Friday, April 15, 2011

Cross Posting from MyTracks to DailyMile

As I wrote before, I find that the My Tracks application from Google is a very useful and easy to use utility to use for tracking my running training. Howver, I have noticed that many people I know seemed to be using an application called DailyMile to post details of their exercise activity on Facebook.

This integration with Facebook seems to be great fun and it allows people to give and receive motivational messages, so I decided to register for DailyMile myself to see how it worked. When I started using it first I was surprised shocked to find that people are expected to manually enter details of the routes that they run. It struck me that there should be an application to automatically upload GPS traces to DailyMile, but when I asked a few friends nobody knew of one. However, my asking sparked a colleague Ben Hardill from IBM's Hursley lab to take on the challenge of building such an application. It only took him a few days to get it working and he describes his progress on his blog.

He has not yet officially released the application, but he asked me to be one of the Beta testers. It works brilliantly, with one limitation which means that you must use a regular DailyMile account rather than logging into DailyMile with your Facebook credentials. This bug is caused by a limitation in Daily Mile's implementation of OAuth rather than a limitation in Ben's code and in any case doesn't bother me, because I don't have any significant Daily Mile history to worry about abandoning

The existence of this application provoked me to go for a run this morning before work just so I had something to use to try out the application. I am glad to say that it worked great.

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