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Feature Request: GeoCache Rating System

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You're visiting a new town for a few days where there area literally thousands of caches to choose from... and there is no way you'll be able to find them all. You're a seasoned cacher, so 5 star difficulties don't phase you... in fact, you welcome the challenge. You also like the easy ones, if they take you to a beautiful park or are a clever hide.


You need a better way to decide which caches you will hunt for.


Fortunately for you, dozens of people have found this cache before you.


This is where it gets interesting... introducing the GeoCache Rating System (GCRS)


When someone logs a cache, they may also rate it (on a scale of 1-5) on their impressions of the cache on several qualities:

- uniqueness/cleverness/quality of container/hide/camo (this could be 3 separate questions)

- beauty/draw/interest of surrounding area

- quality of swag (some caches run practically empty)

- their impression of the difficulty

- their impression of the terrain


The first three metrics can be used to give the cache a score (perhaps the user could define the weight of each metric, or the score could look something like "3/5/4"). The other D and T metrics can be used to identify caches the might be mis-labeled... and concensus can help drive the D/T ratings - or at least give cachers an idea what everyone else really thought.


Also, if a cache-owner sees that his/her swag score is low, they might be encouraged to add some goodies.





This could be done without modifying the GPX format (which I image is a logistical nightmare... if I'm wrong on this, then by all means, add some fields to the GPX file). All we need is a couple combo-boxes on the log cache page that allow users to optionally rate the cache on several aspects (by default the values would be blank, so not to affect averages. I image not everyone would want to rate caches, so their non-input should not effect overall scores). These rating selections would then be translated into text that is appended to the end of the cache log.


Now... whenever you want to set up a PQ or filters, you can select caches by their 'quality' rating. You may want to find only the caches that were the most well-recieved, without reading the logs of every single cache.


What do you guys think?


...I think from now on I'll add something like this to the end of my own log entries, and hopefully geocaching.com will implement something as well.

Edited by Uncopyrighted
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The trouble is you might like something I don't. Cache rating would shift and change with the swag and container changes over time. Such a system would likely result in the vast majority of caches being rated in the middle of the scale.


Something that I think is being worked on is something more like a recomendation list. Something akin to: "You rated this cache high - other cachers that rated it high also liked xxxx and zzzzz caches nearby".




I like the proposal of allowing users to add up to 10% of thier finds onto a special "My top caches" list. Then each cache page would list the number of previous finders that added the same cache to thier "my top" list.

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and hopefully geocaching.com will implement something as well.

Snowball, hell?


This comes up so often and each time the same arguments whirl around before someone in or close to TPTB drops by to give the same answer. Even a newbie like me knows what the response will be.

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I like the proposal of allowing users to add up to 10% of thier finds onto a special "My top caches" list. Then each cache page would list the number of previous finders that added the same cache to thier "my top" list.

I'd like to see not only a Top 10%, but also a ToDo list. Then the listing could show something like "This cache on 5 Top Ten lists out of 25 finds and on 8 ToDo lists of 20 caches on someone's ToDo list within 50 miles."


It's not really important the raw number of Top Ten lists as it is the number of lists out of the number of finds the cache has had. For instance, a very convenient ho-hum cache could produce more Top Ten numbers simply because 1 in 100 cachers put it on their list. If it's been found 600 times that's 6 lists. OTOH, a great cache only found 4 times but made each finders Top Ten list would be ranked lower if it were only raw numbers. A cache that makes every finder Top Ten is certainly a cache I'd want to, at least, look into.


Also, not all great caches have a high enough number of finds to really rank as a desirable cache. However, if there were a "ToDo" list function, then that would be saying something. "Here's a cache I want to do." Then maybe I would want to do it, too. Again, raw numbers don't mean much if you're not comparing to other factors. After all, you're trying to figure out why you'd want to find this cache over that cache, so it would make sense to compare it to other caches.


Of course, all of this would be near useless unless it was integrated into the PQ system.

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Having faced this situation, I PQ ALL the caches in a reasonable distance from where I am staying (Hotel, relatives house, campground, whatever). If there is time, I will get everything in the state, and the neighboring states, too!


Since I'll be traveling with a laptop, storage space is not an issue, which is probably where most people will start having trouble. I will later decide which to upload to the GPSr.


Since I will probably not base my travels (in the visited area) entirely on caching, I will decide which way we are going that day, (the beach, or the mountains?), look to see which caches are along that route, and start reading the description and logs for the nearest one. If it sounds interesting, we're off, if not, what about the next one? Repeat as needed.


If I'm just hanging around the local area, I look for clusters to head for. But, I still read the info I have on the nearest cache (unless I happen to want to go in blind (not likely!!)). And, once again, repeat as needed.


But, if you want the quick easy way to do almost exclusively quality caches, look for those with the following formats:



and to a lesser extent



Granted, you might miss out on some good ones by bypassing the newest, and you might stumble on a stinker that has somehow managed to survive, but IMNSHO the oldies are usually the goodies...let the test of time do the filetring for you.

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