What’s Coming Up Next? – Tom Bluewater Introducing Tower Points for macOS

Mac application Tower Points






TOKYO (Tom Bluewater) – I’m back with another edition of a macOS application after a break of some seven weeks. During this break, as usual, I watched a lot of crime dramatization stories from Crime Watch Daily and Paula Zahn’s On the Case. Crime Watch Daily often discusses a case where investigators put things together, plotting the locations of cellular towers on the map, which made me think to myself “Hmm… Could I build a desktop application to make a map like that?” So here it comes. A desktop application that I submitted to Mac App Store just 10 minutes ago is called Tower Points.

Tower points is a desktop application that lets you visually document a case (a murder case, a stalking case, a series of burglaries in the same neighbor…) with positions of cellular towers and objects. Erect dozens of tower pins on the map based on their geo-coordinates. Place an object (body, car, blood, DNA, gun, knife, money…) at the spot where you click on the map. You can measure the distance between two objects you select or between an object and a tower you select. You want to draw a 5-mile-radius circle around a dead body? That’s a piece of cake. Actually, what you can do is document a case by placing tower pins and objects on the map and visit the actual scene with an iOS device since you can share map data with an iPhone and an iPad through iCloud Drive.  





Mac application Tower Points

Tom Bluewater
  Mac application Tower Points

Tom Bluewater






Features

  1. Change map types: standard, satellite, hybrid.
  2. Read cellular tower data from a CSV (comma-separated values) file.
  3. Erect a tower pin right at the spot where you click on the map.
  4. Place an object (body, blood, bottle, building, car, DNA, fingerprint, fire, gun, house, key, knife, man, money, notes, woman) right at the spot where you click on the map. There are 36 different objects (Version 1.1.0) to choose from.
  5. Give each tower a title and a subtitle. Click on a tower to open a callout window to display its title and subtitle.
  6. Give each object a title and a subtitle. Click on an object to open a callout window to display its title and subtitle.
  7. Draw a line (polyline) connecting all tower pins.
  8. Draw a circle nearly containing all existing tower pins.
  9. Draw a circle with a given radius at any point where you click on the map.
  10. Find the distance between a tower you select and an object you select.
  11. Find the distance between two objects you select.
  12. Find the distance between a tower or an object you select and the very spot where you have clicked on the map.
  13. Save map as a picture to your disk.
  14. Save progress as a document file. Open a document file to reconstruct last progress. Drag and drop a document file directly onto the map to recover progress.
  15. Switch the unit of length between kilometer and mile.
  16. Select the fill color of a circle, the stroke colors of a circle, the polyline.
  17. Save map data you create to iCloud Drive so that you can view it with the free iOS counterpart.
  18. Make an object you select visible or invisible.
  19. Automatically calculate the distance between one tower and another in order.
  20. Save the geo-coordinates of existing towers on the map as a CSV file to your disk.
  21. Save the geo-coordinates of existing objects on the map as a CSV file to your disk.
  22. Quickly share data (a small screenshot + geo-coordinates) on a tower or an object you select through Facebook, Mail, Messages, Notes, Twitter and more.
  23. The fullScreen mode is supported.
  24. The application supports the retina screen. (tested with 2014 2.6 GHz 13″ MacBook Pro)
  25. Languages: English only.
  26. Application file size: 47.2 MB.
  27. The application comes with a built-in 23-page user guide. Click on the button that says ‘Learn how to use Tower Points’ in the Home screen.






System requirements

  1. 10.12 (tested with 10.12.1 and 10.12.6), 10.13 (tested with 10.13.4)
  2. 64-bit system






Limitations

  1. This application is NOT document-based. So the user can open one case at a time.
  2. In order to upload map data to iCloud Drive, the user needs an iCloud account.
  3. In order to access map records they have uploaded to iCloud Drive, the user needs the internet connection.
  4. In order to import data from a CSV file, a column containing latitude values must come before a column containing longitude values.
  5. The user can only upload (and not download) map data to iCloud Drive since they can always back up progress at any point with a document file.
  6. The free iOS counterpart only allows the user to view map data. The user cannot insert additional towers or objects to the map. They can remove circles or change colors.






Version history

Version 1.1.1 (Released on June 29th, 2018)

  1. Fixed is an issue where the application could crash after the user launched it for the first time and then resizes the window.


Version 1.1.0 (Released on June 1st, 2018)

  1. Change: All the contextual menu commands for creating objects are put under the Create Object submenu.
  2. Additional 20 objects are available. These new objects include burger, cigarette, coffee, credit card, dog, drugs, eye glasses, garbage bag, hair, phone, police, ring, security camera, shell casing, shirt, shoe print, shovel, syringe, wallet, weed.
  3. Fixed is a minor issue showing 0 geo-ordinates (lat: 0.000000, lon: 0.000000) when the user clicked on the + button under the objects tab of the drawer in order to create a new object and then when the user clicked on the map position.






Trial/Demo version

There is no trial or demo version available since the application uses CloudKit, which requires a developer profile generated for each device.






Video tutorial

Click here to watch a desktop movie showing how to import cellular tower data from a CSV file created with Numbers, how to upload a map record to iCloud Drive, how to view map data with an iOS device.






Privacy policy

This application does not collect privacy data from its users. It does not share any type of data with a third party.






Terms of use

Apps made available through the App Store are licensed, not sold, to you. Your license to each App is subject to your prior acceptance of either this Licensed Application End User License Agreement (“Standard EULA”), or a custom end user license agreement between you and the Application Provider (“Custom EULA”), if one is provided. Your license to any Apple App under this Standard EULA or Custom EULA is granted by Apple, and your license to any Third Party App under this Standard EULA or Custom EULA is granted by the Application Provider of that Third Party App. Any App that is subject to this Standard EULA is referred to herein as the “Licensed Application.” The Application Provider or Apple as applicable (“Licensor”) reserves all rights in and to the Licensed Application not expressly granted to you under this Standard EULA.

a. Scope of License: Licensor grants to you a nontransferable license to use the Licensed Application on any Apple-branded products that you own or control and as permitted by the Usage Rules. The terms of this Standard EULA will govern any content, materials, or services accessible from or purchased within the Licensed Application as well as upgrades provided by Licensor that replace or supplement the original Licensed Application, unless such upgrade is accompanied by a Custom EULA. Except as provided in the Usage Rules, you may not distribute or make the Licensed Application available over a network where it could be used by multiple devices at the same time. You may not transfer, redistribute or sublicense the Licensed Application and, if you sell your Apple Device to a third party, you must remove the Licensed Application from the Apple Device before doing so. You may not copy (except as permitted by this license and the Usage Rules), reverse-engineer, disassemble, attempt to derive the source code of, modify, or create derivative works of the Licensed Application, any updates, or any part thereof (except as and only to the extent that any foregoing restriction is prohibited by applicable law or to the extent as may be permitted by the licensing terms governing use of any open-sourced components included with the Licensed Application).

b. Consent to Use of Data: You agree that Licensor may collect and use technical data and related information—including but not limited to technical information about your device, system and application software, and peripherals—that is gathered periodically to facilitate the provision of software updates, product support, and other services to you (if any) related to the Licensed Application. Licensor may use this information, as long as it is in a form that does not personally identify you, to improve its products or to provide services or technologies to you.

c. Termination. This Standard EULA is effective until terminated by you or Licensor. Your rights under this Standard EULA will terminate automatically if you fail to comply with any of its terms.

d. External Services. The Licensed Application may enable access to Licensor’s and/or third-party services and websites (collectively and individually, “External Services”). You agree to use the External Services at your sole risk. Licensor is not responsible for examining or evaluating the content or accuracy of any third-party External Services, and shall not be liable for any such third-party External Services. Data displayed by any Licensed Application or External Service, including but not limited to financial, medical and location information, is for general informational purposes only and is not guaranteed by Licensor or its agents. You will not use the External Services in any manner that is inconsistent with the terms of this Standard EULA or that infringes the intellectual property rights of Licensor or any third party. You agree not to use the External Services to harass, abuse, stalk, threaten or defame any person or entity, and that Licensor is not responsible for any such use. External Services may not be available in all languages or in your Home Country, and may not be appropriate or available for use in any particular location. To the extent you choose to use such External Services, you are solely responsible for compliance with any applicable laws. Licensor reserves the right to change, suspend, remove, disable or impose access restrictions or limits on any External Services at any time without notice or liability to you.

e. NO WARRANTY: YOU EXPRESSLY ACKNOWLEDGE AND AGREE THAT USE OF THE LICENSED APPLICATION IS AT YOUR SOLE RISK. TO THE MAXIMUM EXTENT PERMITTED BY APPLICABLE LAW, THE LICENSED APPLICATION AND ANY SERVICES PERFORMED OR PROVIDED BY THE LICENSED APPLICATION ARE PROVIDED “AS IS” AND “AS AVAILABLE,” WITH ALL FAULTS AND WITHOUT WARRANTY OF ANY KIND, AND LICENSOR HEREBY DISCLAIMS ALL WARRANTIES AND CONDITIONS WITH RESPECT TO THE LICENSED APPLICATION AND ANY SERVICES, EITHER EXPRESS, IMPLIED, OR STATUTORY, INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, THE IMPLIED WARRANTIES AND/OR CONDITIONS OF MERCHANTABILITY, OF SATISFACTORY QUALITY, OF FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE, OF ACCURACY, OF QUIET ENJOYMENT, AND OF NONINFRINGEMENT OF THIRD-PARTY RIGHTS. NO ORAL OR WRITTEN INFORMATION OR ADVICE GIVEN BY LICENSOR OR ITS AUTHORIZED REPRESENTATIVE SHALL CREATE A WARRANTY. SHOULD THE LICENSED APPLICATION OR SERVICES PROVE DEFECTIVE, YOU ASSUME THE ENTIRE COST OF ALL NECESSARY SERVICING, REPAIR, OR CORRECTION. SOME JURISDICTIONS DO NOT ALLOW THE EXCLUSION OF IMPLIED WARRANTIES OR LIMITATIONS ON APPLICABLE STATUTORY RIGHTS OF A CONSUMER, SO THE ABOVE EXCLUSION AND LIMITATIONS MAY NOT APPLY TO YOU.

f. Limitation of Liability. TO THE EXTENT NOT PROHIBITED BY LAW, IN NO EVENT SHALL LICENSOR BE LIABLE FOR PERSONAL INJURY OR ANY INCIDENTAL, SPECIAL, INDIRECT, OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES WHATSOEVER, INCLUDING, WITHOUT LIMITATION, DAMAGES FOR LOSS OF PROFITS, LOSS OF DATA, BUSINESS INTERRUPTION, OR ANY OTHER COMMERCIAL DAMAGES OR LOSSES, ARISING OUT OF OR RELATED TO YOUR USE OF OR INABILITY TO USE THE LICENSED APPLICATION, HOWEVER CAUSED, REGARDLESS OF THE THEORY OF LIABILITY (CONTRACT, TORT, OR OTHERWISE) AND EVEN IF LICENSOR HAS BEEN ADVISED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGES. SOME JURISDICTIONS DO NOT ALLOW THE LIMITATION OF LIABILITY FOR PERSONAL INJURY, OR OF INCIDENTAL OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES, SO THIS LIMITATION MAY NOT APPLY TO YOU. In no event shall Licensor’s total liability to you for all damages (other than as may be required by applicable law in cases involving personal injury) exceed the amount of fifty dollars ($50.00). The foregoing limitations will apply even if the above stated remedy fails of its essential purpose.

g. You may not use or otherwise export or re-export the Licensed Application except as authorized by United States law and the laws of the jurisdiction in which the Licensed Application was obtained. In particular, but without limitation, the Licensed Application may not be exported or re-exported (a) into any U.S.-embargoed countries or (b) to anyone on the U.S. Treasury Department’s Specially Designated Nationals List or the U.S. Department of Commerce Denied Persons List or Entity List. By using the Licensed Application, you represent and warrant that you are not located in any such country or on any such list. You also agree that you will not use these products for any purposes prohibited by United States law, including, without limitation, the development, design, manufacture, or production of nuclear, missile, or chemical or biological weapons.

h. The Licensed Application and related documentation are “Commercial Items”, as that term is defined at 48 C.F.R. §2.101, consisting of “Commercial Computer Software” and “Commercial Computer Software Documentation”, as such terms are used in 48 C.F.R. §12.212 or 48 C.F.R. §227.7202, as applicable. Consistent with 48 C.F.R. §12.212 or 48 C.F.R. §227.7202-1 through 227.7202-4, as applicable, the Commercial Computer Software and Commercial Computer Software Documentation are being licensed to U.S. Government end users (a) only as Commercial Items and (b) with only those rights as are granted to all other end users pursuant to the terms and conditions herein. Unpublished-rights reserved under the copyright laws of the United States.

i. Except to the extent expressly provided in the following paragraph, this Agreement and the relationship between you and Apple shall be governed by the laws of the State of California, excluding its conflicts of law provisions. You and Apple agree to submit to the personal and exclusive jurisdiction of the courts located within the county of Santa Clara, California, to resolve any dispute or claim arising from this Agreement. If (a) you are not a U.S. citizen; (b) you do not reside in the U.S.; (c) you are not accessing the Service from the U.S.; and (d) you are a citizen of one of the countries identified below, you hereby agree that any dispute or claim arising from this Agreement shall be governed by the applicable law set forth below, without regard to any conflict of law provisions, and you hereby irrevocably submit to the non-exclusive jurisdiction of the courts located in the state, province or country identified below whose law governs:

If you are a citizen of any European Union country or Switzerland, Norway or Iceland, the governing law and forum shall be the laws and courts of your usual place of residence.






Tower Points is a product of Tom Bluewater.
Apple and the Apple logo are trademarks of Apple Inc., registered in the U.S. and other countries. Mac App Store is a service mark of Apple Inc.

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