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Everything posted by GClouse

  1. The Combo Ammo Cans appeared to be Standard Ammo cans fitted with modified combination door locks of the type used in computer rooms and medical labs. BTW I spotted the anamorphic image when the geek ...er.. genuises were looking at it on the bus. the decoder cylinder was just the right size for view it... Duhhh!
  2. Make certain the display is viewable in direct sunlight. All monochrome screens are daylight viewable. many color ones are not. Avoid Pocket PCs with Windows CE 1.0 or 2.0 as they are difficult to find software for. Many older palm pilot models are available at pawn shops, thrift stores and on ebay for under $30. With palm pilots you need an absolute minimum of 8M memory. If you want to have an integrated PDA/GPS consider these alternatives... A gps companion. A gps companion is a GPSr that clips to the back of the PDA and uses the PDA sync port to send data to the PDA. GPS companions are only compatible with specific PDA models. If you want to go this route, buy the companion first, then find a matching PDA as the PDAs are easier to find than the GPS companions. Bluetooth gps receiver. Bluetooth GPSrs require a Bluetooth enabled PDA. Most use the serial bluetooth protocol to communicate to the PDA. Any software that supports NMEA data from a serial port will work with these. The gpsr could be carried in a pocket, in a backpack or possible hidden in you hat. CF or SDIO cards These may only work with specific models and may require OS specific drivers. They have to be researched carefully to garantee compatibility between the GPSr and the PDA. For the last few months, I have been using a Palm m125 with a Magellan GPS Companion, and Cetus GPS software. I got the companion from Ebay for about $30 (incl S&H ) and picked up the Palm M125 at a local pawn shop for $40. I have an HP-Ipaq with bluetooth, but the screen looks black in direct sunlight, so I decided against using it. The Palm has a mono screen, and will run about a week continuously on 2 AAA batteries and longer when turned off between uses. The Conpanion uses 2 AAA batteries which also last about a week of continuous use. The only problem I have seen with this combination is that the Companion once in a while the gprs will have trouble keeping a satellite loc. This is easily corrected by exiting the GPs application and disconnecting the Companion for about a minute. This causes the GPS to reinitialize itself. After reconnecting the GPS and starting the application, It is up and running in a few seconds.
  3. The aspx error happens when you request a web page, and wait too long to reload it. The server "remembers" the query for a few minutes after it is last accessed, then deletes the query results. if the web server is very busy, it may not register the deletion for several minutes. If you try to reload the results between the time the results are deleted, and the web server is updated, the webserver thinks the results are still cached and tries to reload the cached file, which is no longer available, so you get this error .
  4. I am now using a Palm M126 with a magellan gps companion and Cetus GPS software. The Cetus software works very well with the GPS Companion, but lacks a few features that are useful for geocaching. Cetus GPS is designed more for GPS survey work, but works with a lot of gps receivers. It has the ability to maintain several databases of waypoint which the user can switch between quickly. I am also experimenting with the idea of using a gemstar ebook reader (REB1100) to keep copies of the pages on. The REB1100 EBook reader is about the size of a paperback book and has a 320x200 pixel monochrome screen which is very readable in daylight. It also allows the user to make annotations to the ebooks. With gpsbabel, I create a .kml file, a Cetus .pdb file and an html file from the gpx file. I then edit the html file to change it's title to match the database name. The .kml file can be used to get maps and satellite images from google earth which can be linked to the html file. After a quick review of the html file, I convert it to the ebook format ( .rb) I have the process partially scripted at this time.
  5. Years ago, I did a bit of orienteering and I learned something rather quickly. Just knowing which direction you want to go may not get you there. You have to be able to work out the best route to the destination. At the first orienteering meet I attended, this point became painfully obvious to the first team to start. They were issued the map, which had 20ft contour intervals. They oriented the map, found the heading toward the first marker flag and took off running. At the end of the motel parking lot where we started, the both leaped over the hedge.... and off a 14-foot bluff. The second team stopped at the hedge and started laughing. I was on the third team. Fortunately for team #1, the motel groundskeeper had been dumping the grass clippings and leaves and such off the bluff so the guys only got a bit scratched up. Just following the arrow may run you into a rock wall, or a cliff, or some other obstacle. If you have basic map skills and a map, you can work out the best route. Even then, you may need to change your approach while you are out there. BTW My preferred compass is an old boyscout-issued Silva.
  6. Six Digits!!!! My old Magellan 300 only does 4.
  7. It's a bad idea to place a cache on public property without permission. Someone will eventually be spotted going for the cache and it will be reported to the authorities as suspicious behavior. This will certainly bring out the cache cops. It could be the reason the previous caches were muggled. Caches occasionally are mistaken for bombs.
  8. We have an Amish settlement in the Cumberland Plateau region of Tennessee. We also have few Mennonite communities. The Amish I've met are intellegent, and industrious. Many speak a dialect of German as well as English. The Mennonites have similar beliefs, but accept technology only for it utilitatian value. But I'm Drifting... I think that caches at businesses are okay if you are not required to enter the business, and the cache placement adheres to the guidelines for caches placement.
  9. Shhh... Don't tell anyone, but I'm standing on BomberJr's head....
  10. The closest to my home is 2 miles. closest to work is a mile. THere is a puzzle cache that has co-ords listed at about 1.4 miles, but I dont really know where it is since I haven't solved the puzzle yet.
  11. There are a lot of variables that affect the accuracy. I have an old Magellan 300 and a GPS Companion that I use with a palm M125. The 300 is the older unit I started with. It is less sensitive, slow to get a lock and unusable in overcast weather. The 300 accepted waypoints with 2 decimal places in the degrees. This translates roughly to +-50 feet error if you round off to the second decimal place when entering coordinates. The GPS Companion is more sensitive, and and will usually aquire an initial location fix within a minute. I use the Cetus GPS software on an M125 with this. Cetus accepts waypoints with 3 decimal place precision, which theoretically specifies the location within +-5 feet. The catch is that atmospheric effect mess with the signal and to acurately calculate the location, the software has to average the data over a period of time. What makes it complicated is that the software must assume that you are moving, so it uses a more complex averaging algorithm than the arithmatic mean ( "add em all up and divide by how many you have") that most people think of as the "average". WAAS enabled GPSr units use ground based signals used for aircraft navigation to rapidly correct for the error caused by atmospheric disturbances. This gives a quicker and usually more accurate response that averaging the readings over time. The result is that most consumer gps receivers, even the same brand will not lead yo to the exact same location. Sometimes the same unit at different times will not take you to the exact same location.
  12. Nashville's Public TV Nashville Public Television recently ran a short "filler" video abot geocaching. It was locally produced. It gave a short description of the sport and featured a pair of local cacher seeking a cache in a local park.
  13. One of the most Racist atitudes I've ever come across is the idiotic idea that only white anglo-saxon descendant prodestant men from the south can be racisists. Racism and bigotry knows no such boundaries. Most American are mutts. I have mixed ancestry that includes Crow (indian) even though I am caucasion. But the question here is not about racism, but about demographics. I think it has more to do with the individuals ability to be comfortable in solo outdoor activities. My theory is that people who grew up in rural or small town setting are comfortable with hiking, climbing, geocaching, simply because in small town and rural settings, these are usually safe solo outdoor activities. In the cities, however, being alone in a park may put you as risk of being mugged. Since minority populations (particularly immigrants) tend to be denser in the cities, they grow up being less comfortable with solo outdoor activities and are more comfortable with social activities (eg team sports) I wonder if any research have benn done on this topic.
  14. Personally, I don't like the idea of caching in a residential area, because too many of the neighbors may be paranoid with all the homeland security BS. On the other hand, if the caches is located in a rural area, as long as the particular site is interesting and no one is out shooting critters. Here in Nashville, we have many parks with historic buildings. I have been to one of these that looked very much like a private dwelling, and was not comfortable searching the area until I found that it was public property. I would not place a cache on my property for several reasons. 1. My house sits on a 1/8 acre corner lot. 2. In the past few years, some of my neighbors have been arrested as drug dealers. 3. Last year, one of my neighbors was arrested by the FBI for terrorist activity. 4. too many kids in the neighborhood that are likely to muggle the cache.
  15. I was out in a local park with my son, when we spotted something hanging from a tree near the creek. THe clear container had a paper describing geocaching. a few days later, While googling on my lunch break at work, I stumbled on to Wil Wheaton's website. (Wil Wheaton is an actor with numerousfilm and tv credits who has become an author) Among other things, Wil is an avid geocacher. My curiosity was piqued. When I found a second-hand magellan gps at a thrift store, I decided to give it a try, and I was hooked...
  16. I think the purpose of premium membership is to encourage funding by providing some perqs. Geocaching.com has to pay for the hosting services somehow. It's kindof like public TV. My 9-year-old son often goes with me to geocache. He signe the paper log but doesn't have an account on geocaching .com. The cache owner decides to make the cache a members-only cache for his/her own reasons. You may consider sending a note to the cache owner in the situation you described.
  17. I recently met another cacher while going after a cache. I and my #2 son were looking for an offset micro in a parking lot. We pulled up at the co-ords in a fairly empty parking lot, and noticed a guy nearby that kept giving us the hairy-eyeball and seemed to be talking on a cellphone. Then I noticed his "cellphone" was a garmin gecko. #2 son was in the back set asking to decode the clue, and the the guy said to me "What was that?", to which I answered " I think we're looking for the same thing." and flashed my Magellan. We got out introduced ourselves and with a little cooperation we found the cache.
  18. It is my understanding that caches are banned in wildlife refuge areas, simply because US Fish&Wildlife service feels that the activity of caching would disturbe the animals, or that it might be used as a cover by poachers. State operated wildlife refuge areas may vary from state to state.
  19. I am a diabetic with several diabetes related health problems. I took up geocaching as a fun way to get excersize and fresh air.
  20. I'm 46. My number 2 son (who occasionally caches with me) is 9.
  21. Take a bit of "Blind Mans Bluff", stir in a helping of "Hide 'n' Seek" , add a dash of "treasure hunt" and add the ability to leave your "mark" in a way that's secret and legal all at the same time. The best part is : You can enjoy all these favorite childhood games without being a child and almost no-one thinks you chould be committed.. Last year, an old friend from my high-school days climbed Mt Everest. Why... for the adventure. this sport provides mini-adventures for those of us that have neither the time or the finances to go traipsing off to Nepal..
  22. In Nashville I've found one restaurant cache (GC53F4) that is not a micro, and is very interesting. It's in an ammo-box that is at a local theme restaurant/nightclub with the permission of the property owner. I have also seen a lot of micros hidden in busy fast-food joint parkinglots. I think some cachers enjoy the stealth part of caching, while some don't.
  23. I occasionally wait until after a second or third attempt before logging a DNF on a cache. This is mainly because I often I find the location, but can't access the cache for various reasons (most often too many muggles around ).
  24. If I locate the cache and cant get to the log to sign it, I don't consider it a "find". Recently, while taking training classes away from my work, It went caching on my lunch break. I spotted the cache location, but there were way too many muggles ( including many policemen on their lunch breaks) around to get it. On another hunt, I found one of thoes 20 feet up a light pole caches and, since I didn't have a 20 ft ladder, rocket pack or some other way of reaching it, I could not get it either. In both cases, I did not log these at all. If , after 2 more tries, I can't get them, I will log as a DNF. If I were caching out-of town and located the cache, but couldn.t access it, I would log it as a DNF after the first try, as it would be unlike that I would attempt any more tries. How ever, some people just miss the point...... It's not ust getting there. It's the hunt. Anyone can find their way to the location. But if you don't find the cache and leave your mark in the logbook... you're missing out on the exciting and fun part.
  25. The inside of these containers have a coating that absorbs humidity. That probably helps keep the paper dry. Hmm... I could donat some of my old ones to the local club..
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