|Mapping for personal users|
Tracking for Education
The Mapyx Tracking Solution?
Tracking technology identifies the location of individuals or groups. Mapyx develops the best and most reliable technologies to develop into a comprehensive suite of products and services, giving the User the most comprehensive tracking package available. It is not merely a product but a full-service solution providing the User with as much or as little help as required.
The Mapyx Tracking Solution is a fully integrated bespoke mapping and tracking system designed for the Outdoor Education sector. Originally, it was developed for search and rescue operations; subsequently it was developed specifically for outdoor education and has further evolved since its launch in 2010 to respond to specific Users requests. Today it is simply the leading mapping and tracking technology available used by professional organisations. It has been the DofE Recommended Solution for the past 8 years.
The Mapyx Tracking Solution is in use with Mountain Rescue, Lowland Rescue, the Ministry of Defence, Fire Services, Schools, Engineering Companies, Local Authorities and Councils. It has been used for expeditions and events around the world and even for TV work by the BBC and Channel 4. We have tracked people all over the UK, as well as further afield such as Nepal, Bhutan, India, Japan, Africa, Greenland, USA, Europe, New Zealand, to name but a few.
The Mapyx Solution
The Mapyx solution is a fully developed and integrated solution, which consists of software, hardware and full support solutions. It is not a single component, but multiple components that the User can select, depending upon their needs; of course, our recommendation is for the User to have all components to hand, so that they have maximum coverage and support.
The Component Parts
The Mapyx solution consists of a number of Modules, which can be used concurrently or individually.
PC: MX Map
MX Map is a geographical information solution. It supersedes Quo and is the system in use with professional organisations. In simple terms it allows you to draw routes and print them out at any size and any scale. It comes with a complete set of Ordnance Survey Mapping from 1:1m to 25k Explorer Mapping. It is fully featured and simple to use for the beginner. This can be used in the classroom or in-field as required. It is excellent for teaching.
When integrated with MX Tracker, it permits the user to view positions of Trackers and interrogate data. It is a very stable platform and we recommend its use as the primary tracking tool in-field as ‘base-control’.
Mobile: MX Map Mobile
MX Map Mobile is the mobile App available for iOS and Android. It permits you to store maps on your phone and works like a GPS to locate your position. Routes can be uploaded from MX Map. This is our favoured in-field solution (secondary) for using when you leave ‘base-control’ and it can also be used by all of your supervisors.
Text: MX Track SMS
MX Track SMS is a text-based solution that permits the user of any registered phone to text our message centre to obtain the position of one or more of the Trackers in OS grids. This is our favoured back-up solution (secondary back-up), just in case you have limited internet connectivity and texts usually get through where other communication services fail.
Locate: MX Locate
MX Locate is a solution we implemented years ago for Police and Rescue services and has been used to successfully locate vulnerable persons. Simply, it allows the user to text any mobile phone with and typed message to get a location of the phone on the MX Map screen. So, you can use this technology to ‘text-locate’ leaders in the field, who do not have trackers. It can also be used in case of Emergency to locate individual phone users. We view this as another proven back-up solution.
Portal: MX Track Web
MX Trackweb is an internet portal that displays Ordnance Survey mapping at 50k and 25k scales. You can upload gpx files and display trackers on the portal. We grade this solution as ‘Entry Level’ and ‘tertiary’, since it is highly dependent upon internet connectivity since it requires maps to be streamed to the device hence the need for quite high bandwidth. Due to its inherent weakness, this solution should only ever be an entry or back-up solution.
Exped: MX Expedition Card
The MX Expedition Card works within MX Map and allows the user to create a DofE route card in seconds. A useful addition to the system since it does all the hard work for you.
24/7: MX Support
MX Support has two elements:
Network: MX Network
MX Network allows the installation of MX Map on to your school’s network and then accessed via any number of licensed user computers. So, if you want a computer suite filled with 10, 20, or 100 computers using MX Map, no problem.
The below graphic is how we recommend utilising our solutions as the ‘primary system’ and in-field solution.
All of our solutions are thoroughly tested by a group of Users, who regularly provide feedback on product improvements and test results. Initially we test our software internally and once satisfied, we pass our test software to our key beta testers who are mainly part of Mountain Rescue Teams, who perhaps place demands on our software greater than schools, so make the ideal testers. Once tested and any amendments made, we go to our selective Schools testers, who further provide feed-back from an Educational perspective.
By example, our new MX Track SMS was first tested in 2014 and tested more recently by Sutton Valance School who provided the following feed-back: “We used it in earnest up in the Lake District with three different people. It was brilliant – it solved an issue with internet connectivity and once I had set up the individuals it worked fantastically. Overall, a very successful trial and we will definitely be continuing to use it to augment the Mapyx solution.”
By the time our solutions reach you, we have every confidence that they are useful and deliver a proven solution.
To view a simple video, click here
* - https://www.dofe.org/shopping/expedition-kit/tracking-systems
** - https://www.findmespot.eu/en/spotforschools/lander.php
Why Schools come to us:
1. We are the ONLY Company Recommended by The Duke of Edinburgh's Award for Tracking. Mapyx was selected by the DofE after extensive assessment of
available solutions and surveys of DofE groups using the Mapyx Tracking System. We have been reassessed and reappointed.
SolutionsWe offer three purchase solutions:
The best way to find out more information, or to discuss your requirments, or to get a no-obligation quote is to either telephone us or email us:
Telephone : 01392 241 428
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Clients & Testimonials
We do not disclose Client details without their permission, but below is a shortened list of our Education Clients and a few testimonials so you can read some Clients views.
Shortened Client List
TestimonialsColm McCloskey - Thomas Deacon Academy
“We have been using Mapyx Tracking system for the past few years to track our Duke of Edinburgh groups. Having had a few groups wander off in the wrong direction in previous years and my hair turning a lighter shade; once introduced to this system it has been the best Duke of Edinburgh investment we have made.
Prior to going onto the hillside, I train staff and students on how to use and manage the Trackers effectively whilst on an expedition. The benefits that I have found are:
The system has brought a peace of mind to other colleagues and myself involved. The school fraternity from parents to our Educational Visit’s Coordinator are all in support of the Tracking system. The Tracking System has allowed us to further remove ourselves from the hillside, with less remote supervision and enhance the experience of our students in the countryside.”Mary Parker - Akeley Wood School
“We are thrilled with our purchase of the Mapyx system and the Spot Trackers for use in our School Duke of Edinburgh Award scheme. The benefits have been more than we had imagined – not only do the Trackers give great peace of mind to staff and parents alike, we are able to make sure we see each group while they are out on their expedition. In addition we have used the data from each group to debrief them at the end of each day and are able to congratulate and advise as appropriate.
The whole system has brought us more than we hoped for and we cannot imagine being without it now!”Shaun White – 1804 Sqn. ATC
“We have only just had chance to let you know how our tracked expedition went. We were very pleased with the results, and the assessor was suitably impressed. It gave us that extra edge when it came to making decisions on when and if we needed to 'go mobile' to find straying Cadets, and to be able to come off the hill at the end of a long day of remote supervision, set up camp and still have virtual eyes on the last hour for the group was excellent. The group has also used the recorded tracks as part of their presentation.”Mark Eastwood – Downham Market School
“The Spot2 / Mapyx tracking system has made a massive impact on the Duke of Edinburgh expeditions that we have run so far this year. Our first outing was to the Peak District with four Silver practise groups, closely followed by our Gold groups on their practise expedition in the North Yorkshire Moors and then their assessment in the Yorkshire Dales.
We've found the devices to be 100% reliable and accurate in pinpointing exactly where a group is which provides us (and them!) with more peace of mind as to their safety. Gone are the days of interpreting route cards to judge when groups will pop out onto roads so that we can meet them! The students themselves really liked knowing that even if they did go wrong (they didn't!), we would always know where they were and they became quite competitive in the evening debrief at seeing who could overlay their actual and planned routes the closest! Parents also really like the added security of the tracking system in helping us to know where their children are at all times.
Although the expense outlay is quite large, it is an investment that is well worth it in terms of relieving any stress whilst out on expedition. We have worked out that it will also save money on fuel costs as we don't have to drive all over the countryside looking for groups!
The Route Card software is also brilliant as it allows students to really focus on the important part i.e. looking at the map and the features for each leg, rather than spending hours trying to decide if its 17 or 19 contours they cross!
We would thoroughly recommend the system and also the support that we received from Mapyx has been brilliant in getting started and getting to know our way around the system.”Dave Wells -Sqn Ldr RAFVR(T)- Deputy Regional DofE Officer, Wales & West Region
“We have had the system up and running for about 2 years now and have found it to be incredibly useful. It enhances the remote supervision enabling us to keep track of groups with minimum physical interaction thus enriching the experience of the participants. At the same time, the increased safety factor enables us to be more secure in the application of our duty of care. As an example, last August we had a gold group out near Capel Curig (Snowdonia) and the weather had deteriorated, being very cold, wet, and windy (exceptionally so for the time of year). The group were well equipped but one member slipped and sprained her ankle. The group were able to signal us that they needed help via the tracker and knowing their exact position we were able to get 2 staff to her in a 4x4 emergency vehicle and evacuate her within 20 min of the message being received. Given the weather conditions, the least time spent "immobile" the better and the remainder of the group were able to proceed with no ill effects and complete their expedition.
When a group does not report in to camp by dark, actually knowing where they are has resulted in less sleepless nights for supervisors who, despite being confident that the groups were well trained and equipped could not help worrying about them. Also knowing if a group is badly off track and possibly heading for potential danger allows an informed decision about possible intervention for safety reasons to be taken at the earliest time [albeit that one would expect this situation to be rare].
In terms of training and practice expeditions, being able to show the groups their exact route at the end of the day and how it compared to the planned route is an excellent training tool, even to the extent of telling them how long they stopped for breaks which often turns out to be longer than they reported!
In summary, despite the cost, we feel that the investment we made in this system was well worth it and are very glad that we opted to go with it.”Paul Bond, Outdoor Education Adviser, Youth Development Worker & D of E Manager, Children's Services Southwark Council
“We have used Mapyx and Tracker for some time now both for Expeditions and as a training and development tool for navigation.
Remote Supervision is greatly assisted by having much of the guesswork removed and needless journeys being undertaken with the resultant saving of resources. It enables an early warning of teams being misplaced and gives them the opportunity to call in the case of an incident regardless of mobile signal or for the supervision team to place resources where they may be needed.
The data logging tool is great for reviewing what was planned against what happened on the ground for evaluation and development. In addition parents and those seeking assurances are impressed with the professionalism that having such tools gives.
GPS will never replace Map and Compass and this will not replace the need for staff in venue supervision, we had our own misgivings at first about teams not being reliant etc. but we have found this not to be the case and we would now not run a wild country expedition without it.”Derek Clarke, Richard Hale School, Hertford
“It all started on a Gold D of E expedition. My colleague waited for 3 hours at a planned checkpoint for a team, but they never arrived. Were they in difficulty or were they lost? Had they passed through the check point early and not left a check card? In fact the latter proved to be the case. We decided that we needed to do something to help us know where our multiple teams were, not only for safety but for more sensible use of our time. Surely technology could come to our aid.
Trackers were the obvious answer. But ones that used the phone network seemed unhelpful in areas where the mobile signal was at best patchy. Then we heard about Mapyx. Here was a system that used satellites to track people and where information of location came to us via the internet. Furthermore by using Mapyx mapping the position of the team appeared on a normal OS map. We investigated then purchased 5 trackers and Mapyx OS mapping. After a half day’s training from the company we set out on a first Bronze Qualifying Expedition with some teams equipped with a Spot. We’d bought a netbook, added a pay as you go dongle and also used a laptop similarly. Both had Mapyx OS mapping installed and we’d checked out the area (New Forest) to find where the 3G mobile spots were (more places than we expected). We’d set up the system so that each team’s track showed in a different colour on the screen. It took a while to get used to the software, but at last we knew where they were and whether they really were following their planned route. Our pupils knew this and I suspect their navigation was better as a result! Admittedly there were times when the information was a little out of date (when they were under trees) but for most of the time we had just the information we needed. I think the participants were a little surprised at our ability to turn up to meet them just at the right moment! The main problem was that we had 5 trackers and 8 teams on expedition. Murphy’s law seemed to work in that the teams that seemed off route were the ones that didn’t have a tracker!
Our first experience of the set up on a Gold expedition was even more successful. Having persuaded our County to install the internet at our residential centre we could watch the progress of the teams and know just where and when to find them. We set up messages on the Spot devices so that we received a text when they left or arrived at their campsite. We also knew when teams had were making mistakes and at times that proved rather entertaining!
Then of course there is the cost. The cost of the trackers seems reasonable, but the annual subscription is not inconsiderable. We only needed to slightly increase the fee participants pay to overcome this. We know of a school that lost a tracker recently and we find that fixing them to the top of a rucksack with a cable tie is best. But one thing is certain – the gains in terms of safety and use of our time are huge and we will be purchasing further trackers before next summer so that all our Bronze teams have one. Overall they’ve been a great asset in enabling us to run our D of E expeditions.”Dominic Turpin, DofE Coordinator, Olchfa School, Swansea
“The Mapyx Tracking System has revolutionised the way we manage our DofE Expeditions. No more sitting around waiting for hours for groups to arrive, wondering where they are and if they are safe, especially in poor weather conditions. Now we have an update of their locations every ten minutes. It means we can anticipate problems before they arise and if there were an injury, quickly pinpoint their location. It means we can use our staff far more efficiently so that they arrive at checkpoints at appropriate times and can then move on to the next checkpoint. It also means that at Gold level, we can maintain our distance from the groups, while still having an overview of their progress.
I have only used the Out-of-Hours Emergency Service once when I had a technical query, but they answered on a Sunday morning and resolved my problems within ten minutes! I would never go back to not using Trackers; it has created an additional safety level on our DofE expeditions which pupils, parents and staff really appreciate.”
Mapyx Ltd., 8A Cranmere Road, Okehampton, Devon. EX20 1UE
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