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New Maps - HORRID!


God of Caching
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Google instigated a payment system for maps. 1000 pageviews for $4 if the web link I found is right. The first 25,000 is free, and Groundspeak has said in another post they have 2,000,000 a day. That is about $8,000 a day, $250,000 a month or close to $3 million a year. Not much choice there.

 

That is a lot of money to just start paying. Of course they could increase your membership for the first time in years to more than 9 cents per day.

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What the heck GS?? What's the deal w the new maps?? That is a very horrid map feature. You folks make plenty of $$ off the swag, events, premium memberships, etc... to afford decent maps for your site. Why would make your site less user friendly instead of moreso?? Bad move IMO. <_<

 

There are some features I like ... for example, now the Pocket Queries come up with just the caches on the PQ instead of all the others in the area. I also like the map options, though it doesn't remember my choice and always goes back to MapQuest though I keep checking off OpenStreetMap. I guess access to the old maps is gone?

 

That's all I've had a chance to explore so far.

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I'll be the first to admit that I'm not a huge fan of change but I can learn to adapt. I hope the slowness however is just something that needs to be worked out because it really is bad. Also, satellite view so far has proven to be unusable so I hope that's another thing that improves quickly.

Edited by FusionAZ
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check your zoom level. Google limited your zoom when you zoomed in. If you shifted from one map that was zoomed in to Topo it would zoom you out to the last resolution that you could use. I do not think this one does, it just goes to blank when you zoomed in too far.

Edited by firennice
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Just read thead from HQ. Said they are going to bulld tile server to help with maps. New maps are ok for me, but can be painfully slow.

 

If the cache filter is supposed to remember my prefrence for traditional caches, don't work. It gets old erasing all the other type caches everytime I want to print.

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Please, please, please - give us the old map back. The new one(s) are sooooooo sloouuuuu and you have to zoom and zoooooooom and zooooooooom before you can click on them. Not worth using at all :(

 

Please please please

 

In case you did not read the official thread, or the threads above. There is now a cost associated with Google maps, in the millions of dollars a year for Groundspeak. That is up from nothing in years past. So I doubt they will be coming back.

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Well, I understand the cost reason for the map change, but it's pretty much unusable right now. Hopefully they'll work out the kinks, but I basically get a brown/green screen with no maps on it...obviously not very useful.

 

I hope in their attempt to cut out this cost, it doesn't cost them premium members...my renewal is next month...just sayin'

Edited by brydawg
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I have to say I am no fan of the new maps, but I understand why Groundspeak has taken the action they have.

 

I just have a question and a couple points to make: My question is which of the options produces an aerial map similar to google satellite? Because all but one mode (excluding the default mode) produces a blank screen for me and I really need an aerial map for some caching I have coming up this week. Could someone also explain the function of each individual mode because however long I leave them most of the modes fail to appear. Of the ones that do appear they all appear to have similar functions.

 

While I have already acknowledged that I understand the reasons for Groundspeak’s actions I still do question a couple of things, why is it that over the past year with the exception of favourite points I would say very little new features have come onto the geocaching website that I personally think are of any value; Challenges being the most high profile of these. It does seem that our membership money may be better spend on features such as maps that we all use and value rather than on many pointless features. I don't know the exact figures of it but it may be the case that even if these features were cut it still may not be possible to continue to use google maps and if that is the case I except that. But even before this Beta Maps were flaky, after some time your finds would disappear for example. I think time would be better spend improving these features rather than bringing in these features that I feel (and speaking to others, they also feel) bring little value to, and even take away from the geocaching experience, which is one the whole a good one.

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go back to the original maps, I never did get the beta maps to work worth a darn even after contacting, geocaching.com, These new maps really stink, most of the time I am waiting for a map that never comes up. It still won't show all the caches I found and I spend way to much time looking at caches I already did. This may be the last straw to my geocaching, I may just have to find a new sport to enjoy, this is not fun anymore.

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The new maps basically eliminate the aerial/satellite view option for some areas.

 

But Google maps are still available on individual cache pages. They just only show a single cache and not all other caches around. I do not think that it is that important to have a satellite view of all caches in an area at the same time.

 

Cezanne

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I agree with ray461 on this one. The new maps are horrid! Please give us an option to get the old maps back! At least make it an option for premium members.

 

I think that post #2 in the thread explains why this would never happen, or if it were only available for premium members, that there would be a significant increase in PM fees.

 

For the non-satellite maps I tended to favor the open street maps anyway. The coverage for the satellite (aerial view) maps is obviously much less than the Google maps but I'm not so sure that's a bad thing. The use of satellite maps in lieu of capturing coordinates with a "real" GPS had become much more common lately despite the fact the guidelines say you can't do that (but unfortunately a of caches like that get published anyway because there is no way for a reviewer to confirm how coordinates were obtained unless the CO volunteers that information). Making it harder to obtain coordinates using aeriel photos might discourage some from doing it, although it's still rather simple to do by going to Google Maps/Earth directly.

 

I do like how pocket queries are nicely integrated with the maps page.

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I'll be the first to admit that I'm not a huge fan of change but I can learn to adapt. I hope the slowness however is just something that needs to be worked out because it really is bad. Also, satellite view so far has proven to be unusable so I hope that's another thing that improves quickly.

 

This. If the speed issue can be resolved I can live with the rest, but until then I'm not going to be happy. As long as the street maps take to load on a DSL connection I doubt people on dial up can use them at all. The aerial are unusable on DSL unless a person only wants to look at one cache or has a LOT of time to spare.

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Blame Google. Google isn't king. There are other maps out there. I'd rather switch maps than Groundspeak have to start charging membership fees for the use of the maps, because you can still play this game for free.

You can still use Google maps, just not on geocaching.com, I guess. I never bring the computer out in the field, or woods anyway, so I don't care. I use my GPS, or the maps on my phone. Even my phone gives me choices too. I'm one of those people that hates change, and this will probably take some getting used to, but I will. I've also learned not to spend too much time poring over the maps and stuff, or I'll waste all that time I could have been outside, seeing the landscape in person.

Why back in the old day, all we had was Topozone, so consider yourself lucky to have choices. :laughing:

 

Whippersnappers! ;) ;) ;) ;) ;)

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OSM are actually very good indeed when they are working speedily, and better than the basic google map.

 

I prefered to use OSM on the options tab of the old menu anyway. For me, OSM is more detailed and shows more hiking tracks. What I am missing is the terrain map though, as OSM doesn't show the contours and a hiking path can have large rises and falls to get to a cache. I also have no satellite view for my location now. Still, it is fully understandable why Groundspeak have ditched google maps.

Edited by Simdel
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The coverage for the satellite (aerial view) maps is obviously much less than the Google maps but I'm not so sure that's a bad thing. The use of satellite maps in lieu of capturing coordinates with a "real" GPS had become much more common lately...

But satellite maps also serve some useful purposes. When I'm urban caching, for example, I like to find paths between houses that lead to greenspaces where caches are located. OpenStreetMap often doesn't show those paths, but I usually can spot them with the satellite map.

 

A workaround is to use the small inset Google map on the cache listing page, but I'm not sure how long that will continue to be an option. Plan B would be to copy-and-paste the coordinates, open another browser window, and use Google Maps to display the coordinates. But that's rather awkward to do repeatedly.

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The coverage for the satellite (aerial view) maps is obviously much less than the Google maps but I'm not so sure that's a bad thing. The use of satellite maps in lieu of capturing coordinates with a "real" GPS had become much more common lately...

But satellite maps also serve some useful purposes. When I'm urban caching, for example, I like to find paths between houses that lead to greenspaces where caches are located. OpenStreetMap often doesn't show those paths, but I usually can spot them with the satellite map.

 

A workaround is to use the small inset Google map on the cache listing page, but I'm not sure how long that will continue to be an option. Plan B would be to copy-and-paste the coordinates, open another browser window, and use Google Maps to display the coordinates. But that's rather awkward to do repeatedly.

...or use the GSAK macro.

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Please, please, please - give us the old map back. The new one(s) are sooooooo sloouuuuu and you have to zoom and zoooooooom and zooooooooom before you can click on them. Not worth using at all :(

 

Please please please

 

In case you did not read the official thread, or the threads above. There is now a cost associated with Google maps, in the millions of dollars a year for Groundspeak. That is up from nothing in years past. So I doubt they will be coming back.

 

How'd you get to be damage control guy? :ph34r:

 

Oh, I'm fine with it, I'll adapt. And let me be the first to say that ignored caches are shown.

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The coverage for the satellite (aerial view) maps is obviously much less than the Google maps but I'm not so sure that's a bad thing. The use of satellite maps in lieu of capturing coordinates with a "real" GPS had become much more common lately...

But satellite maps also serve some useful purposes. When I'm urban caching, for example, I like to find paths between houses that lead to greenspaces where caches are located. OpenStreetMap often doesn't show those paths, but I usually can spot them with the satellite map.

 

A workaround is to use the small inset Google map on the cache listing page, but I'm not sure how long that will continue to be an option. Plan B would be to copy-and-paste the coordinates, open another browser window, and use Google Maps to display the coordinates. But that's rather awkward to do repeatedly.

 

Do you carry your laptop with you to look at while you're in the field? Or can you photographically remember the satellite view. I just don't see how a different map can be a huge problem. It's not going to look like that when you get there, unless you're arriving by helicopter. :)

Do you have a smart phone? Does it have an app that uses the maps you like?

 

Just watch. Tomorrow Google maps people are going to wonder why their map hits have dropped a zillion-fold, and take it back.

And maybe the new maps are slow, because everyone is looking at once, because of the change. Geocachers are many, we probably have an effect on the pattern now.

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GoogleEarth folks, if you want a hybrid, go to your profile-quick view page. Right hand column, you can choose to view the caches in GoogleEarth. There. Some problems/complaints solved. I imagine that, as always, this will get sorted out over the next week or so as it always does. Step away from the edge...

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There's apparently no way to do a street/satellite hybrid map anymore, which was what I always used before. Also, the Mapquest sat maps look positively blurry compared to how good the Google ones are. Man, what a bummer. Hopefully they can make these work faster soon!

 

A few other observations.

 

The highest resolution available in several areas (even Seattle) is not as good as other satellite imagery and as others have mentioned it's essentially unusable in may places.

 

I really dislike the +/- zoom control in lieu of a slider that would allow me to zoom in/out several levels at a time.

 

The "My Finds" and "My Hides" filter behave strangely. Toggling the MyFinds "button" changes the icons on the page on only part of the pages. Toggling "My Hides" (once the My FInds was toggled back and forth caused "some" icons for found caches to change as well. It worked correctly a few times though.

 

When I selected my "Not Yet Found" Pocket query, and zoomed in a couple of steps, a couple of the caches that I had not posted "Found It" logs, but *had* posted DNF logs, had yellow smiley face icons. Clicking on the "Search" or "Pocket Query" tab changes the smiley face icons to the traditional green icons.

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Plan B would be to copy-and-paste the coordinates, open another browser window, and use Google Maps to display the coordinates. But that's rather awkward to do repeatedly.

...or use the GSAK macro.

...or use the "Google Maps" link located on each and every cache page. This will do exactly what you describe as Plan B, all in one click.

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When I'm urban caching, for example, I like to find paths between houses that lead to greenspaces where caches are located. OpenStreetMap often doesn't show those paths, but I usually can spot them with the satellite map.

 

And here is why OpenStreetMap is cool - one cacher has found the path, they can edit OSM, add the path, and the next cacher will be able to find it. Without using the satellite imagery. So if OSM doesn't show them, you can add them fairly easily.

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This change is really disappointing. For me the maps just don't work right. When I scroll the view around there are tiles that just don't load. It's not just slow, they just never load (I left the map up for several hours while I was out and when I came back the tiles still had not loaded).

 

I also find that it "forgets" who I am after a while and starts showing every cache as "not found" instead of indicating found and owned caches. That really hurts the usability.

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But satellite maps also serve some useful purposes. When I'm urban caching, for example, I like to find paths between houses that lead to greenspaces where caches are located. OpenStreetMap often doesn't show those paths, but I usually can spot them with the satellite map.

 

A workaround is to use the small inset Google map on the cache listing page, but I'm not sure how long that will continue to be an option. Plan B would be to copy-and-paste the coordinates, open another browser window, and use Google Maps to display the coordinates. But that's rather awkward to do repeatedly.

Do you carry your laptop with you to look at while you're in the field? Or can you photographically remember the satellite view. I just don't see how a different map can be a huge problem. It's not going to look like that when you get there, unless you're arriving by helicopter. :)

Do you have a smart phone? Does it have an app that uses the maps you like?

Before I leave home, I'll often plan a route to the various caches I plan to visit. In the city, knowing where the path entrance is located can save lots of time and walking. No smart phone.

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