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Everything posted by brendan714

  1. I've said this with almost every other botched and buggy release before but... I'm sure it'd be easy to find a small dedicated group of experienced geocachers who would be willing to provide you with useful feedback before rolling out a major update to the public. It would probably only take a day or two to collect comments (I'm not sure how long it would be to implement changes, but at least you would be aware of some issues and could prioritize them). I would be willing to suggest that a short internal review process with your clients would result in a lot more happy customers (and/or fewer angry customers) when you roll out an update to the public. (PS, I'm volunteering my name to help beta test future updates) As a paying customer myself, it is quite frustrating to see almost every update take one step forward and two steps backwards.
  2. Note: the results will stay within the existing 1,000 results limit. This is a major limitation of the search system Info: displays if a geocache is part of a GeoTour or has an active Needs Maintenance attribute. This is not very helpful, in my opinion, since most caches are NOT part of a GeoTour and a lot of caches that have an active "Needs Maintenance" attribute are owned by inactive or inattentive cache owners. The first 3 caches I clicked on with the NM attribute appear to be in perfectly fine shape. It's just that the owner didn't clear the icon. I don't think it's a helpful feature, if anything it seems distracting and misleading. Trackables: displays whether a cache currently has trackables logged inside it. I think a small trackable icon on the left hand side would be better than a whole column devoted to this. View the region/country a cache belongs to below the geocache name. This is good! Click the Favorite point total of a geocache in the search results to view the percentage of Favorite points to find logs: This all looks very bland. My additional comments: There seems to be a bug in the "home location"?? When I select "home location" from the filter option, it acts like my home is several hundred km from my actual home. I agree with the others that searching and mapping archived caches is a very important feature that has been lost. I like the option to filter for caches not found by others. How about an option for caches not owned by others? When I do a search of mutually unfound caches with friends, their owned caches should not be included in that list. I still think there is a lot of white space between rows of geocaches. This could be compressed significantly to prevent a ton of scrolling. With the search filling my entire screen, I can only see 8 caches. Compare that to the old search where I could see 14 caches at once because the rows were more compressed. The page option is much better than the infinitely scrollable list. That is a good change! Sorting by distance does not work properly. Mystery caches seem to be out of order. Maybe a difference between posted coords and actual/saved coords? Overall I like the filter options, but the list display of the caches following a search is very much inferior to how they were displayed using the old search. Once again, it feels like this update for the new search result list is much more inefficient (more scrolling, more white space, less info) than the old search / old way of listing caches.
  3. Given that most of the logs on the page appear to be about 5 minutes worth of effort, I am very surprised another year is being given to complete this task. You literally just need to pick up a piece of trash anywhere in the world, take a photo and log where you were at the time. If anything, why not another one to encourage those who completed this task almost a full year ago to do it again?
  4. This is a useful feature to get a sense of the amount of time an adventure will take! I think breaking up the first time slot to 0-15 and 16-30 would be helpful. I have found some AL's that take 5 minutes to complete because all 5 stages were within very close proximity. And on the other end, I think having some more time categories above 120 min would be helpful as well. Maybe adding a few more time categories like 120 - 180, 181 - 240 and >240? I think that there's a guideline/suggestion that Adventures are to take less than 2 hours, but many take much longer than that if the locations are spaced out... One more comment: why is it still called an Adventure LAB cache? Why not just an Adventure cache? The lab part is probably confusing for a lot of people (it kind of is for me, and I'm a more experienced geocacher). I think this experiment has been developed well beyond the "lab" stage? It's confusing because the terms "Adventure Lab" and "Adventure" are used interchangeably. Go to the profile page on the app and everything is simply referred to as an "Adventure". Go to the forums, go to the online Adventure web pages, go to the terms of use, everything is called "Adventure Lab".
  5. As an update to this thread: In early April of this year I changed the posted coordinates of all my challenges which were experiencing trouble with newbies. Rather than having the physical cache at the posted coordinates, I moved the posted coords to a bogus location and added a visible final waypoint to the page with cache coordinates also clearly indicated in the description. Since then, I have received zero 'found it' logs by newbies who found the cache but do not qualify for the challenge. I have received one or two newbie DNFs (likely cachers who go looking at my bogus coordinates and fail to read through the cache description). So, it would appear that the problem is solved - hooray! That said, I am still very strongly of the opinion that challenge caches should have a separate icon. There are still many geocachers who don't understand the concept / rules of a challenge cache vs other mystery caches. Taking challenge caches out of the "mystery" bin just makes logical sense to me as one small step in the right direction. Thank you to those who suggested helpful solutions ( @HoochDog @Isonzo Karst)
  6. I have infrequently been getting error messages when I try to open my search map. This has only started in the past 2-3 weeks: It happens when I scroll down on a cache page and click "View Larger Map" and am directed to this link: https://www.geocaching.com/play/map/GC9HGR9 If I refresh, it seems to work. But a lot of times I will get this error page. I am on Chrome 94.0.4606.81
  7. I saw the same and wondered the same. The attribute to the left of the horse is one that I have never seen before...?
  8. Hmm, I agree with you that this seems to be the case. But it doesn't really make intuitive sense until you play with the search a little bit. Why not just check all the boxes by default, then it's clear that everything is selected? Especially when there's a specific option to "select all" when everything is blank?
  9. Major bug: Say I do a search for caches within 100 km of home. Any time I go back into the filters and change anything, it automatically resets the location to worldwide (even though when I run the search, it still says 100 km from home in the location / distance from location boxes). The search/filters need to remember that I set it to within 100 km of home. It also seems to sometimes reset found status back to "not found by me" and owner status to "caches I don't own" in a similar way after I selected other options.
  10. I am confused why the default search includes no cache types, no cache sizes, no difficulties and no terrains? I would expect the exact opposite: include everything by default and let me decide what to remove. I am more likely to want to search everything than nothing.
  11. You're right, thanks. But that still makes no sense. Why wouldn't "Sort By: Found Date" show MY most recent finds? I really don't care when a cache I already found was found by somebody else...
  12. Yes, I agree, there seems to be a bug when you map your most recent finds. The map defaults to show "Sort By: Distance (Far - Near)" rather that defaulting to "Sort By: Found date (New - Old)". Even if I select "Sort By: Found date (New - Old)", the map pops up caches that I found back in 2014, and neglects to show some caches I found last year. That makes no sense. Must be another bug.
  13. I was on my mobile device trying to look at my recent finds and some recent finds by one of my friends. Not only does the new list/search remove a ton of useful functionality, but it looks really bad on mobile too... Check out the screenshots below to see what I mean - overflow characters in the title and CO name are pushed onto a new line. Also, when I click the map button to map my finds, it takes me to a zoomed out map of the entire world that doesn't show any geocaches. Another bug? I would kind of expect it to map my last 1000 finds...
  14. I was trying to use the new search on my phone to look up my recently found caches. I gave it an honest try. I went in to do a couple simple searches. WOW it feels like 3 steps backwards from the old search! First and most importantly: Having only one parameter viewable at a time is extremely inefficient and results in a significant loss in functionality. Let's say I want to find the terrain rating of several caches I found a couple weeks ago. First I click on my link to All Geocache Finds. Now I scroll down (scroll, scroll, scroll) to find the cache from a couple weeks ago. But it's only showing the found date so now I have to click terrain. Click the 3 dots. Click terrain. Now I'm back up at the top again! Scroll, scroll, scroll back down. Finally found it! Now how about the difficulty? Sigh... Click the 3 dots. Click difficulty. Back at the top. Scroll, scroll, scroll. Now when did I find that cache again? Double sigh... A simple task that used to take me seconds now is a huge chore. Here's a sample screenshot that shows JUST terrain on my phone: Also, where's the GC code? How come the GC code is missing on the mobile version, but not on the desktop version? I do, however, like that in the mobile version it does not say "Traditional", "Mystery", etc next to the cache icon. Next, I was surprised that while some caches take up only 2 lines (for both the title and the cache owner), some caches take up a whopping 5 lines! There's also an additional line added to tell me the cache is PREMIUM (6 lines of text are wasted in the screenshot below to tell me the various caches are premium). Talk about inefficient! It doesn't look very good at all, either! On the old search page, the columns were long enough such that the title and cache owner would ALWAYS fit on 2 lines. Next, I think there's a bug: my found date just disappears after some point? And finally, something a little strange, but when I'm at the top of the page, some caches show as 3 lines. But when I scroll down and the title rows freeze to the top, suddenly some of the caches switch to being 4 lines. It almost makes me sad to see how inefficient and buggy this new system is compared to the old search. As a tool with the intended use to be searches of recently found and owned caches, I just don't think the functionality is there.
  15. I am not a software developer, but, similar to Geocaching HQ, I am in an industry in which I provide a service to my clients. In general, when I plan to do something new, I first go and ask my client what they want me to do. My client then tells me their highest priority item. I then work on this, and after I make some progress, I provide a "working copy" to my client for review and ask "what do you think about what I've done here so far?" There are ALWAYS some changes that come out of this preliminary review. But we are both happy because the client knows they will get exactly what they want, and I am happy because I know I am making my client happy. Then I can finish my product and know that everybody is aligned. What boggles my mind is that, instead of the above, the strategy here appears to be: 1) Release a large unwanted change to your entire clientele; 2) Receive immediate negative feedback on several valid technical points; 3) Your clients now have to live with an inferior product, while you 4) Frantically fix one or two (but not all) of these problems, leaving a flawed product, before soon moving on to the next project. Given a website update like this that seems to have received an overwhelming negative response, I have to wonder why there isn't a small volunteer team of experienced geocachers (not too many, maybe 20-30?) who could test the update and provide comments BEFORE it goes live to everybody? Doing this kind of review early on before going in too deep can save a LOT of re-work (re-work = $$$). Although I'm sure an internal software review does occur, I would argue (based on my observations on this particular update, and, to be honest, with most others) that the development team alone does not have sufficient geocaching experience to understand the functionality expected by an experienced geocacher. As an experienced geocacher myself, I would happily volunteer some of my time to beta test some of the future website updates before they go live. To qualify myself, my constructive comments on this thread seem to be well received by my peers. My virtual door is open.
  16. There is a serious issue with white space in this new update. As a result, the pages now have significantly less efficiency and functionality. I did some side-by-side screenshots. ON MY COMPUTER 1) I am able to see almost 15 caches in my screen view with the old search VS only 9 caches in the new search 2) In the new search I am missing pieces of information such as the maintenance wrench and trackable icons, as well as the "found by me" date. 3) The new search is significantly wider, causing my eyes to run back and forth across the entire screen. 4) I can easily select and copy text (cache name, GC code, cache owner) in the old search, whereas that is not possible in the new search. The result on the desktop version is a loss of efficiency and functionality: ------------------------- ON MY PHONE: 1) I go from seeing 20 caches on the old search to only seeing 9 on the new. 2) Although I can see all useful cache information on my phone on the old search, I can ONLY see distance on the new!! (the 3 dots button allow me to select the ONE parameter I want to see) The result and side-by-side comparison is almost laughably bad to see the loss of features and information in the new search!
  17. My comments, some of which have been mentioned above: 1) Found caches should be sorted from most recent find to oldest, instead of closest to furthest 2) Owned caches should be sorted from most recently placed to oldest, instead of closest to furthest 3) "Date Found By Me" is missing. This is nice to know when you are looking at your friend's finds. 4) There is a big bug when you sort by "Found On" - the top few rows are all in order, but as I scroll down the date order is all messed up. 5) If I want to browse far back into my found history, I have to keep scrolling and scrolling down. And if I have to re-load the page for any reason, I am stuck back up at the top again. Note that in my opinion these items should not be "possible future improvements" - they are essential features (that exist in the old search) that should be done now to make this a useful and efficient tool. It makes no sense to sort closest by default. My 3 closest finds are caches I found 8, 8 and 9 years ago, respectively, and all are now archived. Why should I default to that when I click to see my finds or the finds of my friends? In my opinion there is also way too much white space which means more scrolling to get the same amount of information as what the old search had. As a paying customer, it's frustrating to get "updates" that are a step backwards in many regards.
  18. I have been a GPSr user since geo-birth. I use my phone occasionally (sometimes to look at photos in the field), but I much prefer to use my GPSr to geocache. That said, I bet that I have never read the description on the vast majority of traditional caches that I have found. Typically, my search for a traditional goes as follows: 1) Find traditional on GPSr and load it up. 2) Get to GZ and look for the cache. If I find the cache, great, I'm done, move on to the next. 3) Read hint after a minute or two if I can't find it. If I find the cache, great, I'm done, move on to the next. 4) Read through the past 5 logs if the hint doesn't make sense or another minute or two passes. If I find the cache or the logs suggest the cache is missing, great, I'm done, move on to the next. 5) If none of the above works and I still can't find the cache, I might read through the description hoping for another clue. When I go to log, I do so on my computer and I very rarely open up the full cache page and read through the description - usually I find the cache on the map, click it, then click log visit. For a standard traditional cache, I usually never go in to read the description. I would, however, say that I ALWAYS read the description first for a mystery or multi cache - that way I know whether or not I will be wasting my time by going to GZ. So that would be my suggestion to you: use mystery or multi caches instead of traditionals. Mystery is probably better than multi. Incorporate an easy little Mark Twain puzzle and you've succeeded in getting me to read through the cache description. Whether or not I quote Mark Twain in my log or even read the description of your traditional geocache at all would depend on: a) Whether the cache was an excellent, high quality hide that offered something unique, or b) Whether you are a CO that I personally know or otherwise respect.
  19. It's easy for ProjectGC to tell me: of the 638 caches placed in my area in 2020, 94 are now archived. That's not bad, actually: 85% of caches placed in 2020 are still active. Anecdotally, I didn't seem to notice any significant increase or decrease in overall cache quality last year in my area.
  20. A follow-up to my first post from 2017, here are the updated cache numbers for my hometown using the same search method: 2008 - 585 2009 - 622 2010 - 659 2011 - 608 2012 - 671 2013 - 537 2014 - 602 2015 - 867 2016 - 581 2017 - 308 2018 - 311 2019 - 327 2020 - 638 2021 - 158 (as of March 29) There's no doubt that the number of new caches significantly decreased from previous averages between 2017-2019. But WOW what a huge increase in 2020! And a healthy number of new caches so far this year too despite being only 3 months into 2021! I definitely found myself geocaching much more last year thanks to the increased number of new caches.
  21. Yet another bogus log from another newbie cacher today. That marks 3 now in 3 weeks - this is really starting to get ridiculous! I wonder why this was never a problem in the past 5ish years some of my challenges have existed? I'm not sure what else to do other than to make bogus posted coordinates. Maybe a stupid idea, but why not hide challenge caches from newbies until they have, say, 50 or 100 finds?
  22. He brought it up in my thread as a solution to my problem. I think I'm well within the context of this thread to share my opinion on his proposed solution! Thanks for pointing that out, it is something I've thought of and I don't necessarily disagree with you. It's just that in my experience, I find that my caches get more eyes, more people interested and hence more (legitimate) finds if they are in the city vs hidden out in the mountains. My strategy with my challenges is to challenge geocachers who wouldn't normally go visit the mountains to go. If I hide my challenges in the mountains, the only interest I get is from the regular mountain geocachers. So far I'm happy with how my strategy has paid off! I've had plenty of interest on my challenges from those who I wouldn't expect! I've even received messages from some cachers who claim some of my challenges are on their geocaching bucket lists. That puts a smile on my face and in my mind was the goal of some of these challenges - and is something I'm fairly confident I wouldn't get if I went and hid the same cache out in the backcountry.
  23. Here you go, 2nd time this problem has happened in one week (different geocacher than 1 week ago).
  24. This is not a good solution, in my opinion. If anybody could claim a find on any challenge cache, it would be too easy to add a challenge component to any cache that would otherwise be a simple traditional cache. Under this proposed system, a challenge cache would essentially serve the purpose of a traditional cache AND a challenge cache. So why publish a traditional cache when you could instead post a challenge and get 2-for-1? In my mind, that's a very slippery slope and not a good idea for the game.
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