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Everything posted by evenfall

  1. I Have hunted, and not found two examples of NGS stations set in the early 1900's which were said in the datasheet narrative to have three metal feet coming out of the station around the station disc at 120 degree angles which were said to be for the purpose holding the tripod. I would have liked to seen these but there were unfortunately long gone, station disc and all. It is interesting to see that someone had an instrument set up in mind, and attempted to make it more convienent. I fear, without a close up of this station disc we may just who was behind this. Interesting though. Rob
  2. NFA, I have found that there are often more than three sides to any story, often many more, depending on how many you ask. Lots of opinions and feelings out there... At Walmart, I was once told you could buy a Gallon of Dill Pickles for $2.97... I am not sure why one would want a gallon, but ok, I'll Bite... And so It goes. The People who think your survey discs are cool, will vote with their checkbooks... Walmart seems to be doing ok too... Good Luck, Rob
  3. >You missed the point again. No John, I rarely miss your points, I simply don't offer yours any more acknowledgment than you do mine, a pattern I have noticed with our subtle conversations over these past few months. I am however Happy to oblige you in debate. Point by point. I will attempt to be more direct for you. :-) >If it was a done deal, then why even ask for our OPINION -not permission? Good Question, Perhaps they simply chose to, for any and or whatever reason. Does there need to be a reason and do we need to know? Probably not. You are only assuming things were a done deal and you simply don't know, so that is conjecture on your part. Either way, that is not really important, is it? Now we all know your Opinion. >If the NGS isn't going to be answering the questions then we are right back where we started, I disagree. This can make it easier for the NGS to help us so what would be the harm? Yes some of them do help out in here as it is, but they don't Big Deal each moment, and they may skip over the questions they feel have been adequately answered. There is no be all end all solution that everyone will like, but things can still be improved. People's questions are being answered by many who try to answer. You answer some of them too. An answer is an answer. NGS Discussion is a more technical, and different discussion than the Game's, It simply is. Just like the USGS National Map discussions which were moved, and that was not too confusing. >except there would be 2 forums (and extra work for the mod to determine which forum a >thread belongs in.). Could that be taken to mean that we can't Trust that people cannot sort out where they would like to ask their question and or Post their thoughts? Let's not sell people short. Most people post in the correct forum for their thoughts at geocaching all the time. I think they will do fine. People will post where they feel they want or need to as appropriate. Beings that Tennessee Geocacher has only made 25 posts since August 30 2004 and not all of them in the Benchmark Hunting Forum, I would say he is not all that busy. This is not to say I am indifferent, or insensitive to His Job as a Volunteer, I just don't see us becoming bad people, Unruly, or less helpful than we already are, and we can help in either forum and get the questions answered. It is not about making people wrong, It is about making some things easier. It is about giving the people who would rather avoid the NGS aspects of Hunting a space as much as giving a space to those who do enjoy working with the NGS. So what if people post in a "Wrong Forum", they will get the hang of it. We can and all will help out as we always do and it will be fine. This is not about reprimands and spankings. If there is a need for more moderation or someone no longer wants to, or if a different mod is selected for a new forum, then unless you are the secret moderator, I wouldn't see that as your worry. If you are the secret Moderator then I guess you may have to wait and see, or choose to step away from the responsibility. I would have thought since you have always been rather vocal about reminding us that this Forum as it is, should be about "geoCACHING" and seemingly rather against NGS discussions, that you would love to have a way to avoid them, In other words, this is a solution that would have seemingly worked well for you. You can't have it both ways John. >Judging from the pinned threads, the NGS hasn't been too serious about >following through. As if the pinned thread makes anything easy to follow through on, and this has been made light of in this thread already, so who is missing a point? It is not as if the NGS has nothing else to do at their job but read our forums to hunt questions to answer. It is realistic to think we could be more accommodating than that. Some Geocachers actually do help the NGS and enjoy it. It does add to the NGS workload, but they are happy to have our help, so why not make this easier if we can. You may not enjoy this aspect of the Hobby, John, and this thread has pointed out that some people don't, but that is ok too. They are still being served by the Non NGS, Not as technical Forum. If you don't want or choose not to work with the NGS, I don't really see how this would affect you adversely at all. I won't accept extra reading, or pointing and clicking as any excuse at all. >So my question is, What is the advantage to having 2 forums if the NGS is >only going to be there infrequently? Again, is this your opinion or do you have a Crystal Ball? Do you know if the NGS will be there infrequently? Will you crow about it if you think at some point you were right? I think the advantages, whether you see them or not have been adequately explained. If you are just being disagreeable so as to hopefully shoot the idea down, I hope those who will make that decision will see your actions appropriately and take that into account. Why not, instead of opposing something that has not been tried, just give it a chance? This Forum isn't just about you or I, It is for all of us and there is no reason we can't invite more. It is reasonable to think this hobby may still grow. Can the NGS be included or invited, since we do play a game with their survey? What ever happened to all are invited. None of us Own the way we play. It seems the FAQ allows for NGS recovery too. >If the forum is for the benifit of the NGS, it is not unreasonable to expect them to make an >effort to reply to the questions. Some how I don't think it will be on a daily basis. I think again that you might not have to worry as much as you are. I would not place expectations, I would rather allow for an opportunity for us to be pleasantly surprised. Attitude is everything, A good one gets us all further. >Forgive my skepticism, but I don't see any real advantage to this second forum. Forgive My Differing opinion John, But I do. I very much do see an advantage. If there is no advantage to you, you won't be disadvantaged either. I guess what I don't see is your need to need to oppose it. Thanks for raising these Important Points John! :-) >John Rob
  4. NFA, I wouldn't take the various opinions too personally. I know it can be difficult not to when you are just doing something fun or something yours. Nothing is ever everything to all people but at some point, who cares? Anna Nicole Smith had a TV show you know, and AMC did make the Pacer Available in Light Yellow. I am a surveyor and I see tons and tons of survey in the field every day that means nothing to me. It belongs to somebody else and is only important to them. I know that it is helping someone accomplish something and that it is important to them, so I just keep movin'. The only things instructive for you to keep in mind are these: 1. Please advise your customers look up their local number for the Call Before You Dig Hotline and get the needed Locates done before digging or driving a steel stake in the ground. Underground utilities are everywhere, and if not deadly, they are dangerous, and super costly to the person who causes the outage. 2. Do what you love, the rest will come. Rob
  5. Any answer to a question is simply that, an answer, regardless of the asker or an answerer. So if anyone wants to answer any question, I say feel free. Everyone is welcome to add to a conversation if they like, as it is how things work best. There is no requirement to assume that any particular person has to be the chief answerer. This is an open forum and no one is recommending any different. I wouldn't be too quick to front load this idea with too many expectations as that rarely ever works. The NGS is offering to be more supportive so why not simply welcome that and let them do what they can as they can. This may work best if we allow it to happen and evolve to what works best. Like water it will find it's own level. Like most things, there will be a plan, and then the plan will be something that can be adjusted to what seems to work best. Nothing is ever all things to all people. A take my ball and go home attitude is rarely helpful, and often not forgotton. Most of the time people just change and or adapt, and go on. So all let's try to keep an open mind. As for asking anyone's opinions, It really isn't required. Just because we have opinions and we get to be heard may or may not have any bearing on what will happen. Sure there may be some things we'd like to have one way or the other, or not, as it looks as many can see some benefit as don't. So what if it was a done deal, will that make a difference? That decision is above anyone's pay scale. Many things have already happened here at Geocaching without anyones permission. Our permission has never been required by the owner of Groundspeak. Membership here in this forum space does not mean any of us is owed a thing. Rob
  6. In this morning's News, was this Article. This particular stretch of tracks does have survey markers along it. It is in a remote, difficult to access area bordered on one side by a Cliff, and the other by the Puget Sound. Though this is not a Benchmark Hunter, it is a train pedestrian accident, and in an area where this sort of thing happens all too frequently. Many are killed, It is not clear that this person is lucky. The basis for all of this was about being in a wrong place to do anything, Period. I just wanted to revisit the issue, though we discuss it often, that railroad right of ways are not safe places to play, let alone be. Thanks for listening. Rob
  7. Embra, It is all good! Sometimes I laugh at me too! I guess I read all the different misunderstandings and try to help shed understanding to them all. In a Forum, it really is hard to say who understands at any given point, We lack all the visual and verbal cues in this format. I could say the same thing you did in a different way. I sometimes wonder why some people don't see it or understand it after it has been well, Very Explained... :-) I work in an industry where many peoples experience has shown that not enough info and elaboration can be much worse than too much, so I may have what is to some a bad habit. To others it is a good one. Surprisingly, I have found there are a lot of people who do actually want a lot more information and background than others as well. It is hard to be all things to all people, but I mean well. More than anything else, please know I come from the heart and enjoy trying to help. Thanks, :-) Rob
  8. Wx, Just another thought, Survey Markers on an Airbase are not unlike the ones found anywhere else. It was likely used to help position Roads Underground Utilities, Buildings, and so on. Some could be used to officially position the Runways for the Charts, Give the Airbase a Geodetic Position, and help the engineers design future enhancements just like any city. Each base really is just a small town with a concerted mission really, and it needs all the same amenities any town would. Just another day in the life of a survey marker... Rob
  9. Hey All, For those who do not see a difference, but want to, or are missing a point, here are a few thoughts that may help sort that. First, (in order, with no bearing on signifigance) Benchmark Hunting here at is a game played by geocachers with National Geodetic Survey Owned Data And survey Markers. The game has a specific set of rules to play by that are unique to the game. Second, (Again with no Bearing on Significance) The National Geodetic Survey has always appreciated reports about the status and condition of their survey markers from any peoples who volunteer to do so, however the criteria and rules for doing this is different from the geocaching game's rules, and this is often confusing to some. Third, (same writer as above) No one has ever been nor will ever be expected to recover survey markers to geocaching or the NGS unless they choose to. But there are likely some people out there who are just everyday people who may think it is a good idea. Some people enjoy public service and volunteering, some may not. That is just their unique feelings and it is ok in america to feel either way. This may help the don't want to's and the want to's in ways we have not been able to explore. Fourth, (again) the NGS has four Personnel assigned to helping Geocachers. Why, Well because Geocachers, many of whom know who they are but may have never let on to anyone, chose to send their work in to the NGS. These four people are already supporting us in addition to the normal work load and many will find that their submissions and corrections are being put through the system at a pretty good pace. The NGS would like to do more for Geocachers and is developing this. Fifth, (same deal) The NGS is not able to read through endless threads , because not all of what we discuss is centric to the job they need to do, but they would like to make it easier to respond to us. These are people too, Just like us, and they have a specialized job just like many of us do. It seems to strike a fair balance to make it easier for us to be helped if that is what we need. Yes, Many of us here in the survey field can answer many questions, But there is much more data and other Info that only the NGS has and they often resort to that when helping with this. Sixth, (yup...) Considering reading a forum is not a hassle in the first place, reading a second should not add to the hassle, Pointing and clicking a mouse is simply not that hard and we are already doing it. Less hassle is relative in some respects, especially when it will help focus people's questions and answers in an area where NGS can help if needed. NGS Station Mark Recovery is again a different animal than Geocaching's Game even though there is a Symbiotic Relationship. If we really want to avoid becoming like a Power Squadron as some people note, then it makes sense to talk about this in a space where the rules and criteria for reporting are different than the game, This way there is a clear division in everyone's mind. This can be a confusing and involved subject at times. Seven, (again) This is no elite group . All are welcome to start a thread and add what they think to any thread just as everyone always has, No matter how large or small but the differences to us will be that this area is a better place to discuss the difficult details whether we need the NGS to help or not, and if we do, this is the area we ask for their help to save them a lot of time. It is just a separate place, Similar to the one Given to the USGS National Map, To do the more specific and sometimes more difficult things. Interestingly, the NGS wants to be involved in helping us here, But the USGS is not involved in the National Map Forum. Yet the USGS has an official, unofficial forum space here and the NGS, whose Survey we "borrow" to play on does not. Who really knows how much the NGS could support us unless we give them a chance to do it? They may be planning to be far more gregarious than we think. Casey did allude to good things you know. The NGS did assign Him as a Liaison to us and he has been thinking about us, so hey, since a new Forum is not meant to change the fun we are already having, what would really be the harm? What if we are pleasantly surprised? Eighth, (...) There are many different feelings here and that is clear, but that is not a bad thing, if anything it seems to signify that benchmark hunting is diverse and is evolving. BlackDog is good with statistics and determined that most posts would be about the Game here and I think he is right, but for the different and the technical, a separate place to talk about it would not hurt things a bit. If we do want to grow and we do want help, There is nothing we cannot further evolve as we go. If it turns out to not work well, it is not something that has to be kept. In many ways it would help with a lot of things even some that we may not now clearly see, but rest assured, this is not like getting a tattoo that was a bad idea while too drunk. The ship has a rudder and a strong engine, we can still drive. If we won't really know until we try, I vote for and Highly recommend Try, and go from there. At least then we will know. Thanks. I hope that clarifies some of the questions, Rob
  10. Well where all the NGS and it's predecessors may have or did set survey is not completely known to me but I am aware that Canada also saw CGS Surveyors on the Alcan Highway all along the way to Alaska, in 1943-44, CGS Surveyors triangulated the Philippine Islands Just before WWII and some were captured by the Japanese occupiers of the P.I during that conflict, so they were then Prisoners of War. Many other South Sea islands were triangulated by the CGS as were some of the Islands of the Caribbean. There are likely other places as well, but who knows. Today NGS only keep data current for marks on American Soil, and does not share the information on stations set in other countries. It is likely the information was transferred to the respective governments... As for a survey marker on Kunsan AB, Yup The Base Civil Engineers Squadron will know what it is and all the data for it as well.. Sorry, It isn't part of the National Geodetic Survey's database so it is unavailable to log for the game here at geocaching. Rob
  11. Blackdog, to quote you here: Perhaps instead of the two benchmark forums being: 1. technical / NGS 2. non-technical / gameplaying / informal topics Their distinction should be: 1. Questions to NGS about: Mark Recovery reporting on the NGS site, dswin program, archived datasheets, etc. 2. everything else (technical, non-technical, gameplaying, informal) I'd like to give you that one but too many have already expressed that they do not want to feel put upon by technical discussions and NGS stuff and I want to accommodate that. They need their place to play without being expected to do anything else. Conversely many do want to talk tech without feeling like others were upset about it. All these discussions too are in this forum and one only needs to go read for a while to find them. This will create more freeness and openness for both kinds of player. It will accommodate more people than now. I am not challenging you per se, but how would your idea accommodate this? This growing tension is already a point of contention that needs a better solution. How can we serve more people the way they might like? I have a sense that separating the more technical discussions away from the geocaching game discussion is a better bet. There will be less sharp elbowed comments and snipes this way. To your other questions: >Benchmark "finds" Question: What qualifies as a FOUND? This depends. Are you playing by Geocaching rules or trying to follow NGS recovery rules? This could go either way. >Benchmark Definition? basic definition of a bencmark is? An Innocent question, Valid for either forum. It has two answers in the context of this game. >Monumented 1948; Dated 1899? Probably a more technical answer which the NGS and various Surveyors could help sort out. I see this sort of thing in the field all the time. So do my counterparts. If you find it in either case you can claim it as a find at geocaching. >Finding Those Oldies: Data search techniques This was likely a person looking for old marks they could be First to find on. I would call this a game question first. It could evolve into a tech discussion. >Unlisted Benchmarks How come I didn't find this in the Geocaching database? This is primarily a game question. >Beginner's Questions: Discription Confusion Beginner's? Well let's walk before we run, Lets try it in the general discussion forum first assuming they are new and just want to learn how to play the Game. This is geocaching afterall, and see how it evolves. >Discussion Of Hv5247 Probably Technical. We are dissecting the technical aspects of the description and perhaps trying to unearth a way to find it. >Ngs Appears To Be Down: AM I JUST SLOW I think NGS is a dead giveaway in the title here. So I see it as 2 questions for both forums, or you could say either. Three for the Game/General Forum, and three for the NGS Forum. That accounts for all eight instances you mentioned. So perhaps we see it differently, But the forum regulars will get the hang of it pretty quickly, further they will know that when they start a thread in a given forum, that they are predetermining the direction the discussion should take. The may put it in the General forum in hopes of it not becoming a technical discussion or and NGS deal. They want t to be about the Game. The technical poster may actually desire the thread to keep a technical nature. We are not asking anyone to check their sense of humor at the door here... :-) The non regular may not always post in the best place but this is not bad, we just (graciously I hope) help them as we would anyone. They too will get the hang of it. The Jumping back and forth if it comes to much of it won't hurt a thing. We are all smart people and the change adapt mode never ends in any walk of life. I think it makes sense to do this, The NGS is our Partner in this. We play on their Monuments and Data. Survey Markers are not even black and white to a surveyor, we too have to consider many factors every day, this would help the geocacher who plays this game with the many shades of grey. I feel it will help with a lot of things. Rob
  12. It reminds me of why I am a fair weather bicyclist. I live in an area where the words wind and hill are spelled exactly the same way. I have spent many, many hours paid to be in nasty weather. Mostly cold wind and rain. On my own time, I don't find unpleasant weather, well, pleasant. So I tend to avoid it. Benchmark hunting to dad was introduced as work. Work to some isn't always pleasant... and so it goes. Thanks for the story! Rob
  13. I don't see an NGS/Technical Forum as a bad thing or a problematic one. I would like to see this happen, but most already knew that :-) Casey is welcome to add his thoughts for Blackdog, But I would like to add a few as well. All people would be invited to post in either forum. We would keep in mind the question we ask, and the direction we hope the discussion to take, as we choose the forum we post in. Game? More Technical, or NGS oriented? What kind of answer does the poster want? No fouls for things that evolve from one to another in either direction. No harm or foul at all, this isn't about being wrong or making people wrong. Those who want to play just the game will have a forum where they will not feel put upon by overly technical discussion or those who want to perform public service to NGS. It could attract more people to Benchmark Hunting who for them, want the game this way. The nature of the new forum would be more technical and we could talk about Survey, PLSS, USGS Topo Survey, Instruments and technical methods, How to, the NGS and with the NGS without bothering those who just want a game. We would also be welcome to just have a more technical discussion that some may not otherwise enjoy. This could attract more people to Benchmark Hunting who want to be technical as that is their nature, or want to perform public service and have been looking for a fun way to do this, and want the game this way. The nature of discussions would likely overlap between forums but I would not see that as a bad thing. If it became more or less technical in mid stream, out of respect we could move the discussion to a more appropriate place. Things will probably not need more moderation than now. Maybe the occasional toggling of a topic to a better forum for it would likely be the most intervention, if ever. I see this sort of thing happen all the time in the geocaching forums, which by the way have many sub topical forums. The pinned topics for NGS are not working and do not serve to separate the many questions well. One was an announcement that saw about 4 posts over 4 months ago. In this schema, how can one question end and another begin without multiple overlap? There is a lot we discuss in the general space that the NGS could weigh in on, but does not. Though they often would not need to, they might not know when to. Often someone here is able to answer the question and so they may not feel the need to add. But all pinned topics seem to become stale. All of ours for the most part are. Even Jeremy asked recently that he would rather we asked him to help us from in the Geocaching Website forum rather than the Pinned Topic, so if the pinned topic isn't helping us with Jeremy, let's unpin it, and since the same seems true of the NGS Pinned Topic, is there a better way? Probably. Besides who wants to look for a question on the eventual page 47 of a pinned topic? They simply are not serving the need. Do we tell someone who re asks a question on Page 53 that we already answered that question back on page 21? Imagine the endless scrolling with no way of indexing! A new forum with a slightly different focus will help much more. If the NGS says they are here to help but are finding it difficult as things are, why can't we try finding a better way? Specific questions could be directed to the NGS and they could easily find and answer them without having to read through a lot of other stuff. They have many things to do in addition to helping us here and a new forum will be helpful to them in time savings alone. It is feasible to believe that they are very busy, (and they are, after all they have assigned additional personnel to the work geocachers generate for them to do in addition to what they already have going) and though they may want to help us here, Where would they start? How can we help them to help us? Casey is right, It is a lot of reading to do. Of course many here could still weigh in and try to help answer them as well. The folks at NGS would have a more specific place to look which may cut their looking by half or more and we would have a more specific place to ask. We could know to ask more specifically, and perhaps say so in the Forum Heading. It really remains to be seen how a new NGS/Technical Forum would evolve and how the NGS would interact with us, as we have not tried this before, But the new forum will find a way it works best for all in a natural way just as this one has and will continue to evolve as well. I think we will keep both forums alive and very busy. We will all still be here chatting in both. I don't see either forum falling into disuse. There are plenty of newcomers to the game to help, pictures to share, and congratulations to give. This would be true in either forum but would be more focused as to what was being discussed. New people's questions could be simply posted where they get posted, if we think we can answer it, we should. We should also remain mindful of giving them basic answers and allow them room to ask more questions. If we think we should answer it in the other forum we can start a thread in the other forum for the question and post a link to the discussion started elsewhere. Anyone can do this. In any case, the emphasis should be on getting them an answer and helping them play. This isn't about whether this group is big enough, nor is it about splitting the group. All are welcome in any forum. Pretty much meant as one general group with two forums to handle the varying nature of the topic. People will likely read it all and will post as they wish. Taken as a whole the entire Geocaching forum space is a place where people discuss a great many things and I am sure they will adapt to this too. This is about focusing the style of topical content and keeping more people happy as they all want to discuss the way they want to play, and no one wants to offend anyone. If this already appears to be half technical, then half would be in a technical forum. It is feasible that a game oriented player may have an occasional technical question, and/or may want to ask the NGS something that they feel the group would benefit from in the answer. I know if I see something that appeals to me in the game forum, though most of you know me as a surveyor who enjoys lengthy technical discussion, I will likely post there and add my comments or ideas, the Fun I share or what have you, mindful of the deal that the gaming forum is not the place for me to expansively expound in a technical manner. Yes, I can Laugh at me too :-D The USGS National Map group is very small, yet it has grown a lot since it had it's spin off from here and they are doing very well, they are having fun, they are discussing what they want and are having fun. They have grown as new people have found them and desired to join. I would hope that this will help us grow as well by accommodating those who just want to play here at geocaching, and those who wish to perform a public service to the NGS and wish to discuss it. Geocaching has welcomed public service in many ways in the past and this instance would be yet another way. Imagine attracting more people to this hobby in either way. Some may find that they want to play a game and yet NGS recovery begins to appeal to them, some may want to perform public service, then find that the game is more appealing. Some may enjoy Geocaching too and probably do, some may Join Geocaching and help Geocaching grow. It is all good. It serves us all well, nothing would be Taboo. The previous thread I started did seem to suggest that some people had strong feelings. Well with two forums they can feel that way and have fun in the forum that best represents the way they feel. They can even go back and forth knowing up front what to expect from the topical discussion. The hope is that the respect we have for one another remains as high as it always has. This really is a great group of people here. This is not about Hard fast drawn lines, it is about more accommodating and more focus. It does not need to be tricky. It is a sort of culture change to what we are currently accustomed to, but I sense it will help us evolve overall. There will likely be some confusion and growing pains but I am sure we will take it all in stride and work out the culture it will come to have as we grow. This forum even as it is, has evolved a lot, and will continue to. It has not been without growing pains. This could be taken as a part of the process and won't hurt us, as things evolve all the time. This is another great opportunity, I'd love to see us take this step. If you haven't yet, please feel free to add your responses to Casey's question. As always, Rob
  14. Not to beat a dead horse, but simply put: Rule #1 Survey Markers are not to be construed as collectable. Please do not disturb them. Rule #2, Sometimes there are exceptions to the rule, but if in doubt, Please refer to rule #1. Thanks, Rob
  15. 4leaf, Before you take exception with anyone for what was said, please let me give you a little background. As a Surveyor I have seen a LOT of Vandalism to Survey Markers in My career. elcamano is a surveyor who has likely seen more than I as he is retired and I am still at it. His response was not meant to be reactionary and neither was mine. He was not attempting to be insensitive either. But he and I have both seen hours and hours of our work wiped out by those who seemingly have nothing better to do. I am not saying, nor implying that this case is a similar case at all, but it is instructive to remember that many many people do read the forums and if they ever wondered about this concept, now they know. Survey markers when taken as a whole are fragile objects and some are more so than others. A good bit of our work is about protecting and preserving them, and so it goes. When taken in context of this question, the question did leave a lot to the imagination before it became fleshed out a bit better, later in the thread. A Surveyor who has seen more than one illegal benchmark collector in their time will naturally respond in such a way to caution anyone to not disturb the survey markers. From our perspective it is not light, it is thousands of dollars worth of many man hours of work, and then it is gone, possibly adding difficulty to our jobs as well as other ramifications. Imagine a multi million dollar study being conducted on the basis of some specific Survey Monuments and during the procees, or after, one of the stations which was a basis for the study is taken. This does happen. You might be surprised, some people in the world do dig them up, or remove the disc from the monument, and in so doing are not doing anyone any favors. You just haven't lived until you see a survey station being worn as Jewelry. I have. Of course I am sure it is more disheartening to a surveyor, but if you see the logo emblem which is missing off your car around someone's neck, you would likely get the same feel. As an alternative example, None of us would be very happy to look out and find that someone has obliterated our mailbox with pumpkins, or run it over with a car. Yet the work and costs of replacing the mailbox is far much less than the replacement of a survey monument. Ultimately nothing is for free. In the simplest possible terms. These are not meant to be collected, and when someone finds that they can obtain one for themselves, it is an exception to the rule, not the rule. I thank those who DO go to the trouble and channels to make sure it is ok to remove them, as that is the right thing to do. Yes this is not the case this time, but the fact is, this sort of thing does happen. I meant no offense and I am sure elcamino meant none either. Thanks for understanding, Rob
  16. Artman, I second your motion. I'll see your two cents and raise you one more, Now we have a Plug Nickel. Yup All those Photos just BOG the Forum, I Like to see them too, but once I have seen them the first time, the load times become very long, and since the last one to load is the last one loaded, we wait and wait. I have observed 10 minute load times on some threads myself. It would be easier on a lot of forum users if the photos were uploaded to the gallery and a link be given here so people can go look at them as they wish, they open in a new window and it is a relatively quick load to see the ones we need that way. If it is not too much to ask... Rob
  17. Camper17, Beings that you say these are in a Sidewalk as you say, near where you work, I see little harm in looking inside the monument cover if it is not bolted on. Please just keep an eye to your personal safety as you do this, and try not to do it alone. More eyes watching for traffic is best. A simple pry bar may be needed to gain access. That is up to you to assess. Beyond that, Doing this in the street is not the safest idea. It is often safer to just pass on those. We recently fleshed all this out earlier this month in this thread: http://forums.Groundspeak.com/GC/index.php?showtopic=87875 I hope that helps and if nothing else, feel free to keep asking the questions. We will try to get you an answer. Rob
  18. To All: Jeremy hasn't mentioned it in the Benchmark Hunting Forum until recently, but he has mentioned it in other forums that the only forum he reads daily or with regularity is this one: http://forums.Groundspeak.com/GC/index.php?showforum=8 That is the Geocaching Website Forum. He asks that people bring their problems and requests there. He has also mentioned in the past that he is pretty selective about his daily email, so the forum post would still likely be the best bet. Rob
  19. Holograph, Jeremy hasn't mentioned it in this forum until yesterday, but he has mentioned it in other forums that the only forum he reads daily or with regularity is this one: http://forums.Groundspeak.com/GC/index.php?showforum=8 That is the Geocaching Website Forum. He asks that people bring their problems and requests there. He has also mentioned in the past that he is pretty selective about his daily email, so the forum post would still likely be the best bet. Rob
  20. I echo Mike's (elcamino's) sentiment but to clear up any confusion as to what he meant, If you come across one of these monuments in it's original position, as placed by Geodetic Surveying Crews, it is where it needs to be and is illegal to remove them. Please do not disturb it. While it does say $250 for the fine on many discs, I have heard of instances of it costing the modern day equivalent of reaccomplishing the work, and that can exceed $200/hr and several days time. They could also just fine more for the fun of it. Yes these Monuments do sometimes become disturbed during the many processes of construction but that is Happenstance. More the exception than the rule. Just as many are located and protected as well. More important than the exceptions to this rule, is the rule. All the digging we need to do is just to expose the Brass disc at the top of the monument, if buried. No further digging is required. If there is said to be an underground mark with the station, trust that the monumenting surveyor put one there, and know that if the surface mark is in place, so goes the underground one. In any case, Please leave them as you find them. Thanks, Rob
  21. Matt, Congrats on the great work and the keen thoughts of being where it might not be safe to be. That is something we should all keep in mind no matter the season. Oh, And your P.S. gave me a hell of a laugh! I am reasonably certain that after all the bent up feelings over that question which I have managed to ferret out lately, No one will be asking that question around here for a very long time. Thanks for Volunteering! :-D Rob
  22. DBleess, Go here: http://www.ngs.noaa.gov/cgi-bin/datasheet.prl Click the Benchmark Button. On the new page click the second option, Radial Search. Apply your center coordinate and radius and enter... And you can use this functionality today. Plus the Data is up to date. Enjoy. Roger, Well Said. A response from Jeremy would be simply put, Good Business. Rob
  23. I prefer Cornstarch over Flour as I feel it makes a smoother, lighter sauce or gravy. Rob
  24. Well put by all and thanks. The basis for my idea came from the people who had been Vocally Against the Technical Discussions in the past. It was not an attempt to get the surveyors a place to chat, as we generally do not chat amongst ourselves as it is. I doubt it would start in a new forum. The thought was that if there was a separate place for the Technical Discussions, Those who wanted the just the game would be less bothered. They would have a place to play without the technical discussions that they wished Perhaps it would persuade others who are put off by the technical nature and the long learning curve to join in anyway. Some had taken their ball and went home and told us as much. My hope was to find a way to include them. It is reasonably unanimous that all want the forum to continue to be shared. Two forums would have better defined the scope of discussion taking place and would have offered a channel changer for those who did not want to participate in something they didn't want to. NGS recovery, whether anyone likes it or not is an option here, it is in the FAQ, and it is equally open for discussion as anything else. It is a way some people do play the game and whether everyone likes that or not, it is time to accept it. John's point concerning overwhelming a newcomer with more than a simple answer is a good one and we should remain mindful of this, thanks John. Going forward this choice to keep things as they are means that ALL people will need to be tolerant of all discussion, technical or not. Yes this IS a Game and since there are variations to the way it can be played, everyone is agreeing to be tolerant of all of it. I would not make light of this point if it had not been a bone of contention in the recent past. This means we put the sharp elbows away and accept it, No more griping, sniping, and innuendoes, because in accordance with the FAQ, it is all considered on Topic. It is not all about the way some people want to play and the others don't matter. The rules here are not only by TPTB, but with the input from member benchmark hunters as well. Things work best when we follow them. If the rule is you must be able to read the Disc, then it is what it is. If you do not like scrutiny or being made to feel like a cheater by a purist, do not subject yourself to the scrutiny, or Better yet, just follow the rule and no one will take a dim view of that sort of Game Play. Over time, there have been some who have asked if they planned to submit their finds to the NGS, It was not always asked by Surveyors. In fact it was generally not any of the surveyors at all. It is simply an option, a choice. It does seem however to have become a point of contention for some. I am sure the question was asked in a should sort of way by those who like playing the way they like playing and not meant to spread ill will. it is instructive to remember that it is optional to report to the NGS what one finds, or not, and some people do, some even want to. I have not seen any of them coming out against playing a game. They play it too. I hope those who feel so offended can get over it. In closing, we should remember that this is what we collectively seem to want so I hope to see things go smoothly into the future. I will now close this thread as this is not about Bashing the NGS nor speaking about them in a disparaging way. That is not an opinion I asked for and not something I intend to be part of. My fear is that it could digress to that so we'll just avoid that altogether. As for the NGS and to their credit, They have not asked anyone here for, nor expected from anyone, a single thing. And Joe, I really will have to take some of what you said with a grain of salt since you do have custom magnetic survey mark recovery sign and a light bar on your SUV so you can hunt Benchmarks! ;-D Again, My email box is available if anyone has anything else or any thing further. Best regards to all, Rob
  25. Hi Harry, This isn't about giving headaches, it is more about solving one. There are enough people to make a split at any level if all who use this forum cannot seem to share the space they have been given. The purists and game players are both within their rights to play the game the way they like, with respect to the rules which have been set forth in the FAQ. It seems a shame that some people choose not to hunt benchmarks because they feel the rules and scrutiny is more than they feel is acceptable. I was thinking, how could we accommodate them too? If we decide that we want to share the space we have then the onus is on everyone to do exactly that, and from what I am seeing that is the consensus. I am happy to see it. Respect for each other's desire to take this game to the level each enjoys is something I feel I should respect, and I hope others feel as I do. If this thread serves to refocus us all on the needs for that then it is serving us well. If this respect rules the day then there is probably no need for a second Forum. Either way, I hope to continue to see others weigh in on the proposal. From what you say, it looks to me like you have a good grasp as to what is what and how to play. Some of the methods used to determine a find often have to be taken on a case by case basis. But some things are like monopoly, if you roll a five then you get to advance 5 places. If you can afford the property, you may purchase it. Some times you have to take a chance card. Same sort of rule system here. If anyone isn't sure, the forum is a great place to flesh it all out. As long as we follow the guidelines here we have a basis for which we can compare our scores to one another. How else can a basic playing field exist and be level? No one here is a follow up Surveyor. There is no such thing. Some people happen to work in that profession but that is of no consequence. If you want to play in the way you enjoy, Play. That is how things work best. We just need to be mindful of the guidlines. If others want to play harder or at another level, that is up to them. Some Never Benchmark Hunt and some never Geocache and then there is everyone in between. If all want to discuss all the variations, share the photos, congratulate each other, and answer all the myriad questions, that is why the Forum is here. It doesn't matter if you are a purist or a weekend warrior, a game lover or a person who wants to send what they find to a higher level. In other words, it is all good. If you find or don't find survey markers that have not been reported since 1932, it simply means that nobody has reported them yet. That is all it means. Yes the agency that placed them does care and would love an update if someone wants to send it. If no one does, then no one does. You could be that person if you like, or not. No biggie, Your option. John, You make a good point on the Power Squadron and No I don't think we are even close. My purpose has never been to rankle you, but it does take putting the info out there so people can ask questions. Information and answering questions for those who do want to know. Even those who do not ask learn something if they want. Unfortunately this subject isn't always simple. This is part of how people become proficient at anything. Even those who just want to hunt can become better at hunting from reading some of the more technical discussions. No matter where we go, There we are, at whatever level. One way we can avoid becoming like a Power Squadron, though it isn't really fair to be disrespectful of their public service, is to be clear about how to go about this. For instance we can use NAD 83 and WGS 84 as an example. On a Consumer Grade GPS it does not seem to make much difference between these two particular datum. But there is about a Meter of difference in a basic way, and there is a lot of fine tuning to NAD 83 in this country. Since in places there could be more than a 1 meter difference, just because one meter never seems to show some people a difference at the consumer grade, and it may well be fine, the more accurate we get the further from the actual spot we become. What if consumer grade GPS becomes more accurate at the price point they sell it? Then we will reveal the hidden meter and the philosophy will no longer be valid. If we change to yet another datum we can become even further off course the further we go. Especially if we believe the datum shift doesn't matter, Like NAD 83 and WGS 84 are close eh? So any other Datum ought to work too? That could happen in some people's thinking. I have found a lost hiker or two. There are plenty of Datum whose shift is recognizable with consumer grade gear. With respect to both you, and the science that is available, what is the harm in just teaching people that it is safest to follow best practices even if it is just a bit more hassle? Sure Many People know this. Many Many Do Not. What I mean is that you are right, you can use the default WGS 84 to play the game and you should be fine. It will probably get you close enough to find what is being hunted. It ends there though. But many of these markers are part of how NAD 83 is determined and fixed to the ground, and that is something a player who wants to take the game to a higher level should know. WGS 84 and NAD 83 are different and belong to two different Agencies. They are both currently in use. One is not superseding the other. One is basically for the entire world Primarily for use by the US Military and accurized by various countries in their respective regions, sometimes. The other is for specific and accurized for use in the USA. Now should we, if we choose to do so, send WGS 84 Datum Scaled Mark improvements to the NGS? Well Not really. In fact, let me just say no. I realize you would not ask for this to happen either. That is not serving the purpose well if we do that, but it could happen if we don't know any better. If people want to play at that level they should know why it is important some things are done in certain ways or it seems to become it's own undoing. The age old advice is that we should use the posted Datum, for the map or other wise is still good advice. Establish the bad habits of mixing Datums is not a good one. Most of these Survey markers were established during NAD 27 or before, they have been converted so to speak, to NAD 83. You are right in the sense that for a game here this difference isn't much difference but that doesn't outmode the old advice. I understand your desire to simplify some things and have them be more about the game and fun, and I will give you that it is a good thing you want. But if we can teach and establish good orienteering practices from the very beginning, even if it is a bit more difficult, most people will come out ahead anyway. In the most important sense, I am not worried about people who know the difference, I am hoping to help the ones who do not. People can fudge on what they want to as long as they know the differences. It does not seem right (to me) to fudge up front when teaching them. Some of this stuff is not easy to get ones mind around and everyone is different. In the end not knowing the difference on a Datum is just as you say, as reckless as asking someone to recover stations to the NGS before they know the ins and outs. If we do it right we all find a balance somewhere along the way. Again, I am just talking about this as a for instance and I am not cheerleading for NGS recovery. Will, I enjoyed your thoughts and feel you did your thinking well. Thanks for that. The one forum does help keep everyone honest and the playing field level. I also give credit to John for the point he raised. There is Much Zeal to play in the forum and I see that as a good thing. I have come across many posts like John pointed out and I was well down the list of posters to the thread. After reading my way to the bottom I often saw a lot of answers based on the way each person likes to Benchmark hunt for themselves, which may not have always been a real basic answer. In fact it is often a lot of different answers. John and Shirley have always been big advocates for helping the beginners and I think it is great. I sense they want to keep basic with basic and that is understandable. I have attempted on more than one occasion to cumulatively hash out what it all meant so that when the person who asked checked in for the answer they would have something, or at least I hoped something that would be the answer they wanted as well as how the other things people added might relate to the basic answer. Sometimes I have even contrasted comparisons if I thought it would help. I don't do this on every thread on the board, nor most of them, but I like to play too, and I enjoy helping just as much as we all do. I am sure I haven't always done this right or as well as I could have, and there are times we all probably feel we could have done something differently, but I am also sure that people's hearts are in the right place. We are all different personalities but that is what makes the Forum interesting. Things and questions go in cycles, the uninitiated don't see it but those who are familiar with what has already been said, know. It isn't about losing one's religion, we all have to allow things to evolve as they will and try to be ok with however it happens. Thanks Guys, Rob
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