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If, like me, you've always got a camera on you for spur-of-the-moment snapshots, or if also like me you are a keen landscape photographer, then sooner or later you will probably find yourself looking and a photo of an unidentified building or anonymous pile of rocks, thinking to yourself "where the hell did I take that photo?"
Sony has come to the rescue though, with this handy GPS tracking device that can tell you exactly where you were when you took that photo, to an accuracy of a couple of metres. It uses the same satellite navigation technology as an in-car sat-nav system, but it is extremely simple to set up and use. It's also quite a bit cheaper than a sat-nav system, with a retail price of around £85. It comes with its own software application on a CD, which has to be installed on a home computer in order to process information from the unit. The software integrates with Sony Picture Motion Browser, the image editing and management software supplied with all Sony digital cameras, a version of which is also supplied with the GPS device. You don't have to have a Sony camera to use the Location Recorder; it will work with pictures from any digital camera that supports EXIF image data, which includes pretty much every camera sold in the last five or six years.
The GPS Location Recorder does not connect directly to your camera in any way. Instead you clip it to your belt or the strap of your camera bag, or even to the neck-strap of your camera. You switch the unit on before you start shooting, and it simply records a log of the time and your position, as measured every fifteen seconds by signals from orbiting GPS satellites. The unit runs on a single AA battery, which will last about 10 hours, and the unit's internal memory can store a log file for approximately 360 hours.