An Interesting Point About Trekker Points Of Interest

I figured out something with my Trekker that I thought other people might want to know. If you’re in free mode, and you record a point of interest or POI, a. it becomes hard as all hell to find and label, and b. you cannot use that POI as an origin or destination of a route.

It all started when I first got the Trekker and I was playing with it. When I reached the door of our apartment building, I marked the door. It seemed to have marked. But when you’re marking it by hitting record, you don’t get to name it. You can do that later by going to edit. So, I tried to find it by going to the edit POI button…and I couldn’t find the damn thing. It appeared to not be there. But every time I walked past my door, it would say “POI 4”, and then you’d hear my voice saying “my door.” This was especially perplexing since I had made 3 POI’s before the door and was able to label them. Why was this particular one being so pesky?

This mystery continued to perplex me for a few months. Then, after I put the new maps in, I went out to mark another POI that I had meant to. I did, and it too vanished. I had created several other ones without any problem, so now I was really stumped. Finally, the answer came to me when I marked Steve’s dad’s house as a POI, and it too disappeared. I had made all 3 of these points while in free mode!

Ok, time to back up. What the hell is free mode? Trekker has 3 modes. Pedestrian mode, which is when you’re walking along sidewalks and streets, motorized mode for when you’re in a car, and free mode for when you have navigated into something that’s not on a network of streets. So, parks, parking lots, big open fields, bodies of water, train tracks that are set back from the sidewalk, that sort of thing would make the Trekker bounce into free mode.

I guess, when you make a POI when you’re in free mode, it really doesn’t know where to put it. It *should* know what town you’re in, but I guess it can’t be sure since you’re in the middle of a wide open space. Maybe you’re on a river that happens to be near a town. How can it safely assume you’re in a town since you’re not actually on one of its streets?

So, here’s how you search for the POI’s you make while in free mode. Once you’ve hit the edit button, leave as much as you can blank. Leave the name blank, set the category to all, set the state box to all, leave the town blank. The only things you should change are the source and the favourite checkbox. Check the favourite box and set the source to personal. That will force all your personal POI’s to appear. Then, you can label the elusive little phantoms!

One final thing to note about making POI’s in free mode is you cannot use them as origins or destinations of a route. This is because Trekker does not feel safe giving you turn by turn instructions to the spot. It’s in the middle of open space. It can’t possibly know if between you and that POI is a raging river, a gaping hole, or other things. What you can do is once you get close, you can hit the end key, bring up the points of interest around dialog, and choose navigate to POI and it will tell you at what angle and distance it is. But you can’t set off from your home and plot a route to a POI that was created in free mode.

The part that bugs me is when you try and create a route to one of these suckers, it will finish trying to make the route, and then just say “Cannot compute route. Route canceled.” But it won’t tell you why it can’t compute it! Tell me that you can’t compute route because origin or destination is not on the network of streets. That, my friends, is an informative error message.

So, I don’t know if I’m the last person in the universe to figure out this little tidbit. I hope not. Hopefully this post will stop someone else from scratching their head as to why POI’s keep disappearing, and you can’t make a route to them.

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