Geotagging: What works for you?

Geotagging is nascent but intriguing. What cameras, software and GPS devices work for you?

Stephen Shankland Former Principal Writer
Stephen Shankland worked at CNET from 1998 to 2024 and wrote about processors, digital photography, AI, quantum computing, computer science, materials science, supercomputers, drones, browsers, 3D printing, USB, and new computing technology in general. He has a soft spot in his heart for standards groups and I/O interfaces. His first big scoop was about radioactive cat poop.
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  • Shankland covered the tech industry for more than 25 years and was a science writer for five years before that. He has deep expertise in microprocessors, digital photography, computer hardware and software, internet standards, web technology, and more.
Stephen Shankland

I love photos and I love maps. So geotagging--labeling of photos with geographic metadata--is a technology that was tailor-made for me. I'm starting to look into the issue for a feature I'm writing.

But from my early testing so far, it's clear geotagging is nascent at best. Cameras don't support it, geotags generally have to be manually added to photo metadata, and the software to automate it a bit feels kludgy to me. Five years from now my camera will probably have a GPS receiver built in, or at least a port to add one easily, but for now it's far from seamless.

Which brings me to my request: What do you find works and doesn't work? I'm hoping to benefit from the collective research that readers of this blog have put into this domain.

Specifically, I'd like to know about which GPS units you use, which cameras integrate best with GPS, which track file formats you like, which Web sites you use to display tracks and geotagged photos, and which software you use to tag your photos--especially if you're tagging raw images as well as JPEGs. Do you like Google Earth? I'd love to hear about your negative experiences as well as positive.

Feel free to share comments here in the Talkback area below for the benefit of others, or send me e-mail directly.