however, the Xerox map on the screen lacked the 
detail to showcase the accuracy achieved.


Finally, please tell us more about the GPSy Developer Program.


Suha Ulgen
Managing Director
Port Hueneme, CA and Istanbul, Turkey

[Yes, the Xerox map server has low-resolution detail for countries other than the U.S. Keep an eye out on the Digital Map Resource Page for information on maps. You can download the GPSy SDK from our "Solutions" page. -- Karen ]


From: Mary Nelson
Subject: Stitching & printing USGS maps

Hi Karen,

First, we'd like to let you know that we recently purchased GPSy and a Mac
GPS cable (hurray!) and are very pleased with them.  We are active
volunteers with Search and Rescue in New Mexico and were delighted to find
a Mac program that could assist us in managing SAR missions.  Although
we're still learning the ins and outs of GPSy, we expect it to be a
valuable tool for downloading search assignments to a SAR team's GPS unit,
tracking teams in the field, etc.

Ken and I are part of a state Incident Management Team that is called to
missions all over the state when it is deemed that the mission requires a
more highly trained management staff.  We are in the process of acquiring
USGS topo map CD's for the entire state, since the optimum map for a SAR
mission is a 7 1/2 minute quad and it takes a LOT of 7 1/2 minute quads to
cover the whole state.

It almost never fails that a mission will take place at the corner of 4
different maps.  We need to find software that will allow us to copy the
necessary parts of several different maps, stitch them together, overlay
the UTM grid if necessary, number the gridlines, then print the map at
actual size to give to the teams going out to search.  We have been told
that Adobe Photoshop could do the job, but that's a very expensive piece of
software with lots of bells and whistles that we will never use.  We're
hoping that you might be able to suggest some other software that could do
the job for us.

Mary Nelson

[We highly recommend GraphicConverter as a low-cost replacement for Adobe Photoshop. It should be able to do much of the map stitching. GPSy Pro can also print map sub-segments, which should make your job easier as well. -- Karen ]

To:  Karen Nakamura (
From: Tom Deering
Subject: rave review

Karen, you are one great lady.  I was so totally impressed with GPSy in
March, I bought it on the spot.  Utterly the coolest.

But wait!  I come back four months later, and it's twice as good.  I don't
know how you do it!  When do you sleep.  This thing is just totally

(I used it recently to travel the back roads in Poland and the Czech
Republic.  I scanned an ordinary roadmap, fed it to GPSy, and we were in
business.  If you have ever travelled in the part of the world, you know
how impossible the roads and signs are.  We once spend six hours trying to
go ten miles.)

I've used thousands of Mac programs every single day since the Skinny Mac
days, and I can't think of a program so perfect.  I wish all software
worked so well.  I mentally pat you on the back every time I fire GPSy up.

Best of luck to you.  You are the best.



From: Raymond Wong 
Subject: comment

My friends and I just love your software and how it works so well on Macs.
We are mac and pc users and the pc users love the mac now.  I think it's
great that such a great piece of software is available on the mac, and only
the mac.  At least it was here first.  A few of my friends are buying
Powerbooks just so they can use your software.  Keep up the good work.




I love maps, I love playing with GPS, and I love my Mac. GPSy just keeps
getting better and better as a way for me to combine those passions.

Steve Harmony
Los Alamos, NM

Dear Karen,

I just downloaded 3.10. I  started using 3.08 2 weeks ago
on my boat, a Spirit 28, on the dutch IJsselmeer. In rough winds my
Powerbook 1400C and especially GPSY with a Garmin III did a great job.

My friends were really astonished.

By the way, do you have time to sleep? I followed the huge amount of
improvements over the last two weeks on the registered page. As GM of an
AppleCentre, we develop software as well. I think my developers are
awfull lazybones compared with you.

I wish you lots of luck. I will be on your site every day.

Wim Schermer

From: Tom Harvey 
To: Karen Nakamura 
Subject: WOW!!!

Hi Karen,
A few months ago I wrote to you with some of the things I thought would 
be important for DRGs in GPSy and emphasized speed of redraw and related 
items.  You really did a good job on that!  I just got a chance to play 
with 3.07b. With a 6MB DRG on my Powerbook 1400c/117 scrolling is 
essentially instantaneous (other graphics operations seem as fast too) 
and I can even use the scroll arrows without bogging  down.  I have 
never seen graphics operate this fast.

Good Job!


Tom Harvey
registered GPSy user

From: Bill
Subject: A testimonial
To: Karen Nakamura

Karen -

On my suggestion, one of my colleagues got GPSy to go between his
Garmin 12XL (recently updated) and his home Mac. Last week, while his
daughter was off for spring break, he and his family went to
visit his folks out east. They are about 12 air miles (21 or so
hiking miles) from Mt Mitchell, which is the highest peak in the Smokies
(and, I think, in the eastern US). He uploaded a bunch of waypoints from
GPSy into the 12XL and used them to navigate to the peak. He was very
enthusiastic about GPSy and how easy he found it to use (he is a
manager these days, not a computer techy, and very much a woodsy type -
hiking, XC skiing, bicycling, backpacking). 

He got his waypoints by using a trail map (not a topo, but one of those 
"maps" that shows where the trails go) to identify places where the trail 
crossed various roads, then used Street Atlas 4 to get the lat/lon and
generate a file. He said he did a bit of editting of the file to get it to
the exact format GPSy needed, but it went very smoothly, so he was quite

So you have another very happy user. 

          -- Bill

GPSy 3.08 handles StreetAtlas route files much more smoothly, so he should be even happier. :) -- KN

From: Torkel Spindler
To: GPSy Technical Support
Subject: 3.0 Release!!

Karen, et al..

Congratulations to the recent release of GPSy 3.0.

A great piece of software for a great operating system, made by great
and innovative people!!


Torkel Spindler

The following message was posted to the sci.geo.satellite-nav in response to a question on GPS software for the Macintosh. It is reprinted here with permission of the author.

 Subject: Re: Garmin III & Mac
 From: Daryl Daughters
 Newsgroup: sci.geo.satellite-nav
 In article <
>, you wrote:
 I am evaluating the purchase of a hand held GPS device and want to
 interface my selection with my Macintosh. Can anyone confirm whether
 cables are available to link the Garmin III with my Mac. What kind of
 maps are available  on CD Rom or on the Web that could be used with such
 a system. Can anyone identify Web pages that cover Mac/GPS issues. Are
 there better options for general use than the Garmin III ?

 Go to
 It has the most complete collection about using GPS's with Mac's that you
 could imagine.  I followed the instructions and made a cable that worked
 fine, although what I made wasn't very robust.  I later purchased the
 Garmin cable that connects both to your cigarette lighter outlet in your
 car and a computer.  I bought a Mac serial cable and broke off the one pin
 that's indicated at the above site, and it works great.  The software
 offered at the above site also does a very good job of interfacing with
 your Mac.  You can interface it with various mapping software, save
 waypoints, etc.  I bought it and it's well worth the small price.  I have a
 Garmin GPS III and the maps, although limited to major highways and
 freeways, are very useful.  We used it on a 850 mile vacation in January
 and it was nice to always know we were on the right highway, and how far it
 was until we needed to change highways again.  It was worth it to have the
 car adapter so that I could leave the display on bright at night and
 continue to tell where we were without using up batteries quickly.  The
 Garmin GPS III is able to pick up plenty of satellites mounted to velcro on
 your dashboard, but I bought a small, powered, external antenna that
 results in full signal levels from every possible satellite.  It's also
 nice because you don't have to leave the GPS on your dash, you can pass it
 around the car.  There are references to the antenna at the gpsy site.  I
 don't remember the brand, but it was made somewhere in Europe.

 Daryl Daughters

The name of the antenna is the Lowe Antenna, built in England and highly recommend by all those at Global Mapping Systems -- KN

Subject: GPSy
From: Frederick B. Ammons
To: GPSy Technical Support

Without a doubt, GPSy has proven to be the best product of its kind available 
to Macintosh users.  I did not hesitate to register my copy after using it a 
bit with my powerbook and Garmin 12xl.  I look forward to the GPSy pro as I 
already have ordered a number of DRG CD-ROMs from USGS.


We've decided to roll USGS/GeoTIFF support into GPSy itself rather than GPSy Pro, which has made a lot of customers very happy. :)

Subject: Re: periodic time synchronization with GPSY 3.0 

Hi Karen,

I've downloaded the [new GPSy 3.0 alpha] and it works like a charm. Thanks for making
the change. We'll be using the program on a station  along the San Andreas
Fault near Parkfield, CA -- the so-called earthquake capital of the world.

Best regards,


[You're most welcome! Tom will be synchronizing network clocks using the new AppleEvent 'sync' command in GPSy. - Karen]


Everything worked great out on the water. This is the best navigational
system ever used on this 20 year old vessel.


Subject: GPSy Comment from Registered User

Karen (et all),

Just wanted to say EXCELLENT product!!  I first tried GPSy with a
Tripmate and got so into it that I went out and purchased a Garmin 12xl
and love the functionality I have with GPSy and my GPS unit.

Thanks and keep up the great work,

Roy W. Reter
Computer Specialist
National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences

Hello Karen,
I just ordered your GPSy program tonight after downloading the sample
version and testing it with my 1400c/166 and DeLorme TripMate. It worked
the first time and I was really impressed, so much so that I broke my
This summer, a friend of mine who own a sailboat, and I spent some time
attempting to integrate a PC navigation program called NavTrek, running
under SoftWindows95 on his PowerBook 1400c/133, to integrate into his
boat's GPS/AutoPilot system. We got the program running, but never were
able to get the program to talk to the Mac's Modem/Printer port from
SoftWindows95. Have you heard of anyone successfully using the 1400c
serial port from SoftWindows95 to receive data from a GPS?
My friend will become one of your clients too, as soon as I show him
mine! Thanks very much for a fantastic Mac product!!!!

Looking forward to v.3 !!!


[Thanks for the kinds words. Unfortunately native Wintel serial support is so poor that SoftWindows/VirtualPC doesn't have a fighting chance of keeping up with the NMEA stream. - Karen]

Subject: GPSY is great.


Just wanted to drop you a note to say that your software (and cable) are
fantastic. Just got my new Garmin GPS II+ today. Ran Delorme 3.0 for the
first time, Gpsy for the first time, and it all worked w/o ever so much
as looking at documentation. I am impressed. And as a software systems
engineer I am not easily impressed by software. Good luck with your


Subject: Asheville Trip with GPSy

The trip to Asheville to find potential housing sites was a major
success. The wife put her business up for sale as soon as we got back,
and once the business, and the house (in that order) are sold, we're on
our way to Asheville.

GPSy was an essential element in scouting Asheville. With Street Atlas
3.0 and my Mac 520 PowerBook, GPSy not only showed us exactly where we
were at any moment, it also allowed us to select the most effective
route to the next area of investigation. There's no way that we could
have learned all we needed to know without GPSy support.

GPSy also provided an excellent speedometer calibration, to avoid
meeting any unpleasant 'bears'

Thanks for creating an excellent product, and I hope your negotiations
with Delorme go well. GPSy is a natural for the TripMate product.

Earl B.

[Karen: I've now signed a contract with DeLorme for access to the Street Atlas (R) database and Tripmate (TM protocols. Expect to see greater integration of these products in the near future.]


... Thank you for all your support and I really do think you have put together a 
great package. I look forward to future updates and will recommend this 
software to anyone who is interested in gps on the mac.

Thanks again.

Joe D.

I'm so excited to play with this I can't breathe...

Justin M.

Hi Karen,

I am writing to thank you for creating such a cool program, and to give you
some feedback on it. 

This past Monday, a friend and I went on a road trip, and I wanted to use my
GPS. (This is my reason for purchasing GPSy in the first place.) I am running
a Magellan 4000 and a PowerBook Duo 210.

Everything worked well, and all the instructions were good, but I was tripped
up in a few places:

1) For the Magellan units, use the first ("raw") cable diagram in Appendix A.
(Which I did first,and it worked, but I would have been reassured if the WWW
site told me outright.)
2) The Magellan units speak three types of 0183: an A, B, and C type. Set the
GPS to use the A type with GPSy.
3) Be sure you are using the newest version of ShrinkWrap - I had an old one
that can not work with a disk larger than 1.44 MB. (I downloaded the newest
4) Do not leave the United States while GPSyLink is running (we went to
Canada for fun - I live in NH) - it crashes Street Atlas, though GPSy was
still working fine.

I was super impressed in this program - it worked better than advertised, did
not crash once (ran for 12 Hours straight) and was very accurate. My friend
just about wet his pants when I showed it to him! 

Needless to say, GPSy and GPSyLink will go with me on road trips for now on!
(Now all I need it that 1 GB HDD for the PowerBook...).

TNX   ...JMM

Karen, I thank you for writing one of the best GPS programs and one
especially for the Mac.  Also, very glad to hear that your cat thanks me.  As a
bonafide "Cats" person here at the Wintergarden Theatre, I would like
you to have this JPEG of one of my favorite "cats".
Dale M.
[Cool photo! - K.]
Once I had a working cable, The tripmate worked fine. I had a lot of fun this
weekeend with the combination of Tripmate, Street Atlas and GPSy.  Everthing
worked and was pretty accurate.

Thanks again for a wonderfull product that makes Wintel toys availible to the
Mac community.

Jim G.

Hi Karen,

Just a note to say that GPSy (2.1) worked great on my
trip to Lake Shasta, CA! I recorded several log files
as I cruised the lake. I used a Magellan Meridian (not XL)
as my GPS unit and a PowerBook 520 8/240. I'm looking
forward to the mapping functions when they become available.

BTW, I made my own interface cable using a Maxim 233 chip
powered by the Magellan cable.

Thomas B.
[A quick note: Magellans are one of the hardest to hook up, glad you figured it out!]

Thanks for provide us all with a GREAT program. I really enjoy loading
up Street Atlas 3.0 and driving around with a moving map on my

As a boater I'm also looking forward to NOAA maps on my powerbook.

Thanks for the hard work.

David G.
[NOAA/BSB Maps are on the planned feature list for GPSy Pro! -K.]
Thanks for your help regarding GPSY, congratulations on a very cool
application!  -- Mike R.

First of all I want to tell you how impressed I am with GPSy -- keep up
the good work!  For what its worth I am using it with a Garmin GPS-35 12
channel "TracPack" -- the amount of time required to acquire a fix is
extremely short with this package.

Now to the question - have you had any luck with any of the PCMCIA card

thanks for any info

Steve C.

[Yes, GPSy works with any PC-Card GPS receiver that outputs NMEA-0183 and registers as a serial device. But I'd much recommend using a handheld GPS unit and a PC-Card serial port rather than an all-in-one. -K.]

Macintosh was part of GPS History!

Karen -

...  Back in the '80's, I worked for Rockwell International on the GPS program.  
We made and tested the satellites before they were launched into orbit (I was on
the test end).  I purchased my first Mac while employed there utilizing
their generous employee computer purchase plan.  I was chided for buying
this "toy" but within a couple of years, Macs could be seen everywhere
at the facility (which, at its peak, employed 5,000+ people).

Every time I hear of a cool use of GPS technology, I feel glad to have
had a part in it all (I physically worked on satellites 13 - 24).  Even
more so, many people don't realize that much of the day-to-day logistics
support was thanks to the Macintosh as well.



Greg M.
[Note: everytime you see SVs 13-24 on your GPS screen, think of Greg and Macs! - K]

GPSy 3.0 at MacWorld Tokyo '98

On the kind invitation of the folks at the Shonan Macintosh User's Group (Shimayugu), and FGPS (a NiftyServe GPS Group), Karen Nakamura and Kiyoshi Suzuki were seen demoing GPSy to a crowd of Japanese, American, Taiwanese, and other Macintosh professionals.


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.

This page was last updated on June 22, 2000. We've had [N/A] hits since we relocated on March 27th, 1997.