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www.undertowsoftware.com • View topic - Change Campground info

Change Campground info

A discussion area for users of RTN2012, TLDCN2011, TLDCN2010, TLDC2009, TLDCN2008, TLDCN2007 & TLDCN2006

Change Campground info

Postby xavier » Sun Aug 22, 2010 7:12 pm

Does anyone know how I can change the information of some campgrounds in TL-2010? I searched the Help file. but I didn't find anything. I also wanted to look at the tutorials, but every time I click on any of them, I get an error message that my system is not configured to open such file, so I gave up on that. I can see the pdf files in the Tutorials folder, but just can't open them.
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Re: Change Campground info

Postby artmart » Sun Aug 22, 2010 11:59 pm

On my version of 2008 version of TLDCN the tutorials files are opened via a menu bar Help option in the application. Click on Help, then Tutorials, then you'll see the item to click on. This will then open the pdf file associated with the help menu option.

Many times a common file format (like pdf files) can only be opened with an application even though you might have another application using the same extension (like a pdf). I don't know how this is specifically done, but TLDCN has a few of these file limitations. I have learned not to get too fancy with anything on TLDCN. They don't want their files to be opened except if you have paid for the program to do this.

Same with many of the files in their database (campgrounds, points of interests, etc.). What you've got is what you'll have. If you want new information, you have to report it to their tech support and then maybe they'll include it in their next version. Their data files are not intended for user updating. Apparently in 2010 and up you can change the "name" of a waypoint (campground for example), but nothing else. I have not confirmed it.
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Re: Change Campground info

Postby xavier » Mon Aug 23, 2010 12:31 pm

Well that just sucks. I never understood such approaches. I paid my good money for the product and if I want to change the data, I should be able to do so. I paid for it, I own it! Why do companies do that? I like the program so far, but this really irks me :-(
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Re: Change Campground info

Postby artmart » Tue Aug 24, 2010 1:43 pm

You need to look closely at the Rules and conditions for all software you buy. You'll find that you are not allowed to modify it and use it in that way unless specifically allowed. What you purchased was the right to use it under their rules and conditions (aka License agreements). What you paid for was the right to USE it.

Since I was involved in the computer industry for over thirty years, I experienced the software licensing processes being developed and there are plenty of software developers who also provide databases for sale and want them protected as other software houses use them. They work together to minimize piracy as much as possible. Yes, any unwanted use, modification, sale, loaning, etc. of software products beyond the license agreement is considered piracy. Freedom to do what you want and Freedom to do what you want to someone else's stuff are not the same.

If you paid anything close to what I paid for my copy of TLDCN, then believe me, we didn't pay enough to exceed the rights to modify the software including the database that you'd love to modify. Rest assured that TLDCN is only trying to protect the rights of the owner's of the databases that they include with their software, to not have it modified. It's all by what's allowed by the license agreement. Sometimes it's some wording in the license agreement then they hope you abide, and sometimes they are able to protect it even more by preventing modification. I certainly won't tell you what tools I've used to modify software because it can be done - I used them under agreement and knowledge with the software partners I was working with.

TLCDN does have a way for you to create your own entries into a user-defined database and you can put all the same comments in there you want. One of my last contacts with them I asked to be able to modify the name of the campground and apparently this is in a newer version I don't have yet. You might try asking them for the ability to modify their database, but it will be up to them whether to include that feature or not if they get enough requests for it.

While you might not like it, I hope you better understand how this works then you might not be so irkable in this regard.
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Re: Change Campground info

Postby xavier » Tue Aug 24, 2010 5:21 pm

I don't know, you are too quick to give these people a pass. I still think that if I purchase a product, I should be able to modify its data, anyway I want.
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Re: Change Campground info

Postby Don Bryer » Tue Aug 24, 2010 6:38 pm

So, go ahead and and change the info, who is stopping you? Nobody is going to come to your house and check if you have changed the data. Question is, do you know how to even interpret the data, since it appears to be in binary format? :-)
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Re: Change Campground info

Postby xavier » Tue Aug 24, 2010 11:11 pm

Don Bryer wrote:So, go ahead and and change the info, who is stopping you? Nobody is going to come to your house and check if you have changed the data. Question is, do you know how to even interpret the data, since it appears to be in binary format? :-)

Well, the point is that they should provide the description of how the information is stored, so that we *can* change it, if we so wanted. The way it is now, companies are holding us hostage, since they are the only ones that know how the data is arranged.
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Re: Change Campground info

Postby RWinlow » Tue Aug 24, 2010 11:25 pm

Don Bryer wrote:So, go ahead and and change the info, who is stopping you? Nobody is going to come to your house and check if you have changed the data. Question is, do you know how to even interpret the data, since it appears to be in binary format? :-)

Easier said than done :-) I think the best approach may be to ask Undertow if they are willing to provide such capabilities. I'll fire off an email message and ask them.
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Re: Change Campground info

Postby DK13 » Wed Aug 25, 2010 9:46 am

How do you know if it is even the company's data? I assume that they purchase the data from another source and they may not even be allowed to alter the data nevermind allow us (users) to do it. Or do you guys actually think that undertow travels to each individual place and gathers data and can therefore do whatever they want with it. I have never used a mapping program from any company and been allowed to make any significant changes. But i am interested to see what their response is. Please let us know Don
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Re: Change Campground info

Postby xavier » Wed Aug 25, 2010 10:53 pm

DK13 wrote:How do you know if it is even the company's data? I assume that they purchase the data from another source and they may not even be allowed to alter the data nevermind allow us (users) to do it. Or do you guys actually think that undertow travels to each individual place and gathers data and can therefore do whatever they want with it. I have never used a mapping program from any company and been allowed to make any significant changes. But i am interested to see what their response is. Please let us know Don

You can make all the excuses you want, but I still say we pay for the software and once we bring it home we should be able to modify it, change it, and in short, do whatever we please with it. It's our copy! If I buy a car and bring it home, I can decide to change it's exhaust, put different tires on it, re-paint it a different color, and so on. It's mine. Why should it be different with software? I just don't get it.
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Re: Change Campground info

Postby artmart » Thu Aug 26, 2010 12:53 pm

Xavier, you are not understanding what Rvwinlow and DK13 are pointing out. When you purchase software you also purchase a license agreement and there isn't anything in there that says you get to modify their software in ALL areas. Your generalities don't apply correctly.

Let's try an analogy. You buy a car. The company has a warranty. Put a new engine in it then try to get your warranty honored when something doesn't work. NOT gonna happen. All that money you spent on the car didn't buy you the right to do anything you want just because you bought it. If you wanted to have that kind of freedom, you're gonna have to pay a LOT more than that and I know of very few companies that want to allow that kind of freedom with THEIR products. If you want to change the brakes, the paint, the tires, the wheels and something goes wrong do you contact the car company to replace these for you for free or ask them to fix it? No, you now own that problem because you created it and gotta deal with the brake, paint, tire or wheel company instead (someone else).

In the world of software, some companies flat out do NOT want that phone call from anyone that says, "I modified your database and now something does not work". You didn't pay enough for that software. You, Xavier might not call but just like you don't understand how this works they just don't want to risk it from any one. They want to keep their support calls down. A vast majority of automobile owners don't modify the autos either because they still want to call in on their warranty.

If that's the way Undertow wants to run their company then they are allowed and I will live within that price I paid or go elsewhere and have the same or different limitations. If they were that bad in what they provided they wouldn't still be in business. I and most others are pleased with what we got from them and will certainly ask for additional features, but it's their call if I get them or not. I certainly don't know enough about their business to expect the freedom to do whatever I want just because I paid a few dollars.

I hope this helps.
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Re: Change Campground info

Postby RWinlow » Thu Aug 26, 2010 7:12 pm

xavier wrote:
DK13 wrote:How do you know if it is even the company's data? I assume that they purchase the data from another source and they may not even be allowed to alter the data nevermind allow us (users) to do it. Or do you guys actually think that undertow travels to each individual place and gathers data and can therefore do whatever they want with it. I have never used a mapping program from any company and been allowed to make any significant changes. But i am interested to see what their response is. Please let us know Don

You can make all the excuses you want, but I still say we pay for the software and once we bring it home we should be able to modify it, change it, and in short, do whatever we please with it. It's our copy! If I buy a car and bring it home, I can decide to change it's exhaust, put different tires on it, re-paint it a different color, and so on. It's mine. Why should it be different with software? I just don't get it.

As I promised, I contacted Undertow and surprisingly, they were prompt to respond. Since emails are private communications, I don't want to repost the message, but here are the pertinent parts of it.

The Trailer Life program uses many different databases, from different sources. Each is licensed under very specific licensing agreements that spell out what can and cannot be done with it. For example, we could not buid tools into the program to allow you to change the mapping data (roads, etc.) since that is not allowed by our data providers (Tele Atlas). If you were to secure a license from them directly, that would permit editing their data (probably at a cost of 100s of thousands), you could hire us to create a special version of the program for you that allowed editing their data. The campground information database is from Trailer Life, again, under restrictions so that it cannot be edited. Trailer Life may also be willing to issue you a license for a few tens of thousands so you can edit their data. As for the data formats, these are proprietary data formats and once you secured any of the above licenses, we’d be happy to spend the time and produce a detailed file spec for you - as long as you are willing to pay for it (not an inexpensive proposition, since these are fairly complex file formats that we have spent the last 20 years developing and refining).

The program will allow you to modify files "you" create with it, or files that someone else created "with it" and passed them on to you. Modifying proprietary dataset files that took many man-years and big $$ to create, is outside the scope of a $50 product (or whatever the price is), but I am sure you can secure an appropriate license to do what you want to do, at the appropriately enumerated license cost.


I think this makes sense and artmart is right on the money on this one.
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Re: Change Campground info

Postby MarkY » Fri Aug 27, 2010 10:36 am

xavier wrote:
DK13 wrote:How do you know if it is even the company's data? I assume that they purchase the data from another source and they may not even be allowed to alter the data nevermind allow us (users) to do it. Or do you guys actually think that undertow travels to each individual place and gathers data and can therefore do whatever they want with it. I have never used a mapping program from any company and been allowed to make any significant changes. But i am interested to see what their response is. Please let us know Don

You can make all the excuses you want, but I still say we pay for the software and once we bring it home we should be able to modify it, change it, and in short, do whatever we please with it. It's our copy! If I buy a car and bring it home, I can decide to change it's exhaust, put different tires on it, re-paint it a different color, and so on. It's mine. Why should it be different with software? I just don't get it.

I don't use this particular program (I use their development tools), but I spent almost 10 years working for a "Large" software company and I was responsible for documenting and keeping up to date detailed file formats for a dozen different products and I can tell you, a team of 4 of us were spending ~ 50% of our time doing just that. It's no small feat. There is an old adage that says it can take twice as long to document a software product than to develop it.

As for allowing one to edit such datasets, as mentined earlier, these companies have spent tens of man-years (or longer) to develop and fine-tune these datasets and you want to be able to allowed to do the same by paying $50 - I don't think this is ever going to happen.
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Re: Change Campground info

Postby xavier » Sun Aug 29, 2010 4:56 pm

So I have to pay thousands of dollars for the privilege of changing some data of a program I already paid for? What a bargain. I think I may just have to figure out the format myself and make the changes I need.
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Re: Change Campground info

Postby artmart » Mon Aug 30, 2010 1:02 pm

By George, I think you've ALMOST got it. The part you don't seem to comprehend is that you have NOT already paid for the rights to change THEIR database. You only paid for a copy of their software intended for the public within the limits of the license agreement. You can make a new database and put whatever you want in there even using some of the information they have already collaborated. That would be easier than changing theirs and it's legal, too. When it comes to computers I know plenty of people who have had to pay others to correct what they screwed up when they try this stuff and you'll be paying big for that.

Like the example I provided before, you're allowed to make thousands of dollars of changes to your vehicle (new radio, tires, wheels, engine mods, etc. - easy stuff like that), then NOT call the manufacturer when you screw it up, and there is no "license agreement" for an automobile. In the case of a product which has a license agreement you are obligated to live by those terms and they have obligations they have to meet for you. If you keep the modifications to yourself then you are taking on this effort yourself and assume all the infractions by yourself but don't tell us about it, or try and seek help from them, or try to sell it afterward - in your license agreement I'm sure it's a no-no. You are only allowed to resell the "copy" that you bought and this implies you are selling all parts of that copy with the license agreement and an intact database.

In their case, you can't afford the rights to their database, so this point is moot. You don't have to like it, you just have to respect it. Just keep in mind the prisons are full of people who thought they could do what ever they wanted especially if they paid a few dollars. From stealing software to taking lives. We've all pointed out what's legal. It's your choice whether you want to remain legal.

At this point constructive posts to this topic are over. You posted, it's been explained in great detail, and it's over. We've ALL tried to be as clear as possible what you paid for and in this case, none of us knows each other except through this topic therefore we are not conspiring, and have all explained pretty much the same thing and why it's that way. If you don't understand by now, you'll never get it.
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Re: Change Campground info

Postby Kevin_T » Wed Sep 01, 2010 8:59 am

Art, don't waste your breath. Xavier is one of those people that can only see things their way, no matter what. You find them on most on-line communities. You won't be able to make him see the light, no matter what :-(

I, too, have issues with some software companies and products (more with some than with others), but the basic issue here is that his example of comparing a car with software, is nonsense. A car is a tangible piece of property that you "purchase" (you do not license it), whereas software is a piece of intellectual property that you license (not purchase). The only tangible thing you purchase in this case is the "media" the software came on, and you can do whatever you want with that, burn it, scratch it, write on it, throw it away, etc. Most licensing agreement spell it out "that's the only thing you *purchase* and own).

Like you said this thread has gone on for too long, there are better things one can spend their time on :-)
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