Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Camera + GPS (built-in) = GeoTagged Images

In December 2008, I purchased a Nikon (Coolpix) P6000 - a consumer point-and-shoot camera with a built-in GPS.  I finally decided to part with my $500 as I was preparing for a trip to Africa and didn't want to lug around a camera AND a GPS and bother with hoping I could link photo and location later.

A great little camera, this 13MP camera has a zoom lens, video capacity, and several preset and user-set modes for shooting.  If you plan for field studies with your students and you have the budget, I'd highly recommend you take a look at this camera, still available in most camera shops that carry Nikon gear (or Amazon). The photo below was taken with the P6000 and geotagged as I took the photo!

My cautionary notes:
  • The GPS eats the barrery - fast.  Bring a second battery along for a day long outing ith kids.
  • On my camera, the automatic lens shield has trouble fully opening and fully closing on occassion, particularly when the air is very humid (tropical).
  • The P6000 isn't the most rugued camera with built-in GPS.  Be careful!  Consider the Ricoh 500SE, if you need a ruggedized camera or one that is "GIS friendly".

    Lastly, recently Samsung has also released a GPS-enabled 12.2MP camera.  Although I haven't used it, it may be right for you and your students.  It's half the price of the Nikon!

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