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Everything posted by JTA

  1. JTA

    .LOC Files

    palmetto, Thanks! Just what I wanted to hear.
  2. Hello fellow Geocachers! Im currently mid-development of a GSAK like application to manage geocaches and waypoints. Just curious if anyone has ever seen a .LOC file contain more than one waypoint? I know geocaching.com .loc files are all separate, but not sure about other sources. Thanks James
  3. JTA


    I've been into photography for many years and this is the first time I've heard that mega pixels has anything to do with noise. On a cheaper point and shoot, if you jack the ISO up you'll be more likely to get more noise but with todays higher end DSLRs there is very little noise. I'm shooting with a Nikon D80 which is a 10.2 MP camera, and I routinely shoot available light at ISO 1600 with little or no noise. I dont think we can really compare a D80 to a P&S as they dont have the same firmware/sensor size. I shoot with a D80 as well and I agree that it is a great camera. I plan on buying a D700 very soon since it has a true 35mm sensor (equals even less noise) The sensor of a P&S is much smaller than a DSLR. Packing more and more pixels into a tiny area reduces the amount of light each gets, therefore causing noise. I did a bit of googling and found this link below that explains a bit. Clarkvision Link Part 1 Part II
  4. JTA


    The smallest, slim camera you can find. I personally us a Nikon S51. A lot of people believe the more megapixels you have, the better. However, it can actually lead to noisier images. I would aim for a compact around 6 megapixels. To me, the most important thing is the ability to carry it comfortably in my pocket. When not geocaching, I use a Nikon digital SLR.
  5. Currently serving with the 101st Airborne in Baghdad, Iraq as a 1LT in the Signal Corps.
  6. ... You spend hours every night, for weeks, developing your own version of GSAK to fit your exact needs ... You've grabbed one in Iraq... and you're not a citizen
  7. GPS accuracy can get pretty scientific. In college I did many research papers and presentations on GPS use in agriculture and precision farming. One thing we found was on tractors, if the GPS was mounted on a flat surface, the signals could reflect causing small positional changes. The atmosphere also makes a difference. If you are getting signals from a SAT low in the horizon, the atmosphere can delay the signal from the SAT to the GPSr very slightly, but "slightly" means a lot when a signal is traveling at the speed of light. If you log the NMEA strings for 24 hours from your GPSr and plot the points in excel, you will see a great deal of variation from hour to hour. So if you think about it, it's amazing we can get the accuracy we have now. JTA
  8. JTA


    Ah.. they beat me to it.
  9. JTA


    An Army Surplus store may have ammo cans and other containers. If there is one near you I would check it out.
  10. The non-premium membership files are .LOC file types. These will work with the eXplorist 400 (I assume since I have a 210). You just open the file in Magellan's Geocache manager and select to transfer the file to the GPS. The .LOC file only contain the name of the cache, ID number, and location. It does not however include the difficulty, terrain, hints, last found, etc. That information can be found in a .GPX file. The only way to get that file type is to become a premium member. Premium Membership: One huge advantage of becoming a premium member is the ability to get pocket queries. This is a file that contains up to 500 geocaches (including all information available in the .GPX file type) that is customizable. In other words, you can select to get 500 caches from a certain location, zip code, area code, etc. These are sent straight to your email at a regular schedule, if you choose to do so. It is one large file instead of 500 single files. The reason many members opt for the premium membership is to simply help support our hobby and help fund the website. It takes a lot of resources to operate the geocache "machine". I hope that helps. JTA
  11. If you are not a premium member, the file type that you are downloading is a .LOC. This file type does not contain the hints. If you do become a premium member, then you can optionally download the .gpx file type. This type contains the hint, difficulty, terrain, etc. that the LOC does not. Some applications geocachers use do not transfer that data as well. I know my old eXplorist 210 came with geocache manager and it worked fine. Happy caching, JTA
  12. I just bought a new Garmin 60cx last week, switching from my eXplorist 210. On the map page of my 210 I could choose what is to be displayed on the map (ie. turn off geocache points). How do I do this on the 60cx? I have read the manual and didnt see anything about this. I may have over looked it but I would love some help from you experienced Garmin folks. It's quite annoying seeing 500 geocache points all over my map when Im just trying to hike down a trail. Thanks JTA
  13. It's just a different way to write the same coordinate. Instead of using degrees they use feet (I assume). NAD83 is a different coordinate plane, which does not change the format of the coordinate per se, but the location as the WGS84 is a more updated plane that is commonly used today. Correct me if Im wrong, but I believe this is correct. JTA
  14. I have experience with both Garmin and Magellan. Both are good. I have been using an eXplorist 210 for geocaching until I bought a Garmin 60cx last week. The Garmin has many more options and is in your pricerange. I would recommend this if using it for highway use. The eXplorist is great for geocaching and has an easy file management system. I dont think you will go wrong with either brand, although I do prefer my new 60cx over the eXplorist 210. But the 210 and the 60cx are in to separate price categories. JTA
  15. The 600 should come with Magellan software that is quite good for geocaching. It's what I use with my wife's eXplorist 210. It shows all of the cache info and transfers it to the GPSr. I would assume it came with your 600 as well. I could be wrong. JTA
  16. Here is my method, and it works well. I download the files to my GPSr. While doing this, I also save the webpage of the cache on my laptop. Therefore, if I do stumble and fail to find a cache in a reasonable amount of time, I can always come back to the truck and view the original information again. Unfortunately, this can be a pain if you use pocket queries. I do have a palm and will look into using that soon. Good luck, happy caching, JTA
  17. I currently own an eXplorist 210. This unit is great for geocaching as it has all the functions you will need. Also, they just updated the unit via a free download from Magellan. I would highly suggest you get this unit if you are unsure. Just my opinion. By the way.. my 60cx should arrive tomorrow!! Good luck and happy caching. JTA
  18. You can view the hints and cache info when you put the cursor on the cache icon on the map. I think you can do it from the file system too (new software update for the 210 changes this). The reason the hint is always blank is because you have to manually enter it in using the Magellan Geocache Manager software provided with your GPSr. The only thing the file contains when you download it from the website is the name and location I believe. Difficulty, terrain, and hint are not included. This is why I take my laptop with me geocaching. Save the webpage to file and solves these little issues. Hope this helps a bit.
  19. No, you will still be able to CBR on a Kenwood or any other radio brand with that capability.
  20. Yep, times have changed. It took me almost 3 months before I got my ticket. Ain't technology wonderful! Wasn't that terrible? Haha... I remember having my Radio Shack 202 handheld ready to operate and all I could do was listen for months. Technology is great (most of the time) ! JTA KE4JXA
  21. Most of the caches I have found recently have contained a small, thin, geocache specific log inside for you to log your visit on. On the back are instruction and information about geocaching. I have searched on this site and was unable to find the logs for sale (possibly overlooked?). Could someone point me in the right direction of where to get these type of logs to I can start my own cache (I assume any type of paper can be used.. but these look nice). Then again.. I suppose someone could have made these themself. Thanks, JTA
  22. 2004 GMC Sierra Z71 It's a gas hog, but it has plenty of room for my toys.
  23. This is a similar thread in another forum section. It may help a bit. LINK JTA
  24. JTA

    beginner gps

    I am currently using a 210 and it works well. It does everything you need for geocaching (at least the basics) and it also has dedicated geocaching "information page" that you can view unlike my older Meridian. My one complaint is the joinstick you have to use to navigate through the menus and enter remarks/coordinates can be a pain.. especially if you have large fingers. However, I am looking to upgrade to a GPSr that has a little bit larger screen and color. But if you want cheap... the 210 is a great GPSr. Good luck. JTA
  25. I took the test when I was 14 (12 years ago). When I took it you studied a book called "Now You're Talking" which had sample questions in the back. Those questions are the exact questions that you would find on the test. If you knew them well you did just fine. Im not sure what books they have now for the test. Also, from what I hear you dont have to learn code anymore. JTA KE4JXA
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