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Ban PQ's. Lets search using modern methods. (An idea).


TNXPro
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Okay maybe not ban them but it got your attention. Yes pqs can be useful. However, I believe an alternative could be even better. While preparing my GPSr for a coming trip, I once again battle to create Pocket Queries to upload. I want things done immediately, life is too short for waiting when theres a few FTF's up for grabs! There must be a better way!

 

My idea to bring Geocaching.com's search methods into the 2000's.

 

It would be fantastic if all the cache icons on the map could be made selectable, to add directly to a list, in which you can save as a GPX file. If you use the filters function already on the map to filter out the caches you dont want (or do), and select using a single pick, a box select or a polygon select, you simply drag the selected caches into a 'Tree structure' on the left hand side of the page. It could then automatically layer them into the respective cache types, which you could expand to view individual ones if necessary, or further filter out things like e.g. disabled listings, by a tick box. When you are happy with the list, click Save as, and write it as a GPX file, which is easily uploaded into a GPSr device or phone app.

This process should also make it easy to do on a mobile phone, which is where the future is heading.

 

Now of course I am not a programmer and dont know the complications of this idea, but I'm sure someone will tell me.

 

BTW. I apologize if this idea has already been mooted, because I dont have the patience to trawl through the whole forum.

Edited by TNXPro
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Sounds like your original desire is met by using GSAK. At least once you have pulled down locally the area(s) you desire. It's a little work to get it done up front and then a couple mins a day to keep updated, but all the slicing/dicing and immediate exporting exist.

 

Also Project-GC allows something similar - great your virtual GPS, pick/select and move to the virtual GPS and build a GPX from it.

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You'd get better feedback without the "Ban PQs" part of the subject line.

Agreed.

 

PQs have their purpose, and most of the functionality they provide would need to be retained by any future search/retrieve method. Eliminating or banning that functionality would be a bad thing.

 

Also, it isn't completely clear what problems you see with PQs that would lead you to suggest banning them. Maybe if you could explain that part further, we'd have a better understanding of your position.

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While preparing my GPSr for a coming trip, I once again battle to create Pocket Queries to upload. I want things done immediately, life is too short for waiting! There must be a better way!

 

My idea to bring Geocaching.com's search methods into the 2000's.

 

It would be fantastic if all the cache icons on the map could be made selectable, to add directly to a list, in which you can save as a GPX file. If you use the filters function already on the map to filter out the caches you dont want (or do), and select using a single pick, a box select or a polygon select, you simply drag the selected caches into a 'Tree structure' on the left hand side of the page. It could then automatically layer them into the respective cache types, which you could expand to view individual ones if necessary, or further filter out things like e.g. disabled listings, by a tick box. When you are happy with the list, click Save as, and write it as a GPX file, which is easily uploaded into a GPSr device or phone app.

This process should also make it easy to do on a mobile phone, which is where the future is heading.

 

Now of course I am not a programmer and dont know the complications of this idea, but I'm sure someone will tell me.

 

BTW. I apologize if this idea has already been mooted, because I dont have the patience to trawl through the whole forum.

 

Yes. You certainly do not seem to have a lot of patience. I'm PM because of GPX files. Planning my trip, I set up a GPX file for Montgomery County PA. Set it for five hundred caches. Sounds a lot easier than your method!

Thanks, but let me keep using PQs. I don't have a mobile phone. I'm happy with the way things are! So. leave ma alone to play this game the way I want, and have been for thirteen years.

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Okay maybe not ban them but it got your attention. Yes pqs can be useful. In my opinion it would be great to do it as I suggested.

 

Yeah. Come in telling bald face lies gets my attention. At which point, I think, this person has nothing to offer.

 

Thanks. I'll make sure I find your posts too and call you a lier and that your ideas suck too.

If you dont have something nice to say, then keep it to yourself.

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You'd get better feedback without the "Ban PQs" part of the subject line.

Agreed.

 

PQs have their purpose, and most of the functionality they provide would need to be retained by any future search/retrieve method. Eliminating or banning that functionality would be a bad thing.

 

Also, it isn't completely clear what problems you see with PQs that would lead you to suggest banning them. Maybe if you could explain that part further, we'd have a better understanding of your position.

 

That would certainly help. As a start, it's important to understand what a PQ *is*. A PQ is comprised of three parts

 

1. A form based search interface which allows one the filter cache listings based on several criteria. One can select caches which are within a specified proximity of a specific point, select caches with a range of D/T ratings, size of the container, type of cache, the placed date, and whether or not the cache has certain attributes.

 

2. The ability to save multiple search queries and schedule any of them such they can automatically be replayed on a periodic basis.

3. A mechanism for encapsulating the list of caches produced by the search in a format that can be saved and transferred to a GPS enabled device.

The OP is basically asking for a replacement of the first part, using a map with filters to perform the search. Some of that work has already been done. From the map page, one can filter out caches based on the cache type, and pan/zoom the map to select a region where the cache are located. Once that's done, one can "Save as Pocket Query" which basically just populates the PQ search interface with some criteria chosen on the map. Then one can further filter the list based on attributes, and other fields on the PQ form.

The caches along a route features goes a step further in that it basically uses Google maps to create a polygon around a "route". There have been discussions in the past about being able to created a box or polygon around an area on the map, and that sort of functionality does exist in GSAK (however GSAK is a native application that only runs on a PC). The GSAK application has been around for years and nobody has stepped up to the plate to port it to MacOS. What are the chances that someone will turn it into a mobile app that runs on all the major mobile platforms? Note also, that one can go from the "new search" to the map to show a filtered view of caches on the map, but caches that appear on the map can't be saved as a GPX file (or imported into the PQ form). One has to "turn off filters" in order to get the side panel that has the "Save as Pocket Query" button. We've been told that there are issues between the filters available on the search form and the map page and that it was being worked on. That was a couple of years ago.

So essentially, the OP is asking for a much more full features filter panel on the map, and the ability to select caches within a box/polygon. The "drag-n-drop" to a tree view, and I'm not sure how useful that would be.

Getting all that to work as a mobile app adds a whole other level of complexity.

Personally, I wasn't offended by the "ban PQ" comment. I don't care whether it's called a PQ or not, as long as all the functionality available with a PQ is still available. I did, however, roll my eyes at: "I want things done immediately, life is too short for waiting when theres a few FTF's up for grabs!"

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You'd get better feedback without the "Ban PQs" part of the subject line.

Agreed.

 

PQs have their purpose, and most of the functionality they provide would need to be retained by any future search/retrieve method. Eliminating or banning that functionality would be a bad thing.

 

Also, it isn't completely clear what problems you see with PQs that would lead you to suggest banning them. Maybe if you could explain that part further, we'd have a better understanding of your position.

 

That would certainly help. As a start, it's important to understand what a PQ *is*. A PQ is comprised of three parts

 

1. A form based search interface which allows one the filter cache listings based on several criteria. One can select caches which are within a specified proximity of a specific point, select caches with a range of D/T ratings, size of the container, type of cache, the placed date, and whether or not the cache has certain attributes.

 

2. The ability to save multiple search queries and schedule any of them such they can automatically be replayed on a periodic basis.

3. A mechanism for encapsulating the list of caches produced by the search in a format that can be saved and transferred to a GPS enabled device.

The OP is basically asking for a replacement of the first part, using a map with filters to perform the search. Some of that work has already been done. From the map page, one can filter out caches based on the cache type, and pan/zoom the map to select a region where the cache are located. Once that's done, one can "Save as Pocket Query" which basically just populates the PQ search interface with some criteria chosen on the map. Then one can further filter the list based on attributes, and other fields on the PQ form.

The caches along a route features goes a step further in that it basically uses Google maps to create a polygon around a "route". There have been discussions in the past about being able to created a box or polygon around an area on the map, and that sort of functionality does exist in GSAK (however GSAK is a native application that only runs on a PC). The GSAK application has been around for years and nobody has stepped up to the plate to port it to MacOS. What are the chances that someone will turn it into a mobile app that runs on all the major mobile platforms? Note also, that one can go from the "new search" to the map to show a filtered view of caches on the map, but caches that appear on the map can't be saved as a GPX file (or imported into the PQ form). One has to "turn off filters" in order to get the side panel that has the "Save as Pocket Query" button. We've been told that there are issues between the filters available on the search form and the map page and that it was being worked on. That was a couple of years ago.

So essentially, the OP is asking for a much more full features filter panel on the map, and the ability to select caches within a box/polygon. The "drag-n-drop" to a tree view, and I'm not sure how useful that would be.

Getting all that to work as a mobile app adds a whole other level of complexity.

Personally, I wasn't offended by the "ban PQ" comment. I don't care whether it's called a PQ or not, as long as all the functionality available with a PQ is still available. I did, however, roll my eyes at: "I want things done immediately, life is too short for waiting when theres a few FTF's up for grabs!"

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Thanks for that informative reply.

I dont recall seeing the "Save as Pocket Query" function there before, so have yet to explore its functionality.

 

You won't see the "Save as Pocket Query" if you get to the map page from the new search results. The panel on the left of the page is hidden (and can't be exposed) until you click the "Clear Search Filters" button (which kinda of defeats the purpose of mapping caches with a set of filters)

 

 

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