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Everything posted by Kodak's4

  1. quote: High Mountain Park Preserve covers more than 1,000 acres in Wayne and North Haledon. It is owned by The Nature Conservancy, Wayne, and the state. Aha. I guess maybe those Nature Conservancy folks are a little PO'd that their scamming and the free ride are over. Or maybe it's someone who contributed to the 'cause' and is feeling ripped off. There must be, oh, twenty or thirty million such folks in the US alone.
  2. quote:Originally posted by leatherman:No Strange. How would the extra step of zipping the file alleviate problems in how many waypoints are generated in the original GPX? That wouldn't change the fact that Spinner generated 139 waypoints. When the query GPX only makes 89. Download the most recent version of Easygps. previous versions had a bug where they would not see all the waypoints in the gpx file. What you are hitting sounds exactly like that bug - spinner sees 139, easygps sees 89. There are probably actually 139 but easygps does not see all of them.
  3. quote:Originally posted by travisl:Kodak's4: quote:I don't believe for an instant that everyone who participates in the CM is present at the site when the cache is found. I expect (and I'd be very, VERY surprised if I was wrong) that the first few folks on site find the cache, and by the time the bulk of the people arrive, the cache has already been found. Then you should come see how it really works. _WWJD? JW RTFM._ The times I've gone out caching with a group, the group has arrived at the cache site and started searching together. How, exactly, do you arrange that with 40 people in ten vehicles? Given that there were problems with the people who actually found the cache moving on to the next cache BEFORE the cache was re-hidden in the first CM, that would seem to pretty definitively indicate that people were arriving at that next cache not in one big group but staggered. And it doesn't seem like a big speculative leap to conclude that that next cache was found before the stragglers from the previous cache caught up. It seems to me like all the people who are getting upset seem to feel that this means that the CM cache finds somehow aren't quite legit. I don't believe that for a fraction of a second, and here's why: I, personally, have gone to find a cache solo, and run into another cacher at the site, ammo can open at their feet. My finding the cache at that point is exactly the same as what I believe many of the CM participants did, and I will tell you that I have no qualms about logging that as a find. Furthermore, I'll go out on a limb, and make the claim that prior to Travis's first CM, the vast majority of cachers with significant find counts had, at some point, also had that exact experience. Never once when a cacher came upon *me* with the ammo can at *my* feet has anyone ever asked me to re-hide the cache so they could find it, nor has anyone ever suggested that they'll rehide a cache so that I can log a 'legitimate find'. For me the rule "If you sign the log, it's a find. No sign the log, no find." works just fine. Until now, no one has ever brought up 'must visit the cache site' for the simple reason that until I raised the issue, no one had ever suggested simply collecting logbooks and having a central logging point. On the other hand, until Travis suggested it, no one had ever raised the issue of finding caches with a group of N (N > 10) people where one person finds the cache and then (N-1) people sign the log, either. I don't see much difference between CM finds, where the emphasis is clearly on spending the minimum possible time at each cache (in order to achieve the maximum possible find count), and having someone bring the log book to another location ('waiting in the car' as Travis put it). Everyone (including me) has bragged about how many caches they've found in one day, and it isn't a huge exercise in logic to conclude that if you're maximizing the number of caches found in a period, you're minimizing the time spent at each cache site. That's exactly why I suggest that if find counts are the primary goal, we could get *really* efficient and run up *really* huge counts. The target for the VCM is 100 caches - and for having the temerity to suggest that it might be possible to construct an event where folks log 1000, I get vilified? Give me a break. With the advent of CM's, find counts are meaningless, period. Travis has stated that the primary goal of CM's is huge find counts. All I'm proposing is that if find counts are the goal, we can run events that will be to cache machines what cache machines are to solo caching. If people feel centralized logging is 'over the line' there's still lots of room for improvement. If this makes you uneasy, then I respectfully suggest that rather than calling me "utterly disgusting" and "not reasonable, funny, or smart", and telling me that my sarcasm is scaring people away, you might more profitably examine exactly WHY my suggestions make you uneasy and why you feel they are so extreme they are sarcastic. I know you will find it more profitable for the simple reason that in order for your insults to actually have any effect at all, I would have to actually care what you think. Would I participate in a UCM, or even in a CM? Never. But that has nothing to do with my views about whether the finds would be legitimate (they are, both CM and UCM, as far as I'm concerned) but is based entirely on the fact that I dislike being around crowds of people, present company (which tells me I am utterly disgusting, not reasonable, not funny, not smart) very much included.
  4. quote: Have you ever been out to the coast, sat in the sand for an hour, and watched the sun set? Have you ever been on your way home from work, and as you're driving down the freeway, seen the sunset? Have you ever seen a photograph of the sunset? Sure. I'm a photographer, for crying out loud. I understand the difference between the primary experience and the photograph. I've actually spent an embarassingly large portion of my life working very hard at learning how to make a photograph effectively communicate the primary experience to the viewer. But, as you point out below, we're dealing with a continuum. At one end, you have the full experience of being in the place, spending time there, and really appreciating it. At the other end, you've never heard of the place. And my question would be "Which is closer to the 'full' experience - looking at photos for ten minutes, or standing in the spot for two minutes waiting to sign the logbook and chatting with people". You seem to think the photo is farther from the full experience but I'd disagree (especially if someone good takes the photo). In any case, nowhere is 'spending time appreciating the gestalt of the location' listed among the requirements for logging a cache. The rule generally cited is "If you sign the log, it's a find". There's nothing in there about 'if you participated in the search for the cache' or even 'if you went to the cache location'. All it says is 'if you sign the log'. It's about find counts. I don't understand your resistance to the UCM. People logging the finds have exactly as much participation in the hunt as regular CM people do, but they don't burn gas, don't tear up the landscape. They sign the log, so it's a legitimate find. The ONLY difference is that instead of moving the people, we move the logbook. Big deal. If Ultimate cache machine finds are not acceptable, then I sure as heck don't see why finds from the BCM and YKM are acceptable.
  5. Whoops, wrong button. [This message was edited by Kodak's4 on April 28, 2003 at 05:31 PM.]
  6. quote:Originally posted by travisl:I won't, however, allow any one to claim finds for them. Part of the 'find' for my caches is getting out to that area. Of course, this is where the rabid anti-Cache Machine folks might be confused, because to them, logging a find on a cache that their caching partner found is the same as logging an logbook exchange. It's black and white -- either you found the cache, or you didn't (someone else did). To me, it's more of a continuum: 1) Finding it solo. 2) Sole caching partner finds it with you nearby 3) One person of a group of x people finds it with you near by (where x is a finite number) 4) Solo caching partner finds it while you wait in the car 5) One person of a group of x people finds it while you wait in the car (where x is a finite number) 6) Someone brings you the log book to a cache a long distance off. 7) You get to the area (solo or with a group), but nobody finds it 8) You think about visiting the cache 9) You read the cache page only. My personal choice, for finding and for allowing finds on my caches, is to draw the line at number 3 above. For 4-6, it'd get a note. For 7, it'd get a not found. For 8 or 9, no log. I don't agree with that at all. I don't believe for an instant that everyone who participates in the CM is present at the site when the cache is found. I expect (and I'd be very, VERY surprised if I was wrong) that the first few folks on site find the cache, and by the time the bulk of the people arrive, the cache has already been found. 'In a car driving to the cache site' is exactly equivlent to 'waiting in the car', and that means that a CM log is more like a 4 or 5 for everyone except the front runners. Unless you're specifically doing a roll call to make sure everyone is present before the hunt starts, I can not believe that everyone who signs the log is present when the cache is found. I believe that the majority are still in their cars, driving to the cache, or parking. That's why I see centralized logging as equivalent to a regular CM - you've participated in finding the cache to exactly the same degree, and it allows MUCH bigger find counts. And, after all, the primary goal is find count.
  7. quote:Originally posted by travisl:While I would choose to log Cache Machine finds as finds, when you bring your 35 log books to the next WSGA meeting, I'd be happy to log them, but I'll count them as notes until I get out to the area of the cache and find their containers. That's interesting. Why insist on visiting the area of the cache and on finding the container? After all, if you have a CM that runs for 16 hours and finds 100 caches (which is apparently the rough target for the VCM) then you have about 10 minutes for each cache location, INCLUDING the travel time from cache to cache. From what I've read about the CM's, the typical sequence of events for a find is roughly: 1) drive to the next cache 2) park 3) greet the cachers leaving for the next cache 4) jog over to the crowd of cachers all signing the log book and get in line 5) sign the log book. 6) head back to the car, greet the arriving cachers. It doesn't sound to me like visiting the location figures prominently in this process, which is why I first suggested a cache farm, and then suggested abandoning the whole 'site visit' thing altogether. Would it be enough if I just brought a photo of the site to the meeting? Surely you'd get as much from the photo as you'd get standing around with a group waiting for your chance to sign the log. Maybe more, because we eliminate the travel time and streamline the log signing and so there would probably be something like 8 minutes to view the photos of each location. And why insist on not only visiting the site, but on finding the container as well? If you have 50 people in a CM, surely only one person finds the cache, and the other 49 just sign the log book, right? I just don't see any difference between that and having a mass log signing in a different location after one person has found the cache, extracted the log, and gone to the central location. In both cases, one person found the cache, and then some huge number of people came along and signed the log. With a regular CM, it's not like all 50 people (or however many there are) all arrive at the site, divvy up the space to be searched, and then search, right? You can do that with 3 people, or even 6, but it's a non-starter with 50 because by the time the 50th person arrives, the first folks have found the cache, signed the log, and left for the next cache already. The 3 people in the lead find all the caches, and the other 47 just run along and sign the logs. The last one out rehides the cache and rushes off to the next cache. In terms of actually participating in finding the cache, there's really no difference at all between the CM and what I propose - centralized logging. So why the insistence on visiting the site later, and finding the cache later? quote: As I said above, visiting cool places is another, secondary goal of Cache Machine events. While it would increase my numbers, I'd prefer to bag the caches out in the field. Why? I just can't believe that if you're tagging 100 caches in a sixteen hour day, you're going to get from one cache to another in less than five minutes average. And that leaves 3 minutes to walk to the cache, sign the log, and walk back; that three minutes is the totality of the 'out in the field' experience. If you weigh the environmental impact against the benefits of a site visit, it seems to me like we'd be better off doing centralized logging. quote:Please do bring them, though, because I do enjoy signing log books and seeing what others have written. See? That's one way centralized logging is BETTER than a regular CM. In a regular CM, you're out in the field, and I can't believe anyone has time to do more than write "<date> I was here, TNLN, thanks! - <name>" in the log, and surely no time to go reading the logbooks - not with a pile of people waiting to sign and move on. With centralized logging, you could have people go through the logbooks and read the good parts aloud, and in an auditorium with a sound system, people would be getting that 'read the logbook' experience while they were busy stamping one log every ten seconds - they wouldn't even have to slow down! One problem with centralized logging is that you must be present at the central location to log. It occurs to me now that that's really not neccessary - nothing is lost by having the people signing geographically distributed. You could have, say, 100 locations. At each location, you'd gather together roughly 1/100th of the participants, and 1/100th (more or less) of the logbooks. You can either allow proxy logging, or you could just assemble each parcel of logbooks and fedex them around, and give all 100 sites a chance to log. I don't see much difference (in a mass log signing, as with a regular CM, no one has time to read the logs anyway) so I'd suggest the simplest, cheapest thing to do is allow proxy signing of logs. Heck, you could have a nationwide CM with hundreds of logging sites, each of which has tens of cachers and hundreds of logs. No reason why we can't exchange proxy logs with folks in PA, or NY, or even in Europe, after all. This would be a sort of Ultimate cache machine - everyone involved would probably get thousands and thousands of finds on caches hidden all over the planet. I know you think that deep underneath I'm being sarcastic, but I'm not. I say, if we're going to embrace CM's, let's really embrace the whole idea, and not do a half-baked job of it. Everyone agrees that CM's are about find count. Why settle for a mere 100 finds when the Ultimate Worldwide Cache Machine could easily land everyone involved 5000 finds overnight? The Ultimate Cache Machine concept has ALL the benefits of the regular CM events, with NONE of the environmental impact, none of the wear and tear, none of the gas consumed. It would get geocachers together in great numbers, in a great social/rally type environment, which would surely be a great deal of fun. If you like CM's, I can't believe you can't see your way clear to embracing the Ultimate Cache Machine. I believe we can pull off a NW region UCM with far less effort than it would take to all go up to the VCM. People could participate without traveling, so a lot more folks would get to play. As far as I can see, there's no downside at all. If the NWUCM works as proof of concept, we can try for a worldwide one after. Let's do it! [This message was edited by Kodak's4 on April 28, 2003 at 04:43 PM.]
  8. quote:Originally posted by Seth!:It has been said that geocaching is a lot less harmful than a busload of school kids getting dumped out a park for the afternoon. Typically, we hunt a given geocache in very small numbers over a period of weeks and months. Our impact is minimal. Now, tell me, how are representatives of the sport going to use this analogy in a discussion with a land manager who has gotten wind of ‘cache machines’? How many park rangers have to see a dozen cars pull up and unload four times as many geocachers, before they call ‘foul’ on our sport? How long will it be before cache-machine type events make the task of advocacy difficult or impossible? http://www.geocachingwa.org This drives home the advantages of the 'bring all the caches/logs to a central location' plan I advocate. Not only does it avoid needless travel, it neatly avoids environmental impact entirely - because only one person need visit the cache site! Better and better! Let's give it a try. I've hidden 32 caches. I'll bring the log books to the next WSGA meeting. Everyone else who wants to run up their find count, bring the logbooks to your caches (other folks, too, if they'll give you permission to grab the logbook for one day!) and we'll all sit down and log them till our brains drop out. My 32 caches include some really hard ones that very few people have logged finds - including at least one five star multi-micro. So it will be a big relief to lots of folks to get a chance to log it so quickly and easily. If even just Seattle Seekers and Eraseek bring the logbooks for their caches, we'll have a hundred caches right there. Travis, you've got 18 hides - that puts us close to 120. If someone can persuade Fledermaus, we're up to 160. Surely we can get another 40 caches in dribs and drabs, which would bring it up to a nice round 200 caches. If we're organized, everyone can log them in an hours, tops. One question - do you think we need the logbooks from the caches, or can we use proxy logbooks which are later placed in the cache along with the regular log? Because if we decide to use proxy logbooks, we can really go to town, and include caches that are pretty inaccessible. But you have to draw the line somewhere, and I'd personally say that you need to use the actual logbook from the cache. Call me stodgy, yes. But we have to have standards, or the whole thing becomes pointless. Come on! The more, the merrier. Bring those logbooks!
  9. quote:Originally posted by travisl: 1) If I hide them, I don't get to claim them as finds. 2) The only other problem I'd see with this would be getting them approved. 600 new caches in a 4.7 square mile area would probably raise a red flag somewhere along the line. This would be in violation of the cache listing requirement that reads ''Cache Saturation ... the ultimate goal is to reduce the number of caches hidden in a particular area. On the same note, don't go cache crazy and hide 10 caches because you can. If you want to create a series of caches, create a multicache. Why hide two caches when one will do?'' I agree with the cache saturation guidelines in most cases. While a cache farm might be fun for a cache machine group, it might be dreadfully dull for subsequent searchers. (''Cache farm''... I like that. I think I just coined a new term, which I'd better arbitrarily define here. Cache farm: an area with a high concentration of caches, usually more than 5 in a one mile radius. Downtown Victoria is a cache farm. By this definition, http://www.geocaching.com/seek/cache_details.aspx?ID=5216 is also at the center of a cache farm.) _WWJD? JW RTFM._ 1. If you hide them, you don't get to find them. First, this is just a convention - if find count is really what you're aiming for, why not just ignore the convention and log your own caches? Second, you can avoid this problem by having each participant hide some of the caches. If there are 100 participants, each one can log 99% of the caches. 2. Cache saturation - this is easily solved by having each particpant hide their share of the caches, then bring the caches to the central location so that people can log them. Sure, if you do this, you don't actually have people visiting the cache locations, but the goal is find count, not cool locations. The real trick here is that the 600 or 1000 caches can be distributed over an area 100's or even 1000's of miles across - it doesn't matter because all the caches are transported to the central location to be mass logged. 3. I don't see why a cache farm would be fun for a CM group but dreadfully boring for subsequent searchers. For one thing, subsequent searchers would probably actually visit the cache locations as opposed to simply having folks bring the caches to a central location to be logged. In any case, I'm leaning away from the 'cache farm' idea, since it's possible to have all the caches brought to a central location to be group logged. That avoids lots of travel time, the time spent finding/rehiding the cache, opening the cache container - all of which just slow things down. I advocate making each particpant use a stamp to make a log entry - that way you can probably make your mark (including date) in perhaps ten log books per minute. That's 600 caches per hour! Just sit everyone down in an auditorium, and pass the logbooks down each row, back and forth. Even if you slow it down to a leisurely 4 caches per minute, you're still hitting 240 caches an hour, and in a bit more than 4 hours (before you need to even take a bathroom break) you could log 1000 caches. In one day, it's perfectly possible to tag, say, 3000 caches. This would move virtually every participant to the head of the rankings in one 24 hour period. As I see it (and as you've stated) the goal of CM's is to bag the maximum number of finds possible. Things like actually traveling to the cache location, finding the cache, etc. are just hurdles to be overcome. The trick is to ruthlessly eliminate each of these hurdles and maximize the efficiency of the process. My plan is to collect the log books for all 35 of the caches I've hidden and bring them to the next WSGA meeting. If everyone else does the same, we can probably boost the find count of every WSGA member up over 500 in one evening, and we won't even have to hide any caches to do it. We'll just use the existing caches! I love it! Are people up for this? I'm game!
  10. quote:Originally posted by travisl: Primary goal: Numbers Since the primary goal is numbers, why don't you plant hundreds of easy to find micros every 528 feet in some area the day before the event, then all go trooping around finding them? It would minimize gas consumption, you could jog from cache to cache in about a minute, and the time to find micros doesn't matter because the cache itself is found once and then just passed from particpant to participant, so you could probably do one cache every two minutes (call it 30 caches an hour). In a 12 hour day you could do 360. If you do it on a very long daylight day (or even just mark the cache locations with blinking LED's) you could go for much longer. If you could sustain a rate of 30 caches an hour for 24 hours, you'd immediately vault every participant to the top of the rankings. 600 film cans can't be that hard to hide. Film cans are free (just ask for them at a photofinisher). You could probably write a program to submit the cache listings. With the cooperation of one of the admins, you could get all 600 approved and be on your way. No, I'm not being sarcastic. Yes, I'm serious. If numbers are the primary goal, I think this is the way to go about it. The only problem I see is that you need a good place to do it. Two possibilities occur to me: 1) do it in a city, and just put a micro at every street corner (and maybe halfway between the corners). Then you just jog up and down the street grid. (2) Find some helpful farmer. I'm a little foggy this morning so my math might be off, but if you close pack the caches in a hex pattern, it works out to one cache for every five acres. So a 3000 acre farm would be big enough. One problem - if you do it all on foot, and assuming 528 feet between caches, you'd need to travel 600*528/5280 = 60 miles. That's a long way to walk, or even bike. So I propose the following - you get N participants. Each one shows up in the morning, and immediately goes and finds 600/N caches. Then they bring the cache back to a central spot, and everyone signs the logs. Then everyone goes out, rehides the caches, and you're done. This way, you don't need to move 600 people 60 miles. Done this way, you could probably do 600 caches in a couple of hours. Actually, now that I think of it, this is a great idea. Say you can round up 100 participants. Before the event, each participant hides, say, 20 film can micros and gets them approved. The evening before the event, everyone goes and finds someone else's 20 micros, collecting them as they go. On the morning of the event, everyone converges, you have a mass signing of logbooks, and then everyone replaces the 20 micros they found. Done this way, 100 participants each would get 2000 finds. Who's up for this?
  11. quote:Originally posted by Renegade Knight:However the forums are the final appeal. This is that final appeal. Night Stalker can make his own case if he so chooses, or ad to this thread. Oh, please. If Night Stalker has his/her knickers in a knot, let him/her take it up. Why the heck do you insist on flogging this dead, dead, dead horse, when it isn't even your cache, and the cache owner has yet to make a single post on the subject? Do you have ANYTHING NEW to add to the discussion since the last thread about this stupid conflict? Because if not, I really think it's time for you to get over it and move on.
  12. quote:Originally posted by Nurse Dave & LKay:This seems like an obvious answer to me. If you don't know you need to bring something special to get a cache, how can you get the cache? Go to the cache location, scope out the situation, then come back another time with the required equipment? I don't see anything anywhere that says that you should expect finding a cache should take only one attempt.
  13. quote:Originally posted by CachinCin:Seeing the new geocache by Evergreenhiker has me wondering about other "puzzlers" in the Puget Sound region. Are there tough finds and difficult puzzles that I'm missing? Whose geocaches do you watch and wait for, just to see what they've come up with recently? Of course, if you're on the eastside of the Seattle area, you're probably already familiar with the evil Dr. Koska and his nefarious hides. LucyandRickie have a fun series (that Pepper and I are just starting) -- Pieces of the Puzzle. Oh, and TravisL can certainly create a doozie! If you haven't attempted http://www.geocaching.com/seek/cache_details.aspx?ID=54343, it's a fun one. There are now hints that might help. BlankJeff and I are VERY proud to have gotten firsties on that one (our first and only firsties ever)! Any others I'm missing? cin KIDNK9 Let us pass over the river Reverse World Those are the first that come to mind. Also, the following caches that I have hidden: Flatland 4 - completing the square Trapdoor Jewel Carnation Conundrum I suspect you've found some of those already but other folks reading might be interested.
  14. quote:Originally posted by drat19:Clearly several folks agree that we've all seen our share of less-than-great caches along the way (and that means any combination of location, container, and contents), and clearly there needs to be some compromise in the area of EDUCATING folks on what constitutes a cache of good quality, though the local orgs, emphasizing the FAQs more prominently, or what have you. THAT is what I'm looking for here...not ways to make newcomers feel excluded, but ways to improve caches such that newcomers will feel great about their early finds (the cache "quality" to which I've been referring) and become that much more enthusiastic. My argument has been that if a new cacher's early finds are of less-than-good quality, the first impression might very well be, "What so great about this sport?"...and that's precisely NOT what we want. -Dave R. in Biloxi You claim your concern is that people are placing poor quality caches. And yet, you seem to believe that the vast majority of these poor quality caches have been placed by people who hide them before they've found some number (you say 15) of finds. Effectively, you're claiming that by keeping people from hiding a cache until after they've found 15, we'll prevent a lot of poor quality caches but not lose any high quality caches. I don't believe that, not even for a second. I know of at least one geocacher who has more than 100 finds and hides caches I think are fairly lousy. There's one geocacher with considerably more than 15 finds and more than 15 hides whose caches are so poorly done I won't search for them anymore. At the same time I know several geocachers whose first hides (hidden with only one or two finds) were among the best I've had the good fortune to hunt for. Insisting that people should have found 15 before hiding their first would be a great plan IF: a) you could prove that it would prevent some number of bad hides and it didn't seem exclusionary to newcomers. But in fact, it would fail on BOTH counts. So my question for you, which you'd have noticed if you'd carefully read all of my response, is "Why are you focusing on the low quality hides made by newbies, when the low quality hides by 'experienced' cachers are far more of a problem?" Because from my point of view, someone who is still hiding lame caches after having found more than 100 and hidden more than 15 is way more of a problem than someone who is an eager newbie. And I feel that way because the evidence is strong that the experienced cacher who makes lame hides will continue to do so into the forseeable future, whereas it's actually fairly likely that the clueless newbie will make one or two lame hides, notice the problems, and will improve as they gain more experience. Furthermore, I'd assert that no matter what you do, the person who still hides cruddy caches in cruddy locations after more than 100 finds and more than 15 hides will continue to do so no matter what you do, and I'll also assert that the best way to advance the clueless newbie to the 'hides good caches' stage is by helpful, positive, constructive comments rather than by draconian rules which arbitrarily sort people into the 'clue-less' and 'clue-full' categories based on a metric which has very poor correlation with being clued in. Beyond the lack of correlation between experience and hide quality, I'd also claim that the term 'quality of a cache' is pretty vague, and a cache that is rated as 'high quality' by one person may well be rated as 'sucks big time' by another. Some folks LOVE urban micros with evil, devious hides, and would rate such a cache as 'extremely high quality'. Others HATE urban micros, love caches at the end of day long hikes to scenic locations, and would rate an evil urban micro as 'sucks big time' but rate the 1.0/4.5 cache the urban micro lover hated as 'best cache ever'. There's a diversity of wants and needs, ranging from handicapped accessible brain teasers to the multi-day 5 star terrain adventure. We don't need (and I'd claim don't WANT) to come up with a single scale of quality. There's no way to please everyone with a single cache. Let people hide the sort of caches they want, and instead of trying to compel people to do it your way, let the searchers sort out which ones they'll hunt for and which ones they won't. If you really want to reach the newbies and help, I'd suggest that setting up a 'find a mentor' service for people who want to hide their first cache would be a whole lot more positive and a whole lot more effective than establishing the rule you propose. Just set it up so that when someone wants to hide their first cache, it's easy for them to find a sage, experienced, helpful geocacher who knows what makes for a good cache to go out, meet with them one on one, and *help* them hide the cache, explaining along the way about the things that make for great caches and the things that just spoil the experience. Or the Biloxi area cachers could put together a list of 'recommended caches for your first hunt' to help make sure newcomers have a positive experience on their first outings. But beyond all that, you just set all sorts of alarm bells ringing when you write things like quote:...that we come up with a better way to compel first-time placers (or heck, even experienced placers) with a requirement ... Why are you so focused on 'compelling' anyone to do anything? Not only do I not see the problem of poor quality caches being primarily the result of newbies hiding caches before they have some number of finds, I find your need to 'compel' people to do something fairly distressing. Furthermore, I don't believe that we can 'compel' someone to hide only quality caches anymore than I believe we can 'compel' people to be honest, or moral, or anything else. You didn't find it very pleasant when I suggested that we 'compel' you to not come up with rules until you'd reached a certain experience level. I suggest you take a good look in the mirror, and ask yourself why you feel you've earned the right to 'compel' newcomers to do something but you claim that I haven't earned the right to 'compel' you (a relatively inexperienced cacher compared to me) in the same way. After all, I seem to have about as many more finds than you have as you have more than the newbie with one hide. If relative experience gives authority, then I'd claim I have as much authority over you as you have over a newbie. Face it - experience isn't a very good indicator of anything besides experience. It doesn't confer 'ability to hide good caches' any more than it confers 'ability to guide the future of geocaching by coming up with draconian rules'. Maybe a better way for you to proceed with this would be for you to simply not search for caches hidden by people with fewer than 15 finds. Or if you'd prefer, I could propose a 'rule' that you not be allowed to search for caches hidden by people with fewer than 15 finds.
  15. quote:Originally posted by drat19:(4) I'm sincerely appreciative of those on this thread who have chosen to engage in a RESPECTFUL debate on this...there is NOTHING WRONG with a healthy disagreement as long as the comments are written with respect to the others' point of view. However, comments such as "president of Iraq" or the one where the respondent took my words and replaced them with information derived from my profile (the "260-270 finds" reference) are just being mean-spirited, in my opinion. Let's keep the debate on a respectful level, please.Once again, any and all healthy/respectful debate gladly welcomed and appreciated, sincerely! -Dave R., Biloxi, MS [This message was edited by drat19 on April 16, 2003 at 07:12 PM.] Well, since you mention my response specifically, I'll see if I can make my point in a way you feel is more respectful. Reading your own words, with your own situation on the downside (e.g. 260-270 finds treated as a 'newbie') seems to have struck you as (ahem) less than completely respectful. In fact, to you it seems 'mean spirited'. Now, let's examine the situation for a person who, having found five caches that are close to his home, decides he'd like to contribute by hiding a cache in his own special spot. And you tell him that, after having found ONLY five caches, he's not yet qualified to *hide* one. Will he feel this rule is mean-spirited? Based on your response, the answer is 'yes'. Will he be ticked? Heck, yes. Is that a problem? I think it is. We, as a geocaching community, NEED that new geocacher as a part of our community. We don't want him/her to feel like we don't welcome him, or like we are mean-spirited, or that we are not treating him and his cache idea respectfully. I see people with a lots and lots of finds who continue to hide caches that I think are lame. I've seen some caches hidden by 'clueless newbies' that were absolutely stellar. To be honest, I see only a very rough correlation between number of finds and quality of hides, and I see that correlation only with people who have hundreds and hundreds of finds, and it certainly does not start at 15. Plenty of people make lame hides after their 15th find. Heck, some people are still making lame hides after 15 *hides*. And I think that's ok, because the alternative is to cut these people off. And I don't see that excluding someone is helping geocaching at all. I'm in favor of basic standards for caches (e.g. don't hide it on railroad tracks, don't hide it on private property without permission) but beyond that, I say let people learn by doing if that's their learning style. We have enough problems with people feeling excluded when the volunteer admins enforce the few rules we currently have about cache placement. We don't need more bad feelings. So I say let the enthusiastic newcomer hide a less than perfect cache. Pretty soon, he'll discover why it's not as great as it could be, and then he'll do better. Some people learn by reading a checklist. Some people learn by watching what others do. Some people learn by doing, and correcting their mistakes. And frankly, some people seem to never learn at all. Why focus on the lame caches hidden by newbies, and not on the people who, despite the experience of many finds, continue to hide lame cache after lame cache? Experience is usually better than no experience, but experience is certainly NOT a panacea. Where are we going to draw the line between 'newbie' and experienced? Why must we draw this line at all? What goal is advanced by drawing it? I think the geocaching community can withstand the occasional lame geocache far more easily than it can handle giving newcomers to the sport the impression that they and their contributions to the sport are not needed or not wanted.
  16. quote:Originally posted by drat19: I would like to propose that the cache approvers enforce a guideline that a cache Hider must have made at least 15 Finds before having their first Hide approved. In addition to higher-quality caches and locations, this will also prevent Hides from folks who get all excited when they first start to play, and then the novelty wears off and we never see them again (and thus, maintenance of their caches never happens). Think about how many Hides you see from folks who have 2 or 3 Finds and 1 Hide, and then no activity for 6 months. Obviously this guideline would need to be published in the "Hiding your first cache" rules as well. What do y'all think? -Dave R. in Biloxi, MS I would like to propose that people should refrain from making up new rules for geocaching until they have at least 450 finds. In addition to higher-quality [sic] rules, this will also prevent rules from people who get all excited when they first start to play, and then the novelty wears off and we never see them again (and thus, enoforcement of their rule never happens). Think about how many rules you see from folks who have 260 or 270 finds, and then no activity for 6 months. Seriously, now. What about those places where there are no caches? Why not do something constructive, like volunteer to moderate a forum discussing what to consider when making your first hides?
  17. quote:Originally posted by Breaktrack:Either way, I really don't think we have a single complaint concerning this issue, but it sure has been fun to chat about it, at least in my humble opinion. Well, actually, I have one. My complaint is that sppd_reserve_cop still hasn't told us why he thinks ammo cans are bad. Since that was the specific content of his original post, it would be nice if he'd follow through and tell us. Surprisingly, I still want to know.
  18. quote:Originally posted by Breaktrack:After they checked it out and everyone was satisfied there was nothing to it, they all left with the can to investigate it's placement further. Then one of them came on here and posted about it. Sounds like a very concientious effort on their part to me! Yes, yes. What actually happened is that after they checked it out and everyone was satisfied there was nothing to it, they all left with the can to investigate further. Then one of them came on here and posted, saying quote: As a member of the Saint Paul, MN police, I cannot say this strong enough....the use of ammo boxes, especially during the current heightened terror alert, is a really bad idea, and may get you in trouble and quote:I certainly don't want to see geocaching get a bad rap over the use of an improper container. I think that what happened is that law enforcement found something. And they decided it was a bomb. Now, please understand - I know that they can't afford to take ANY chances, no matter how small. So I understand perfectly that they called the bomb squad. If I were in their shoes, I might well do the same thing. No one ever got fired for calling the bomb squad for what turned out to be a false alarm, but I assure you that if it HAD been a bomb and they ignored it, there would be hell to pay. But when it turned out to NOT be a bomb, and people started pointing out that generally speaking terrorists don't hide bombs in parks, in the woods, under logs, against a tree, with markings reading "this is a geocache" on them, those folks started feeling foolish, despite the fact that they were in fact doing exactly the right thing - calling the folks who know how to make a good assessment. But still they felt silly, so they cast around for an ironclad reason why they thought it was a bomb, and they latched onto the one feeble reason they could find - it was in an ammo can. But, in point of fact, if it had been in a rubbermaid tub, they'd still have thought it was a bomb. The difference is that afterwards, they wouldn't have been able to say "Well, yeah! Maybe we should have known it wasn't a bomb, but it was in a rubbermaid tub, so naturally we thought it was a bomb" without sounding like total idiots. And I guess I don't see that as a persuasive reason to avoid using ammo cans for geocaching.
  19. . quote:Originally posted by sppd_reserve_cop:There were markings on the box (top and side), but they were not visible. Top was covered by logs, the side was up against a tree. We take any possible threat seriously. But we were VERY happy it turned out to be nothing. This is the United States. Your are free to use ammo boxes or not use them. I simply ask that you think twice about it. If you do, make sure it is well marked. A simple suggestion. I'm still confused. You guys come across an ammo can. I understand that this particular ammo can had been repainted, so there's no issue with markings that say scary things (like "7.62mm NATO cartridges, 500 count"). You found this ammo can in place, against a tree, covered by logs. What was it that made everyone decide it was a bomb? Do people in Saint Paul usually hide bombs next to trees, under logs, in a park? I'm serious, here, not jerking you around. I genuinely want to know what motivated the decision that this thing was a bomb, because I'd like to know how to avoid problems in the future. And if, in retrospect, it was not a particularly reasoned decision, I'd like to know that, too, because often people don't use reason when confronted with unusual sitations. That's fine, I don't care, I just want to know how to prevent people from freaking out when they stumble across a cache I've hidden. Finally, you advise people that "Your are free to use ammo boxes or not use them. I simply ask that you think twice about it. If you do, make sure it is well marked. A simple suggestion." This particular ammo can was marked, top and side. Yet you guys still called the bomb squad. Clearly, prominent markings don't help, so I don't understand the motivation behind your advice. I think the most helpful thing would be for you guys to tell us what factors you use in deciding something is a bomb - e.g. proximity to population, matches common terrorist targets, proximity to infrastructure (e.g. bridges, dams, or other obvious bomb targets), receipt of a bomb threat, matching the profile of other bombing incidents. It seems to me that all of these things (which I would think would be used in some sort of formal risk assessment of the sort you expect police to use) point to this thing NOT being a bomb, so clearly I don't understand how this sort of decision is made by law enforcement folks. [This message was edited by Kodak's4 on April 14, 2003 at 09:24 AM.]
  20. quote:Originally posted by AltDotAir:I propose we add a rule that is clearly expressed in the cache-placement guidelines: no physical cache containers on the grounds of cemetaries without explicit permission of the caretakers (which, dare i say it, will likely NEVER be granted.) == Alt Dot Air == I've found a number of caches in cemetaries, ranging from one hidden in an untended old cemetary site in the woods to a virtual right smack in the middle of a sprawling hyperlandscaped urban cemetary. They're ranged from virtuals at the graves of the famous through micros all the way to a full size cache hidden on the grounds. All in all, probably more than half a dozen. And every single one was tastefully done. Some of them were, frankly, quite reverent. And in the case of the full sized cache hidden on the grounds, the caretaker was aware of the cache, had examined it, followed along with me while I found it, and seemed pretty postive, saying that all the geocachers he'd met had behaved appropriately on the grounds, unlike the teenagers who generally trash the place when they go there at night to drink beer and have sex in the bushes. I think his comment was along the lines of "If I could rig the gates to let the geocache people in and the teenagers with beer out, I'd do it!" So my experience certainly does not match yours. And I'd hesitate to ban geocaches in cemetaries simply because of one, lone cache which is *perhaps* inappropriate.
  21. quote:Originally posted by TEAM 360:Think about it, what if I changed mine to a red biplane, would BassoonPilot post about it? Or if I go stand next to a 10 foot tall rocket out in front of my house? They wouldn't be exactly the same, but you can bet I would hear about it..... You bet you would! Because avatars are so important, the very first thing people should do when they hit this geocaching.com thing is come up with a really, really cool avatar. When you get right down to it, geocaching is really all about cool avatars. Actually going out into the world and finding or hiding geocaches - man, that's for folks who have no real talent for coming up with a really boffo avatar. Folks like that, with hundreds of finds but no avatar - man, what the heck are they thinking? Talk about completely missing the point! Who the heck cares about ammo cans in the woods, for pete's sake? And GPS units? Jeez, talk about SO LAST WEEK. We're not here to have fun, we're here to show everyone that when it comes to avatars, we're the tops. Folks with no avatar should get with the program, stop hunting for stupid containers and start hunting for a really spiffy avatar. Those folks with no avatars - man, someone should fire up the international relief agencies to fill up a big airplane and air drop them a clue. Or maybe show a little pity and give them a ride on the avatar clue bus. No avatar - sheesh, what a dweeb thing. It's like they're saying "I'm so busy hunting and hiding geocaches I can't be bothered with the whole avatar thing", or maybe even "I'm so totally cool I don't bother with avatars." Or maybe they're such geocaching snobs that they expect people will be impressed by how many hides and finds they have - like people would really just judge a geocacher by something as lame and elitist as how much geocaching they've done. Everyone KNOWS that when it comes to geocaching reputation, the really important factor is how cool your avatar is. Without an avatar, how the heck would people know it was you who posted stuff? Do you think people could actually READ your name? As if! People with no avatars - they're all either clueless newbies or elitist snobs. I hate'em. They should be banned from the site.
  22. quote:Originally posted by Sissy-n-CR:I mean, what's the difference between giving out nudges and partnering up? When you partner up, it's generally with someone who hasn't yet found the cache. When you get a nudge, it's generally NOT from someone who hasn't yet found the cache. That would seem to be a pretty fundamental difference to me.
  23. quote:Originally posted by regoarrarr:So the issue if I understand it is that now Team Jedi wants to make Sith Impossible 2. As I understand it from Team Jedi, the approver (Erik) will not approve them, as he says that it is a multi cache and wants it to be one cache (instead of 1 per stage). My understanding of multi-caches is something that is all in the same park, that can usually be done in one day. My http://www.geocaching.com/seek/cache_details.aspx?ID=32824 is a good example, as well as many others. This IMHO is different. It's 10 caches that can act as stand-alone, but are also part of an ongoing series. I feel they should be qualified as separate caches. As an example, if I put 10 GladWare containers in the woods in various parts of town, stuck a few things in them and a logbook, they would be approved without another thought I bet. Just because they are part of an inter-connected series is no reason to ban them I think. So, what does the general populace think? I think that if you are going to hide 10 stand alone caches in one park, it had better be one big park. Really big. Super honkin' big. Because if you are spacing the caches .1 mile apart, and packing them as tightly as you can, that works out to about 5 acres for each cache. And I would think that you'd be spacing them farther apart than 528 feet as a general rule. If you space them 1000 feet apart, you're talking about roughly 17.6 acres per cache. How big is the park? Anyone know?
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