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Posts posted by oakenwood

  1. It means Punxsutawney Phil was freaked out by a hundred flashbulbs going off at once and ran for cover. It also means Bill Murray didn't steal him and drive off a cliff.


    What's it mean for me? Nothing. I do hope this winter is over soon, because we've had too much cold and snow around here. The last couple of winters were mild and I was getting used to it.

  2. Any Garmin GPSr comes with a free copy of MapSource. With your GPSr attached to your laptop with its USB cable, it'll update your location as you move. You can enter caches into MapSource as waypoints and transfer them to the GPSr. (And vice versa, if you like to use the "Download to GPS" feature on cache pages.)


    When you're done driving, detach your GPSr and follow it to the cache.

  3. I was just wondering. Has anyone created a cache so complex that it spans a couple of states or maybe countries? A cache that has puzzles you have to solve to get coordinates to the next cache and it leads you to other destination? Maybe use QR barcodes to hide riddles, messages or coordinates? Sort of like a long adventure with challenges? Didn't know if someone has done this already. Any one know of one of these?

    I think I'll take this one at face value and stay on-topic.


    A multi-cache spanning states or countries? I don't know any off-hand, but with a million caches out there, someone must have posted one. There's no rule against it. If by some chance it hasn't been done, you could be the first.


    Puzzles leading to the next cache? I'm working on one right now: The Book of Lies.


    Bar codes? It came up in a topic recently. I'd search for it, but these forums have a minimum of five characters per search term, so "bar code" is out. Maybe someone else remembers the thread.

  4. That's the Miranda warning. You get told that after being arrested.

    You get read Miranda when you are being detained and questioned regarding specifics of a crime. This can happen before handcuffs, after handcuffs or not at all. Contrary to what you see on Law & Order, there is no requirement to read Miranda just because you arrest someone.

    I've never seen Law & Order. Is it any good?


    Back on topic... I'm familiar with the ins and outs of custodial detention. I was just simplifying it. I didn't want to bog down my post with details regarding detention and rules of evidence. My point was that one's constitutional rights don't suddenly kick in when they hear those words.


    I merely wanted to press home my message: watch the video. Watch it all. It could keep you from being the next Caleb Osborn.

  5. There is NEVER a reason to talk to the police.


    Sure... I will be social and polite as I am with anyone... but once a cop tells me anything I say can and WILL be used against me... time to shut up.


    I detest blind obedience to "LEO's"


    Most people use their heads... some use a badge...

    There are obvious exceptions to the rule. Relatives and friends, regular contact as part of your job, etc.


    The time to clam up is when there's an investigation going on. Stopped in your car = investigation. A policeman stops you while you're walking and asks what you were doing in the woods / near the train tracks / under the bridge / in the alley, etc. = investigation. A policeman turns up at your door to "ask a few questions" = investigation.


    is a good primer on how to handle such situations. I strongly recommend watching it, even if you're a law-abiding citizen. Laws are complex and we don't always know when we can get into trouble. That's what this thread is all about. Some fellow is engaged in perfectly harmless activity and winds up charged with a crime.


    And when you hear the words "anything you say can and will be used against you", it's past time to shut up. That's the Miranda warning. You get told that after being arrested. Everything in the warning applies before arrest as well. Watch the video.

  6. While posting in another thread about keeping an up-to-date alamanac, I remembered this thread.


    Having an out-of-date almanac can throw off your coordinates. It takes the satellites 12.5 minutes to transmit the complete almanac, which goes out of date every 180 days. If you turn on your GPSr for just a few minutes at a time and never have it on long enough to download the full almanac, your unit will eventually lose accuracy until it receives an updated almanac.


    To be safe, leave your unit on for at least a half hour every couple of months. This assumes you can get a good lock on one satellite long enough to receive the almanac. If you're getting bad reception, it could take longer. If your unit travels hundreds of miles while it's turned off, you should update the almanac as well.


    WAAS corrections are transmitted every two minutes and are considered valid for up to six minutes.

  7. When the last thing you do at night before bed is to turn on your GPSr just to make sure you have a good link-up signal and all your cache locations are still there, only to turn it off again 2 minutes later satisfied that all is well ... for now.


    I have finally stopped doing this ... mostly


    This may only apply to n00bs :)

    If I haven't used my GPSr in a while, I'll leave it on for a half-hour just to make sure I have an up-to-date almanac. I'm told it takes about 12.5 minutes to transmit and is good for about 2 months.


    One should also do this if traveling. If the unit is on, it updates itself. However, if you take a plane and put it in your luggage, you'll need to update. I don't have a firm number for the distance; the low number is 300 miles.


    You know you're getting serious about your caching when you actually know this stuff.

  8. "Interference with the duties of a public servant" amounts to "I could have been catching speeders, but I wasted half the day with your pipe bomb hoax thingie, so you're going to be punished for it." He got arrested for inconveniencing a cop. The DA recognized that the cop had inconvenienced his own self by his ignorance, and did the right thing by dropping the charges.


    See the Boston Bomb Scare. Again, nothing illegal was done, but after the city overreacted they needed to blame someone for all the time and effort expended.


    Lessons learned?


    1. Stealth. It's not just about preserving the secrecy of the cache.

    2. Location. I personally prefer woods caches, partly because it helps avoid these problems.

    3. The 5th Amendment. Many people think that all they have to do is explain themselves, and they'll go free.

    contends otherwise. If you have the time, watch the long version, including the police officer who confirms everything Prof. Duane says.

    4. All activities have risks. Prepare for them. I carry bug repellent. You may want to carry an attorney's business card. I'm serious.

    5. Raise awareness. The more people understand geocaching, the better.

  9. Geocaching got much tougher after the neo-Luddite revolution of the 24th Century.


    It's no fun getting chased by villagers with hatchets because they spotted your GPSr. Batteries and the solar cells to recharge them have gotten really expensive on the black market. It was awful tough after the GPS constellation fell into disrepair. Fortunately, GLONASS is still up and running. The sad part is, you have to pay three quadrillion yuan to some really shady characters for the access codes. Every dadgum year, too. Next year it'll probably be four quadrillion.


    And don't get me started on the quality of swag. I found a cache last week that had toenail clippings, a couple of rocks, and a semi-used bandaid. Since I always trade up, I left a 21st Century guitar pick. Whatever "tortex" is, it sure lasts.

  10. It would be interesting to see an academic analysis of swag economics. A brief one. Instead of that, I'll give you some observations, musings, and general blather.


    In free market pricing, the value of an object is that which another person is willing to pay for it. Caches are not markets, so conventional notions of "value" lose meaning. The essential nature of swag is that it is sufficiently worthless for us to part with it willingly.


    We can assign arbitrary values to swag based upon the value a hypothetical cacher might see in it. A McToy might be free, but to a four-year-old it could be a great thing, usually for a day or two. I have a glow-in-the-dark silicone bracelet I found in a cache which I like a lot. I have a bunch of carabiners that I don't have much use for, so I leave them in caches knowing that others find them useful.


    The point is, swag value is very subjective. Still, the deterioration of cache contents gets noticed and discussed. I've read logs where a cacher decided to restock a cache they liked. Perhaps if some of us dedicated ourselves to leaving items and never taking any, it would help to offset swag deterioration.

  11. Do you do it? How often?


    How do you get it done? Do you carry the log home for a day? If so, do you temporarily disable the cache? Do you do it at the cache site with a smart phone or a copy of the cache page on a laptop?


    What do you look for? How do you resolve discrepancies?


    I've never done it, so I could use some hints. I'm thinking about doing it during my annual cache inspection.

  12. On the topic of geovandalism: there is a cache in this area. (It's placed by a certain CO made infamous here in the last few days. It's a coincidence that I bring him up. Really!)


    The problem is that the cache is close to a crumbling, yet historic, rock wall. The cache is not actually in the wall, but near enough to it that cachers have been taking the wall apart in the search. I recently visited the site to assess the CITO situation, and noticed that the wall continues to deteriorate as rocks are removed to look behind them, and are not properly replaced. It's been bothering me enough to wonder what to do about it. This thread has prompted me to mention it.


    Can anyone recommend what can be done about this cache? I'm not inclined to contact the cache owner. Not any more.

  13. I mean if you're in the race, you're on your own, right??


    No, if you're in the race, you're using every available resource, including time, money, batteries, spousal tolerance, and favors from relatives.


    Just give him the coordinates and let it be. Hopefully, he thanks you for your help and owes you a favor. Maybe you'll call him when you're on "Who Wants to be a Millionaire".

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