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Enchanted Shadow

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Everything posted by Enchanted Shadow

  1. You know, I think it's a sad turn of our society that knives are considered by so many to be a weapon, first and foremost. Knives are a *tool*, and too many people forget that. It wasn't that many generations ago, that young boys were regularly given pocket knives, and taught how to use them responsibly. Nowadays, parents scream and shudder at the thought that their baby might come across something *sharp*. I'm sorry, but the *tool* is not the problem. It's the parents and how kids are being raised. After all, *anything* can be used as a weapon. It's foolish to blame the object instead of the person who wields it, and it's foolish to try and solve the issue by sheltering people from said items, instead of simply teaching them how to deal with them in a responsible and safe manner. But that's what too many people are doing, and it's a bass ackwards way of doing things. ...<sigh> Sorry about that folks, this is just one of things that really peaves me off, and I guess I had to get that out.
  2. In response to your first paragraph, I only played that card after Jeremy effectively categorized power users as unreasonably greedy. In response to that, pointing out what I did was more than reasonable, in my opinion. In response to your second paragraph, it still doesn't tell you that you're being throttled, and aside from that, it does not address the issue that opening up multiple pages simultaneously is common browsing behavior, and does not deserve to be put into the same category as a robot trying to rip the entire site as fast as humanly possible. In response to your third paragraph, PQ's do not solve the issue for me. I *do* use PQs for my initial stages of searching. But when it's time to finetune that list, I open them up in live browser pages. This lets me see the actual cache page in its most recent form, it lets me see all logs, and it gives me the most up to date information as to the most recent finds. PQs cannot properly handle any of those things. Once I have the pages open, I flip between them and close out the ones I'm not interested in, until I'm left with the final set - which are in the perfect position to be printed. I think I have a nice and efficient way of doing things, as far as my needs and desires go. I'm not doing anything unreasonable, and I take offense at the management's characterization of being unreasonably greedy.
  3. Jeremy, with all due respect, not everyone reviews caches the same way you do. Just because you might not open a bunch of caches in seperate windows for simultaneous review, doesn't mean that others don't, NOR does it mean that they *shouldn't*. How you browse is your business. And how I browse is mine. How do you think people would respond if Google's policy was "Please don't run multiple searches simultanously. If you're looking for information, sifting through results takes time, and there's no reason and no possible way you could really make use of simultaneous searching." If they tried that, their stock (as well as number of hits) would drop like a rock within 48 hours. And people don't even PAY to use their site! I *pay* for the services of your site. If the way I browse involves opening multiple caches at once, there should not be a problem with that. As I said earlier, it's not like I'm trying to do a high-bandwidth spider of your complete site, so that I can have the entire shebang for offline viewing. Opening 5-10 caches simultaneously is not an unreasonable methedology. I do the same on many other sites, as do a lot of people. If your servers can't keep up with the needs of your users, than fixing that is on your side of the net. It's not right to blame the users for it.
  4. Same here. I don't have any bots. At the time, I was just quickly loading 5-10 caches in seperate windows. I definitely do not like the current restrictions. It's not like I was trying to download 100 pages in 2 seconds. It was more like - at most - 10 pages in 10 seconds. I suppose I don't mind if TPTB want to keep spiders from ripping their entire site. However, I would like them to relax this restriction so that it doesn't catch power users. Seperate from that, however, does anyone know what the current thresholds are, exactly?
  5. I'm having a problem with the main site. Several times a day, I can't call up any cache pages. Doing any sort of search or putting in a URL directly leads to a blank page. I might be able to load a few at first, but then everything seems to lock up, and I get nothing but blank pages. After a few minutes, things *might* start working again, but it doesn't take much for the problem to re-occur. Is anyone else seeing this?
  6. Wrong. There is a basic definition of geocaching. The hobby will always have this core. It will never morph to you having to carry a ball across some goal line, race each other on motorcycles from one point to another, or not be able to use a GPS. If the hobby morphs into one of those things it would be something else. The statement of "[whatever] is fluid" is the same as those who claim the Bible, or some other document, is a living document. In other words, you want it to mean what you want it mean, not what it really means. <snip> Apparently, you have a very limited understanding of history. Rules of etiquette, societal norms, traditions, etc... have most definitely changed over time. As an example, consider what was considered socially appropriate for weddings 40 years ago, and compare them with what people consider acceptable today. As far as geocaching goes, when it first started, did states have mandatory registration requirements for caches? No. It's something that has evolved over time, as the sport/hobby/activity of geocaching has grown, and knowledge of it has become more widespread. And do you think that the complete set of guidelines and generally accepted rules of geocaching etiquette are exactly the same today as they were when geocaching was first started? Of course not. Those guidelines and rules of etiquette have *also* evolved over time. People learned what worked, and what didn't. And do you think there was the same sense of freedom on where a cache could be placed pre and post 9/11? Of course, not. There we have an event that has led to a much higher level of suspicion and paranoia than existed previously. And as cachers, we need to respect that and work with it. And what about all the different types of caches (virtual, mystery, multi, etc...). Did they exist from the very beginning? Nope. How about travel bugs, geocoins, etc...? Nope. Therefore, geocaching - just like etiquette in real life - is indeed fluid. It changes to meet new views, new needs, and new desires. My original statement stands.
  7. Hmm. I understand. The issues regarding potential problems with Land Managers is not one I considered. As far as your last point, however, I would argue that "what if" scenarios are not sufficient by themselves to warrant a policy restriction. It's easy enough to make a prominent note reminding people that the rules of this cache don't necessarily apply to others within the cache description, as well as inside the cache itself. After that, people who would violate that etiquette in other caches, are the ones who might do so anyway, even without our hypothetical adults-only cache.
  8. I'm not really concerned about the location issue - I tossed that in because it was appropriate to the discussion, and because I found a cache that fell into that category. My personal interest was in having caches where one didn't have to censor trade items, but where people would be free to leave items suitable for adults, but not suitable for kids.
  9. Okay. I did read that portion you quoted before I made my post, but what confused me was existing published caches that clearly went against those guidelines. That being the case, I guess what's left is simply the suggestion that I think it would be nice to be able to expand those guidelines on a cache-by-cache basis.
  10. Okay, let me preface my questions/suggestions with two things: 1. I'm guessing that this is probably going to be a topic with strong viewpoints on opposite sides. Please don't flame me for bringing it up, I'm just trying to get some information/opinions/intellectual debate on this matter. 2. I'd be shocked if this wasn't brought up before, by someone else. However, with the forum's Search function disabled (and yes, I tried using Google, too), I can't find anything prior, so I'm bringing this up from scratch. Okay, now onto the meat of the matter... As with many activities, there are a lot of views on how geocaching should be done, who should it be suitable for, etc... As a general item, geocaching is listed as a "family activity". However, what I'm interested in, is in the possibility of being able to classify a cache as "Adults Only". Now, I realize that it is possible to set an attribute of "No kids". But I need clarification here. If Geocaching.com's policy is that all caches must be "family friendly", than to me "No Kids" simply means that the terrain is dangerous for children, and nothing else. However, I have seen caches that have deliberately been placed near adult stores (or similar), where that is relatively clearly indicated in the cache description, and the "No Kids" attribute was attached. So, I need some clarification: If I wanted to create a cache that was for adults only - and by that I mean that either the location might be not suitable for kids (not what I had in mind, but I might as well add this in here), or that I didn't want people to feel limited in what they could place as cache contents (i.e. adult-only-suitable parody items such as Stephen Lynch CDs, a leatherman, heck, even a Playboy, for that matter) - could I do this, and be within acceptable guidelines for this site? If I were to use caches that are currently published as a measure, I would assume that this would be okay, but I wanted to get a clear answer on this. And if not, than I would offer the suggestion that it might be a nice thing to be able to do. If for no other reason, than because adults and kids don't always have interest in the same things, and because there are things that an adult would consider to be a *great* cache find (i.e. Leatherman), but which some parents wouldn't want their kids to possess. And, insofar as more mature items are concerned, while between adults it's easy to say "well, if you don't like it, or find it offensive, than just don't take it", that same mentality is not considered sufficient for kids, as many parents don't want their kids to even see/hear/be aware of such things in the first place. Okay, so there are my questions/suggestions on the table. Let's see how painless (or painful) this is going to be. <duck>
  11. I have to admit that I take a bit of offense at that. Being in the minority, opinion-wise, does not necessarily make you the bad guy, nor does it necessarily make you wrong, or diminish the value of your opinion. After all, there have been several points in time, where thinking that *all* humans had rights would have put you very squarely into that minority category - but that doesn't mean that your opinion wouldn't have been worthwhile, am I right? Geocaching is a fluid sport, it changes to meet new views, new needs, and new desires. If you want to post a list of etiquette, that's fine. But I would also add that this list should clearly indicate that points of etiquette are not *rules*, per se, but only the general concensus at the time they were posted. And that, not only may they change over time, but that there are many individual circumstances that may perfectly justify an act that would normally be outside those points of etiquette. Ultimately, each person is responsible for using their brain and determining what's right and what's not. Does that seem fair?
  12. Here's a seemingly radical thought that you may have not considered: Safety shouldn't *always* come first. What would the greatest achievements in our history be like if people only did what was safe? What would our level of science and technology be if people only had done what was safe? Remember, even with modern day precautions and OSHA, you still have space shuttles exploding. Space exploration is always inherently risky (i.e. not safe). Undersea exploration is inherently risky. And on a less grand scale, if you simply wish to talk about recreation and personal living... Mountain climbing is inherently risky. SCUBA diving is inherently risky. Boxing is inherently risky. Football is inherently risky. NASCAR is inherently risky. Hiking *can* be inherently risky, which means that Geocaching can be inherently risky as well. After all, if you're going for a Terrain of 3-5, and you don't have the skills, experience, or physical ability, you're putting yourself in a potentially unsafe position. Heck, even with all of that, some 5.0's I've seen are still potentially unsafe. Oh, and even with a Terrain of 1.0, you can still come across poisonous plants, spiders, snakes, etc... But let's not forget - have you looked at accident statistics? Every time you cross the street, you're taking a risk and putting yourself in a potentially unsafe position. Does that mean that you should never leave your house? So, what kind of life would you have, if safety truly came before *anything* else?
  13. You're forgetting a few things here: 1. It doesn't have to stick out like a sore thumb in order to be obviously fake when carefully, but *safely* examined. 2. Some people like easy caches. 3. Originality often is a highly subjective concept. How many things that you, personally, have seen, have you considered to be original because you've never seen anything like it before? And out of those, how many of them do you *really* think are genuinely original? In other words, no one - at any time in history, in any place, has *ever* done it before? If you, personally, have seen an electrical box cache taped to a tree, than the next one isn't original. But to anyone who has NOT come across anything like that before, than it *is* original - to them. And there's nothing wrong with that. This is not a closed sport - there are always new people coming in, and there are always new experiences for people who have been doing it for awhile. *That's* the draw. Nope. As I said before, it's common sense not to do anything dangerous with electrical boxes that *might* be live, UNLESS you have the knowledge to determine whether it's safe to do so. For example... 1. If we're talking about nothing more than standard outlet-type boxes, than there's nothing wrong with getting close to only LOOK. 2. If you can see that the box is attached to the surface with magnets and/or double-stick foam, and that - via the gap caused by said magnets or double-stick foam - that there's *nothing* connecting the box conduit-wise to *any* surface. 3. It's a pretty safe bet that the box is a fake. On the other hand... 1. If the box is permanently mounted (i.e. bolted in place)... 2. And if you can clearly see conduit running from the box, OR if the box is flush mounted to *any* surface, keeping you from getting a clear look at any side of the box... 3. And if it's not mounted to something obviously unsuitable - i.e. a 2x4 strapped onto a tree stump in the middle of a forest... 4. Then you should leave it alone unless you have the skills and equipment to determine whether it's live or not.
  14. A good part of the argument in this thread has been about whether or not perfectly safe caches should be created, if it *might* cause *some* people to do stupid things at another time and another place. It was primarily that argument that I was initially addressing.
  15. It's common sense that if electrical equipment *might* be live, you don't even attempt it *unless* you have the specialized knowledge to tell if it's safe.
  16. Thank you for the suggestion. But planar coordinates (which most of that suite seems to use) isn't accurate enough for what I'm looking for.
  17. As I said before: ---------------------------- Nobody is arguing that it's not a great idea to mix caches with electricity. What people are arguing is the idea that a PERFECTLY SAFE cache should not be created because there are *some* people who don't have enough sense to be smart when they are *somewhere else*. ----------------------------
  18. Ed's sample spreadsheet uses Vincenty's Algorithm, so I can probably reverse engineer that. But, it's certainly going to be a chore! But having it coded a different way will probably help me to understand it's implementation better, so I'd certainly be interested in it. I didn't initially see it on your website, though. Am I going blind prematurely? As I discovered, Ed's spreadsheet has that function. So, it's more RE work for me!
  19. If you wanted to keep people from doing things that *might* get someone sued, no one would ever get out of bed. Ever. And even then, someone would try suing Sleepy's for selling such comfortable beds that lead to bed sores. p.s. As a side note, the McDonald's lawsuit you're referring to was actually a lot more substantial than that. That "sued because their coffee is hot" line is just the oversimplified hype that ended up being circulated by everyone.
  20. Your side of the analogy wasn't about actually hiding a cache in a dangerous spot. It was about a "what if" when the cachers are elsewhere. This side of the analogy says that it isn't about actually gluing a condom on, it's saying that there's an inherent problem with either condoms or glue (or perhaps just both being sold in the same store) because someone *might* do something stupid with them. If they do, they'll suffer the consequences. But it is not necessary, nor is it right to limit everyone else with regulations designed to only protect people without a whit of common sense. That's just it. Nobody is arguing that it's not a great idea to mix caches with electricity. What people are arguing is the idea that a PERFECTLY SAFE cache should not be created because there are *some* people who don't have enough sense to be smart when they are *somewhere else*.
  21. That doesn't mean there isn't a way to work it out mathematically, it just means that I can't use that particular formula. If I use Vincenty's Algorithm (which allows for the Earth being an ellipsoid, and allows you to set the Major Axis and Flattening you wish to use), I come up with the WGS84 distance. In fact, that's what Ed Williams uses for his Online Great Circle Calculator (http://williams.best.vwh.net/gccalc.htm).
  22. The problem is that there are *always* people who don't exercise intelligence and common-sense. In 2004, in Singapore, a 39 year old guy discovered that his motorbike's fuel tank was leaking. He removed it from the bike, brought it to his 6th floor apartment, where he drained the gasoline into a bucket, and proceded to light a propane torch so he could solder the leak. Unfortunately, some of the gasoline had spilled onto his hand, and that caught fire. He tried to extinguish the fire by plunging his hand into his toilet, but in the process, managed to ignite the fumes coming from the bucket full of gasoline. This engulfed the toilet in a ball of fire, and caused the *first* explosion. Then, some of the burning gasoline spilled down a floor drain, into the sewer system, where it mixed with sewer gas and set off a huge underground explosion, which blew one manhole cover to pieces, and caused two others to pop open. Now, would you outlaw soldering torches? Or motorbikes? Then, in the same year, in Romania, we have a man whose wife bought him a condom that was too large. He had a brilliant idea, which was to superglue the condom to his member. Needless to say, he ended up going to a clinic when he couldn't get it off later that evening. He told a nurse, apparently, that he thought the condom could be used several times, and glued it on so that it could be re-used later. So, how do you feel about having condoms or glue outlawed, because someone *did* manage to come to harm? You see my point. Even sticking with things that *did* cause a problem is not a solution. Somewhere, you will find someone stupid enough to cause an issue with just about anything. You'll still end up making the entire universe illegal. It's no way to deal with the issue. People have to learn to take care of themselves, rather than have the world regulated into a police state, making sure they can't get any boo boos.
  23. Just to toss in a really quick observation, personally, I hate the new stars. It makes it a lot harder to tell at a glance what's what - *especially* for half-stars.
  24. I just wanted to make some general comments here, in the spirit of this thread. I may seem to range a bit off topic, but bear with me, because it's relevant. Many of the world's largest societies (most notably, but not exclusively, the US) have become very much a risk-averse culture. Not that many years ago, it was generally understood that life *is* risk. And worthwhile gain rarely comes easily or without risk. Nowadays, our society has gotten to the point where people are pointing out anything and everything that could possibly cause harm, and demanding regulation and legislation to curtail actions which *might* conceivably lead to harm. People have begun to take common-sense type caution and bring it to a point where it has become stifling. Many of the greatest achievements in history were accomplished only at high risk. Combating a corrupt government, taking a stand against slavery, experimenting with nuclear physics, attempting space travel - the list goes on and on. What would have happened if society was there pushing everyone back in their seats because - <gasp!> someone could get hurt! Please. Regulation is in place making it illegal to use cellphones while driving. Why? Because if someone isn't paying enough attention, they might get into an accident. Do I think it's a serious problem if people aren't paying attention while driving? Hells yes! Do I think it should be *regulated*? Hells no! Going by that reasoning, CHILDREN should be banned from automobiles. Certainly they can cause an order of magnitude more distraction than any cell phone conversation. Also, we should ban makeup, car stereos.... hell, why stop there? Let's make it illegal to have passengers! After all, it's been discovered that it's not *holding* the cell phone that's the problem, it's being distracted by conversation. So, let's make it illegal for anyone to be in a moving vehicle other than the driver! New Jersey also makes it illegal for drivers to pump their own gas because someone, somewhere, *might* be too stupid to do it right, and cause an accident. Let's ignore the fact that someone that stupid, who is allowed behind the wheel of two tons of metal is already causing risk. And don't forget the realm of cold medicines. Pseudoephidrine Hydrochloride (the active ingredient in many cold medicines, such as DayQuil, Sudafed, etc...) is now listed as a controlled substance by the FDA. That's why so many companies changed formulations to a different - and *less effective* drug. But it wasn't because it was found to be unsafe. It was because it *could* be used as a chemical precursor to make metamphetamines. So now, society is restricted from a better medicine, because of what *some* people *might* do. Of course, while we're at it, let's not forget that many illicit chemicals require water - so therefore, water should be made illegal too. As I said earlier, risk is a part of life. And most things that are worthwhile are attainable only with a certain amount of risk. After all, how satisfied would you be if caches were ONLY allowed with a Terrain Rating of 1? You can't regulate and make illegal everything that *might* cause an issue somewhere - you would end up making the entire universe illegal! Now, some of you are saying that certain methods of hiding should be explicitly forbidden by the rules of this site, because someone *might* do something stupid. I'm sorry, but I disagree. If someone *might* do something stupid, than that someone should smarten up - otherwise they will learn their lesson the hard way, or society will be protected from them by natural selection. It may sound harsh, but that's what got the human species far enough for you to exist. And that's what got you far enough in life, that you're still alive to read this post. Anyone familiar with The Darwin Awards knows exactly what I mean. And if you're talking about kids - then that responsibility falls to the parent. You don't teach a five year old that fire is dangerous by making sure he never even sees fire until he's eighteen. They will learn and be kept safe either because their parents spanked them when they tried to play with it (whereby, they learned indirectly to equate fire with pain, until they're older and can genuinely understand), or because they got themselves burned. Hiding them from reality serves no useful purpose. You cannot shield them from reality forever, and you are only keeping them from learning lessons that can be learned no other way. For less critical lessons, it's up to the parents to teach their children. For example, I am completely against all the products to control, lock down, and limit what channels a TV can be turned to, or what web sites a computer is physically able to reach. Teach the child what is acceptable and allowable! Don't treat them like prison inmates! Am I saying that it should be perfectly acceptable for caches to be placed in dangerous environments? No. (Although one could argue that hiking outdoors is intrinsically risky, and you better know what you're doing before you start navigating slick boulders) I'm not even saying that caches should *never* be put into dangerous environments. But if they are, the danger should be self-evident, thereby giving people the choice. What I am saying is that a perfectly safe cache should not be prejudiced against because of what someone *might* do. And while I believe that it is everybody's right to comment on any given cache's appropriateness - I am strongly against *regulations* or laws curtailing caches for the reason of protecting people who choose not to exercise any intelligence and/or common sense.
  25. Really? The section on that page I took it from is the following: ----------------------------------- Distance between points The great circle distance d between two points with coordinates {lat1,lon1} and {lat2,lon2} is given by: d=acos(sin(lat1)*sin(lat2)+cos(lat1)*cos(lat2)*cos(lon1-lon2)) A mathematically equivalent formula, which is less subject to rounding error for short distances is: d=2*asin(sqrt((sin((lat1-lat2)/2))^2 + cos(lat1)*cos(lat2)*(sin((lon1-lon2)/2))^2)) ----------------------------------- Is that not what it claims to be?
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