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mrisaka

iPhone Geocaching App

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The iTunes Applications Store for iPhone and iPod Touch is active! Tons of these applications look amazing, and of course my thoughts immediately turned to the inevitable Geocaching app. Hell, maybe I'll make one myself. Or maybe it could be an open source project?

 

Any feature requests?

 

I'm thinking:

-Google Maps integration (just like on geocaching.com) to see cache listings, hopefully with an option to download certain maps for offline use (though I don't know how Google would feel about that...)

-detailed cache listing pages (with option to download them for offline use)

-uploading photos directly from the phone to a cache gallery page

-search feature with pocket query level filtering

-bookmark lists on the phone

-take notes on caches, option to share them with others

-trackable items management

-use the iPhone's GPS to actually find caches, or at least get close to them

-use the iPhone's GPS to plan a route with caches along it

 

I'm also wondering what sorts of licensing, etc. would have to be done with Groundspeak. I assume that some stuff, like the advanced searching, they would want to save for paying members. Maybe paid members get the app for free, and all others have to pay for it? I don't know if Apple has any sort of system in place to accommodate that sort of system though... It could probably be pretty easily tied to a login, same as it is now.

 

Man, I'm excited though!

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My thoughts ...

 

Read the GPX exports from GC or GSAK and display nice navigatable pages.

Include links to the actual GC page (or at least follow links in page -- which GSAK inserts GC page link)

Tie location to the built-in GPS so you can "go to" and give you a compass like feature to navigate with

Have ability to do "find nearest" from current coordinates (including / excluding found caches) with advanced sort features (could be tied to GC search page or use their interface -- the same one obviously the Trimble app is using).

Direct link to "log" from phone (Trimble method is OK, but why not go direct to log page on GC?)

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The iTunes Applications Store for iPhone and iPod Touch is active! Tons of these applications look amazing, and of course my thoughts immediately turned to the inevitable Geocaching app. Hell, maybe I'll make one myself. Or maybe it could be an open source project?

 

Any feature requests?

 

I'm thinking:

-Google Maps integration (just like on geocaching.com) to see cache listings, hopefully with an option to download certain maps for offline use (though I don't know how Google would feel about that...)

If you'll recall, you can use the location API to show things near you on a google map with the pins that drop in to view. Simply using this to query nearby caches from the website and then select a pin and choose FIND with a button seems most logical to me. Most of that funtionality is already being used by other location based apps. :lol:

 

-detailed cache listing pages (with option to download them for offline use)

-uploading photos directly from the phone to a cache gallery page Sounds great.. similar to TypePad's app.

-search feature with pocket query level filtering

-bookmark lists on the phone

-take notes on caches, option to share them with others

-trackable items management

-use the iPhone's GPS to actually find caches, or at least get close to them already mentioned above re: maps integration

-use the iPhone's GPS to plan a route with caches along it

 

I'm also wondering what sorts of licensing, etc. would have to be done with Groundspeak. I assume that some stuff, like the advanced searching, they would want to save for paying members. Maybe paid members get the app for free, and all others have to pay for it? I don't know if Apple has any sort of system in place to accommodate that sort of system though... It could probably be pretty easily tied to a login, same as it is now.

 

Man, I'm excited though!

 

Thanks. I've been thinking about it too. I'm even registerd as a developer. But I'm a hack newbie. Anything on par with Geocaching.com and experienced cachers is WAY OFF

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The iTunes Applications Store for iPhone and iPod Touch is active! Tons of these applications look amazing, and of course my thoughts immediately turned to the inevitable Geocaching app. Hell, maybe I'll make one myself. Or maybe it could be an open source project?

 

Any feature requests?

 

I'm thinking:

-Google Maps integration (just like on geocaching.com) to see cache listings, hopefully with an option to download certain maps for offline use (though I don't know how Google would feel about that...)

-detailed cache listing pages (with option to download them for offline use)

-uploading photos directly from the phone to a cache gallery page

-search feature with pocket query level filtering

-bookmark lists on the phone

-take notes on caches, option to share them with others

-trackable items management

-use the iPhone's GPS to actually find caches, or at least get close to them

-use the iPhone's GPS to plan a route with caches along it

 

I'm also wondering what sorts of licensing, etc. would have to be done with Groundspeak. I assume that some stuff, like the advanced searching, they would want to save for paying members. Maybe paid members get the app for free, and all others have to pay for it? I don't know if Apple has any sort of system in place to accommodate that sort of system though... It could probably be pretty easily tied to a login, same as it is now.

 

Man, I'm excited though!

 

I currently have a "demo" version of a geocaching app that I have submitted to apple. It's fairly basic, set a target and use the new iPhone's GPS to navigate to it.

 

Unfortunately it is still marked as "Under review" by apple, and has been since wednesday afternoon. I didn't quite make the cutoff on monday for a few different reasons. I'll post a link here once it actually gets approved. In the meantime, here's the default screen for the app.

 

I should note also that there are at least two other developers developing for the iPhone currently that are members of the community. If/when they release something as well I am not sure, but I know at least those two have something going already. A couple of companies including Groundspeak have hinted at it as well, but I've not spoken to them and it's been at very vague levels.

 

That's also assuming that apple lets any of that happen. I hear TomTom has their software ported to the iPhone, but there are contract issues with that. That's more general of an application, but the point stands -- if apple has issues with them, they may have issues with geocaching software in general.

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It would be great if something akin to Trimbles Geocache Navigator got ported to the iphone - I've found that app to be very useful on my 4 year old sanyo phone.

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Thought I would mention this here as I've mentioned it publicly in another forum... Check it out here: http://geopherdemo.blogspot.com This demo is [edit: will be as soon as apple approves it!] freely downloadable from the app store in iTunes.

 

Not trying to spam, but I figure since it's still "In Review" by apple, it probably won't be approved before next monday, and I've seen a lot of people wondering about these kinds of apps. There's nothing currently like this in the app store right now, it's possible apple is on the fence if they will be letting developers do this or not.

Edited by slycrel

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I've also registered as a developer, but haven't programmed for years and certainly not in this sort of environment, so have a steep curve. But I'm now reluctant to start with Apple's iron grip over what they will allow in the store. In fact I'm even holding off going for the iPhone until this becomes clearer.

 

Second thought, whatever app people are developing, please remember that many caches are placed out of signal coverage, so don't assume live link to gc.com or maps.

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Any idea how the GPS unit in the iPhone will handle geocaching? I have hear it isn't the strongest chip, and it doesn't do well indoors or in cars. What do people think about in deeply wooded areas or other distant places?

 

I want to get started with geocaching and want to make sure I get a unit that fits with my lifestyle (like the iPhone has for the last year).

 

Tim

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Any idea how the GPS unit in the iPhone will handle geocaching? I have hear it isn't the strongest chip, and it doesn't do well indoors or in cars. What do people think about in deeply wooded areas or other distant places?

 

I want to get started with geocaching and want to make sure I get a unit that fits with my lifestyle (like the iPhone has for the last year).

 

Tim

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Any idea how the GPS unit in the iPhone will handle geocaching? I have hear it isn't the strongest chip, and it doesn't do well indoors or in cars. What do people think about in deeply wooded areas or other distant places?

 

I want to get started with geocaching and want to make sure I get a unit that fits with my lifestyle (like the iPhone has for the last year).

 

Tim

 

Without web access you won't be able to load web pages in the web view. but you can type in the lat/long coordinates wherever and the arrow will still point which direction you need to go in relation to where you are, the distance will still show up, and the GPS tracking will still work.

 

I will have a 3G iPhone sometime next week (I've prepaid, it's being shipped to my AT&T store) so I'll know more then. I've heard mixed things about the GPS reception.

Edited by slycrel

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Let me first say that I would pay any reasonable amount of money for a good Geocaching app. I've stopped Geocaching almost entirely because of two reasons: There's too much prep-time to load .gpx or .loc files onto my Magellan GPS, and the thing is huge and inconvenient to lug around. This is why the GPS on the 3G iPhone is so appealing to me, but I need a really good app to make it come true.

 

Here's what I'd like to see: Something that's a simple all-in-one paperless Geocaching solution without a bunch of extra stuff on top of it. Ideally, I'd like to never need anything but my iPhone and sometimes another GPS for extra accuracy if necessary when I'm geocaching. I don't want to have to look up geocaches before I go somewhere, I want to say, "Hey, I've got an hour to walk around here. Let's see what I can find."

 

After launching the app and logging into my geocaching.com account, the screen should have a button to locate where I am using Core Location and a manual option to enter coordinates. Upon searching, it should center on Google Maps with some number of nearby geocaches as pinpoints on the map, with icons for each cache type if possible. Tapping on a pinpoint gives you a popup with the cache name and maybe the rating and a button to go to a page for that cache.

 

The cache page should provide detailed information: coordinates, rating, description, logs, etc. Basically everything you get on the geocaching.com page, but formatted for better speed and readability. At the bottom of the description should be a button to make a post about the cache. Clicking it pops up a form with the keyboard and an input field to type your post as well as buttons for Found / Did Not Find / Status, etc. The cache page should also have two navigation buttons in the top row (like where you would navigate between folders in other apps). The left button would return you to the map and the right button would set the iPhone to track that cache.

 

Tracking the cache should be simple. Present a compass or bearing/heading and a distance to the cache. You may also want to do a map view that displays Google Maps with the GPS tracking and a line toward the waypoint. For users of the original iPhone, we'd probably want to have something that gives them some information since it'll be more difficult to track toward the waypoint. For them, the map view may be the only option to help them out. Being able to use the satellite or hybrid views on the map would be nice, and Google Maps on the web has a topographical view, but I don't know if it's possible to implement that on the iPhone. Once a cache is found, the user hits back from the top of the screen and can log their find, then return to the map for the next cache.

 

I think having something like this would make Geocaching easy and fun for anyone to do wherever they are without much investment, and would provide a very worthwhile service to already dedicated cachers. Some of what I said might be obvious and overlooked a lot of nuance like photo uploads, on-the-fly multi-waypoint routes or loading pre-defined .gpx files, and while all of that is certainly nice to have, I'd really love to see an app that does what I described as a minimum starting point. That would make Geocaching something that I could do every day instead of only when I have the time to prepare for it.

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I also have a 3G on order, and one of my main reasons for getting it is the GPS function. I've been caching for the last year and a half with my Palm Treo with a bluetooth GPSr and love it. Its a little clunky carrying around the phone and the bluetooth, but much better than carrying a large GPSr and a palm for paperless. I have been using Geoniche as my caching program and have to say its great. Its simple and gets the job done, but I think with the capabilities of the iphone there should be so much more available.

 

I know people have commented on the durability issue. Otterbox makes "waterproof and crushproof" cases for the old styler iphone iphone otterbox, and according to their website are currently working on one for the 3g. To me this would make the iphone the ultimate geocaching device, as tough as my etrex, internet access, phone, camera, and even an mp3 player.

 

Now to some of my wishes. With my palm I still have to go through the routine of downloading a PQ, converting it on my pc, then syncing it with the palm. Since I travel alot I'd love to be able to open geocaching.com, go to the google map feature, see what caches are close by, and be able to navigate right to it. Once in the navigation mode I would like to either be able to tap on the geocache icon, or have a button available that will pull up the cache page and/or notes. This is one of the features I enjoy about the Geoniche program. While navigating you can tap on the icon and pull up details, notes, logs, hints, etc about the cache. This is greatly useful on the fly when you cant find a cache right away, a quick lookup of the description or hint usually puts me back on the right path. Also to be able to instantly log the cache, and even upload pics directly from the camera to the log would be awesome.

 

With that being said, I'd also like to retain the capability to be able to load a PQ onto the phone and be able to use it to navigate out in the field. This would save us from being at the mercy of a wi-fi network, 3g, and the painfully slow edge. I definitely think the any cache app created should NOT rely solely on internet access for availability of caches. This sport invariably takes us into remote locates and thats why I love it, but those locations often lend themselves to poor or no cell reception.

 

I know GC.com makes alot of its money from Premium Memberships, and some of these functions may bypass the PQ function and take the requirement for a membership out of the loop. I personally would have absolutely no problem continuing to pay my membership for the ability to use my iphone as described about.

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I noticed this post, wanted to add my 2cents.

 

I am a recent newcomer to Geocaching, only doing it now for about 2 weeks. My first solo geocache I went with paper printouts and my BlackBerry 8800 with GPS and GoogleMaps. Went ok, but I felt the 'live' interaction with the site was lacking - I hated the paper printout thing. I mostly do geocaching when I go on mountain bike rides, so I don't like the idea of paper stuff on me.

 

I then discovered the Geocaching Navigator from Trimble, which for $4.99 per month let's you interact with the geocaching.com website and your account. So now, I use just my BB 8800 and that one app. and i'm off to the races. It's a breeze now to go geocaching as I can view hints, details, a "radar" of my location relative to the known coordinates of the cache, mark as found, etc. all live as I am hunting for caches. So the immediate solution to the iPhone and Geocaching situation is to port this app. immediately to the iphone and you will have all you need.

 

The thing I am most interested in, is creating an open source project and re-write the similar geocache navigator on an open platform, that could be run on the iPhone or any other mobile platform - JavaME seems like the best candidate for this since it's the most portable platform. Any thoughts? I would be willing to contribute development and management time if required - I work in open source already for a living.

 

If you are interested in working on such a project - email me and let's setup a working project location (google groups?) and let's get the ideas going to start and see where it goes from there.

 

cheers

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I noticed this post, wanted to add my 2cents.

 

I am a recent newcomer to Geocaching, only doing it now for about 2 weeks. My first solo geocache I went with paper printouts and my BlackBerry 8800 with GPS and GoogleMaps. Went ok, but I felt the 'live' interaction with the site was lacking - I hated the paper printout thing. I mostly do geocaching when I go on mountain bike rides, so I don't like the idea of paper stuff on me.

 

I then discovered the Geocaching Navigator from Trimble, which for $4.99 per month let's you interact with the geocaching.com website and your account. So now, I use just my BB 8800 and that one app. and i'm off to the races. It's a breeze now to go geocaching as I can view hints, details, a "radar" of my location relative to the known coordinates of the cache, mark as found, etc. all live as I am hunting for caches. So the immediate solution to the iPhone and Geocaching situation is to port this app. immediately to the iphone and you will have all you need.

 

The thing I am most interested in, is creating an open source project and re-write the similar geocache navigator on an open platform, that could be run on the iPhone or any other mobile platform - JavaME seems like the best candidate for this since it's the most portable platform. Any thoughts? I would be willing to contribute development and management time if required - I work in open source already for a living.

 

If you are interested in working on such a project - email me and let's setup a working project location (google groups?) and let's get the ideas going to start and see where it goes from there.

 

cheers

 

Not possible. Geocaching.com will not release the rights to port this application. Geocaching.com won't even let the Iphone apps interact like geocache navigator with geocaching.com. There was already a developer working on a similiar app and was turned down geocaching.com. It has to interact like any other web users and thats all you are allowed to do.

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I noticed this post, wanted to add my 2cents.

 

I am a recent newcomer to Geocaching, only doing it now for about 2 weeks. My first solo geocache I went with paper printouts and my BlackBerry 8800 with GPS and GoogleMaps. Went ok, but I felt the 'live' interaction with the site was lacking - I hated the paper printout thing. I mostly do geocaching when I go on mountain bike rides, so I don't like the idea of paper stuff on me.

 

I then discovered the Geocaching Navigator from Trimble, which for $4.99 per month let's you interact with the geocaching.com website and your account. So now, I use just my BB 8800 and that one app. and i'm off to the races. It's a breeze now to go geocaching as I can view hints, details, a "radar" of my location relative to the known coordinates of the cache, mark as found, etc. all live as I am hunting for caches. So the immediate solution to the iPhone and Geocaching situation is to port this app. immediately to the iphone and you will have all you need.

 

The thing I am most interested in, is creating an open source project and re-write the similar geocache navigator on an open platform, that could be run on the iPhone or any other mobile platform - JavaME seems like the best candidate for this since it's the most portable platform. Any thoughts? I would be willing to contribute development and management time if required - I work in open source already for a living.

 

If you are interested in working on such a project - email me and let's setup a working project location (google groups?) and let's get the ideas going to start and see where it goes from there.

 

cheers

 

Hey, welcome to geocaching! I fell in love with it after finding my first cache and haven't looked back since. I'm a gadget geek at heart, so having a mobile device and a GPSr just seemed like the natural activity to me :-)

 

Just want to let you know that there is already an application in the works for the iPhone platform that does just what your looking for called Geode. I'm currently working on this project as lead UI (and part time Public Relations guy), and as a dedicated geocacher, I can tell you that this is one fun app to use. You can load geocaches on to it, browse from a list and choose one to navigate to, have an interactive map, and a compass that will allow you to change function (north up, track up, or track up with cache pointer). I know I sound a *little* biased as I'm a part of the project, but I wanted to start this project because I was tired of lugging around my GPSr and having to use my iPhone to browse GC's website when I got stuck or needed some more info. This application started off as a list of "You know, if I could create an app" much like what you posted. We're very much listening to the community on features to add, so your input would be VERY much welcomed!

 

Take a look at our site and tell me if this was something you were looking for (at least for the iPhone side of things)

 

Geode

 

BTW - I know this is my first post, I've been having crazy account issues with this forum. Bleh :-P

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I noticed this post, wanted to add my 2cents.

 

I am a recent newcomer to Geocaching, only doing it now for about 2 weeks. My first solo geocache I went with paper printouts and my BlackBerry 8800 with GPS and GoogleMaps. Went ok, but I felt the 'live' interaction with the site was lacking - I hated the paper printout thing. I mostly do geocaching when I go on mountain bike rides, so I don't like the idea of paper stuff on me.

 

I then discovered the Geocaching Navigator from Trimble, which for $4.99 per month let's you interact with the geocaching.com website and your account. So now, I use just my BB 8800 and that one app. and i'm off to the races. It's a breeze now to go geocaching as I can view hints, details, a "radar" of my location relative to the known coordinates of the cache, mark as found, etc. all live as I am hunting for caches. So the immediate solution to the iPhone and Geocaching situation is to port this app. immediately to the iphone and you will have all you need.

 

The thing I am most interested in, is creating an open source project and re-write the similar geocache navigator on an open platform, that could be run on the iPhone or any other mobile platform - JavaME seems like the best candidate for this since it's the most portable platform. Any thoughts? I would be willing to contribute development and management time if required - I work in open source already for a living.

 

If you are interested in working on such a project - email me and let's setup a working project location (google groups?) and let's get the ideas going to start and see where it goes from there.

 

cheers

 

Hey, welcome to geocaching! I fell in love with it after finding my first cache and haven't looked back since. I'm a gadget geek at heart, so having a mobile device and a GPSr just seemed like the natural activity to me :-)

 

Just want to let you know that there is already an application in the works for the iPhone platform that does just what your looking for called Geode. I'm currently working on this project as lead UI (and part time Public Relations guy), and as a dedicated geocacher, I can tell you that this is one fun app to use. You can load geocaches on to it, browse from a list and choose one to navigate to, have an interactive map, and a compass that will allow you to change function (north up, track up, or track up with cache pointer). I know I sound a *little* biased as I'm a part of the project, but I wanted to start this project because I was tired of lugging around my GPSr and having to use my iPhone to browse GC's website when I got stuck or needed some more info. This application started off as a list of "You know, if I could create an app" much like what you posted. We're very much listening to the community on features to add, so your input would be VERY much welcomed!

 

Take a look at our site and tell me if this was something you were looking for (at least for the iPhone side of things)

 

Geode

 

BTW - I know this is my first post, I've been having crazy account issues with this forum. Bleh :-P

 

App looks really nice. Quick question though, I don't currenty have an iphone. Does gps features work if you have no phone service signal?

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App looks really nice. Quick question though, I don't currenty have an iphone. Does gps features work if you have no phone service signal?

 

Thanks for the compliment!

 

As for the iPhone...yes, it does. The iPhone has a dedicated GPS chipset (Hammerhead II), so you can get a GPS lock without a data connection.

Edited by bugbbq

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I bought my iPhone 3G the day it came out, and one of the first things I thought of was geocaching! I have been a member of this website for years, and have looked at various caches, really only dreaming of one day being able to play this game, as I have never had a GPSr before. Now, with my iPhone 3G, I am super stoked, because I think I will venture out today and find my first cache! Geode looks amazing. I'm wondering what it will cost. Geopher is $1.99 right now, but seems to be very much in beta. I'm going to find my first cache just using gc.com and google maps on my iPhone, then see what I would like to improve. I know, I'm spoiled starting out with something as convenient as an iPhone...

 

I can't wait... I'll let you guys know how it goes.

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I bought my iPhone 3G the day it came out, and one of the first things I thought of was geocaching! I have been a member of this website for years, and have looked at various caches, really only dreaming of one day being able to play this game, as I have never had a GPSr before. Now, with my iPhone 3G, I am super stoked, because I think I will venture out today and find my first cache! Geode looks amazing. I'm wondering what it will cost. Geopher is $1.99 right now, but seems to be very much in beta. I'm going to find my first cache just using gc.com and google maps on my iPhone, then see what I would like to improve. I know, I'm spoiled starting out with something as convenient as an iPhone...

 

I can't wait... I'll let you guys know how it goes.

 

Hey, we all start from somewhere :-)

 

As of right now, we're discussing the price point for Geode. More attention is put towards building a finished product, of course. I'll let you know we're aiming for the 5-8 dollar range. We think with the features put into this app, that should be a fair price range to shoot for. Considering there are similar apps for mobile devices that charge more than that (on a monthly basis), we hope it will be an agreeable price. I also want to keep the price down to give everyone a chance to play without breaking the bank.

 

That being said, we also plan on releasing a free "light" version for those that don't want to make the plunge immediately and want to kick the tires a bit. This version will have limited features of course :-)

Edited by bugbbq

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Ok, so I'm back from my first day of Geocaching! What a blast. I took 14 waypoints with me (even with the internet on my iPhone, it's a bit of a struggle to find locations while out and about). I was able to locate 8 sites, and I am addicted.

 

What I'd need from a Geocaching App on my iPhone:

 

1. Using Google maps with GPS is perfect for finding caches, the biggest pain is getting the coordinates into the map. That's the most important thing to me, generating links for google maps.

 

2. Finding nearby locations. That is next to impossible to do without a headache on the iPhone. I'd like the Geo App to find spots near me.

 

3. Parse geocaching.loc XML files! This would be incredible on the iPhone! When you check the boxes of a geocache seek page and press Download Waypoints, it generates an XML file called geocaching.loc that contains the name of cache, the coordinates of the cache, and a link to the cache details! All an iPhone 3G cacher really needs is a link to the page and a link to the google map location. I would like to be able to upload a geocaching.loc file to the internet (my own web server, or otherwise) and point my iPhone to that file, getting all the information I need about a preselected list of caches! This would be a dream!

 

4. Display of current coordinates. This would be neat. Currently, if I want this info, I use the free app called HereIAm. It's simple, but I'm sure that any Geo app is gonna have that.

 

5. Compass. Meh. I know some diehard geocachers love the mock compass which tells you which way to walk, and I can imagine a couple scenarios where that would come in handy, but I don't think I'd need it much. From the looks of things, both Geopher and Geode already have this.

 

So, these are probably pretty run of the mill requests, with the exception maybe of the .loc XML files. I think I'd be willing to pay up to $10 for an app that delivered that eloquently. Thinking more about it, it might be my most important request.

 

Well, thanks for reading. I am so glad to finally be doing the Geocaching thing (I've been waiting over three years).

 

Take care,

Jeszu

GPSr: iPhone 3G

 

(So much for my signature working...)

Edited by Jeszu

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Hey, welcome to geocaching! I fell in love with it after finding my first cache and haven't looked back since. I'm a gadget geek at heart, so having a mobile device and a GPSr just seemed like the natural activity to me :-)

 

Just want to let you know that there is already an application in the works for the iPhone platform that does just what your looking for called Geode. I'm currently working on this project as lead UI (and part time Public Relations guy), and as a dedicated geocacher, I can tell you that this is one fun app to use. You can load geocaches on to it, browse from a list and choose one to navigate to, have an interactive map, and a compass that will allow you to change function (north up, track up, or track up with cache pointer). I know I sound a *little* biased as I'm a part of the project, but I wanted to start this project because I was tired of lugging around my GPSr and having to use my iPhone to browse GC's website when I got stuck or needed some more info. This application started off as a list of "You know, if I could create an app" much like what you posted. We're very much listening to the community on features to add, so your input would be VERY much welcomed!

 

Take a look at our site and tell me if this was something you were looking for (at least for the iPhone side of things)

 

Geode

 

BTW - I know this is my first post, I've been having crazy account issues with this forum. Bleh :-P

 

 

Hi bubbbq - the app. looks great - exactly what Trimble's Geocache Navigator does, except on the iPhone. I am still using my BB for now, but if I move to an iPhone would certainly be willing to pay $5/month for this app as I do not Trimble's.

 

Anyone know in terms of GPS chip, which one has been tested and known to be more powerful/accurate? I am curious as my BB 8800 is pretty dadgum good now, much better then a few standalone units I have tested in terms of accuracy.

 

thanks

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Just want to let you know that there is already an application in the works for the iPhone platform that does just what your looking for called Geode. ...

Take a look at our site and tell me if this was something you were looking for (at least for the iPhone side of things)

 

Geode

 

Hi,

I am very excited about the upcoming Geode app - it seems to have all that I am looking for in a geocaching app for the iPhone. I bought the new 3G phone and love it. I am anxious to get paperless geocaching on it. Last week I was in FL in the Ocala National Forrest and found I was out of cell range the whole time. Luckily I had already loaded the waypoints in to my Garmin 60csx, and the caches were easy finds. But I'd like to load and easily be able to search a large query. One concern is battery life on the iPhone - it seems to go low quick when using the internet/GPS/mapping. At this point, I feel I have to rely on the Garmin for the walk to GZ and then use the iPhone as needed for logs/hints and maybe taking a photo or making notes.

 

Is conserving battery power a consideration in the development of the app?

 

The website for Geode says it can sync photos and notes back to the computer - does this mean it will also have a companion program for Macs?

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I went ahead and bought Geopher. It works pretty well, but it still needs some updates (one is coming soon that help a lot). Geode looks awesome, but who know when it will come out.

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Just want to let you know that there is already an application in the works for the iPhone platform that does just what your looking for called Geode. ...

Take a look at our site and tell me if this was something you were looking for (at least for the iPhone side of things)

 

Geode

 

Hi,

I am very excited about the upcoming Geode app - it seems to have all that I am looking for in a geocaching app for the iPhone. I bought the new 3G phone and love it. I am anxious to get paperless geocaching on it. Last week I was in FL in the Ocala National Forrest and found I was out of cell range the whole time. Luckily I had already loaded the waypoints in to my Garmin 60csx, and the caches were easy finds. But I'd like to load and easily be able to search a large query. One concern is battery life on the iPhone - it seems to go low quick when using the internet/GPS/mapping. At this point, I feel I have to rely on the Garmin for the walk to GZ and then use the iPhone as needed for logs/hints and maybe taking a photo or making notes.

 

Is conserving battery power a consideration in the development of the app?

 

The website for Geode says it can sync photos and notes back to the computer - does this mean it will also have a companion program for Macs?

 

Everything we are doing for the app is in effort to conserve battery power. I too have taken my 3G out for geocaching, and I have noticed a considerable power drain when using the 3G, GPS, and high brightness. We'll have the ability to turn off GPS for time when you want to just browse caches, and our map cachings will allow limit the amount of downloading needed for map updates.

 

Taking cache photos and notes are options we are planning to incorporate into Geode for syncing to a computer for later. We will also provide a live windowed link to geocaching.com's website so you can add notes in real time. But that will use up battery time, of course.

 

Hope that answers your questions. :-)

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I don't have a GPS unit yet, having done my first and only (so far) cache hunt with a geocaching friend. Now that I have an iPhone I'm itching to give it a try. I got the Geopher App and seems easy enough to find a cache and load the coordinates. The map feature is great, too.

 

However, when we were last geocaching we relied alot on the arrow indicator on the GPS (it was a Magellan unit) since it was along some wooded trails. How will this work with my iPhone? I notice it tells you how many metres you are away from the target - will I use this as an indicator of whether I'm getting closer to the cache or not?

 

I do plan to get myself a handheld GPS, but not for a bit (just forked out for the iPhone, lol). But I really want to do some more geocaching...any tips?

 

TIA.

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I just got my iphone 3g as well and found my first two caches yesterday. I think they were both ranked easy, made easier by having google maps hi-res imagery (caches in downtown Atlanta, Georgia Tech campus). Battery power in general seems to be an issue with the phone, but then again it's my first smartphone type device.

 

I used only the geocaching.com website and the google maps program on the phone, not any additional geocache app. Geode looks really nice, and I'm considering trying Geopher. I'm really new to all this (obviously)...

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I finally was able to go out the other day and try finding a cache using geopher lite. I purposely left behind my garmin so I had to use only my iphone. I went after a cache I hadn't found before to get the full experience, and used only my iphone, no compass, etc. I tried to use the map function on geopher, but the cache was in a park close to a freeway, so google maps snapped the location to the freeway and gave me directions accordingly. So I just panned around on the map to figure out where to go and made my way to the park. Once there I headed in the general direction that the cache was according to the navigation screen on geopher. With no compass and just knowing generally which direction I was heading I got to within 1.5 meters of the cache location. Geopher led me directly to a large tree on the edge of the park, so I figured it had to be the cache location. Searched around quite a bit and couldn't find it. Tried the "cloverleaf" method to try to narrow down the location, and kept getting back to the same spot. So I figured the accuracy was off, and searched the surrounding area with no luck. Finally pulled up the cache page on geoper and read the clue, sure enough the cache was about 8ft up in the tree geopher led me directly to!

So I learned that although I would much prefer a "GoTo" pointer like Garmin uses, the navigation compass on geopher still works pretty good. You just have to pay attention to your direction a little more. I was pretty impressed with the accuracy of the geopher program. While standing next to the tree I pulled up the google map app with the pin for the cache, and it showed me standing about 10ft away and floated around a bit, while geopher still showed me 1.5 meters away. Being able to actively pull up the nearby caches is amazing, and is going to be great for me since I travel so much. While there is still some work to be done on geopher, its definitely a great start!

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Once there I headed in the general direction that the cache was according to the navigation screen on geopher. With no compass and just knowing generally which direction I was heading I got to within 1.5 meters of the cache location. Geopher led me directly to a large tree on the edge of the park...

 

Okay, stupid question.... What do you mean by the "navigator" on Geopher? Do you mean the compass with the red arrow? Because I thought I read on the Geopher blog that it doesn't actually work. If so, then that is super news and I'm very excited that it worked for you. can't wait to try it myself (heading off today for a family camping trip. I'll see if I can sneak away if there's a cache nearby!

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Once there I headed in the general direction that the cache was according to the navigation screen on geopher. With no compass and just knowing generally which direction I was heading I got to within 1.5 meters of the cache location. Geopher led me directly to a large tree on the edge of the park...

 

Okay, stupid question.... What do you mean by the "navigator" on Geopher? Do you mean the compass with the red arrow? Because I thought I read on the Geopher blog that it doesn't actually work. If so, then that is super news and I'm very excited that it worked for you. can't wait to try it myself (heading off today for a family camping trip. I'll see if I can sneak away if there's a cache nearby!

 

Yeah I mean the compass screen. It does indeed move, just not in the same way the navigation screen works on a handheld. Basically it takes your current location and points to what direction on the compass the cache is from you. So if the compass is pointing south the cache is south of your location regardless of your heading. It won't move much until you get closer to the cache, but it does in fact move. It does take some getting used to, and having a compass with you would help as well. I too am excited about being able to "sneak away" for caches. I travel a lot and come across unexpected free time, so now I can see what's close and instantly go after it.

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Once there I headed in the general direction that the cache was according to the navigation screen on geopher. With no compass and just knowing generally which direction I was heading I got to within 1.5 meters of the cache location. Geopher led me directly to a large tree on the edge of the park...

 

Okay, stupid question.... What do you mean by the "navigator" on Geopher? Do you mean the compass with the red arrow? Because I thought I read on the Geopher blog that it doesn't actually work. If so, then that is super news and I'm very excited that it worked for you. can't wait to try it myself (heading off today for a family camping trip. I'll see if I can sneak away if there's a cache nearby!

 

Yeah I mean the compass screen. It does indeed move, just not in the same way the navigation screen works on a handheld. Basically it takes your current location and points to what direction on the compass the cache is from you. So if the compass is pointing south the cache is south of your location regardless of your heading. It won't move much until you get closer to the cache, but it does in fact move. It does take some getting used to, and having a compass with you would help as well. I too am excited about being able to "sneak away" for caches. I travel a lot and come across unexpected free time, so now I can see what's close and instantly go after it.

 

There has been some confusion on the compass arrow. It does work, but the compass itself doesn't current rotate. I have a version that is in beta testing that rotates. I'm not thrilled with the accuracy at the moment, but it's definitely usable. Keep an eye out, there should be a significant update to Geopher Lite in the next week or so, depending on how long it takes apple to approve it.

 

Oh, I've taken out the directions portion of the google maps link -- I hadn't realized it snapped to a street level. Guess that's what I get for living in the city. =)

 

Thanks for the good cache story. That kind of usage was the intent of the compass and arrow, I'm glad it worked for you.

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Next Question: when I first started using geopher it asked me if it could use my current location as a starting point. Now I'm off camping and want to use this current location but I can't figure out how to change it. It's still searching for caches near my home.

 

TIA. You guys are very helpful.

 

Once there I headed in the general direction that the cache was according to the navigation screen on geopher. With no compass and just knowing generally which direction I was heading I got to within 1.5 meters of the cache location. Geopher led me directly to a large tree on the edge of the park...

 

Okay, stupid question.... What do you mean by the "navigator" on Geopher? Do you mean the compass with the red arrow? Because I thought I read on the Geopher blog that it doesn't actually work. If so, then that is super news and I'm very excited that it worked for you. can't wait to try it myself (heading off today for a family camping trip. I'll see if I can sneak away if there's a cache nearby!

 

Yeah I mean the compass screen. It does indeed move, just not in the same way the navigation screen works on a handheld. Basically it takes your current location and points to what direction on the compass the cache is from you. So if the compass is pointing south the cache is south of your location regardless of your heading. It won't move much until you get closer to the cache, but it does in fact move. It does take some getting used to, and having a compass with you would help as well. I too am excited about being able to "sneak away" for caches. I travel a lot and come across unexpected free time, so now I can see what's close and instantly go after it.

 

There has been some confusion on the compass arrow. It does work, but the compass itself doesn't current rotate. I have a version that is in beta testing that rotates. I'm not thrilled with the accuracy at the moment, but it's definitely usable. Keep an eye out, there should be a significant update to Geopher Lite in the next week or so, depending on how long it takes apple to approve it.

 

Oh, I've taken out the directions portion of the google maps link -- I hadn't realized it snapped to a street level. Guess that's what I get for living in the city. =)

 

Thanks for the good cache story. That kind of usage was the intent of the compass and arrow, I'm glad it worked for you.

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To refresh the coordinates, open geopher and it should go to the navigation screen (the one with the compass and arrow) then tap the "set target" button on the bottom right. That will take you to the second "Target Geocache Location" page, usually it will search for caches close to you automatically, if not tap the "new search" button on the bottom right. That should cause geopher to reacquire your coordinates and give you the closest caches.

 

BTW, went after 3 more caches today using geopher, found the first two no problem, and the program led me right to the cache. Didn't find the third, but it was no fault of geopher because it seems to be gone according to the previous two logs. The second cache I went after was under some pretty good tree cover and I lost my bearings a little bit, but was still able to figure it out with a little trial and error. I think a small keychain compass would work wonders.

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Next Question: when I first started using geopher it asked me if it could use my current location as a starting point. Now I'm off camping and want to use this current location but I can't figure out how to change it. It's still searching for caches near my home.

 

TIA. You guys are very helpful.

 

Let the app sit at the compass screen for 15 or so seconds, it will get a better lock on your position. By default it remembers your last position when you re-enter the app, so if you move a large distance you need to let it update before searching for a cache. I'm not in love with this so it may change in the future, but that's how it works right now.

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Two completely n00b questions:

 

• What is a GPSr? Just a plain GPS receiver used in conjunction with a cell?

 

• Is the 3G iPhone's "GPS" more accurate than the original's? I have the original iPhone and it's pretty sloppy because of the way it bases locations on cell quadrants.

 

Thanks!

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Two completely n00b questions:

 

• What is a GPSr? Just a plain GPS receiver used in conjunction with a cell?

 

• Is the 3G iPhone's "GPS" more accurate than the original's? I have the original iPhone and it's pretty sloppy because of the way it bases locations on cell quadrants.

 

Thanks!

 

GPSr is just short for GPS receiver. Its used to refer to pretty much any hand held gps unit.

 

Yes the 3G's gps is much more accurate then the first version. The first gen iphone just used triangulation from cell phone towers to find your location. The 3G version has an actual GPS chip built into it, and uses wi-fi and triangulation to help find your coordinates quicker or when the gps cant pick up satellites.

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Just a quick update - we've got a demonstration video up with our progress so far in Geode if anyone is interested. Head on over to the blog post and check it out. We will be updating our twitter account with future development updates and demonstrations when they become available.

 

Please feel free to leave comments with any questions or suggestions you may have.

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Just a quick update - we've got a demonstration video up with our progress so far in Geode if anyone is interested. Head on over to the blog post and check it out. We will be updating our twitter account with future development updates and demonstrations when they become available.

 

Please feel free to leave comments with any questions or suggestions you may have.

Nice demo.

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Just a quick update - we've got a demonstration video up with our progress so far in Geode if anyone is interested. Head on over to the blog post and check it out. We will be updating our twitter account with future development updates and demonstrations when they become available.

 

Please feel free to leave comments with any questions or suggestions you may have.

 

Looks nice! Following on Twitter, as well.

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Looking great so far. However I have a couple of pretty major questions.

How will the cache list be synchronised?

Will there be multiple databases? (as in CacheMate)

Can you add notes to a cache page for review later?

Could these notes be viewed en-masse to enable quick logging later at home or via a different computer?

Can you mark a cache as found, DNF etc for quick view later?

Everything so far is talking iPhone & GPS compatibility. I want to ask about iPod Touch features.

Will this app work on the Touch? The database features and viewing are much better than that of Cachemate and i'd prefer use it however if it requires GPS or the 3G connection then it'd be useless to iPod users.

Otherwise, i'm quite excited by this!

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Looking great so far. However I have a couple of pretty major questions.

How will the cache list be synchronised?

Will there be multiple databases? (as in CacheMate)

Can you add notes to a cache page for review later?

Could these notes be viewed en-masse to enable quick logging later at home or via a different computer?

Can you mark a cache as found, DNF etc for quick view later?

Everything so far is talking iPhone & GPS compatibility. I want to ask about iPod Touch features.

Will this app work on the Touch? The database features and viewing are much better than that of Cachemate and i'd prefer use it however if it requires GPS or the 3G connection then it'd be useless to iPod users.

Otherwise, i'm quite excited by this!

 

Thanks for the compliment! The cache list will be synced over WiFi via an application on the PC or Mac. Right now the syncing will just sync a folder of GPX / LOC files with the device, although we will investigate a multiple database concept in the future.

 

Notes and Photo support will be added to the cache detail screen to allow association of these to each cache, as well as logging Found / DNF. During sync this information will make it back to the computer in a nice format to make it easy to go update the website.

 

iPod Touch support is the most common question we get, and yes, it will be supported. Obviously GPS will not function, but it will still be able to search, browse, and log cache details and sync back to your computer via WiFi.

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OK, I've finally found an application in the iTunes store that might make the iphone a bit more usable for geocaching. Yes, I've been following the geopher application, but being as crippled as it is and still reliant on an online connection, I'm not ready to buy into it yet. I don't need the compass pointer capability -- that's what my GPSr handheld does best -- what I really needed was a Cachemate or Plucker replacement for offline GPX file viewing.

 

Well, I didn't get quite that far, but I've found a workable combination that I thought I'd share ...

 

The program in the itunes store is called Datacase. This is basically a file library application for the iphone which lets you transfer files (via FTP) from your PC to the handheld. This includes the ability to view HTML files and following local link references.

 

So, I loaded this application on my iphone, exported an HTML extract from GSAK, started up the application on the iphone (it uses the Wifi network for transfer, not a cable, so you need to have your local wifi network available), and then pointed my browser at the URL indicated by the datacase application (you can then follow the on screen instructions for opening the view in the more useful windows explorer screen so you can do file transfers).

 

I copied over the GSAK HTML extract directory and then went to the file library on the iphone and started up the index.htm file.

 

Voila! A navigatable offline database complete with links to the online Geocaching page -- so if I am in range of a cell tower with data service, I can pull up the online page in real time.

 

Let me know if anyone else is doing this or has tried it.

 

Full disclosure ... I don't have any relationship to the folks who wrote Datacase ... and be aware that this is NOT a free app from the Itunes store ... it costs about $7.

Edited by Lasagna

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Is this app going to require an internet connection? (Sorry if I missed that in the thread) If so, that cuts me out as most of the caches I look for are in the sticks where you're lucky to get a cell signal much less a data signal.

 

If this app would do all of what was shown in the demo and run completely local and maybe have the option to run online it would be perfect.

 

I already have my locations ported to my GPS, I just need a handheld reference for cache description, hints, etc. As it stands now if I want to do that I'll need a PocketPC on top of the rest of the gadgets I carry!

 

Can you make an option to run a local database.... pretty please? With sugar on top?

 

EDIT: Hmm... not enough coffee yet. I think the questions have been answered just a couple of posts above. If the app will work without a data connection, consider it bought the day it's released.

Edited by team140

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Thanks for the compliment! The cache list will be synced over WiFi via an application on the PC or Mac. Right now the syncing will just sync a folder of GPX / LOC files with the device, although we will investigate a multiple database concept in the future.

{snip}

Like a lot of cachers, I get my pocket quieries though g-mail. We usually port them into GSAK to filter them before sending them to cachemate and/or a Nuvi 350. But just curious since I now have my g-mail account on my iPhone. Will Geode let me open a .gpx file from the g-mail on the iPhone? This would be great for users who aren't near a WiFi connection.

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More than anything else, I'd like to be able to view a cache map on my touch's google maps application. it's a pain in the "you know what" to scroll around using the buttons in the top left corner.

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Oooo ... gotta read all the intervening threads on these notes. I had this one marked as a Geopher thread and I see it's since had a new entry called Geode added to the mix. Just viewed the video ... looks to be right on the money. When can we have it? (standing here with my money in hand).

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Like a lot of cachers, I get my pocket quieries though g-mail. We usually port them into GSAK to filter them before sending them to cachemate and/or a Nuvi 350. But just curious since I now have my g-mail account on my iPhone. Will Geode let me open a .gpx file from the g-mail on the iPhone? This would be great for users who aren't near a WiFi connection.

I'll second that question. That would be much better then syncing from a desktop. This way you could update in the field (with iPhone) and whilst out and about with either, ie on Holiday etc.

With the desktop syncing you have to be home.

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Is this app going to require an internet connection? (Sorry if I missed that in the thread) If so, that cuts me out as most of the caches I look for are in the sticks where you're lucky to get a cell signal much less a data signal.

 

I haven't tried this app yet, but looking at the online doc I think it only needs wifi to transfer the files to the iPhone. When you are out caching in the sticks, it will pull up local html files off your iphone's local storage even if you don't have cell reception.

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Just got back from a cache hunt with my iPhone and geopher and thought you guys would like the results. I'm up in NW Connecticut for a race and had a free morning, so decided to take some of my crew out for a little caching. The cache was in a pretty remote location with pretty heavy tree cover. I entered the coordinates while I still had cell coverage and edge, no 3g though. I also took along my etrex as a "backup". On the drive to the cache I was in and out of coverage, then lost it altogether. The compass sceen still worked fine, but obviously I couldn't pull up the cache page anymore. I

On the way to the cache geopher was right on with the etrex. Once we got under the tree cover everything changed, when I thought I might have to resort to the garmin it dropped out and geopher was going strong! My buddy had the garmin and keep losing signal and had to try to find clear sky, while the iPhone kept on track and led me right to the cache showing 10ft (3.5m) to cache. When the etrex finally got signal it showed 34ft to cache. So much for the iPhone supposedly not having a good enough gps for caching :laughing:

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Will these new applications be able to work with the older iPhones? (Obviously not the GPS part, but the rest)

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When the etrex finally got signal it showed 34ft to cache. So much for the iPhone supposedly not having a good enough gps for caching :(

 

I am not surprised really. The iPhone likely has a better GPSr receiver then the eTrex did when it was new. If you had an eTrex H with you I'm thinking things would have been different.

Edited by ryleyinstl

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