NMEA Generator: A drawing tool for creating GPS logs

Posted by Diego Assencio on 2017.01.06 under Technology (Maps)

NMEA is a standard which is widely used for representing GPS position information in textual form. This standard defines a set of one-line sentences which are independent from each other and contain information such as position, velocity and time.

Given the broad range of applications which are capable of understanding NMEA data, I decided to create a tool for manually drawing a path on a map representing an object or person moving around while carrying a GPS device which gives them their current position at regular time intervals (e.g. once every second). This path can then be stored as an NMEA file, i.e., as a text file containing NMEA sentences which represent the position information for all points in the path.

The tool is called NMEA Generator. I hope you will put it to good use, and should you have any questions, please don't hesitate to write a comment below or send me an e-mail. Enjoy it! :-)


Christoph on Sep 30, 2017:
Will try some test with a app for my private use.
Magnus on Dec 15, 2017:
Hi, since not having a mfd to generate nmea route sentence from gpx file generated by a nav app, only have ipad, need an app that can send nmea route sentences straight to my autopilot over wifi bypassing mfd, will your neat nmea generator work? Cannot find send/start, only download...
Diego Assencio on Dec 15, 2017:
@Magnus: The NMEA generator only produces NMEA sentences on a downloadable file. Perhaps you can use another application to stream the contents of that file to your device?
Joop van Dijk on May 19, 2021:
Hello Diego and thanks for your wonderful NMEA Generator!

Although it doesn't do exactly what I'm looking for there may still be a way:

I'm trying to re-create my (f)actual route during 10+ years of travelling through about 110 developing countries, and was looking for a way to connect the places I have visited using the exact roads that I took using public transport only, which means they're not the fastest, shortest, or anything. So I hoped to find a way to mark town A and town C using a sub-optimal road through town B.

Now I see I can get NMEA points extremely easy with the generator, but I wonder if there's a way to not simply generate a straight line but to actually follow the road between those points. If I need to be more specific to find that road then I could simply add a few more points on the map, re-create that leg, see if that's what I need, and download it to file.

My question: Is such a think possible with NMEA Generator? And, if not, do you know any tool that can do such a thing?
Diego Assencio on May 29, 2021:
@Joop: The NMEA Generator has no notion of roads. The map it displays is simply a background image on top of which the markers and segments are drawn based on their coordinates.

I unfortunately do not know a tool which does what you want. There are tools which allow you to create a path on the map in the way you described, but I have so far not seen one which can generate NMEA files as well.