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Everything posted by HoPri

  1. Yes, the public bookmark feature is a very good first step towards a very helpful Favorite Cache System as it has been proposed and refined by Markwell and others . Hence, after "phase one" is now happily in place for some time (about half a year) now, it would be more than interesting to hear how plans are for the next phase... Best regards, HoPri
  2. I second that. Personally, I found the separation of searches for objects and places that do not contain a logbook to Waymarking.com very logically. However, I would not appreciate any further splitting off of searches along the "GPS-use is a must"-line that is currently layed out by the guidelines. Most of all, as cezanne already explained, it is not at all perfectly clear what "uses GPS coordinates" really means. "GPS and coordinates can be used to locate the cache." - In this generality, it is true for all caches I ever heard of. For some Traditionals, coordinates are required in the sense that everybody must use them to find the cache. For other traditional caches they are not required at all (use of maps in urban areas) but if you prefer to use a GPS, you can do it. However, the same holds true for any multi-cache as well. But so far, the rule has only been applied to mysteries and multi-caches but not to traditionals - and that makes it really confusing. This one-sidedness of the rule interpretation clearly conflicts with the logic of the statement as such, as the rule does not really separate trads from the other types but rather draws a line through all categories. Confusion and inconsistancy is the inevitable result of that. Where exactly is the line between "GPS coordinates can be used but can also be solved without. Fits the guidelines." and "does not require use of GPS coordinates, you could if you wanted, though. Does not fit the guidelines" - the first being said to an urban traditional, the second being said to a letterbox-style multi? The only difference that appears to me is for the trad it's about the cache itself for the multi about the starting point. GPS use possible seems really vague to me. I understand that given coordinates should be fairly precise, as this has been mentioned as one reason why the rule was created. However, the rule seems to go much farer as that. But why? Is it really the goal that people add a coordinate waypoint to certain multis just to meet this guideline? Is this really an improvement? Having to look at three different sites (Waymarking, geocaching, letterboxing) with unrelated databases to find available hunts in an area is IMHO not really making things more user-friendly. For me, splitting off multis that are close to letterbox-style would really take away a big part of my geocaching fun. I like my GPS and I like using it. But I thought geocaching was about "where you are the search engine" and the GPS is just one tool. If it is considered so essential for the sport, we should maybe call it gpscaching instead of geocaching then... I do hope that this sport is not only about GPS-reading but about searching and hunting boxes in the outdoors, with coordinates and GPS just being a means of pointing people to certain places, a means among others which are often just as interesting. Just my personal opinion, HoPri Edit: typos and hopefully more precise expressions.
  3. Perhaps instead of 'Scenic View' - 'Additional point of interest' might be a more generic for these. Also, I don't know if its be suggested yet but perhaps a type of 'Trail Junction' or 'Route Waypoint' could be used to provide waypoints for a suggested route to the cache. I would second both suggestions: * To have a "point of interest along the way"-type of waypoint * To have an "intermediate waypoint along the route" (which is available already only for multi-caches). Both types would be good extensions of this very useful feature.
  4. What about adding a "lost place" attribute? It could go into the hazard category, similar to "abandoned mine" but being more general. Lost places typically are somewhat dangerous places due to their nature of being decaying unmaintained structures. Hence, it would make sense to have the attribute (similar to abandoned mine) to raise awareness of the specific dangers. And, of course, as a great search attribute for the bazillion geocaching lost places fans... Best regards, HoPri
  5. HoPri

    Feature Request

    Well, fizzymagic's solution is manual - and PQs are automatic. Hence, there should also be an automatic way to get the images. The whole thing about PQs is having the descriptions automatically retrieved according to custom search critera in order to take the descriptions with me offline. And there are many people that really would like to see that the FULL description is delivered, not only the textual elements. Manual browsing is not really an option, as it thwarts the automatics of the whole process. I understand that there are technical challanges to make it feasible in a compliant way with the current TOU. But I do hope that TPTB are thinking about how to make it happen. Not having the images offline is a real restriction for many people. What we see as a result is that, in lack of an official way to get them, images are spidered in an uncontrolled way. I reckon that it is well worthwhile to put effort in creating an official solution not only as a feature for PMs but also as a means to reduce spidering. It is my understanding that many people would appreciate an offical solution and quit obtaining the images by non-compliant means. Best regards, HoPri Edit: spelling
  6. HoPri

    Feature Request

    I'd like to receive the images as well. There may be some regional differences in how important this feature is rated. I know that many European PMs see it this way: Images are a nice way to add spice to a cache description, and to create interesting out-of-the-ordinary cache tasks. I'm sure that most people agree that images are fine in principal - that's assumedly also why the site supports images in the great way as it does. If the site - promotes offline and paperless caching as a major benefit for PMs, and - allows images to be included in cache descriptions or attached as spoilers/visual clues, then they should also provide a legal way to access them offline. It is, of course, completely up to TPTB to provide technically feasible methods for that. If embedding images in the PQs is not feasible, then I hope they are thinking about different ways to achive the same goal in the end. Best regards, HoPri
  7. Sometimes owners replace a cache at a somewhat different spot after it went MIA. Although you may argue that they should then archive the old and post a new one, there are also voices that think differently. I have seen that owners allow to log "the same cache" (which it isn't really) twice in these cases. Logging a find on one's own cache should normally not happen AFTER it became your cache... However, the whole issue is about how serious you take the complete statistics and # of founds stuff in general. It does not hurt me if some people increase their count by double logging or logging their own caches. This is typically only a very small minority as compared to people who log caches that they haven't properly found at all. But even there, it bothers me personally only slightly. It's a game and nothing in the game depends on the correct finds statistics. Why bother too much about the numbers, and how people get to their's, then? Owners of caches typically do sufficient maintenance work to avoid most of the possible misuse. Happy geocaching, HoPri
  8. Edit: New version output: 535 unique caches found. Avg. Difficulty = 1.85 Avg. Terrain = 1.95 Avg. Challenge = 2.20 158 hard caches (30%) 10 countries 5 US states Difficulty: 1.0: 175 1.5: 100 2.0: 139 2.5: 37 3.0: 38 3.5: 18 4.0: 20 4.5: 3 5.0: 5 Terrain: 1.0: 172 1.5: 93 2.0: 101 2.5: 60 3.0: 57 3.5: 23 4.0: 15 4.5: 8 5.0: 6 Countries: 1 in Antarctica 19 in Australia 36 in Belgium 6 in France 339 in Germany 3 in Hong Kong 1 in Ireland 48 in Netherlands 2 in Turkey 59 in United States US States: 1 in Idaho 15 in Kentucky 41 in Ohio 1 in Utah 1 in West Virginia
  9. I agree that this would be a nice attribute. One for which I assume that there would be many supporters... Then, what about a general lost place attribute? We could have both - the historic attribute for places that are still intact or in regular use, and lost place for those places that are in decay and rather forgotten? Best regards, HoPri Edit: smilies... PS: On a serious side-note, those attributes would make sense if "historic" is in general context and not only geocaching.
  10. I imagine that for the typical FTF-hunter it does not make a big difference. He'll run for the cache anyway (and hence click through to the listing)... But for me, just moderately interested in FTFs, the reaction on a notification would be different for different cache owners. Some guys I know are experienced placers and you can run for the FTF as soon as you get the notification. In contrast many others normally require some beta-testing by FTF-wonnabes... I for my part typically sit and wait till everything's settled and go get the cache a bit later. No FTF but also no trouble with wrong descriptions (lots of multis over here!)... Currently, I MUST click through to the website to see who placed the cache. If the owner was mentioned I'd be able to tell the "good apples" from the "bad" () ones right away. If the owner and a link to the wap-version of the listing was given, that would really change life of FTF-hunters, even of people like me who get freaked out on a brand new cache only occasionally. Best regards, HoPri
  11. It is very interesting to read about all the opinions with respect to how people think of multi caches. Over here in Germany a large percentage of caches are multi-stage caches (~40% I guesstimate) - about as many as there are traditionals. For a German geocacher, a multi is just as normal as a traditional. Good multis will be like an interesting guide to a special hike. They will take you around a spot like a local guide would do. And the really good ones will have suprising elements (like nice self-constructed clues or tasks) or locations that you would typically miss. How to tell the good ones from the boring ones? In the same way you do with traditionals: Look at the description and the logs. EDIT: From the view point of the placer: Would I like to see this spot? Would I like to investigate this place? Would I have fun with this task? Sure, often you could place a sequence of traditionals instead of a multi-cache but that's not always possible. And - what I personally like most (and I hear that reason also from many others) - is exactly the adventure that lies in the unknown elements. For one of our favorite caches, we had to explore different parts of an old mine (find a micro here, follow a bearing to another part, follow a chain of reflectors to a side-passageway, locate an old writing at the wall in still another part of the mine, get out, across some rugged terrain and by some old mining equipment (clues given underway), abseil down into another mine, get to read the clue that was fixed to the wall underway, etc. It was just one big fun adventure. We did not know whether we would succeed or how long it would take (a full day afterall) or where the clues would eventually take us. It was big part of the fun to FIND OUT. And imagine our pleasure when we finally got the box! Ok, this was one hell of a cache, sure not all have this quality. But still, well-done multis can be a lot of fun - at least if you are prepared "to venture into the unknown"... Best regards and happy hunting (whatever caches you prefer). HoPri
  12. For me, it is NOT the question whether I find it inane or pointless. Everybody can decide what to do with his or her time, and it's (under normal circumstances) their business alone. The question for me here is rather whether it is considered a normal part of the game by the community and that is supported by the website. Or, in an interpretion closer to the OP's request, whether cache owners should have a way to exclude this "part of the game" from their caches. Edit: somewhat clearer
  13. As it becomes more and more frequent that virtual TBs/Coins are logged everywhere, I already begin thinking about taking certain caches off my watchlist. Is it the current season that virtual TB logs are more apparent at the moment? They definitely make up a significant part of all watchlist mails I get (bad weather - few real logs?). However, they are IMHO reducing the benefit, or better say efficiency, of the watchlist feature.
  14. Only a small remark: My point was that the geocaching.com maps could serve both purposes, look at map details for a specific cache AND provide the overview the geocaching.de maps provide. However, that would require a change in the map layout according to the zoom level (AND useful map data). Cheers, Holger
  15. Thanks very much to everybody, and in particular to Keystone for commenting explicitely on the examples. That explains a lot on how to understand this specific guideline and on how not. Appreciated! HoPri
  16. Thanks for the clear input! It is, of course, always a good way of preparing a cache listing to discuss out-of-the ordinary things in advance with a local reviewer. I mean, we are all playing together to make this an enjoyable activity for the community. Knowing the guidelines* and their intention sure helps to make those discussions straight forward. *thanks for pointing out. Best regards, HoPri
  17. I see that this kills Example 2. All other examples still involve accurate GPS-coordinates to some degree. The owner uses a GPSr to determine the exact location (Examples 1 and 4) resp. starting point (Example 3). But even in Example 1) GPS accuracy is either questionable (urban environment) or not really required (point described verbally). Many people I know even pinpoint the coordinates of example 1) caches with good maps rather than a GPS receiver. The cache hunter does not really need a GPS in Examples 1) and 3) as he can locate the cache spots on the map (Example 1), resp. the start point on the map (Example 3). Hence, neither the owner nor the hunter really need a GPS in examples 1) AND 3). Are then both non-compliant? The difference of Examples 1) and 3) is that for one, given coordinates (not really required, though) it's the cache coordinates, for the other the start coordinates (also not really required). Does this make a difference for the reviewing process? Only in Example 4, the hunter really needs a GPS. That should be a clearly compliant cache, right? I mean the question is not of utmost importance. That's clear. However, it is always nice to understand the rules and the reasoning behind the rules. So, thanks for input! [] Best regards, HoPri
  18. Dear Keystone, could you please give some more background on what this exactly means? Let me give some examples, and maybe you would be so kind to explain shortly how they are to be viewed from the perspective of the quoted guideline. 1. Example: Urban Traditional (example applies to many drive-in traditionals): Coordinates are taken by owner and given in the listing (of course). However, clicking on the map feature from the listing's page reveals the spot on the map (e.g. a well-known public place). Maybe the description even gives a hint as to where to search. Hence, you can locate the cache completely without use of a GPS. It will even not be of much use other than bringing you to the right area. 2. Example: Mystery Cache, where the puzzle determines a location that can easily be found on a map. Once you have the puzzle's solution, you are essentialy back in example 1. The puzzle would, for example, include identifying a location from an areal or a satellite image. Coordinates are not of particular importance here, but once the image is identified you could get the exact coordinates of the spot, however, and use GPS from there. Nevertheless, as in example 1, it is not essential to find the cache as the spot can also be located by map use only. 3. Example: Multi-Cache. Start coordinates are taken and given in the listing (of course). From there you need to use a radio bearing device to locate the cache, which is at the sender's position. Again, except from the start coordinates, coordinates are of no particular importance. You could, however, make use of a GPS by projecting your bearings subsequently, and use the GPS to get to the intermediate waypoints. From there, you take a new radio bearing and project again, and so forth. However, the important part is the radio bearing device, not the GPS. Once at the starting coordinates, you don't need the GPS. (Same for many night caches, where you just follow a chain of reflectors to the cache.) 4. Example: Almost the same multi-cache as above, except that now the location of the radio sender is only an intermediate waypoint. There you find the coordinates of the final cache. A GPS now is required to get from the radio position to the coordinates of the cache. But as it is the case with many other special equipment caches, you can't find the cache without that additional equipment. Ok, one could of course construct a lot of examples here. But maybe these suffice to clarify how the guideline is to be interpreted. It would be great if you would share your view us, in particular comparing Examples 1 and 2, respectively 3 and 4, with respect to demonstrating the use of exact GPS coordinates. Thank you very much! HoPri
  19. I must agree with Hynr that the geocaching.de maps are rather for getting an overview than for planning and fine-tuning a caching trip if you are unfamiliar with a region. They lack several important features that are normaly important to do that, such as: show/don't show found or owned caches, zoom in sufficiently far to be able to identify the best approach, quickly determine the cache type. These are features that geocaching.com offers (at least for PMs). I have used that feature frequently when I was in the US and it is very helpful. However, the usefulness vanishes quickly, when the underlying map data is wrong or off. That is, unfortunately, very often the case in large parts of Europe. Many European PMs (and I guess, many normal members as well) are still looking forward to having improved map data that have a sufficient level of reliability. The current map data render the map feature quite useless in most cases. (Some examples for how BAD the map data are: No clear distinction between different road categories (even interstates/autobahnen cannot be identified properly). Some areas are missing local road coverage completely. Location names can be (and often are) completely wrong.) However, there is a big demand for overview maps (such as on geocaching.de or geocaching.nl or on buxley's and many more). This is something that in my opinion requires a different map layout, optimized for giving a quick overview rather than providing too much detail. For example, as much as I like the cache icons, once you zoom out the geocaching.com maps, you are quickly lost as many caches clutter the map with their "huge" symbols. Maybe Groundspeak can figure out a way to provide overview maps in an optimzed way - e.g. if you zoom out to a certain level, the cache symbols (the whole layout?) change to something different. Combined with the other features (e.g. show/hide/mark found caches), this would really be a valuable enhancement (provided that the map data IS reliable). Best regards, HoPri
  20. HoPri


    Proposal 1) might be a bit problematic, as it opens a new source of error and mistake, or at least confusion if it is not filled in properly. If it were (or the information retrieved properly by an automatic process) then it would be really useful, I agree. I fully support proposal 2). This is, in my view, essential information on a cache and much more interesting than the reviewer's name. I would be pleased if this is added (like in the weekly cache notification mail). 3) is of course important for all FTF hunters who get the insta-notify on a mobile device. Maybe just add a link to the cache listing on the wap-portal, similar to the already included link to the cache listing on the web-portal. Then you can directly "click" through to the wapified cache listing. Regards, HoPri Edit: spelling
  21. bevema, you might find this thread helpful. It was started by cezanne, and the arguments pro and con what you address here have been made there already.
  22. Exactly as you say. They are not allowed, and hence there is no classification of them. If you want to press it into one of the old classes then it's IMHO closer to a virtual than to a traditional. Actually, small well-camouflaged micros (with a tiny logbook) can be quite some fun (once you found that little bastard, that is... ). Cheers, HoPri
  23. How about adding the number of people watching the cache, and the bookmarks that list the cache? Could be useful to search for "interesting" caches beyond the normal attributes... Best regards, HoPri
  24. I would say that you know a very select group of people who do not represent the majority. The default for most browsers is to keep cached files across sessions, because it speeds up the browsing experience. Files are not removed until a preset storage limit is reached, and then they are usually selectively removed based on date of last access. Most people do not use the 'paranoid" settings, unless they have some real need to do so. You may be right. I'm not sure how large the percentage of such people actually is. How big is the fraction of DSL subscribers of all Internet users? Would not most of them have some personal firewall installed? Would not many of them regularly use anti-spyware tools? And quite some part of the dial-in users would also use these? Lot of this stuff is bundled with PC sales these days. And as far as I see, most of this software provides "privacy services": Manage cookies, clean up browsing traces. Not that people actually need it but the software does its job at most places where it is installed, I reckon. I'm just saying that local caching should be done dedicatedly for the geocaching images/descriptions by the corresponding tools. To require browser caching being configured in one way or the other would IMHO not be a very good idea. Best regards, HoPri Edit: removed some typos
  25. Being the ever-learning person I am, I'd love to be educated by you about where I'm getting something wrong (in particular browser caching). It is always good to learn to understand things better. I suggest we do this by PM rather than in public here. I'm looking forward to your PM (if you will)! Best regards, HoPri
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