Below are some of the logistical issues and solutions one will typically encounter using GeoPads.

  • Loading GeoPads -- standard approaches to loading and maintaining the operating system and software applications on Windows computers are directly applicable to the GeoPads. Common approaches include Ghosting or Microsoft Sysprep
  • Distributing Projects -- a variety of approaches can be used to distribute projects to students' GeoPads, such as:
    • USB Flash Drives -- Students can be given a flash drive with the contents of the project on it. This can be a time-consuming process, if there a lot of thumb drives to load, or one needs to be passed around a large group. (The students can also carry these in the field as a back-up option.)
    • Bulk Distribution -- Applications, such as Ghost, can be used to bulk distribute files and folders to students' GeoPads over a network.
    • Network File Sharing -- A shared network drive can host projects for students to copy to their GeoPads.
  • Backups
    • USB Flash Drives
    • Network File Sharing -- Provide students with network file storage to copy backups of their work. Automatic copying is also an option. Network file sharing can also be used by instructors to remotely copy data from students to their own computer or a network drive.
  • Power -- If you're spending time in the field away from the grid, you need to consider how you will recharge the GeoPads and related peripherals, such as using a generator. A good choice is an electronic-equipment sensitive, ultra quiet model, such as the Honda 2000i. Make sure the generator has sufficient output and you bring enough fuel to meet your charging needs. You'll also likely need power strips and extension cords to distribute the power.
  • Safety
    • Hands-free Harness -- Using a hands-free harnesses helps to promote a safe environment for both students and GeoPads. Clipping GeoPad up tight against the body increases stability when scrambling about on rough terrain. Using the hands-free harness decreases the odds of accidentally dropping the GeoPad and causing damage through repeated picking up and setting down or taking in and out of backpacks.
    • No Cable Policy -- Avoid attaching peripherals (e.g., GPS, camera, audio headset) through cables to eliminate incidences of snagging and possible damage to the GeoPad and/or the peripherals.