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Reviewers Reviewing D/T?


JL_HSTRE
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Personally, it comes down to this for me: When I see a D1, I expect to click "GO TO", follow the arrow, stop when it is near zeroed out, and then look up/down from my GPSr/phone App for just a moment and find the cache at that spot nearest "0 to next", while not also having to do a single thing AT the location to open the container to sign the log.

 

Well, that's your personal expectation.

 

Of course it plays a large role whether one sees anything different from a traditonal as something special and exceptional.

Around here there are cachers who do not award favourite points to traditionals by principle.

Only other caches types have a chance to get one.

 

Starting from D=3*, there would not be left any meaningful room for distinguishing between multi caches and mysteries that take less than 5 minutes, those that maybe take 20 minutes, those that need an hour, several hours or even a few days.

 

 

Again I'll add: I used to see far more description of caches on the listing. Sometimes the hint would say something like, "Puzzle D4, finding the cache is D1.5." I rarely see this type of help being added to listings anymore. Those ratings don't have to only be in the D/T ratings, but can also help provide helpful, valid, and sometimes more necessary detail to help people know what they're getting into when added to the hint or description.

 

Of course it makes sense to add additional information where it applies. However the ratings are still of importance for quick filtering. Those who watch out for easy caches for their trip (say anything that can be done within 30 minutes regardless of the cache type), wouldn't want to exclude the simple multi caches (except those who filter out multi caches at all, but those do not have an issue anyway).

 

If a filter for D/T should make any sense, D=3 cannot mean for one cache type "challenging for an experienced cacher, can take a good portion of afternoon" and "easy - the average cacher will find this within 10 minutes" for another cache type.

 

That's why I think that it would make more sense to adapt the questions depending on the cache type and not interpret the ratings differently for each cache type.

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Personally, it comes down to this for me: When I see a D1, I expect to click "GO TO", follow the arrow, stop when it is near zeroed out, and then look up/down from my GPSr/phone App for just a moment and find the cache at that spot nearest "0 to next", while not also having to do a single thing AT the location to open the container to sign the log.

 

Well, that's your personal expectation.

 

:laughing: :laughing: :laughing: :laughing: That's why I said "Personally, ..." :anicute:

 

My personal expectation is also backed by the tools, descriptions, Help Center, and many other conversations by users in the forums, at events, and in other personal communication. A D1 is the easiest, and a D5 is the most difficult. I think my personal take is founded on rather simple expectations for what "easiest" means, no?

 

Of course it plays a large role whether one sees anything different from a traditonal as something special and exceptional.

Around here there are cachers who do not award favourite points to traditionals by principle.

Only other caches types have a chance to get one.

I didn't realize we had a rating for "special" or "exceptional".

 

Starting from D=3*, there would not be left any meaningful room for distinguishing between multi caches and mysteries that take less than 5 minutes, those that maybe take 20 minutes, those that need an hour, several hours or even a few days.

Huh?> :blink:

 

Sure there would be. You can outline additional details in the description or hint. The ratings were meant to describe the overall experience, not the specific nuance of a multi or puzzle, or whatever.

 

Is your memory that short to forget that I agree that starting any and all multis at 3 would not be helpful? Did you not also read that there is "wiggle room" with the 0.5 up or down from a whole integer? One cannot compare apples to oranges, and I think you and I are arguing the same point to that end. What we can do is try to be somewhat objective and accurate to the overall experience. A 5-minute-to-solve puzzle is not the same as a 5-minute-to-complete multi, no. That's why that multi might be more difficult (say, a D2.5?) than that multi (say, a D2?)

 

 

Again I'll add: I used to see far more description of caches on the listing. Sometimes the hint would say something like, "Puzzle D4, finding the cache is D1.5." I rarely see this type of help being added to listings anymore. Those ratings don't have to only be in the D/T ratings, but can also help provide helpful, valid, and sometimes more necessary detail to help people know what they're getting into when added to the hint or description.

 

Of course it makes sense to add additional information where it applies. However the ratings are still of importance for quick filtering. Those who watch out for easy caches for their trip (say anything that can be done within 30 minutes regardless of the cache type), wouldn't want to exclude the simple multi caches (except those who filter out multi caches at all, but those do not have an issue anyway).

 

If a filter for D/T should make any sense, D=3 cannot mean for one cache type "challenging for an experienced cacher, can take a good portion of afternoon" and "easy - the average cacher will find this within 10 minutes" for another cache type.

 

That's why I think that it would make more sense to adapt the questions depending on the cache type and not interpret the ratings differently for each cache type.

I already generally discard multis from any trip where I'm planning a trip along a route. (That's just me...) I already anticipate that any multi will have more detail to complete versus a "set it and forget it" Traditional cache cache run. I can always look for additional information if I get to GZ for that trad and can't find it--the hint, the description, and of course that it is under a certain, predetermined level of D or T for me to even bother with adding it to my query.

 

Did you read any of my suggestions for how to add language to the rating system to help aid in accurate and more consistent D/T? Or, are you still trying to argue the rating tool at one point, and the end-result descriptions in the next without providing any segue?

 

Sounds like you just really hate the descriptors and the tool, and would rather just go at it alone and with regional bias versus trying to help this global game be a tad more consistent?

Edited by NeverSummer
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My personal expectation is also backed by the tools, descriptions, Help Center, and many other conversations by users in the forums, at events, and in other personal communication. A D1 is the easiest, and a D5 is the most difficult. I think my personal take is founded on rather simple expectations for what "easiest" means, no?

 

But even in this thread several cachers wrote that they think that are D=1* and D=1.5* multi caches.

 

Starting from D=3*, there would not be left any meaningful room for distinguishing between multi caches and mysteries that take less than 5 minutes, those that maybe take 20 minutes, those that need an hour, several hours or even a few days.

Huh?> :blink:

 

Sure there would be. You can outline additional details in the description or hint. The ratings were meant to describe the overall experience, not the specific nuance of a multi or puzzle, or whatever.

 

The ratings provide an estimate for the required time (excluding the way that goes to terrain).

The cache type does not play a role, but caches for which about the same time effort for finding the cache

is invested should have comparable D-ratings.

 

Is your memory that short to forget that I agree that starting any and all multis at 3 would not be helpful? Did you not also read that there is "wiggle room" with the 0.5 up or down from a whole integer?

 

Whether it is 3 or 2.5 does not make that much of an difference.

 

and I think you and I are arguing the same point to that end. What we can do is try to be somewhat objective and accurate to the overall experience. A 5-minute-to-solve puzzle is not the same as a 5-minute-to-complete multi, no. That's why that multi might be more difficult (say, a D2.5?) than that multi (say, a D2?)

 

Most cachers I know want to know how much time they should reserve for a cache.

The cache type is available as additional information anyway.

So those who do not want to look for D=2* multi caches taking the same time investment as D=2* traditional need to go for them - they just exclude multi caches from their queries.

 

I already generally discard multis from any trip where I'm planning a trip along a route. (That's just me...) I already anticipate that any multi will have more detail to complete versus a "set it and forget it" Traditional cache cache run. I can always look for additional information if I get to GZ for that trad and can't find it--the hint, the description, and of course that it is under a certain, predetermined level of D or T for me to even bother with adding it to my query.

 

Your approach will continue to work. Those have an issue however who want to search (filter for) caches (regardless of the cache type) which are estimated to take less than 30 minutes (or a good portion of an afternoon, or just a few minutes).

 

Did you read any of my suggestions for how to add language to the rating system to help aid in accurate and more consistent D/T? Or, are you still trying to argue the rating tool at one point, and the end-result descriptions in the next without providing any segue?

 

Yes, I read it, but when your rating for a multi cache starts at 2.5* or 3*, this means that a multi cache will never end

up in the classifications "Typically found within a few minutes" and "The average cacher needs less than 30 minutes" and there

exists an extremely high number of such multi caches. They should be selectable by just filtering for all caches with D<=2*

without starting a separate search for each cache type (would be pretty much inconvenient).

 

Sounds like you just really hate the descriptors and the tool, and would rather just go at it alone and with regional bias versus trying to help this global game be a tad more consistent?

 

It is not about my own person and even less about hatred.

 

For both locals and those who choose to do multi caches and other more complex cache types while on travel, it is the time requirement that plays the central role and not coming up with a total order based on the difficulty of the involved caches.

It does not matter if cache A with rating x* is more difficult than cache B with rating x* provided that the estimated time

requirement for x* is in the correct range. That's what really plays a role for those who want to go for caches.

 

Consistency can be achieved in many different manners, some are more meaningful than others. Consistency is not the only goal.

The ratings should above all help those who are going to visit a cache and not mainly focus on cachers who will never ever go for these caches anway.

 

I still stick with my opinion there are better ways to achieve consistency while not harming others.

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But even in this thread several cachers wrote that they think that are D=1* and D=1.5* multi caches.

Of course, since even the Clayjar system says that the Clarjar system is only an estimate. Users are encouraged to add or subtract a half star if they they think the cache is easier or harder than the number the Clayjar system gives. And, in fact, not withstanding the topic of this thread, nothing prevents a geocacher from adding or subtracting more than half a star or from ignoring the Clayjar results altogether.

 

The definitions behind the Clayjar system were discussed in a thread like this in the early days of geocaching. There were a few around back then who felt that just telling people to enter a rating where 1 meant easy and 5 meant difficult would result in a wide variation from cache owner to cache owner. So they tried to come up with some rules-of-thumb to help people rate caches.

 

I wasn't around then. I no doubt would have found the debate then amusing, knowing that no matter what they came up with, it would be subjective and wouldn't solve the problem of consistency. cezanne wants the terrain rating at least to be consistent so he can use it to decide which caches are in his ability and which are not. But if you had a scale that worked for cezanne, it would not work for someone else. There may be things that cezanne is willing to do that someone else would find too difficult and visa versa.

 

In order to reach a consensus the definition has to acknowledge that they wer only an estimate and that cache owners were free to make adjustments or even not use the system to begin with.

 

That brings us to the topic of the thread. It appears that there has been a change where in a few specific cases, the language of the rating descriptions will be incorporated into the guideline for publishing caches on GC.com. For a while some reviewers have insisted that a cache with T1 must have the Wheelchair accessible attribute. Now it seems the event difficulty is to be reviewed, and that a cache owner may have a difficult time getting an event with D>1 published. I don't have too much of a issue with the changes other than - Update the guidelines instead of sending semi-secret memos to reviewers. Once again I find out of a change because someone starts a thread in the forum when the reviewer denies their cache. I also worry that this may just be the camel's nose poking into the tent.

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My personal expectation is also backed by the tools, descriptions, Help Center, and many other conversations by users in the forums, at events, and in other personal communication. A D1 is the easiest, and a D5 is the most difficult. I think my personal take is founded on rather simple expectations for what "easiest" means, no?

 

But even in this thread several cachers wrote that they think that are D=1* and D=1.5* multi caches.

Woahwoahwoahwoah-wait there a minute. A few people have mentioned their preferences, and that sample is from a small portion of users who might also have seen this thread as eye-opening to why those ratings might not be quite right. Just like yourself, until it was brought to attention in this threads, they and you likely would have just kept going on thinking that the tools were bunk, or just not knowing about why one might use them, and perhaps tossing baby with bathwater.

 

You can't claim that your army is bigger while also seeing that the "opposition" to your opinion is rooted in the guidelines (and the clear common practices Geocaching.com and Groundspeak have provided). You ignoring or disregarding those tools doesn't make strength for your argument.

 

Starting from D=3*, there would not be left any meaningful room for distinguishing between multi caches and mysteries that take less than 5 minutes, those that maybe take 20 minutes, those that need an hour, several hours or even a few days.

Huh?> :blink:

 

Sure there would be. You can outline additional details in the description or hint. The ratings were meant to describe the overall experience, not the specific nuance of a multi or puzzle, or whatever.

 

The ratings provide an estimate for the required time (excluding the way that goes to terrain).

The cache type does not play a role, but caches for which about the same time effort for finding the cache

is invested should have comparable D-ratings.

 

You don't see that "effort" is incredibly variable across the population, and thereby a poor metric to hold all the weight of your ratings? That is a subjective measure. Again, did you not read the Clayjar tool? Did you also ignore the language I added and note the difference in how it reads? (I'm doing your work for you to design a more clear description for each metric...the least you could do is read it before heading off to war again)

 

Time is not mutually exclusive. The ClayJar can read as an "and/or" flow-through. It can be a multi and/or be a puzzle which takes, say, 30 minutes or more to solve or find the final location. Please read the actual tool, then read my suggested additions before simply continuing to cast off the whole process.

 

Whether it is 3 or 2.5 does not make that much of an difference.

Ummmmmm....yes it does. It means that the 2.5 is slightly easier than the 3, or that the 3 is slightly harder than the 2.5. What's so hard about understanding that? It's relative--a 1 is easier than a 2 or a 5. We just need to establish what the baseline is for a 1; a D5 is pretty clear for what that means, however also doesn't differentiate for how "difficult" one D5 is against the next. The only metric used (and accepted by users and adopted into Groundspeak Knowledge Books/Guidelines) is that it may take special knowledge or tools to find/open that cache.

 

Most cachers I know want to know how much time they should reserve for a cache.

The cache type is available as additional information anyway.

So those who do not want to look for D=2* multi caches taking the same time investment as D=2* traditional need to go for them - they just exclude multi caches from their queries.

Then put it in the description. "This took my beta tester 15 minutes to solve" or, "This took me 20 minutes to walk from the first waypoint to the last" and add, "your results may vary..."

 

Time to solve a puzzle and time to find all points in a multi is not the same as a traditional where it is so well-camouflaged that it takes over 30 minutes to locate the dang thing. Don't you see the key difference here?

 

There is no filter for subjective rating such as time. One should not count only on the D/T ratings to estimate time to complete. D rates effort as best it can objectively, not time.

 

Did you read any of my suggestions for how to add language to the rating system to help aid in accurate and more consistent D/T? Or, are you still trying to argue the rating tool at one point, and the end-result descriptions in the next without providing any segue?

 

Yes, I read it, but when your rating for a multi cache starts at 2.5* or 3*, this means that a multi cache will never end

up in the classifications "Typically found within a few minutes" and "The average cacher needs less than 30 minutes" and there

exists an extremely high number of such multi caches. They should be selectable by just filtering for all caches with D<=2*

without starting a separate search for each cache type (would be pretty much inconvenient).

Please stop fixating on the time aspect. You're reading far too much into the descriptions. Those are estimates; "individual results may vary".

 

Here's the clear problem: You've been rating all along using the descriptions instead of learning how one gets to them via the conversations in 2001, and the rating system designed to assist. Those "final" write-ups are helpful descriptors, but do not take into account the more nuanced individual aspects that get to a rating--see the ClayJar rating tool.

 

The times listed in those descriptions are estimates, and really shouldn't ever be used as the sole source for rating a cache. That's not their purpose.

 

I still stick with my opinion there are better ways to achieve consistency while not harming others.

How? By using seriously subjective and skewed local preferences over trying to re-engage with a tool made to try and smooth the wrinkles across the game?

 

Great! I'll know which caches to avoid when I'm touring Europe this spring! :laughing:

Edited by NeverSummer
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Great! I'll know which caches to avoid when I'm touring Europe this spring! :laughing:

 

I did not expect to visit you multi caches there anyway at least not in countries where you do not understand the language.

 

It's definitely not about my caches. They are not suitable for tourists anyway who are not there for at least a week.

In case of my caches as they are all available in English (not common in my area), you can clearly see that and will never end up with a cache hunt for a cache that involves something completely unexpected.

 

What I tried to describe and explain to you is that multi caches in all countries where multi caches are really popular start with D=1* and use up the full spectrum. 99.9% of the cache owners never visit the Groundspeak forum at all and even less visit the English speaking part. I will just stop this discussion as you do not seem to get that it is not about me not having dealt with the Clayjar tool. I told you what are the expectations of cachers in countries with many multi caches and other non traditionals when they come across such caches. In contrast to what you might claim, estimating the average time needed for easy multi caches (not the highly complex ones that are not our issue here anyway) works reasonably well in all areas where I've visited a larger number of multi caches. There are greater variations in the time needed at GZ than for writing down a few numbers and plugging them into the formula for the coordinates (that's a pretty predictable task unless some sign went missing which is not covered by the D-rating however).

 

When someone wants to city with 3000 caches and does not want to exclude multi caches (for example, because multi caches are their favourite cache type or because they work on x cache types in x country challenges etc), one needs to rely on filtering - one cannot visit all 3000 cache pages to look for additional information. That's why the most important need in this setting is that the D rating tries to give an estimate of the involved time in very much the same way as it tries to give for traditionals.

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A D1 is the easiest, and a D5 is the most difficult. I think my personal take is founded on rather simple expectations for what "easiest" means, no?
To me, it sounds like you're confusing "the easiest possible rating" (which is what D1 is) with "the easiest possible cache".

 

A cache can be more difficult than "the easiest possible cache", and still be rated D1 (the easiest possible rating).

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A D1 is the easiest, and a D5 is the most difficult. I think my personal take is founded on rather simple expectations for what "easiest" means, no?
To me, it sounds like you're confusing "the easiest possible rating" (which is what D1 is) with "the easiest possible cache".

 

A cache can be more difficult than "the easiest possible cache", and still be rated D1 (the easiest possible rating).

:laughing: Yeah, maybe.

 

But we have the apparent baseline litmus test of "wheelchair accessible" for T1, how not also that D1 is that "in plain sight at the listed coordinates, no special tools or knowledge required to open the cache, etc."? There will be variability of that "in plain sight", but to say that a camouflaged container that is up/in/behind an object is the same as a cache that you can see plainly as "out of place with the surroundings" isn't a D1--it's likely a D1.5 (or greater, depending on the camo, and other circumstances).

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But we have the apparent baseline litmus test of "wheelchair accessible" for T1,

 

There are also different levels of wheelchais accesibility, not all T=1* are equally difficult.

 

how not also that D1 is that "in plain sight at the listed coordinates, no special tools or knowledge required to open the cache, etc."? There will be variability of that "in plain sight", but to say that a camouflaged container that is up/in/behind an object is the same as a cache that you can see plainly as "out of place with the surroundings" isn't a D1--it's likely a D1.5 (or greater, depending on the camo, and other circumstances).

 

You seem to argue that already a multi cache with a simple offset and a cache container hidden in plain sight should be rated with D=2.5*. I do not think that the listed coordinates play such

an essential role. I can write the coordinates in the text in an unencrypted manner and the cache would not get a bit more difficult.

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Great! I'll know which caches to avoid when I'm touring Europe this spring! :laughing:

 

I did not expect to visit you multi caches there anyway at least not in countries where you do not understand the language.

 

It's definitely not about my caches. They are not suitable for tourists anyway who are not there for at least a week.

In case of my caches as they are all available in English (not common in my area), you can clearly see that and will never end up with a cache hunt for a cache that involves something completely unexpected.

 

What I tried to describe and explain to you is that multi caches in all countries where multi caches are really popular start with D=1* and use up the full spectrum. 99.9% of the cache owners never visit the Groundspeak forum at all and even less visit the English speaking part. I will just stop this discussion as you do not seem to get that it is not about me not having dealt with the Clayjar tool. I told you what are the expectations of cachers in countries with many multi caches and other non traditionals when they come across such caches. In contrast to what you might claim, estimating the average time needed for easy multi caches (not the highly complex ones that are not our issue here anyway) works reasonably well in all areas where I've visited a larger number of multi caches. There are greater variations in the time needed at GZ than for writing down a few numbers and plugging them into the formula for the coordinates (that's a pretty predictable task unless some sign went missing which is not covered by the D-rating however).

 

When someone wants to city with 3000 caches and does not want to exclude multi caches (for example, because multi caches are their favourite cache type or because they work on x cache types in x country challenges etc), one needs to rely on filtering - one cannot visit all 3000 cache pages to look for additional information. That's why the most important need in this setting is that the D rating tries to give an estimate of the involved time in very much the same way as it tries to give for traditionals.

No, the D rating is not only for "time". It is for "effort". That can include required preparation (puzzle or online research, printing of a key for in-the-field "mazes", etc.), need for special knowledge or tools to open the container, etc. The time it takes to do any of that is related (perhaps correlated), but not going to be clear and accurate for each individual human who attempts it. You can estimate time, but that isn't how you should rate the D for a cache. Meaning, you're doing it backwards. Rate for the effort, and then that D rating takes on a different meaning for each individual.

 

Look at it this way: I know that, for me, a D3 puzzle will generally take some time for me, but not be too difficult. I know that most D4 and D5 puzzles are going to be a real challenge, and will take me many hours to many days (sometimes years) to solve. Others in the caching community might solve and find that cache in significantly less time, and others in significantly more. That doesn't make that D3 cache very accurately rated in your useage for anyone. So, you rate for the other aspects of the cache (via ClayJar), and the time it takes is then relatable only on an individual basis.

 

Again, you're using the D rating's end descriptions to rate a cache in reverse. But the method for reaching those descriptions comes from a more detailed set of smoothed-out, less subjective metrics via the rating tool. Then you get the end descriptions, which include a rough estimate for the possible time it might take for the "average" cacher to solve/find/log that cache. Those descriptions are the ballpark, and you drill down the specifics of the rating by using the tool.

 

Work from the top of the page to the bottom, not the bottom to the top! (Help Center) :anibad:

 

And remember, it's "The average geocache hunter...", not "I am the average geocache hunter...". The average of yourself, your family, your group of caching buddies, or even the local geocaching community is not an accurate group to measure "average" when the greater community playing this game is over 6 million people worldwide. Your personal or local collective knowledge base may be increasing day after day, but the "average" person isn't accurately quantified in your evolved and "mature" or "accomplished" local/regional area.

 

When new users come in every day, and even accomplished users, may not have encountered a cache of "X" type, you don't move the goal post down the field because you are more knowledgeable or familiar with the game.

 

A multi, as a rule of thumb, would fall under that D2 description anyway. And if is was a "super easy multi", then you are welcome to slide that down a half-star. Claiming a D1 for a multi is not helpful (especially for newbies), nor is it accurate.

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You seem to argue that already a multi cache with a simple offset and a cache container hidden in plain sight should be rated with D=2.5*. I do not think that the listed coordinates play such

an essential role. I can write the coordinates in the text in an unencrypted manner and the cache would not get a bit more difficult.

No, to the letter, using the ClayJar tool gives a 3* for any multi. I've discussed and agreed that this is not really accurate in "modern" times. Any multi should really start at a D2, and then adjust up for more involved or difficult caches, or down a half-star if it is really, really easy.

 

This more accurately addresses the end descriptors, the current state of the game with newer styles of hides since the tool's inception, and also (what a win!) meets you halfway in your desire to rate a multi with 1* difficulty.

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This more accurately addresses the end descriptors, the current state of the game with newer styles of hides since the tool's inception, and also (what a win!) meets you halfway in your desire to rate a multi with 1* difficulty.

 

I'd say that a multi cache and a mystery cache such that the final coordinates in the description in a plain form and if the hideout is in plain sight, this is D=1*. It's absurd to rate it as D=2*. That's not a question of my desire as I never will hide a D=1* cache.

Edited by cezanne
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This more accurately addresses the end descriptors, the current state of the game with newer styles of hides since the tool's inception, and also (what a win!) meets you halfway in your desire to rate a multi with 1* difficulty.

 

I'd say that a multi cache and a mystery cache such that the final coordinates in the description in a plain form and if the hideout is in plain sight, this is D=1*. It's absurd to rate it as D=2*. That's not a question of my desire as I never will hide a D=1* cache.

That sounds more like a traditional cache then?

 

If you list the coords in the listing for the second spot (Multi or Unknown/Puzzle), one still has to do more than simply hit "Go To" or "Navigate"--they'll need to know to read the description to get the next coordinates. D1.5 at minimum, but again...starting at D2 and adjusting from there is the idea.

 

If one decides to make a cache that isn't listed as a Traditional, yet makes the final location very clear, it is still more difficult than a D1 Traditional. It's just that simple. (And shouldn't need a reply or rebuttal, as you "will never hide a D1 cache...")

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That sounds more like a traditional cache then?

 

Except that the cache type is not a traditional and that you need to read the description.

It also filters out cachers that only visit traditionals while

not making the cache any more difficult.

 

If you list the coords in the listing for the second spot (Multi or Unknown/Puzzle), one still has to do more than simply hit "Go To" or "Navigate"--they'll need to know to read the description to get the next coordinates. D1.5 at minimum, but again...starting at D2 and adjusting from there is the idea.

 

For the only spot to be visited. How the coordinates get on the GPS (can be manual, by downloading etc) should not influence the D-rating of the cache.

One even could have an extra waypoint for the mystery cache so that not even entering the coordinates is required (which I do not see as element of difficulty however).

 

If one decides to make a cache that isn't listed as a Traditional, yet makes the final location very clear, it is still more difficult than a D1 Traditional. It's just that simple.

 

I guess you will be quite alone with this opinion.

Of course I used an extreme example, but the idea was to demonstrate that D=1 is fully legitimate for caches that are neither events nor traditionals.

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That sounds more like a traditional cache then?

 

Except that the cache type is not a traditional and that you need to read the description.

It also filters out cachers that only visit traditionals while

not making the cache any more difficult.

 

If you list the coords in the listing for the second spot (Multi or Unknown/Puzzle), one still has to do more than simply hit "Go To" or "Navigate"--they'll need to know to read the description to get the next coordinates. D1.5 at minimum, but again...starting at D2 and adjusting from there is the idea.

 

For the only spot to be visited. How the coordinates get on the GPS (can be manual, by downloading etc) should not influence the D-rating of the cache.

One even could have an extra waypoint for the mystery cache so that not even entering the coordinates is required (which I do not see as element of difficulty however).

 

If one decides to make a cache that isn't listed as a Traditional, yet makes the final location very clear, it is still more difficult than a D1 Traditional. It's just that simple.

 

I guess you will be quite alone with this opinion.

Of course I used an extreme example, but the idea was to demonstrate that D=1 is fully legitimate for caches that are neither events nor traditionals.

You realize that it's just you saying these things back and forth, right? Can you just read this last post and then let it go?

 

Think of this: A downloaded cache to GPSr won't necessarily include the other waypoints. If you don't have the specialized and paperless GPSr required, you won't get all the information from the query anyway. So that person has to know to read the description and edit or add a waypoint. =more difficulty

 

Or: A person uses the App on their smartphone, clicks on a multi, and then clicks "go-to". They will also need to know how to find the final--one assumes there is more to it than just clicking "Go To" or "Navigate", so they must read and find the new coordinates. Then they have to edit or add the new waypoint to their phone. =more difficulty.

 

Is it substantially more difficult? Not necessarily. Caches can be "easy" no matter the type. But the overall difference between a traditional and other caches is that the other physical cache types require a bit more in-depth knowledge of what those cache types are, what the requirements are, and what it will take to find the container and log it. Knowing how to use your smartphone App or your GPSr for more than just hitting "Go To" adds a level of difficulty to the entire process by nature of learning how to use your GPSr.

 

Just mention "project a waypoint" to some folks these days, and they'll have no idea what you're talking about. In fact, most folks with only the App will struggle to know how to do this without downloading an additional App, or knowing the advanced methodology for mathematically projecting a waypoint with pen and paper. Even knowing to manipulate the App's coordinates for a cache is hard for me, and I use it almost exclusively now for geocaching. Thankfully I am familiar with my GPSr too, but it isn't a paperless model so I must rely on knowing how to navigate menus and use options to enter additional information beyond the coordinates for a (traditional) cache.

 

I'm not "quite alone" with my opinion. There are many people who would agree (including many at Groundspeak itself, I would guess...). I can't lay this out any more clearly for how your ideas are flawed, and how you rate caches is based on a backward and seemingly misguided process. I have in the 6 pages of this thread been able to see where a multi would be rated "too high" by the rating tool, and adjusted my opinion to lower that rating to something more reasonable. I'd agree that it could be retooled and adjusted to help in modern cases after the evolution of the game since its inception. I even gave language that could help more accurately describe hides and make it more accurate in rating caches--all while still holding true to the foundational concepts that describe D/T.

 

You just seem to stick your head in the sand, or just push back because you can't see that how you've been rating caches might be inaccurate or possibly inconsistent with the rest of the gameplay outside of your area. You just keep saying you won't use the tool, and don't agree about how caches are rated. I urge you to try and rate your caches from now on using the tool, and perhaps meet the rest of us where we've given ground and objective backing to why the tool and system work.

 

To bring it back to the OP, this is why a Reviewer might ask for adjustment to a D/T rating. Events are one thing, but caches can be experienced and then entered into the rating tool. Whatever it spits out can confirm or deny that what the seeker experienced was either more or less difficult, or lighter or heavier terrain. Between the "gut check" and application of the rating tool, one can quickly see if a cache might be a little "off", and a Reviewer can certainly ask that the owner adjust the cache to more accurately describe the hide.

 

Edit to add:

 

Exceptions, of course, exist. But the bottom line is that the tool is pretty durn accurate, and one should embrace it to help assure consistency, and that a Reviewer won't have much reason to ask that cache's rating to be changed.

 

Cezanne, I doubt that I'd end up reporting your cache to a Reviewer if you rated a multi D1.5, and I thought it might be better as a 2. You're entitled to some wiggle room, and I can accept that my personal interpretation will be different than someone else's. But to rate a multi-stage, "find this photo in the city", maze, or whatever kind of multi (like that odd gibberish you posted above) as less than a D2 is just wrong, and likely closer to a D3 anyway. You'll disagree, but the signs all point to that end.

Edited by NeverSummer
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Cezanne, I doubt that I'd end up reporting your cache to a Reviewer if you rated a multi D1.5, and I thought it might be better as a 2. You're entitled to some wiggle room, and I can accept that my personal interpretation will be different than someone else's. But to rate a multi-stage, "find this photo in the city", maze, or whatever kind of multi (like that odd gibberish you posted above) as less than a D2 is just wrong, and likely closer to a D3 anyway. You'll disagree, but the signs all point to that end.

 

I never said that these multis are less than a D=2*. I just said that in many cases D=2.5* and higher is not appropriate and

I explained to you what is the common practice in all regions I'm familiar with (and that's a quite a number from several different countries) and I also explained you why the rating is done in that way.

 

You simply do not get that it is not about me - something I told you already at least twice. I will never end up to hide a cache with a D rating below D=2* due to my preference for non traditionals with more than one stage. None of my caches is addressed to beginners or app cachers. So if it concerns just me, I do not need to take this kind of audiences into account at all.

 

I thought you and perhaps others might be interested to get to know how differences between the D-ratings in e.g. the US and a country like Germany. Apparently you do not care. The way caches are rated in those countries will not change regardless of your and my opinion.

 

By the way, I enter most waypoints manually in my GPS-receiver (not capable of paperless caching) and those that I download are sent cache per cache via "sent to gps". I'm not even a PM and I would not use PQs if I were one. I often write down the cache descriptions on a piece of paper. I do not agree that the ability to use one's GPS (regardless of whether is a phone or a dedicated GPS) is something that should be taken into account when rating the difficulty of caches and I do not think that navigating to a point or projecting waypoints are meant when the rating tool asks about special knowledge regarded. I also do not regard the ability to read as a knowledge that increases the difficulty.

The Clayjar tool oft course depends on how the questions are answered and you and me just have different understandings of what the questions mean.

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I thought you and perhaps others might be interested to get to know how differences between the D-ratings in e.g. the US and a country like Germany. Apparently you do not care. The way caches are rated in those countries will not change regardless of your and my opinion.

I do care. I now know that a cache might be underrated when I plan my caching trips in Germany or Austria. When I see a cache that requires 10 miles and 11 stages, I'd think it were more than a 2/2, for example. I'd imagine it rated as a 2.5/3 or perhaps a 3/2.5 depending on the actual circumstances. Rated with the tool, a 10-mile, 11-stage multi comes out as a 3/3. That might be a little too high if the ups and downs in elevation aren't that notable, and/or the solving at each waypoint were quite simple indeed. Thankfully, some cachers take the time to write that out in detail (like it appears you do on your cache(s)--very nice, thank you!), and it makes it more clear what to expect from the cache when you have more than just the D/T ratings to go off of. But it is when a cache doesn't have clear information to help understand the rating that you must rely on accurate D/T to help know "what you're in for". Seeing a 10-mile, 11-stage multi, especially without anything clear in the description, would be mighty frustrating to many if it were rated only 2/2. I would imagine this would take over 30 minutes, and would also involve the distance to cover--walking 10 miles would take me 5 hours at a slow-walk, let alone when stopping every once in a while to calculate the next stage!

 

The Clayjar tool of course depends on how the questions are answered and you and me just have different understandings of what the questions mean.

Right, and that's where I supplied alternative descriptions which you can use to assist in the language barrier/understanding. If the tool's language is the problem when coupled with how you're interpreting it, I and others have shown how it can be interpreted more clearly--rather than discarded completely. It was written in English in the United States, and things have changed a bit since it was written. That's where I've done my best to help clear up the confusion and provide language that more accurately describes what the tool was referring to or trying to measure.

 

By the way, I enter most waypoints manually in my GPS-receiver (not capable of paperless caching) and those that I download are sent cache per cache via "sent to gps". I'm not even a PM and I would not use PQs if I were one. I often write down the cache descriptions on a piece of paper. I do not agree that the ability to use one's GPS (regardless of whether is a phone or a dedicated GPS) is something that should be taken into account when rating the difficulty of caches and I do not think that navigating to a point or projecting waypoints are meant when the rating tool asks about special knowledge regarded. I also do not regard the ability to read as a knowledge that increases the difficulty.

Cute, that last part.

 

If using the GPS to do more than hit "Go To", I'd think it is more difficult than just hitting "Go to" and finding a cache. This doesn't seem that strange to me. Is it not slightly more skilled or specialized knowledge to know how to calculate an offset? I think it is. Perhaps a half-star, maybe more depending on what is being asked. Add in the other aspects of having to actually go through with doing it, and you're adding more effort--difficulty--to the cache. Again, a multi is different from a traditional because there are 1 or more stages to find the final location. That much is apart from Traditional caches, yes? I can't reiterate this any more clearly--that difference is enough to add difficulty to what would otherwise be a very easy cache.

 

edit to fix broken quotes

Edited by NeverSummer
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I thought you and perhaps others might be interested to get to know how differences between the D-ratings in e.g. the US and a country like Germany. Apparently you do not care. The way caches are rated in those countries will not change regardless of your and my opinion.

 

Everything you have said regarding the way caches are rated in Germany has served to confirm my most negative views of German society. The confluence of the cache ratings difference and the tendency of German cachers to claim finds they did not actually do makes complete sense, which is really too bad.

 

That fact that you don't see it that way is, well, amusing.

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But we have the apparent baseline litmus test of "wheelchair accessible" for T1, how not also that D1 is that "in plain sight at the listed coordinates, no special tools or knowledge required to open the cache, etc."?
Well, if things had turned out differently more than a decade ago, then perhaps we could have that definition for D1. But instead, "the definitions that came as a result of those discussions" include the following for D1:

 

Easy

In plain sight or can be found in a few minutes of searching.

 

Maybe I'm being too literal, but if a multi-cache is "easy" and "can be found in a few minutes of searching" (including all its stages), then that looks like a D1 multi-cache to me. And yes, I've found multi-caches that were that easy. They certainly aren't the norm for multi-caches. And perhaps creating an example of the easiest possible multi-cache was the CO's intent. But they do exist.

 

No, the D rating is not only for "time". It is for "effort".
FWIW, estimating the time that is likely to be required is a common enough technique for estimating the effort that is likely to be required.

 

And there are multi-caches that require very little effort, including all their stages. No calculating new coordinates, no entering new coordinates, no projecting a waypoint, no manipulating the posted coordinates, no searching for camouflaged containers, no in-depth knowledge (unless you count reading the cache description), no real complications of any kind other than the mere fact that the cache has more than one location. But if you reach GZ (covered by the terrain rating) and finding the first location is then trivial, and if finding the second location is trivial once you find the first, and if finding the cache itself is trivial once you reach the second location, then I can see how someone might think that the complete cache experience is still "easy" (D1), and nowhere near being "average" (D2).

 

But maybe that's just me.

Edited by niraD
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But we have the apparent baseline litmus test of "wheelchair accessible" for T1, how not also that D1 is that "in plain sight at the listed coordinates, no special tools or knowledge required to open the cache, etc."?
Well, if things had turned out differently more than a decade ago, then perhaps we could have that definition for D1. But instead, "the definitions that came as a result of those discussions" include the following for D1:

 

Easy

In plain sight or can be found in a few minutes of searching.

 

Maybe I'm being too literal, but if a multi-cache is "easy" and "can be found in a few minutes of searching" (including all its stages), then that looks like a D1 multi-cache to me. And yes, I've found multi-caches that were that easy. They certainly aren't the norm for multi-caches. And perhaps creating an example of the easiest possible multi-cache was the CO's intent. But they do exist.

 

The important thing to consider is that the conversations that formed the end descriptions (like what you reference above) was had and used the "metrics" of the questions in the tool ClayJar designed. Meaning, to get a rating, you walked through the flowchart to get to that end description. This would mean that you would have to ask, "does this cache have more than one point one must go to for finding the final cache?" If yes, proceed to...3* difficulty.

 

Those end descriptors are helpful, but aren't how you arrive at the final decision for rating--there were "established" questions that were accepted by the community as reasonable metrics to rate terrain and difficulty. Using those final descriptions is helpful for a quick reference on the seeking side (what a user can expect), but the questions are how the cache gets rated on the front end by the creator of the listing for the hiding side (what the conditions actually are).

 

So, as a user seeking a cache, I can see that D1 and know that it should be in the ballpark of "Easy. can be found in a few minutes of searching..." Now, for a D3, I could expect as a user seeking a cache that the cache might take more than 30 minutes, or possibly the afternoon to find--but maybe less if I'm savvy or have specialized knowledge, maybe more if I am really new to the game or completely unfamiliar with the process.

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So, as a user seeking a cache, I can see that D1 and know that it should be in the ballpark of "Easy. can be found in a few minutes of searching..." Now, for a D3, I could expect as a user seeking a cache that the cache might take more than 30 minutes, or possibly the afternoon to find--but maybe less if I'm savvy or have specialized knowledge, maybe more if I am really new to the game or completely unfamiliar with the process.

 

Of course a newcomer can take even longer, but keep in mind that D=3* should correspond to a challenge for experienced cachers! If someone who is savvy is likely to need 30 minutes or less, then something is probably wrong with the D=3* estimate. The experienced cachers who look out for challenging caches would very disappointed to be find caches among that list that are considered

experienced cachers are routine caches.

 

More difficult caches are hidden with mainly experienced cachers in mind and I find it much less of an issue if a beginner gives up at a D=2 multi cache that you would rate higher than if a routine cache gets rated too high and experienced cachers looking out for a challenge end up disappointed.

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The important thing to consider is that the conversations that formed the end descriptions (like what you reference above) was had and used the "metrics" of the questions in the tool ClayJar designed. Meaning, to get a rating, you walked through the flowchart to get to that end description. This would mean that you would have to ask, "does this cache have more than one point one must go to for finding the final cache?" If yes, proceed to...3* difficulty.

I think it was the opposite. The discussions resulted in what you call the end descriptions. They are the metric that was defined to assign the rating numbers - along with a consensus opinion that there was some variability and that cache owners could make adjustments.

 

Clayjar took the descriptions and created a form to fill in to make them easier to use. In fact the D rating on Clayjar's form is simply a multiple choice radio button that essentially has the user select the difficulty from the end definition. For terrain, Clayjar was able to break down the definitions a bit because they take into account distance, elevation gain, trail conditions, number of days of travel, and special equipment - so he asks about each of these and computes the T rating.

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So, as a user seeking a cache, I can see that D1 and know that it should be in the ballpark of "Easy. can be found in a few minutes of searching..." Now, for a D3, I could expect as a user seeking a cache that the cache might take more than 30 minutes, or possibly the afternoon to find--but maybe less if I'm savvy or have specialized knowledge, maybe more if I am really new to the game or completely unfamiliar with the process.

 

Of course a newcomer can take even longer, but keep in mind that D=3* should correspond to a challenge for experienced cachers! If someone who is savvy is likely to need 30 minutes or less, then something is probably wrong with the D=3* estimate. The experienced cachers who look out for challenging caches would very disappointed to be find caches among that list that are considered

experienced cachers are routine caches.

 

More difficult caches are hidden with mainly experienced cachers in mind and I find it much less of an issue if a beginner gives up at a D=2 multi cache that you would rate higher than if a routine cache gets rated too high and experienced cachers looking out for a challenge end up disappointed.

Below is the language for the descriptions. The ratings are found via asking yourself the questions in the rating tool. Descriptions are for general seeking "rules of thumb", and the ratings are created by using the metrics outlined in the rating tool. Once again, start at the top, go to the bottom... Start by rating, then the user/seeker can use the descriptions to have a general understanding of what they're in for.

 

The quote you posted states that a D3 could take more than 30 minutes ("...under 30 minutes" is the estimated description for a D2), and might take an afternoon (D3, see below). If you're that concerned, then you shift the rating down a half-star. Then you're right in the middle for what a user/seeker might expect in general--likely more than 30 minutes, and possibly as much as an afternoon. But who knows, right? At least if you use the tool to rate the cache, you're consistent across the board, and the user can make their judgement on what to expect based on their own abilities after reading the title, the ratings, the attributes, the description, the hint(s), and looking over the general area via a map. Some may see that D3 as "easy", others might see it as spot on, and others might leave it be as it might be "too difficult for me..."

 

8e5e0bdf-6fc6-4ac1-bafc-b2d0315a1cee.jpg

 

Now, is your run-of-the-mill multi really that difficult to be rated a D3? No. I'd consider that "average", or D2 for a starting point (then down a half star if REALLY easy, or up to D5 if more difficulty). That's where I'd suggest updating the rating tool's language to be closer to what I posted before--that the tool should state more clearly, somehow, that a simple/easy multi should prompt a click on the second button, not third. D2 is average, which to the experienced cacher isn't all that hard. "Average" could easily apply to a US LPC cache, as it is a "standard" for most, and quite simple once you understand the camo and the possibility that you can lift a lamp skirt to find that cache. Thus, "average", not "easy". Again, going from a D1 to D2 isn't a richter-scale level of increase in difficulty--it's just saying it is more difficult than a really easy cache on that scale of 1-5.

Edited by NeverSummer
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I think it was the opposite. The discussions resulted in what you call the end descriptions. They are the metric that was defined to assign the rating numbers - along with a consensus opinion that there was some variability and that cache owners could make adjustments.

 

Clayjar took the descriptions and created a form to fill in to make them easier to use. In fact the D rating on Clayjar's form is simply a multiple choice radio button that essentially has the user select the difficulty from the end definition. For terrain, Clayjar was able to break down the definitions a bit because they take into account distance, elevation gain, trail conditions, number of days of travel, and special equipment - so he asks about each of these and computes the T rating.

 

I don't know what came first.

 

But as I said on post 200, the statements for "D" are different between the definitions in the help center, and Clayjar.

 

The statement "may be multi-leg" is in Clayjar only.

 

It is the 3 rating where the definitions vary the most.

 

Groundspeak definitions

 

* Easy. In plain sight or can be found in a few minutes of searching.

** Average. The average cache hunter would be able to find this in less than 30 minutes of hunting.

*** Challenging. An experienced cache hunter will find this challenging, and it could take up a good portion of an afternoon.

**** Difficult. A real challenge for the experienced cache hunter - may require special skills or knowledge, or in-depth preparation to find. May require multiple days / trips to complete.

***** Extreme. A serious mental or physical challenge. Requires specialized knowledge, skills, or equipment to find cache.

 

Clayjar

 

1 Cache is in plain sight or location is fairly obvious.

 

2 Cache could be in one of several locations. Hunter may have to look for a while.

 

3 Cache may be very well hidden, may be multi-leg, or may use clues to location.

 

4 Cache likely requires special skills, knowledge, or in-depth preparation to find. May require multiple days or trips to find

 

5 Finding this cache requires very specialized knowledge, skills, or equipment. This is a serious mental or physical challenge.

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Of course a newcomer can take even longer, but keep in mind that D=3* should correspond to a challenge for experienced cachers! If someone who is savvy is likely to need 30 minutes or less, then something is probably wrong with the D=3* estimate. The experienced cachers who look out for challenging caches would very disappointed to be find caches among that list that are considered experienced cachers are routine caches.

 

Time is a poor proxy for difficulty.

 

For a cleverly-hidden cache, if you don't find it in the first 15 minutes, you are not likely to find it on that trip. Especially for urban caches, spending a half-hour pawing through the bushes is not likely to qualify as "challenging" on any sane scale. It would, IMO, register as "annoying." Using time as a proxy for difficulty just does not make sense.

 

Higher-difficulty caches, at least in my area, tend to involve mental challenges that require one to think outside the box. A clever finder may be able to find them in just a few minutes after thinking about the situation. A less-experienced cacher might need to go home and ponder the situation.

 

The difficulty rating should be calibrated to correspond to the difficulty for an inexperienced cacher. Inevitably, as one gains caching experience, the perceived difficulty for hides decreases. The problem comes when (as is, from your description, the case in much of Europe) more experienced cachers are unwilling or unable to put themselves in the shoes of a new cacher. Then the cache is rated by how difficult the hider would find the cache, not how hard a new cacher would find it.

 

I find that practice distasteful, to put it mildly.

Edited by fizzymagic
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The important thing to consider is that the conversations that formed the end descriptions (like what you reference above) was had and used the "metrics" of the questions in the tool ClayJar designed. Meaning, to get a rating, you walked through the flowchart to get to that end description. This would mean that you would have to ask, "does this cache have more than one point one must go to for finding the final cache?" If yes, proceed to...3* difficulty.

I think it was the opposite. The discussions resulted in what you call the end descriptions. They are the metric that was defined to assign the rating numbers - along with a consensus opinion that there was some variability and that cache owners could make adjustments.

 

Clayjar took the descriptions and created a form to fill in to make them easier to use. In fact the D rating on Clayjar's form is simply a multiple choice radio button that essentially has the user select the difficulty from the end definition. For terrain, Clayjar was able to break down the definitions a bit because they take into account distance, elevation gain, trail conditions, number of days of travel, and special equipment - so he asks about each of these and computes the T rating.

If memory serves, when I read that thread discussing and coming up with definitions for the ratings, the "metrics" used in the tool were derived straight from the language people agreed upon for what each level of difficulty could mean.

 

1. "Cache is in plain sight or location is fairly obvious." meaning for the seeker, "Easy. In plain sight or can be found in a few minutes of searching."

2. "Cache could be in one of several locations. Hunter may have to look for a while," meaning for the seeker, "Average. The average cache hunter would be able to find this in less than 30 minutes of hunting."

3. "Cache may be very well hidden, may be multi-leg, or may use clues to location," meaning for the seeker, "Challenging. An experienced cache hunter will find this challenging, and it could take up a good portion of an afternoon."

4. "Cache likely requires special skills, knowledge, or in-depth preparation to find. May require multiple days or trips to find," meaning for the seeker, "Difficult. A real challenge for the experienced cache hunter - may require special skills or knowledge, or in-depth preparation to find. May require multiple days / trips to complete."

5. "Finding this cache requires very specialized knowledge, skills, or equipment. This is a serious mental or physical challenge," meaning for the seeker, "Extreme. A serious mental or physical challenge. Requires specialized knowledge, skills, or equipment to find cache."

 

Whereas a multi-legged Multicache could take longer than 30 minutes and possibly as much as an afternoon (Woah, what a swath of time! I'd say that's a poor metric to rate a cache between 2 levels of a 5-point rating system, but I digress...), some Multicaches could take only a few moments or minutes. That doesn't mean "Cache is in plain sight or location is fairly obvious" or "Easy. In plain sight or can be found in a few minutes of searching." It actually more accurately fits the intent of the statement "Cache could be in one of several locations..." and "The average cache hunter would be able to find this in less than 30 minutes of hunting..."

 

It could fit for the D1 ratings and descriptions, but that really isn't what I understood as the intent of the statements in that early discussion that created this rating tool and the end descriptions. (The original statements were/are flawed, but the context and intent were more clear in the thread...can we please try to track down that thread link??)

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Time is a poor proxy for difficulty.

 

For a cleverly-hidden cache, if you don't find it in the first 15 minutes, you are not likely to find it on that trip.

 

I fully agree if you refer to searching for a container at GZ.

 

I was mainly referring to rating difficulty issues which are not related to searching a container.

 

Especially for urban caches, spending a half-hour pawing through the bushes is not likely to qualify as "challenging" on any sane scale. It would, IMO, register as "annoying." Using time as a proxy for difficulty just does not make sense.

 

Once again I agree (by the way I do not like to search at all in an urban setting).

 

In my country multi caches are popular and there are cachers who really like to do them also when they are travelling.

They want to have an estimate on the expected effort. It makes a huge difference whether you have to visit 20 stages or just 2 (assuming that the stages are of the same difficulty level). The attributes "takes less than one hour" and "does not take less than one hour" are not enough.

 

When going for a hiking multi cache which might span 20km I definitely want to know in advance an estimate on how much time I need to spend for the stages and as those stages are almost exclusively virtual ones, it is neither about urban hides nor about searching for hideouts at all.

 

 

Higher-difficulty caches, at least in my area, tend to involve mental challenges that require one to think outside the box. A clever finder may be able to find them in just a few minutes after thinking about the situation. A less-experienced cacher might need to go home and ponder the situation.

 

Such caches exist of course. What I had in mind are caches of a different type. For example longer picture hunting caches where 30 and more photos need to be found along a given route - the container in the end is very easily hidden. There it is mainly the estimated time needed by the average cacher that plays a role and this amount can quite well be estimated as it does not depend on any of the factors you have mentioned.

 

 

The difficulty rating should be calibrated to correspond to the difficulty for an inexperienced cacher. Inevitably, as one gains caching experience, the perceived difficulty for hides decreases. The problem comes when (as is, from your description, the case in much of Europe) more experienced cachers are unwilling or unable to put themselves in the shoes of a new cacher. Then the cache is rated by how difficult the hider would find the cache, not how hard a new cacher would find it.

 

I do agree if it comes to tricky containers that once you have seen them once, do not pose a challenge any longer.

I do not agree however that caches where normal usage of GPS-devices and routine waypoint calculations (but not 1 or 2, but say 10 or 15 or even more) play a role should be rated as challenging.

 

I do think that being able to use a GPS-device can be assumed (not any strange things, just very basic things, including waypoint projections) and it should not be taken into account when rating the difficulty of caches.

 

I do not see any reason why a multi stage cache should start from D=2.5* or even D=3*.

Of course there are very difficult caches with multiple stages and of course a 3 stage cache with a tricky hideout at each stage or a puzzle to be solved, will be a challenge. A hiking cache where you note down 10 numbers from 10 signs (where nothing else is around - you do not even need the GPS-device to

find/locate those signs) and plug these 10 numbers into a formula in the end and the cache is hidden in a 0815 manner definitely does not deserve a D=3* rating.

Such caches are certainly not frequent in your area and they will not belong to your favourites, but they are more popular elsewhere.

 

 

I find that practice distasteful, to put it mildly.

 

I guess we were talking about different things.

It appears to me that you mainly have single stage caches in mind and clever hides while I was mainly focussing on rating the difficulty elements that do not come from anything at GZ and also not from solving a puzzle at home.

 

The way you think about difficulty fits well to the Clayjar tool as it based on the same way of caching where searching for containers (including twists like containers that are hard to open) plays the essential role (except for puzzles).

 

Cezanne

Edited by cezanne
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I think it was the opposite. The discussions resulted in what you call the end descriptions. They are the metric that was defined to assign the rating numbers - along with a consensus opinion that there was some variability and that cache owners could make adjustments.

 

Clayjar took the descriptions and created a form to fill in to make them easier to use. In fact the D rating on Clayjar's form is simply a multiple choice radio button that essentially has the user select the difficulty from the end definition. For terrain, Clayjar was able to break down the definitions a bit because they take into account distance, elevation gain, trail conditions, number of days of travel, and special equipment - so he asks about each of these and computes the T rating.

 

I don't know what came first.

 

But as I said on post 200, the statements for "D" are different between the definitions in the help center, and Clayjar.

 

The statement "may be multi-leg" is in Clayjar only.

 

It is the 3 rating where the definitions vary the most.

 

Groundspeak definitions

 

* Easy. In plain sight or can be found in a few minutes of searching.

** Average. The average cache hunter would be able to find this in less than 30 minutes of hunting.

*** Challenging. An experienced cache hunter will find this challenging, and it could take up a good portion of an afternoon.

**** Difficult. A real challenge for the experienced cache hunter - may require special skills or knowledge, or in-depth preparation to find. May require multiple days / trips to complete.

***** Extreme. A serious mental or physical challenge. Requires specialized knowledge, skills, or equipment to find cache.

 

Clayjar

 

1 Cache is in plain sight or location is fairly obvious.

 

2 Cache could be in one of several locations. Hunter may have to look for a while.

 

3 Cache may be very well hidden, may be multi-leg, or may use clues to location.

 

4 Cache likely requires special skills, knowledge, or in-depth preparation to find. May require multiple days or trips to find

 

5 Finding this cache requires very specialized knowledge, skills, or equipment. This is a serious mental or physical challenge.

 

I suspect that Clayjar may have developed his tool while the end description was still being debated, thus the slightly different wording. Also, without going back an checking, I imagine the Groundspeak lackey may have made minor edits over time as the description moved from the forums to various parts of the website.

 

Some people want to interpret either the description in the help center or the Clayjar rating as cast in stone. Like many guidelines on GC.com, their interpretation has changed over the years. Often Groundspeak will udpdate the text to clarify or simplify. In addition these methods to arrive at a rating have always assumed there are situations where the cache owner may think a different rating is more appropriate.

 

I personally rarely look at the D, and the T is only a first pass. For higher terrain I'll look at a map and the cache description to decide what to prepare for. So misrated caches don't affect me. But others are making choices based on the ratings and Groundspeak may have asked reviewers to exercise some judgement in places where the rating is obviously wrong. It isn't clear to me if events are always D1, but I don't think I've been to an event where I had problem locating the group once I got to the location. Maybe once when the picnic area they had reserved was usurped and they had to move the event a few hundred feet away.

Edited by tozainamboku
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Some data.. as I like data.

 

I happened to have 6000 unfound caches in my "home" GSAK database. 410 were Multis. Of those multis ,the D ratings were as follows:

 

16 were rated 1

124 rated 1.5

131 rated 2

62 rated 2.5

77 rated 3 or more

 

So multis are being set with D=1. Though only around 3% of my sample; while for all cache types with the same sample of 6000, there were 11% D=1.

 

66% of the multis in my sample were rated D=2 or less.

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Some data.. as I like data.

 

Among the multi caches I've found (including archived caches) in Austria I have

28 D=1*

189 D=1.5*

313 D=2*

102 D=2.5*

76 D=3*

23 D=3.5*

13 D=4*

1 D=4.5*

0 D=5*

 

Among the multi caches I've not found in Austria (including archived caches) there are

 

222 D=1*

1459 D=1.5*

2269 D=2*

1081 D=2.5*

956 D=3*

270 D=3.5*

171 D=4*

53 D=4.5*

70 D=5*

 

So among the unfound ones I obtain >60% of the multi caches are rated with D=2* or less and that's pretty similar to what the previous poster obtained and also fits well to my experience that there are lot of multi caches where the overall average time effort (excluding the walk) is not more than 30 minutes.

There are much more devilish hides among traditionals and some type of mystery caches than among multi caches in the countries where I have cached.

 

Edit: Added some data for multi caches in Germany (not including archived ones)

 

1937 D=1*

10745 D=1.5*

14767 D=2*

7601 D=2.5*

6609 D=3*

2343 D=3.5*

1411 D=4*

345 D=4.5*

237 D=5*

 

which again gives around 60% of multi caches rated with D=2* or lower.

Edited by cezanne
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Some data.. as I like data.

 

I happened to have 6000 unfound caches in my "home" GSAK database. 410 were Multis. Of those multis ,the D ratings were as follows:

 

16 were rated 1

124 rated 1.5

131 rated 2

62 rated 2.5

77 rated 3 or more

 

So multis are being set with D=1. Though only around 3% of my sample; while for all cache types with the same sample of 6000, there were 11% D=1.

 

66% of the multis in my sample were rated D=2 or less.

And yet, without being able to experience those caches myself, I'd guess that I--personally--wouldn't have any problem with those ratings. At least not to the point of notifying a reviewer for a rating change request...

 

I may have, with that number of multis, encountered a few that I'd question the D/T combo in my log based on the rating system tool and end descriptions.

 

If anything, your sample also shows that there is a pretty standard bell curve. That is not too telling of anything, but at least helps understand the distribution of your finds. Very few indeed were rated D1, and most are rated D1.5 to D2. That sample also doesn't "get my undies in a bundle" about anything; it just shows that there are some Multicaches out there that could probably have an owner that doesn't know or doesn't/won't use the rating tools and/or only uses the seeker descriptions to rate caches and not any of the less-subjective (albeit imperfect) measures within the rating tool.

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That is not too telling of anything, but at least helps understand the distribution of your finds.

 

It's not his finds, but his unfound caches! So his caching behaviour has a smaller influence (in his case - not a general argument).

 

What the numbers show is that around 2/3 of the multi caches are rated not higher than D=2 while according to your arguments most multis would be 2.5* and 3* (or higher).

 

Of course among a set of caches there will always be misrated ones (too high or too low). The point I'm trying to make is just that when rating multi caches the full scale 1-5* is actually used and also that I find that this makes sense.

 

By the way the numbers for California (where the distribution of the available types of multi caches differs considerably from the distribution in Germany or Austria - more virtual stages in Europe) are

 

68 D 1

359 D 1.5

681 D 2

398 D 2.5

380 D 3

128 D 3.5

118 D 4

33 D 4.5

37 D 5

 

So even there around 50% of the multi caches are rated with D=2* or less.

Edited by cezanne
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That is not too telling of anything, but at least helps understand the distribution of your finds.

 

It's not his finds, but his unfound caches! So his caching behaviour has a smaller influence (in his case - not a general argument).

Oops, my mistake. Still doesn't change the point of my post.

 

What the numbers show is that around 2/3 of the multi caches are rated not higher than D=2 while according to your arguments most multis would be 2.5* and 3* (or higher).

No, no, no. I said that the rating tool, taken word-for-word would rate any Multicache starting at a D3. What I recommended was an update to the language, as well as a bit of context to help people like you understand that the second button makes more sense for a simple starting point for a Multicache--rendering a D2 rating. From there, I also stated that the ratings could be adjusted down a half-star if the cache were quite easy, or higher rated up to a D5 depending on the relative difficulty metrics outlined in the tool...and then cross-checked with an honest assessment of the cache against the end descriptions from the imagined mindset of a beginner, novice, or even "average cacher".

 

Of course among a set of caches there will always be misrated ones (too high or too low). The point I'm trying to make is just that when rating multi caches the full scale 1-5* is actually used and also that I find that this makes sense.

Yup. Read the rest of my post for my personal take on this. And yet, if we want to split hairs and talk about consistency, we'd need to address those low-rated outliers (especially D1) for consistency against the established rating metrics...if you're into that consistency thing. :anitongue:

 

By the way the numbers for California (where the distribution of the available types of multi caches differs considerably from the distribution in Germany or Austria - more virtual stages in Europe) are

 

68 D 1

359 D 1.5

681 D 2

398 D 2.5

380 D 3

128 D 3.5

118 D 4

33 D 4.5

37 D 5

a3096070-cf27-4ffc-a323-64bfe2f0af11.jpg

 

Ok, so what I see is a good bell curve, with most Multicaches rated at and over the D2. Some caches are likely "slightly easier" than a full D2, so they are within a reasonable deviation from the D2 center. The D1 ratings are clear outliers, and reasons for that cannot be estimated without 1. knowing what those specific caches are, 2. knowing what the conditions are for each cache, and 3. using hands-on analysis of each for validity against the more quantitative measure. If that measure is simply the rating tool, then that outlier set should be adjusted up to the D2, or slightly adjusted down to D1.5; D1 is not a valid rating for a low-difficulty Multicache according to the tool and the herein stated adapted interpretation of it.

Edited by NeverSummer
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Ok, so what I see is a good bell curve, with most Multicaches rated over the D2. Some caches are likely "slightly easier" than a full D2, so they are within a reasonable deviation from the D2 center. The D1 ratings are clear outliers, and reasons for that cannot be estimated without 1. knowing what those specific caches are, 2. knowing what the conditions are for each cache, and 3. using hands-on analysis of each for validity against the more quantitative measure. If that measure is simply the rating tool, then that outlier set should be adjusted up to the D2, or slightly adjusted down to D1.5; D1 is not a valid rating for a low-difficulty Multicache according to the tool and the herein stated adapted interpretation of it.

 

No, not most, not even for California where the type of multi caches are not the same as in Europe. You get 50% up to D2 in California and 50% higher than D2.

In countries like Austria and Germany and apparently also in the UK sample it is more like >60% up to D2 and 40% higher than D2.

Edited by cezanne
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What the numbers show is that around 2/3 of the multi caches are rated not higher than D=2 while according to your arguments most multis would be 2.5* and 3* (or higher).

No, no, no. I said that the rating tool, taken word-for-word would rate any Multicache starting at a D3. What I recommended was an update to the language, as well as a bit of context to help people like you understand that the second button makes more sense for a simple starting point for a Multicache--rendering a D2 rating. From there, I also stated that the ratings could be adjusted down a half-star if the cache were quite easy, or higher rated up to a D5 depending on the relative difficulty metrics outlined in the tool...and then cross-checked with an honest assessment of the cache against the end descriptions from the imagined mindset of a beginner, novice, or even "average cacher".

 

Yes, of course one can do that (however nothing has been done about it in all those years - it is not something that has been brought up in 2014)

and essentially this is what most hiders in one or the other are doing anyway. My statement is just that the strict application of the Clayjar tool (not of the description of the ratings) for multi caches leads to ratings that are way too high in many cases (not in all cases of course).

 

I'd say that on average the rating of the many multi caches that I visited has been pretty much ok and there were not more misrated caches than among any other cache type (rather less in comparison to the more subjective puzzle ratings).

 

 

I do not need to click buttons to end up with exactly the result I intended to end up with in advance. That approach might be useful for a different type of person, but definitely not for me. As I told you, I have analysed what the Clayjar tool is doing for any sort of combination of answers. Your argument that one might start out with the second radio button is somehow a bit strange to me. I can use any fixed path and will end up with exactly what I want to end up with. That works for any variant, but then it is not any longer using the tool in my understanding and rating by making use of the descriptors does then make much more sense to me.

 

 

By the way when reading novice, beginner and average cacher up there, I again was reminded of your argument about newer caches and that they often use apps and do not know how to enter waypoints or how to project waypoints. Do you seriously think that one ought to change the D ratings of caches because some part of the newer cacher population is not any longer acquainted with using a GPS-device? It was issues like that one I had in mind when I mentioned that I do not think that beginners need to be taken into account. I was not thinking of devilish hides where caching experience is needed. I was not thinking of having found hundreds of caches or a big variety of containers. I was however assuming certain basic knowledge that a few years ago every cacher had right at the beginning. I do not think that we should adapt the ratings to people who first need to learn how to enter waypoints.

Edited by cezanne
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Ok, so what I see is a good bell curve, with most Multicaches rated over the D2. Some caches are likely "slightly easier" than a full D2, so they are within a reasonable deviation from the D2 center. The D1 ratings are clear outliers, and reasons for that cannot be estimated without 1. knowing what those specific caches are, 2. knowing what the conditions are for each cache, and 3. using hands-on analysis of each for validity against the more quantitative measure. If that measure is simply the rating tool, then that outlier set should be adjusted up to the D2, or slightly adjusted down to D1.5; D1 is not a valid rating for a low-difficulty Multicache according to the tool and the herein stated adapted interpretation of it.

 

No, not most, not even for California where the type of multi caches are not the same as in Europe. You get 50% up to D2 in California and 50% higher than D2.

In countries like Austria and Germany and apparently also in the UK sample it is more like >60% up to D2 and 40% higher than D2.

Ok, what kind of voodoo math do you use over there? I see 427 D1 and D1.5s, and 1775 D2 or greater. Also, a cursory visual analysis of the graph of the information provided also shows that your estimations are coming from...Mars?

 

Then, when you add in the fact that a multi starting at D2 can be adjusted down to D1.5 if "really easy", then we're only seeing 68 total caches outside of the "current" interpretation of the rating tool's "window" for Multicaches. That's 3% of the total, no?

 

Even with that fact (which isn't applicable across the entire game, rather is just a single reference point no speaking for the whole), the D1.5 Multicaches are still lower in occurrence than each of D2, D2.5, and D3. That speaks volumes to me that most Multicaches in this case are rated from D2-D3--right in line with the rating tool for your "average, run-of-the-mill Multicache" which may have from 1 to many stages of any type (virtual, physical, e.g.).

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D1 is not a valid rating for a low-difficulty Multicache according to the tool and the herein stated adapted interpretation of it.

I'm not seeing that. The Clayjar tool indicates that a cache might be difficulty 3 if it is very well hidden, or multi-leg, or uses clues to location. It does not say if your cache has more than one leg then it is a difficulty 3 or that it can't be less than D3.

 

You are giving the Clayjar system and the ratings suggested in the help center far more weight than Grounspeak does.

Read the help center article; http://support.Groundspeak.com/index.php?pg=kb.page&id=82

  • The use of the Clayjar tool is recommended - not required.
  • The rating system is subjective.
  • Geocache ratings vary from one community to the next.
  • These are simply suggested ratings. Each geocache owner can make decisions about the final ratings of their own geocaches (despite the title of this thread)

Edited by tozainamboku
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Ok, so what I see is a good bell curve, with most Multicaches rated over the D2. Some caches are likely "slightly easier" than a full D2, so they are within a reasonable deviation from the D2 center. The D1 ratings are clear outliers, and reasons for that cannot be estimated without 1. knowing what those specific caches are, 2. knowing what the conditions are for each cache, and 3. using hands-on analysis of each for validity against the more quantitative measure. If that measure is simply the rating tool, then that outlier set should be adjusted up to the D2, or slightly adjusted down to D1.5; D1 is not a valid rating for a low-difficulty Multicache according to the tool and the herein stated adapted interpretation of it.

 

No, not most, not even for California where the type of multi caches are not the same as in Europe. You get 50% up to D2 in California and 50% higher than D2.

In countries like Austria and Germany and apparently also in the UK sample it is more like >60% up to D2 and 40% higher than D2.

Ok, what kind of voodoo math do you use over there? I see 427 D1 and D1.5s, and 1775 D2 or greater. Also, a cursory visual analysis of the graph of the information provided also shows that your estimations are coming from...Mars?

 

Up to D2 includes D2: this gives a sum of 1108

Higher than D2 starts at D2.5: this gives a sum of 1094

 

All the percentages computed by me and the one given by redsox_mark is based on up to D2 vs higher than D2. Of course the numbers change if one splits at 1.5* which never has been the intention.

 

You wrote most of the caches are rated over the D2 which is wrong as 1108 in California are rated with <=2 and 1094 are rated >2 (i.e. over the D2).

If your real meaning was that the bar in your chart over the D2 text is the highest one, that's of course correct, but something completely different. I was talking about the distribution and not about charts. There is no doubt that D2 is the most common rating for almost all regions I know of. I would not have needed to look up numbers to come up with that statement - without the numbers I would not have been able however to make an estimation of the proportion of multi caches with ratings up to D2 and all multi caches.

Edited by cezanne
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What the numbers show is that around 2/3 of the multi caches are rated not higher than D=2 while according to your arguments most multis would be 2.5* and 3* (or higher).

No, no, no. I said that the rating tool, taken word-for-word would rate any Multicache starting at a D3. What I recommended was an update to the language, as well as a bit of context to help people like you understand that the second button makes more sense for a simple starting point for a Multicache--rendering a D2 rating. From there, I also stated that the ratings could be adjusted down a half-star if the cache were quite easy, or higher rated up to a D5 depending on the relative difficulty metrics outlined in the tool...and then cross-checked with an honest assessment of the cache against the end descriptions from the imagined mindset of a beginner, novice, or even "average cacher".

 

Yes, of course one can do that (however nothing has been done about it in all those years - it is not something that has been brought up in 2014)

and essentially this is what most hiders in one or the other are doing anyway. My statement is just that the strict application of the Clayjar tool (not of the description of the ratings) for multi caches leads to ratings that are way too high in many cases (not in all cases of course).

Do you not see the futility of our discussion if you're just going to keep sticking your head in the sand?

 

If Groundspeak either has not yet, or will not change or update the tool to assist in clarity and validate the modern applications of geocaches and their ratings, then we must do our best to adjust our own behavior. That means we might have to "fudge it" a bit, but that all comes with a responsibility that we "fudge it" on the same level. Therein is why it is good we're having this conversation--we've pretty well established that the word-for-word use of the tool renders any Multi as a D3, and that rating is not most accurate for the "easiest Multi" out there. What is more accurate is a D2, and then applying the same treatment as one would with any cache--adjust up for more difficult, or perhaps down a half-star for a really, really easy Multi.

 

You may not want to join in the hopeful attempt to reign in the inconsistencies a bit--but then why also complain when a "band-aid" fix has been clearly and repeatedly presented? Why not mention via the "Contact Us" link to Groundspeak to address the issue and view this thread to find the discussion and related language to better describe the metrics for rating caches with the recommended and universal tool? Your repeated heel-dragging, arms-crossed "You can't make me" isn't productive in this otherwise clarifying and productive conversation about a flaw in the "universal" system Groundspeak presents users. If you like, you can take your toys and leave. Meanwhile, I think it's best to try and keep finding a positive "solution" to this very minor, as statistically shown, problem. Your opinion sets you outside of the statistics, the norms, and the recommendations of the very host of the game you like to play. If you want to keep ignoring those facts, you're welcome to do it.

 

D1 is not a valid rating for a low-difficulty Multicache according to the tool and the herein stated adapted interpretation of it.

I'm not seeing that. The Clayjar tool indicates that a cache might be difficulty 3 if it is very well hidden, or multi-leg, or uses clues to location. It does not say if your cache has more than one leg then it is a difficulty 3 or that it can't be less than D3.

 

You are giving the Clayjar system and the ratings suggested in the help center far more weight than Grounspeak does.

Read the help center article; http://support.Groundspeak.com/index.php?pg=kb.page&id=82

  • The use of the Clayjar tool is recommended - not required.
  • The rating system is subjective.
  • Geocache ratings vary from one community to the next.
  • These are simply suggested ratings. Each geocache owner can make decisions about the final ratings of their own geocaches (despite the title of this thread)

Considering I think I was the first person to post the link to that article, I think I'm pretty clear on what it says. A "recommendation" from Groundspeak carries a little more water with me than cezanne's personal preferences for how they think caches should be rated. Like has been said above, how can we expect that each individual's opinion is rendered honestly and clearly for each cache placed? We really can't if we want some shred of consistency for the gameplay across the globe; we are obliged to use the recommended tool to try and have some level of objectivity to temper the otherwise extremely subjective rating process. Again: temper the otherwise subjective rating process, not "fix" or make "infallible".

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Ok, so what I see is a good bell curve, with most Multicaches rated over the D2. Some caches are likely "slightly easier" than a full D2, so they are within a reasonable deviation from the D2 center. The D1 ratings are clear outliers, and reasons for that cannot be estimated without 1. knowing what those specific caches are, 2. knowing what the conditions are for each cache, and 3. using hands-on analysis of each for validity against the more quantitative measure. If that measure is simply the rating tool, then that outlier set should be adjusted up to the D2, or slightly adjusted down to D1.5; D1 is not a valid rating for a low-difficulty Multicache according to the tool and the herein stated adapted interpretation of it.

 

No, not most, not even for California where the type of multi caches are not the same as in Europe. You get 50% up to D2 in California and 50% higher than D2.

In countries like Austria and Germany and apparently also in the UK sample it is more like >60% up to D2 and 40% higher than D2.

Ok, what kind of voodoo math do you use over there? I see 427 D1 and D1.5s, and 1775 D2 or greater. Also, a cursory visual analysis of the graph of the information provided also shows that your estimations are coming from...Mars?

 

Up to D2 includes D2: this gives a sum of 1108

Higher than D2 starts at D2.5: this gives a sum of 1094

 

All the percentages computed by me and the one given by redsox_mark is based on up to D2 vs higher than D2. Of course the numbers change if one splits at 1.5* which never has been the intention.

 

You wrote most of the caches are rated over the D2 which is wrong as 1108 in California are rated with <=2 and 1094 are rated >2 (i.e. over the D2).

Ahhhhhh...there's that voodoo math. You mean, "Up to and including D2", not "Up to D2".

 

The tool, if used with the "new school" approach discussed ad nauseum above, would rate the "easy" or "simple" Multicache starting at a D2. Therefore, the discussion I am trying to have is inclusive of that starting rating for an "easy" or "simple" Muilticache. Then, adding in the "adjust down 1/2 star for "really easy" if you see fit, and we get D1.5.

 

If you want to skew math to support a point I'm not trying to make, that's fine. But you're misrepresenting the numbers, and it is unfortunately too multifaceted for me to take seriously. Head+sand.

 

Edit to add: Changed what I typed to make it more clear. I said "over D2" meaning visually on the curve--starting over the D2 rating and curving out as you progress higher, and to that "1/2 lower".

Edited by NeverSummer
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Here's one early thread about D/T ratings, and the same desire that people would use the tool and then "adjust" if it sounded a little bit "off". Even back then people thought it might be off by a whole star for T ratings, so whole and half downward adjustments could then be made.

 

Another thread about use of the "tool" for helping to keep rating more consistent. Sadly, the links to the early, foundational threads are broken.

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Some data.. as I like data.

 

I happened to have 6000 unfound caches in my "home" GSAK database. 410 were Multis. Of those multis ,the D ratings were as follows:

 

16 were rated 1

124 rated 1.5

131 rated 2

62 rated 2.5

77 rated 3 or more

 

So multis are being set with D=1. Though only around 3% of my sample; while for all cache types with the same sample of 6000, there were 11% D=1.

 

66% of the multis in my sample were rated D=2 or less.

Me too, I'll follow:

 

3878 not yet found caches, 991 Multis.

 

D1: 30

D1.5: 255

D2: 396

D2.5: 139

D>=3: 171

Link to comment

Some data.. as I like data.

 

I happened to have 6000 unfound caches in my "home" GSAK database. 410 were Multis. Of those multis ,the D ratings were as follows:

 

16 were rated 1

124 rated 1.5

131 rated 2

62 rated 2.5

77 rated 3 or more

 

So multis are being set with D=1. Though only around 3% of my sample; while for all cache types with the same sample of 6000, there were 11% D=1.

 

66% of the multis in my sample were rated D=2 or less.

Me too, I'll follow:

 

3878 not yet found caches, 991 Multis.

 

D1: 30

D1.5: 255

D2: 396

D2.5: 139

D>=3: 171

This data set so far serves the recommendation for adjusting the rating system language to match what is going on in the real world: Most Multis are already rated D2 and above, with a notable level of use for that "easiest Multi" -1/2 star adjustment.

 

It isn't such an unfounded idea that the language could be edited to include D2 as including a simple offset Multi, or single-stage Multicache. Then adjust upward for additional stages or other factors impacting difficulty of finding/opening/logging the cache.

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Ahhhhhh...there's that voodoo math. You mean, "Up to and including D2", not "Up to D2".

 

I do not agree and moreover my statement also included higher than D2 so the two classes I built were implicit anyway.

For integers and in this context I do not see a reason to include (and including) which of course is needed when distinguishing between open and closed intervals of the reals.

 

 

The tool, if used with the "new school" approach discussed ad nauseum above, would rate the "easy" or "simple" Multicache starting at a D2. Therefore, the discussion I am trying to have is inclusive of that starting rating for an "easy" or "simple" Muilticache. Then, adding in the "adjust down 1/2 star for "really easy" if you see fit, and we get D1.5.

 

You do not need to convince me that one could relatively easily adapt the Clayjar tool so that answering the questions delivers results closer to how people rate multi caches in practice.

I have claimed that myself already before this thread.

 

It was you who started into this thread with your firm statement that any multi cache should be rated with D=3* or at least 2.5* and later came along with adaptions.

 

 

If you want to skew math to support a point I'm not trying to make, that's fine. But you're misrepresenting the numbers, and it is unfortunately too multifaceted for me to take seriously. Head+sand.

 

I used the numbers exactly for the purpose I had in mind namely to demonstrate how the D ratings of multi caches are distributed out in real life. When I tried to make some statements about the rating of multi caches (with special focus to Europe), you always turned it into an issue about me as a cache owner and me as a rater of caches which never has been my intent.

 

The numbers provided by others and myself just provide a picture of what I tried to convey already before but in which I failed as you always started to tell me that I should use the tool for my caches while it never has been about me.

Edited by cezanne
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It isn't such an unfounded idea that the language could be edited to include D2 as including a simple offset Multi, or single-stage Multicache. Then adjust upward for additional stages or other factors impacting difficulty of finding/opening/logging the cache.

 

But many among the D2 multi caches in real life are not single stage or offset caches - caches with 5 (not much locally) virtual stages are around here not considered to be automatically 2.5*, that depends on the stages and the hideout.

Edited by cezanne
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Oh, lordy. Cezanne, you win. I admit it. I came here, discussed events and their D1 ratings, then got taken off on your wild goosechase with the multitude of Muilticache ideas that might impact the D ratings.

 

The numbers above are meaningless without context. When placed in the context of the recommended rating tool, it isn't a surprising trendline: D2+ ratings are most common for all multis, and a statistically notable and related number of caches are also seen as employing the -1/2 star adjustment for what I assume is because they are "really, really easy".

 

I came in discussing the ClayJar tool in reference to the event conversation, and then also discussed how a Multicache (a cache with stages to find the final) would be rated in the tool as a D3 with strict interpretation of the tool metrics, yes. Then we discussed how there are really, really easy Multicaches with simple offsets, and I mentioned that can be addressed by dropping the tool-recommended ratings by a half-star. Then, as the conversation evolved, so did the point I was making (I'm allowed to do that--I compromised where you don't/won't FWIW). I understood where people might be coming from with Multicaches falling more accurately under the D2 as a starting point, and upward from there. This actually isn't that far off from how I've handled my Multis, but then again, I only have 1 owned Multi anymore, and it's a single-stage simple one.

 

Now we see that, in practice, very few Multis are being listed at the D1 level. And, if you measure against the recommended tool, they shouldn't be D1. I believe that is because of the same behavior noted in the 2002/2003 threads on the subject that observed that, despite best efforts to have a tool to make things consistent, people just plain ignored it and rated from the hip or plainly how they wanted to--instead of trying to think beyond their own nose.

 

You, cezanne, were advocating for the D1/D1.5 rating for Multis outright. It's all here in this thread. That's what I have a problem with. So if you want to "call me out" for admitting that I think the tool could be adjusted to more accurately describe metrics to rate caches more consistently, go for it. I'm happy for you to finally see that your idea that Multis should be rated D1 for being "really easy" is just plainly not helpful, accurate, or consistent.

 

You said the language is difficult to understand with language barriers. You admitted that you are reading it without a nuanced approach. You said you don't use the tool because you don't agree with how it rates caches. You also showed that you didn't have a grasp for what the ratings were, and also that you rate more for the time it takes to find the cache than for other, more valid and objective measures.

 

I suggested ways to interpret what the tool is trying to say. I provided context for how the tool was developed. I offered suggestions for how Groundspeak could adopt some new language when you said you didn't have the time or abilities to do it.

 

Now we have real-world data that, while not conclusive, supports the trend that "the easiest Multi" starts ratings at D2, and increases with difficulty. In some cases, people also have adjusted downward a half-star. The trendline seems to support that D1 ratings are outliers, and anecdotal evidence from the field and this thread lead me to believe that this is because of a lack of familiarity with the tool, lack of use of the tool, and perhaps blatant disregard for the tool. I have also provided context that supports the idea, as threads mention a hope that people would be more consistent and use the provided tool, from as far back as 2002.

 

But hey, you got me. You win! :laughing:

Edited by NeverSummer
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Below is the language for the descriptions.
Maybe it's a language barrier. When I read the Help Center page, it says (emphasis added), "Below are the definitions that came as a result of those discussions."

 

You seem to regard the text as mere descriptions, where others of us seem to regard the text as definitions. Given that, it follows that we don't view the rating tool as the definition of the ratings.

 

That's where I'd suggest updating the rating tool's language to be closer to what I posted before--that the tool should state more clearly, somehow, that a simple/easy multi should prompt a click on the second button, not third.
It looks like we agree that the rating tool doesn't accurately reflect the definitions of the ratings. Perhaps we just disagree on how inaccurate the rating tool is, and under what circumstances. And on whether the definitions of the ratings need to change to accomodate the inaccuracies of the rating tool.

 

 

The difficulty rating should be calibrated to correspond to the difficulty for an inexperienced cacher.
Yes and no.

 

Yes, because I agree that there is a tendency to rate caches as D1 if an experienced geocacher can find it in a few minutes of searching. And often that is because the cache is hidden in a "standard" location that the experienced geocacher knows to check. Meanwhile, the rating is misleading for inexperienced geocachers who don't know to check the "standard" locations yet.

 

But no, because using the definitions in the Help Center article, D2 is defined in terms of an "average geocache hunter", and D3 and D4 are defined in terms of an "experienced geocache hunter". And of course, an inexperienced geocacher is likely to require more effort than either an "average geocache hunter" or an "experienced geocache hunter". But that doesn't mean that these ratings shouldn't be based on an "average geocache hunter" or on an "experienced geocache hunter".

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This data set so far serves the recommendation for adjusting the rating system language to match what is going on in the real world: Most Multis are already rated D2 and above, with a notable level of use for that "easiest Multi" -1/2 star adjustment.

 

It isn't such an unfounded idea that the language could be edited to include D2 as including a simple offset Multi, or single-stage Multicache. Then adjust upward for additional stages or other factors impacting difficulty of finding/opening/logging the cache.

 

Yes. The data tells me that most cachers setting multis either aren't using Clayjar, or they are not taking it literally that multi stages equals D=3. And that D=1 multis exist.

 

Without posting more numbers... looking at my same data set the "mode" for a multi is 2, while it is 1.5 for a Trad. And the percentage of D=1 for Trads is 3 times higher than Multis. Which makes sense to me.. on average multis are rated with slightly higher "D.

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You said the language is difficult to understand with language barriers. You admitted that you are reading it without a nuanced approach. You said you don't use the tool because you don't agree with how it rates caches. You also showed that you didn't have a grasp for what the ratings were, and also that you rate more for the time it takes to find the cache than for other, more valid and objective measures.

 

I did not say that at all. I'd rather agree with NiraD who has about the same understanding of the ratings as myself and he is a native speaker.

I do not know from which professional area you come from. It appears to me that you have a different understanding of what makes a definition than NiraD and myself (and many others I know).

 

What I did mention is that many German speaking cachers make use of a translated version of the Clayjar questions and that the German translation says something different than the English original. But's that another issue. I'm only using the English version.

 

I have hidden only 15 caches most of which are rather specialized caches. It would not make much sense to base what I write on how I rate my caches. I tried to explain you how multi caches are rated in the regions where I have caches. I'm not talking about a handful of caches, but thousands of caches and I do not have any intention to win in whatever sort of competition or debate you have in mind.

 

I never said that time is the only criterion for measuring difficulty. For example for opening a tricky container or spotting a devilish hide, it will not be easy to measure the essential part of difficulty with respect to time. I still think however that many cachers who search for multi caches they want to include in their trip, want to filter out caches that take too long.

 

If you compare a traditional with a very tricky container with a multi cache with 5 virtual stages (all within 100m of the header coordinates) where you just need to visit 5 signboards and write down a single number to find the cache container at the only possible location (which is also mentioned in the description explicitely), then it is quite hard to provide a time estimate for the first case, but it's quite easy to provide a time estimate for the second one (which will show very small variances).

 

I know that most cache owners in your country would set up such caches as traditionals and leave the decision whether the visitor may want to explore the area and have a look at the signs to the visitors. In my country a traditional in such a setting which does not have an overwhelming hideout will always lose against a multi cache in the same area (much better logs, much more favourite points etc). The increase in difficulty between a traditional and a multi cache of the type described above if they have the same hideout will sometimes be 0 with respect to the star system and at most 0.5 otherwise, and that fits nicely with the descriptions of the difficulty levels.

Edited by cezanne
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