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  1. I've been all about challenges for years. We started the Challenge Talk podcast in 2020 which is great for challenge enthusiasts. Personally there are so many challenges in Ontario now that I'm not so much working focused on specific challenges any more, but passively working on any I don't qualify for yet As mentioned above, I have a doc that lists all the challenges I know of and I periodically update them all with current progress, and whether they're qualified (then log it as such with a note); and if I sign in first I mark it in the doc as found as I know once it's qualified I can just log it found. Going on trips is prime time to prioritize finding qualifying caches. But I also have them sorted by priority. Dates needing find specific qualifying caches go straight on my calendar so I know "today I've got to find 5 caches, 2 letterboxes, 1 Other, and a 3.5/4" for example. If I'm traveling then region and location becomes priority. Any rare caches in the vicinity of travel go on the stop-and-find list. Especially region oldests, jasmer caches, rare DTs, or even just properties that don't appear nearly as often near to home. Rarely ever on a trip do I just casually find caches. There are too many and the vast majority don't help towards any qualifications. Even so, before casual caching I'd be searching for high favourite points for the best chance at maximizing my travel's experiences. Challenges give that extra goal, a new layer on top of regular geocaching (like geocaching on top of the real world :P)
  2. So, your talk about privacy was misleading. You are affraid of strange motivations. Let's compare this airtag with a logbook. Logbook reveals your private data. Logbook is tracking you not the airtag. You should opt-out all of them because there are huge number of airtag owners with more strange motivations compared to the OP. For example, a business owner may be tracking you when you enter the shop and can count how many times you have visited - spooky - isn't it?
  3. If forum participants want to talk about challenge caches, the General Geocaching Topics forum is the place for that. This is the Creating Adventures forum.
  4. When I've introduced people to geocaching, I have never had them create a geocaching.com account or install an app (any app). As kunarion pointed out, that's a lot of finicky technical work, and it's more productive to introduce them to the "finding tupperware in the woods" part of geocaching. When I've taught one-hour classes on geocaching (usually, but not exclusively, to kids at church), I've spent the first half of the class explaining geocaching with as many hands-on examples as possible. Then I've taken everyone outside to a nearby spot where I've hidden a bunch of varied containers, and I've had them raise their hands when they've spotted a hidden container. In the class, I start by explaining that geocaching is like a modern scavenger hunt or game of hide the thimble, using GPS coordinates to show roughly where the container is hidden. (I specifically avoid the term "treasure hunt" because that gives people the wrong idea about what geocaching is.) To demystify GPS, I have three colored strings/ropes hanging from the ceiling. I explain that the GPS device (whether built into a phone or a separate handheld device) measures the precise distance from it to a GPS satellite. I grab one string and show that with one satellite, it defines a circle. Then I grab a second string and show that two satellites define two points, the places where the two circles intersect. I grab the third string and show that three satellites define a single point... except that there's another point "up there" so you have to assume I'm on the ground and not "up there". All this takes just a few minutes. The bulk of the explanation part is explaining and showing them different containers (sizes, types, camouflage), different trade items ("Trade up, trade even, or don't trade."), and different trackables (and that they are NOT trade items). I also explain difficulty and terrain ratings, and I briefly explain that most caches are traditional (a container at the GPS coordinates), but that some are more complicated (multi-caches, puzzles, etc.). By then, it's time to go outside to look for hidden containers. I generally try to have at least one hidden container per kid. If you don't have enough real cache containers, then any recycled jars/bottles covered in camo tape will do. Before the class, I hide them in an area where there are plenty of bushes, trees, and other landscaping features. Vary the hiding spots, and make a few of them really hard. I have the kids stay behind a line and raise their hands when they've spotted a hidden container. I try to call on everyone once before I call on anyone a second time. It's important to have a count of the number of containers hidden, and the number of containers spotted so far. As we get to the end, I let the kids know how many containers are left to find. If we run out of time, then I reveal the ones they missed. The other style of class that I've helped with has met at a trailhead parking lot in a county park. After a brief "chalk talk" explaining the basics (pretty much the same way I described above, without the colored strings/ropes to explain GPS), the new geocachers break up into small groups, with one experienced geocacher assigned to each group as a coach. Each group receives a preprogrammed GPS with real caches hidden along the trail. We used a popular trail that had become naturally saturated with a variety of caches placed by different owners (what we called a "power trail" before the advent of modern numbers trails like the ET Highway trail). Over the course of 2-3 hours, the new geocachers could find an assortment of different caches and be back at the trailhead in time for lunch. The experienced coach in each group was there mainly to answer questions, and to make sure there wasn't any confusion about trackables or replacing the cache as found or things like that.
  5. This water fountains, with the intent of providing water to the population - now or in the past - is definitely something deserving its own category. They are usually interesting, many are historic, pure heritage, and still, no place to place them in Waymarking. From time to time there is some talk about creating a category but so far, nothing came up. Fountains - as far as I can remember - only accept decorative fountains.
  6. A lot depends on who it was that took it. For example, you'd talk very differently to a church custodian who didn't realize it was supposed to be there, than you would to a bored preacher's kid who got into some mischief.
  7. I met pmaupin at the Mega GIFF in 2021, after I saw his signature on another event earlier that day and we had a good talk. I also know that some cachers I've met personally some time ago (in about 100km distance) do some Waymarking - but caching is more on their focus.
  8. Ethical discussion on collecting countries. I realized a few days ago that it's still possible to visit Russia: Go to Gdansk, take bus to Kaliningrad. Well, it's not that simple. Depending on your home country you need an invitation, insurance and visa, or you need to actually talk to the Russian ambassador to get this visa. In some countries it's not possible anymore at all. But it would theoretically be possible here. How you actually get rouble for your stay is a completely different matter as creditcards might not work. But it's possible. On that note, there are buses from Austria to Ukraine. Just saying. Discuss
  9. I eagerly anticipated attending an event hosted by a sort of infamous new geocacher who placed hides on private property, had hide coordinates hundreds of feet off, etc. In fact, several of those of us who attended were really interested to meet this person and talk to them about proper hide techniques. The event owner never showed up. Bummer! And hasn't hidden a cache since. And I think all their caches are archived at this point. I still attended the event with several others and we all logged it as attended. The event owner didn't though lol.
  10. Watch it. I love learning. I dislike having to prove it. Weird is pretending you can "place" or "find" these geology quizzes, as if they were something tangible. Weird is that it's mixed in with a game about containers. Weird is that you need landowner permission to "place" nothing at their land. I'm EC-free for well over 10 years now. That hasn't changed. Oh, since they nuked Brass Cap Cache (searching for tangibles), I'm done with virtuals too. I offer the same ridicule for them as the special-case virtuals about geology. EDIT to avoid dragging this out. Nothing weird about events; we talk about finding caches, and don't pretend to "place" or "find" events. I love events.
  11. kunarion

    AirTags

    Unless it's something dangerous, I'd expect it's allowed. AirTags simply use the tracking ability of the phone, and phones are allowed for Geocaching. But I'd prefer an option to shut off "tag trackers". There are many things that Apple either requires or won't allow, that I don't like. And now I've switched back to Android. By default Droid doesn't automatically talk to the tags. The TO's previous "Tile" tracking device traveled from the US to Europe, looks like without issue. For over a year. Until somecacher justified destroying it or hoarding it or "forgetting" it. Whatever. The usual.
  12. Great - I have a 'library cache', too that I'm proud of. Still, be careful in your cache writeup. It's easy to slip over the line. You can talk about what's there in the park and the trails they offer, the history, the beauty, the overlooks, but not the giftshop or how they're trying to fight Climate Change. You can say that there's an admission charge to the park if you don't have a membership, but you can't encourage people to GET a membership. You can tell cachers about how as of this year they'll have to pay for parking, but not how pissed off you are about it! You can mention the park's regular events, but not the one who's purpose is to push back against an encroaching housing development! Slippery slope stuff. And, to keep this on topic, as others have said that's not a 'partnership' cache.
  13. But it's much too young compared to town hall of the "Queen of the Hanseatic League", so that modern town hall matches it quite well Just for classification: 50% of our team was born and raised in Lübeck, known as the Queen of the Hanseatic League. Both of us are Lübecker Kaufleute (Lübecks Merchantpeople), so we live in, with and from parts of the Hanseatic League. Churches played a great role at the Hanseatic League as well as the town halls. The most powerfull parts of the Hanseatic League were the merchants, not the kings, dukes. They decided what happend in those cities. Only the clergy had some powers over the merchantmens. Lets talk about that for a while: The City Council (which was 100% made of merchants, no Kings, no Queens, no Noblesse) had their own church which inhabited the city treasure. So if you want the Hanseatic League, you can't decline the churches. City Walls and city gates: The Hanseatic League had it's peak times in the closing mediaval times, where the times where rougher and peace was the exception, so one city had to defend them and their goods, as the City of the Hanseatic League were rich. So city walls and gates were essential for the wealth and so for the groth of the Hanseatic League. Without walls and gates, there wouldn't have been any Hanseatic League.
  14. Are there historical markers or signs that discuss and explain Hanseatic heritage? This looks like just a very cool mural to me, which can go into the Murals Category. Please explain how someone from Texas traveling in Europe would know something they saw along their journey could be waymarked in a possible future Hanseatic Heritage category Let's talk it over
  15. So as not to disappoint my fan base, I've edited the topic title. It seemed easier than urging people to only talk on topic about the Geocache of the Week.
  16. Usually Keystone will step in and say "hey everyone, let's keep this on topic, we're supposed to be talking about <topic>". But there's been minimal talk about geocache of the week and lots of talk about adopting caches from CO's who no longer participate. Hi back. I never did return to NYC to find that cache near the the ferry.
  17. Perhaps someone thought there was a lot of value in the tags and that alone, regardless of what you say you were intending to do with them, was enough of a flag for the agent. That's unfortunate. Personally I might keep calling back to talk to someone about them, and hope to speak to a higher up who sympathizes and can find a way to let go of what is effectively other people's property... *shrug*
  18. There's no difference between the two. A cache type is a cache type as far as the data framework goes. We may talk about other types of cache experiences like puzzle caches or challenge caches or (in some places) an adventure lab considered as one (and this has been discussed before), and even Benchmarks may have been referenced as a cache type by some (showing up in the find count of 'cache types', eg). Doesn't change the fact that something either is or is not a "real" cache type. If it's not, then it has special code if there are places where its usage mimics that of actual cache types (Traditional, Multi, Virtual, Event, Earthcache, etc), like the counts of finds in our stats under "cache types". A Geotour is a category of cache types, not a cache type itself. An Adventure is similar to a Geotour in that it's a wrapper for a set of Adventure Locations. And that's harping back to the initial setup of Adventure Labs, individual 'finds' that added +1 smiley in a separate data source that was wrapped into a user's public stats. So there's already a pseudo-parallel between Geotour and Adventure. But that's a far cry from making Adventures a new actual cache type. Right, however, the structure of an actual cache type is not similar to the structure of an Adventure. And the Adventure experience is its own app, its own functionality, its own framework, and its own code. And that's why I said: it would require a complete overhaul of the Adventure system and importing all the data into the existing geocache system patchworked to make Adventures a new cache type, in some way, which I would think would look absolutely nothing like Adventures do currently... they are simply fundamentally different experiences with functionalities that are miles apart.
  19. @Mangatome Then from your perspective, we have not yet reached the limit of what we can do with lua if done correctly. What will need to be done is the following: The player app should be able to run one version of lua for all v1 cartridges (retaining compatibility, such as it is). We will run all v2 cartridges in the latest version of lua. When the player app requests a cartridge from the Wherigo API, the player app's current lua version will be included in the request. The Wherigo API is responsible for compiling a cartridge with the requested lua version. As long as the Wherigo API is updated prior to releasing an updated version of the app with a newer lua runtime environment, things will work as expected. In this manner, we can also deal with old versions of the app. (The Wherigo API reserves the right to tell the app when it is too old and must be upgraded.) Updates to the player app could include updates to either the lua environment or player app API. Because of this, once we expose an endpoint to a cartridge, it is fixed in stone and cannot be changed. I know how to version web-based APIs, but have not yet put time into determining how to version the player API. (In other words, we need to guarantee cartridges built in 2024 will still be able to run when the year is 2030--or even cartridges created in 2026 using a 2024 version of Urwigo.) I imagine we could just have an interface per player API version, which when upgraded will simply chain call into the newer method. As mentioned above, the Wherigo API's compiler service would need to load the compiler appropriate for the request. (I'll likely store a compiled cartridge when requested for the first time, then skip the compiling step during subsequent requests.) We will need to have living documentation that covers the player app's specification: lua versions, required libraries, and the player API (not only the part that allows interaction with the UI, but also that allows the subset of network features we desire). I would like cartridge state to be kept separate from the lua version if at all possible. I want to work on a more robust state management API. Other thoughts: I certainly don't mind exploring a version of player app that will allow cartridges to be written in C#. You definitely know player apps better than I: how difficult would it be to construct interfaces for the player app such that we could easily drop in different types of cartridges? Even if we stay with lua, that's my intent to preserve compatibility with v1 cartridges while continuing to update lua for v2 (unless we decide each cartridge's manifest can tell the player app the lua version against which it's supposed to run). My first priority is to everyone's security. I still would like to allow authors the ability to use network resources, so how about this idea? When an author wishes to use network resources, their cartridge can undergo review. Once approved, that particular URL scheme will be whitelisted for that cartridge. When a player app downloads a cartridge, it can also download the URL whitelist. The player API will expose a network layer whereby it will only allow whitelisted URLs to be called. In this way, we maintain security while at the same time giving authors the ability to consume network resources. As for in what the player app will be coded, I must leave that up those who will volunteer for the player app. My preference is for the environment to be something in which most people are familiar. That way, when some volunteers have to step away for a while, other people can take up the responsibility with not as much of a learning curve. My preference is MAUI or Blazor Hybrid. I know Groundspeak seems to like React Native (their Adventure Labs app is built using that), but Wherigo v2 is not going to be a Groundspeak project (though I still want Groundspeak's backing). For developing all this, I'll want public GitHub repos with a couple project leads (always more than one since we're all volunteers) set up to review and merge pull requests into the trunk. Anyone in the community can make a pull request. Whether we want these repos initially private is still a good question. I'm glad we're not all jumping into coding this. And some public news: I attended a mega event last weekend, and Jeremy from Groundspeak was there. We'll set up a time to talk with each other and see if I can get Groundspeak to agree to let the Wherigo Foundation run Wherigo if we can deliver.
  20. This is sort of off-topic, because It's not about an actual gadget cache . Last Friday, at a local caching event, some friends and I started to talk about unusual special equipment needed to find some geocaches. We speculated what kind of "special" (but not hopelessly unaffordable) equipment we have not yet seen as required for a cache. Soon, a Geiger counter was mentioned. We then had a good laugh imagining a gadget cache design like this: At the posted coordinates, you find a box, with a small Geiger counter + instructions. The task is to find a very small radioactive item within, say, 30 meter radius (in the woods, so essentially unfindable by chance), which holds the logbook (or coordinates of the location of the logbook). To make it clear, this is not a serious cache proposal, but it was super funny to fool around with the idea. But the really hilarious punch-line here is that less than 24 hours later, I first read about the incident in Australia where they really had to find a nano-sized radioactive item with radiation counters ! You can easily google it, but for reference, here is one news link: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-australia-64481317
  21. 95% of couch logs so far are from very experienced players so this behavior is unlikely to be grounded in confusion about proper logging guidelines and ethics. Interestingly some are the same accounts who like to talk about game integrity in the forums The game contains this disclaimer in different locations: There's no mention of completing this game allowing players to claim a find on the respective cache. While we will try our best to curb couch logging, cheaters only cheat themselves, and it's on all of us honest players to advocate for proper gameplay in the channels at our disposal
  22. Perfect, thank you! I'd missed that one. I spent a lot of time looking at airports back when I first started this list, but now I usually don't go back to a given airport unless one of the existing caches on my list has been archived. For Munich, I know I haven't looked at the map in at least a year. I admit, I struggle with puzzle caches. If it's easily solved, then no problem. But for many, the language barrier is too much for me to overcome. So I usually rely on (robot translated) logs. The best ones are of course any that say, "We had a 4-hour layover at the airport, which gave us plenty of time to go looking for this cache and get back for our flight." Failing that, I look for logs that talk about finding the cache on their way to (or from) the airport. That's why I resurrect this forum post now and again, so I can get feedback from folks who have found the caches on the list. Which brings us to, if any recent finders of GC5PF9M or GC2ABTH have opinions on how feasible it would be to get to either of those caches from the airport terminal, I'd be glad to hear them.
  23. I am very interested in this project. I have always been an advocate for Wherigo and I personally have built a lot of them and have helped many others build them as well. While I am not a coder I can test, build, tear apart, and am willing to do whatever necessary to help bring some advancement to this issue. Also, I do have the ability and the platform to get the word out through our Podcast Network (Geocache Talk). this could be handy if we need more testers or builders or just want some feedback. I am very interested in this project. I have always been an advocate for Wherigo and I personally have built a lot of them and have helped many others build them as well. While I am not a coder I can test, build, tear apart, and am willing to do whatever necessary to help bring some advancement to this issue. Also, I do have the ability and the platform to get the word out through our Podcast Network (Geocache Talk). this could be handy if we need more testers or builders or just want some feedback. Memfis Mafia
  24. Interesting ideas all around. My 2 cents. I like the comment of Dani+Iris. Yes, it's tedious to maintain a physical location (although in my case it's not too bad honestly). On the other hand, there's plenty of examples of cartridges being (re)used outside of the original cache (the Hangman series in the US, the reverse Wherigo from Waldmeister). To attract a crowd for playing Wherigo's (isn't that what we all want), I feel the app/player experience is key. We (as builders) are obviously quick to point out the flaws/features requests of creating a Wherigo. But, in the end it's still the person that's loading a cartridge on his smartphone who's the boss. So what is it in Wherigo that can attract crowds over the myriad (successful or not) alternatives that have been launched? (I wish I had the answer to this.) Trying to dissect some of the ideas that were posted by Ranger Fox and others on the subject. 1. In general - I like the idea of having a map centric approach. It will put limits to how you can develop things, but I think it will give a much better experience for the player. - Videos: I do see use cases (eg. interaction with an NPC) but I would be deterred by the extra effort needed to create videos on top of building the cartridge. So for sure not a critical/v2.1 item for me. From that respect, Audio is more important. - Formatting of items to make it more appealing: text with different fonts/colors/..., different colors for the zones (if you still have those), ... 2. On Zones - Having a more 'stable' zone experience dealing with GPS-jitter - For most purposes, just a point is sufficient, but having a shape can be interesting (eg. I have one built on a roundabout, the zones are like a piece of a pie forming a complete circle; it's nice to have rectangles if you want to have a "gameboard" like experience) - I like the idea of having a picture/icon showing on the map, instead of just the zone shape. But we need to think about how to do it with overlapping zones/small zones (compared to the minimum picture size) 3. On NPC / Items - I like the idea of having a picture/icon showing. But we need to think about how to do it with many items on the same spot/in the same zone - I like the idea of not being forced to have these NPC/Items in a zone (or the inventory) for them to show up - Taking this one step further: what's the difference between a zone and one of these objects? From a logical perspective, not a lot (especially if you don't have shapes for zones). Only the options you have to interact with the Object might be different ("add to inventory" or "use" for Items, "talk" is typically something for NPC). 4. Online or not? - I do see the advantage of being able to play it offline. Trust me, as a European without decent/affordable data plans outside of Europe, it can become costly when visiting the US or other territories. - I like the idea of having a neatly integrated system with APIs to load a cartridge, post a "log", mark completion, ... 5. On Groundspeak/GC links - With the adventure labs, it's going to be difficult to sell a tour guide like Wherigo platform on them - From the GC posting guidelines: "specific apps" are not allowed. So they can easily block/disallow them. https://www.geocaching.com/help/index.php?pg=kb.chapter&id=97&pgid=297#mobileapps A small remark on this: yes, it's (more) work to create a Wherigo than just drop a pill bottle behind a tree in a forest. But I am sure some people put equally (if not more) time in building great cache containers, multi's, gadgetcaches or mysteries. That being said, to buld a community, you'll need "many" cartridges (of high quality), so you'll need many builders too. SWIPEE
  25. I'll add one that's been present for several years now. When a PNG or GIF image is uploaded to a cache page, the contents of the file are quietly changed to progressive jpeg with no warning and no change to the file suffix. There are plenty of puzzle caches that rely on these file formats, for example where the solution is encoded in RGB values, yet this behaviour isn't even documented in the Help Centre, leaving unwary COs oblivious to the fact that their carefully crafted PNG or GIF file has turned into a jpeg without even the .JPG extension to suggest anything's changed. The only explanation given for this is that, for players on slow internet connections, it looks prettier for images to gradually come into focus than to be built up raster-fashion. Talk about form over function!
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