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Release Notes (Website: Solution Checker) - October 19, 2017

218 posts in this topic

  • add a possibility to switch the checker to 1-field
  • make automatic coordinate correction  an option
  • display an additional message if the CO has entered one: often at geocheck.org owners provide info they cannot put in the listing in order not to reveal the final area: how to efficiently approach the GZ, avoid private properties etc. including parking or trailhead coordinates. This could simply be the content of the hidden final waypoint description so you would not have to change the database structure.

 

Edited by Pontiac_CZ
rewording
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10 minutes ago, Harry Dolphin said:

Yes.  I just solved such a mystery.  (And I used to have one,)  "Go this distance in that direction."  A little leeway is necessary in the checker.

This is very practical solution for many puzzles. For example, when you have to guess, where the picture is taken and enter some coordinate which is near the final. But all this kind of mysteries falls to the "geochecker gives the right final position" category unless the answered solution is used without any fixing which is not realistic in this case.

In the case the distance tolerance feature it added to the official geochecker, the allowed distance should be visible for the user. Hidden tolerance information is a problem with current geocheckers. If your first try do not hit, then you have to carpet-bomb the nearby area that there isn't any deviation, just to be sure because you don't know the setup.

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7 minutes ago, Pontiac_CZ said:

This could simply be the content of the hidden final waypoint description so you would not have to change the database structure.

Excellent solution! And maybe the final WP could be set visible and downloadable for players who has entered the right answer.

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  • keep it optional!
  • one field
  • additional messages - you might not want to give away all hints in order to keep people from brute-forcing the location
  • allow for fuzzyness...
  • ...and "alternative" solutions - I have a cache were people often get a wrong solution and I provide an additional hint in a well-established, mature 3rd party checker
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6 hours ago, on4bam said:

1. Because other types have known coordinates. For multi's you go from WP to WP, why would you need to check if you read the tag correctly? If fieldpuzzle, do you really always need to be sure? For most multi solutions just looking at the map will tell you if you're right, if not, walk the extra distance.

Multi caches which involve just going from WP to WP by reading a set of coordinates off a tag or some other object seem to be a lot less common than they used to be.  I see a lot more "count the number of items" or "convert the third letter in the second sentence of the first paragraph to a number" for a single digit in the coordinates, then combine all the numbers for a complete set of coordinates.  Sometimes there's a bit of math involved as well.   A single digit error in a set of coordinate in the least significant digit of the minutes probably won't matter but the difference between N42 26.123 is bit of a walk from N42 25.123 and both may appear to be viable locations on a map.  

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3 hours ago, Pontiac_CZ said:
  • add a possibility to switch the checker to 1-field
  • make automatic coordinate correction  an option
  • display an additional message if the CO has entered one: often at geocheck.org owners provide info they cannot put in the listing in order not to reveal the final area: how to efficiently approach the GZ, avoid private properties etc. including parking or trailhead coordinates. This could simply be the content of the hidden final waypoint description so you would not have to change the database structure.

 

Do these three things to start and I'll drop my third party scripts, plus:
 

  • Make it smaller and fit it into the page a bit better
  • Add an option for multi-caches and letterboxes.
  • Add an option for everyone to see the success/failure rate.
Edited by fbingha
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5 minutes ago, NYPaddleCacher said:

Multi caches which involve just going from WP to WP by reading a set of coordinates off a tag or some other object seem to be a lot less common than they used to be.  I see a lot more "count the number of items" or "convert the third letter in the second sentence of the first paragraph to a number" for a single digit in the coordinates, then combine all the numbers for a complete set of coordinates.  Sometimes there's a bit of math involved as well.   A single digit error in a set of coordinate in the least significant digit of the minutes probably won't matter but the difference between N42 26.123 is bit of a walk from N42 25.123 and both may appear to be viable locations on a map.  

My most common mistake is not hitting a number well or using the arrow one too many times making N51 12.345 come out as 51.12.234 or 51 13.45 (leaving the last digit while moving to the E coordinate. Most of the time I catch it because the wrong coordinate is not along a path but sometimes it is and we see the mistake as we are are walking or upon arriving at the wrong spot.

Anyway, a multi with QTA might just be a lot easier to "solve" from home if each WP has a checker. Where's the adventure if you can check everything? I'm sure that if not mandatory not a lot of multi's will get checkers anyway, at least not around here (remember regional differences?).

 

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9 hours ago, on4bam said:

Automatic update of corrected coordinates is also a bad idea given that PQs and API give different results when importing caches into GSAK for the "has corrected coordinates" flag.

If that's the case, that's a bug PQ results generation code or the API and should be fixed.  

Having coordinate checker integrated into the site provides several useful advantages.  As a CO all I have to do is check a box and it creates a the coordinate checker (using teh final coordinates from the database) on the cache page.  When using a 3rd party checker I have to set up an account, create a checker for the cache then copy-n-paste the final coordinates (or just type them and risk fumble fingering the digits).  Having the result of a successful use  of the coordinate checker automatically update the corrected coordinates field with the final coordinates saves time and potentially avoid translation errors.  

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5 minutes ago, on4bam said:

Anyway, a multi with QTA might just be a lot easier to "solve" from home if each WP has a checker. Where's the adventure if you can check everything? I'm sure that if not mandatory not a lot of multi's will get checkers anyway, at least not around here (remember regional differences?).

I am well aware of regional differences.  I also believe that even if a checker isn't used on every puzzle or multi cache, making it easier to use one is going to mean more cache owners will use them and that's better than the status quo.  If GS doesn't implement the checker for multi-caches, then no multi cache owner or finder will benefit from the creation of the native checker.  If they did make it available for multi-caches, even if a small percentage of geocachers use it and find it beneficial, that's better than nothing. 

I don't consider searching area that has nothing to do with where the CO hid to cache to be part of the adventure.  It's just a waste of time.  Having a set of confirmed final coordinates doesn't check everything.  One still has to go to the location and find the cache and that's where I'd prefer to find my adventure.

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Hi all, a lot of great feedback and opinions so far. There was definitely talk of having the optional checker be allowed across other types, such as multis/letterbox hybrids so it helps to hear your thoughts. It sounds like having one field is heavily favored, having the corrected coordinates update being potentially options, plus it sounds pretty consistent of which features from popular checkers are being asked for. We don't have anything planned for the next steps as it is better to decide off of what we hear post release. 

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25 minutes ago, NYPaddleCacher said:

I am well aware of regional differences.  I also believe that even if a checker isn't used on every puzzle or multi cache, making it easier to use one is going to mean more cache owners will use them and that's better than the status quo.  If GS doesn't implement the checker for multi-caches, then no multi cache owner or finder will benefit from the creation of the native checker.  If they did make it available for multi-caches, even if a small percentage of geocachers use it and find it beneficial, that's better than nothing.

As there are plenty of checkers available that don't get used on multi pages GS's one makes no difference. I don't think there will suddenly be checkers on pages where none were used in the past.

For me it makes no difference, once we leave the house to go caching we don't use internet (OK, we use Waze to get to the starting point and check mail while we take a break for a drink).

 

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9 hours ago, d-n said:

Especially those who are now active anymore or have deliberately wrong FP by their cache due to collisions.

I do not understand this sentence.  I think there must be multiple auto-corrects that are making it confusing.  I get the "now" should be "not" but could you please look at this and fix whatever is wrong?  Also what do you mean by "FP"?  Usually that's "Favorite Points" but I don't think that's the meaning here.  Is it Field Puzzle?  Final Point? 

OK, I just check d-n's profile and this might just be a language issue.  I don't mean to be critical of your English, but I am truly confused by the use of the word "collisions"; what is meant by that?

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5 minutes ago, NanCycle said:

I do not understand this sentence.  I think there must be multiple auto-corrects that are making it confusing.  I get the "now" should be "not" but could you please look at this and fix whatever is wrong?  Also what do you mean by "FP"?  Usually that's "Favorite Points" but I don't think that's the meaning here.  Is it Field Puzzle?  Final Point? 

OK, I just check d-n's profile and this might just be a language issue.  I don't mean to be critical of your English, but I am truly confused by the use of the word "collisions"; what is meant by that?

I think what d-n is saying is that some COs deliberately give incorrect final coordinates to the reviewer, to prevent a cache being rejected due to proximity issues, and therefore this 'native' checker is not for them. ;-)

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18 hours ago, MNofMind said:

I think that is a perfectly acceptable option! This is not meant to replace all the existing checkers that have some great features but to provide an in house one that can help protect against the risk of third party checkers deciding to shut down their servers. 

There's no reason to think the people maintaining the other checkers will continue maintaining them now that there's a GS checker. Just like the statistics sites, even when they have a better product, people will stop using them because the GS option is so much easier. I'm glad, if somewhat puzzled, that you don't think your product will be very popular, but I have no reason to think it won't be a big hit, so I expect it to be the only checker I'll see in a year or two.

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Can it be enabled by an admin or reviewer?

There are quite a few great puzzle caches around with inactive COs and non-working coord checkers (i.e. evince).  In a situation where the CO created a coordinate checker, but it doesn't work anymore, and he/she is inactive, could this built in checker be enabled by someone else?  The only other option is to contact a former finder, and some don't want to help, esp for a hard puzzle or if they don't know you.

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6 minutes ago, BryantsofTR said:

Can it be enabled by an admin or reviewer?

There are quite a few great puzzle caches around with inactive COs and non-working coord checkers (i.e. evince).  In a situation where the CO created a coordinate checker, but it doesn't work anymore, and he/she is inactive, could this built in checker be enabled by someone else?  The only other option is to contact a former finder, and some don't want to help, esp for a hard puzzle or if they don't know you.

Not a reviewer's job. If a listing and/or cache is "broken" it gets a NM and, if not fixed, later it gets a NA.

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14 minutes ago, BryantsofTR said:

Can it be enabled by an admin or reviewer?

I think this is not an option. Reviewer can disable the cache if there are some issues.

14 minutes ago, BryantsofTR said:

The only other option is to contact a former finder

Not exactly, as you can go to find the cache as usually.

If the checker is needed to solve the final coordinates then NM and NA are appropriate next step.

By the way, I am very pleased, after many  "streamlined" changes, to see that the HQ is now more focused to develop instead of "streamlining".

Edited by arisoft
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2 hours ago, on4bam said:
3 hours ago, NYPaddleCacher said:

I am well aware of regional differences.  I also believe that even if a checker isn't used on every puzzle or multi cache, making it easier to use one is going to mean more cache owners will use them and that's better than the status quo.  If GS doesn't implement the checker for multi-caches, then no multi cache owner or finder will benefit from the creation of the native checker.  If they did make it available for multi-caches, even if a small percentage of geocachers use it and find it beneficial, that's better than nothing.

As there are plenty of checkers available that don't get used on multi pages GS's one makes no difference. I don't think there will suddenly be checkers on pages where none were used in the past.

For me it makes no difference, once we leave the house to go caching we don't use internet (OK, we use Waze to get to the starting point and check mail while we take a break for a drink).

I don't expect that adding a native checker for multi-caches will benefit everyone or even most geocachers.  Like any other feature under consideration weighing the cost vs. benefits is what should be looked at.  If the amount of development time is minimal and it doesn't have a negative impact on how people are playing the game, the cost may be minimal compared to the potential benefits.  

I don't know how many cache owners would use a checker for intermediate waypoints on a multi, but none of those existing 3rd party are as easy to use by a CO than a native checker.  If a CO can just check a box for a waypoint to add a checker for it they my be much more likely to use one than having to go to a third party site, create an account, and fill out a form.

 

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3 hours ago, fbingha said:

Add an option for everyone to see the success/failure rate.

Agreed.  I've got a geochecker on a few puzzle but I find that I look at the success/failure rate quite often when looking at a puzzle cache and deciding whether I want to try and solve it.  If the success/failure rate has a lot of failures it tells me that solving it may likely lead to ambiguous answers.  It may mean that the puzzle itself is ambiguos and a lot of people are using the checker to brute force one or more of the digits. I prefer doing puzzles that lead to a clear solution.  

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4 hours ago, IceColdUK said:

I think what d-n is saying is that some COs deliberately give incorrect final coordinates to the reviewer, to prevent a cache being rejected due to proximity issues, and therefore this 'native' checker is not for them. ;-)

Ah, collision of red circles.  Thanks, that makes perfect sense.

I had more, but realized that was going way OT, so I will move to another forum section.

 

Edited by NanCycle
Delete: OK, but that is not a situation for any checker.
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Ah, this is fantastic! I would like to see a toggle for one field though because I usually copy/paste coords into a checker, which is not possible with two fields.

What about automatic coordinate correction? Adding this functionality might convince people to use the GS one instead of an external provider.

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I'd also like to see it available on multis. Most of my field puzzle multis have a checker, as it saves me getting messages from cachers in the field wanting confirmation of their final coordinates; the only times I haven't provided one were where the field puzzle has a limited set of possible answers that could be brute-forced with a checker or where there's no mobile data access anywhere in the area.

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12 hours ago, arisoft said:

The use of geocheckers in mysteries has led to solutions where the task is not so much to solve the mystery but to guess the solution. The same will happen again with multi caches if the use of the geocheckers is favored. Multi caches should be found without use of mobile technology. I would suggest that if a multi cache has an online checker, it should be classified to a mystery cache.

I own two multis where the cacher has to visit a location or a few locations to look for information. For one, the cacher has to go look at a bunch of murals and count objects within the murals. I added a checker after someone requested one. There's no mystery at all, there's nothing to solve, but someone asked for a geochecker.

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I don't see why it shouldn't be available at least for Multis, if not any of the types for which the "corrected coordinates" function is available. Some of the objectors here seem to think that this would be mandatory, but this wouldn't be the case. If the owner of a Multi feels that a checker would make the cache too easy by brute-forcing or some other reasons, then they don't need to add the checker. Nobody's forcing them to do so; we're just asking for the option for the cases where a checker can be appropriate. As we've already seen in this discussion, there are already COs putting checkers on their Multi, so this wouldn't be a new thing.

As for other thoughts about the checker, I was also taken aback by the sheer size of it. As has been the case for many recent changes to the website, it takes up an unnecessarily high amount of space for what it is and could easily be slimmed down significantly (e.g. put the coordinate fields beside each other on the same line, reduce the padding inside the fields, reduce padding around fields and text, etc.). I also agree with other suggestions that it should be hidden/collapsed by default and could then be expanded when someone wants to use it.

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36 minutes ago, The A-Team said:

I don't see why it shouldn't be available at least for Multis,

There is some issue if multi cache needs an online checker. That is my point and it applies especially to voluntary checkers. It is easier to add checker by one click than fix the ambiguous task. If you have solved several mysteries, you will see this pattern quite fast.

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14 minutes ago, arisoft said:

There is some issue if multi cache needs an online checker. That is my point and it applies especially to voluntary checkers. It is easier to add checker by one click than fix the ambiguous task. If you have solved several mysteries, you will see this pattern quite fast.

Technically, no cache NEEDS an online checker. But I've found multi-caches where the tasks aren't really ambiguous, but where it's easy enough to get confused. A checker can be useful in such situations.

One trap I've fallen into a couple times goes something like this:
A = the number of circles
B = the number of squares
C = the number of stars
D = the number of red shapes
E = twice the number of green shapes
F = the number of blue shapes

The tasks aren't really ambiguous, but it's easy to miss the "twice" in the definition of E.

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18 minutes ago, arisoft said:
1 hour ago, The A-Team said:

I don't see why it shouldn't be available at least for Multis,

There is some issue if multi cache needs an online checker. That is my point and it applies especially to voluntary checkers. It is easier to add checker by one click than fix the ambiguous task. If you have solved several mysteries, you will see this pattern quite fast.

Not every field puzzle multi is a D1, some are meant to be difficult, just like solve-at-home puzzle caches aren't all D1, and people do sometimes simply make mistakes. A checker provides an extra degree of assurance before heading off into the wilds to find that T4 final.

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Why oh why does it have to use the worst possible user interface?  Now I have to paste 4 fields to check coordinates.

Not going to subject cachers to it on my pages.

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18 minutes ago, niraD said:

The tasks aren't really ambiguous, but it's easy to miss the "twice" in the definition of E.

Good example. Now think about a geocacher who has printed the description and is using his GPS-device to search this cache. What he might think when realizing that this multi-cache needs an online checker to be solved correctly?

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47 minutes ago, arisoft said:

There is some issue if multi cache needs an online checker. That is my point and it applies especially to voluntary checkers. It is easier to add checker by one click than fix the ambiguous task. If you have solved several mysteries, you will see this pattern quite fast.

I still don't get what you're on about, but it seems likely I never will... It sounds like you don't want checkers for anything. 

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5 minutes ago, arisoft said:

Good example. Now think about a geocacher who has printed the description and is using his GPS-device to search this cache. What he might think when realizing that this multi-cache needs an online checker to be solved correctly?

I don't think anyone's saying it needs an online checker to be solved correctly. None of my multis that have checkers need them, but they're a generally well-received confidence aid for seekers that can prevent a lot of wasted time and potentially hazardous searching in the wrong place because of a simple arithmetic or transcription error or any of the many other ways a non-trivial field puzzle can be incorrectly solved.

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6 minutes ago, barefootjeff said:

I don't think anyone's saying it needs an online checker to be solved correctly. None of my multis that have checkers need them, but they're a generally well-received confidence aid for seekers that can prevent a lot of wasted time and potentially hazardous searching in the wrong place because of a simple arithmetic or transcription error or any of the many other ways a non-trivial field puzzle can be incorrectly solved.

And how do you explain this to the geocacher with printed description on his hand? Cache should be equally safe for him.

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25 minutes ago, arisoft said:
40 minutes ago, barefootjeff said:

I don't think anyone's saying it needs an online checker to be solved correctly. None of my multis that have checkers need them, but they're a generally well-received confidence aid for seekers that can prevent a lot of wasted time and potentially hazardous searching in the wrong place because of a simple arithmetic or transcription error or any of the many other ways a non-trivial field puzzle can be incorrectly solved.

And how do you explain this to the geocacher with printed description on his hand? Cache should be equally safe for him.

I can't diminish that risk by removing the checker, all I could do would be to make the puzzle trivial and/or locate the final, and all possible wrongly calculated locations for it, in a hazard-free region. The checker is an extra helper, like the encrypted hint. It doesn't have to be used, but if someone wants that extra confidence boost, it's available if they have their phone with them. Why do we have to reduce everything to the lowest common denominator?

Edit to add: Or, that printout person could just make two trips - visit the waypoints, come home to check the solution, then go back out for the final. I've done that on a number of occasions.

Edited by barefootjeff
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Would it be possible to automatically fix cache pages which use evince?  In other words, delete the reference to Evince and plug this checker in place of it.  Obviously it would need the COs approval, but it might save some folk a lot of work.

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That looks like a great feature and I'm looking forward to using it. However, it is a bit simple for the moment, so some adjustments would be more than welcome.

Please make the coordinate correction optional and please allow CO to encode a message/spoiler photo.

To give you an example: I own a mystery with a long puzzle to solve, but over time the ground zero has changed (new parking lot has been built where the cache used to be).  Changing the puzzle would be too complicated and not worth the effort... I could have archived the cache, but better option was just to leave a message in the checker with the new set coordinates. Automatic coordinates would incite a mistake, because puzzle solution is not final coordinates of the box in this case.

Also please consider changing the graphical layout of the checker that is not very attractive for the moment (could it be centered? smaller or bigger? etc)

 

Thanks, great job

  

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12 hours ago, terratin said:

What about automatic coordinate correction? Adding this functionality might convince people to use the GS one instead of an external provider.

What is the functionality you're asking for?  It sounds like you're asking for something that is already included in the new feature:  " A Mystery Cache’s final coordinates are tied to the solution checker. If the finder submits the correct coordinates to the checker, it will automatically update the corrected coordinates on the cache page for that finder. "  Is that different from what you are asking for?

 

11 minutes ago, NimfaBłotna said:

To give you an example: I own a mystery with a long puzzle to solve, but over time the ground zero has changed (new parking lot has been built where the cache used to be).  Changing the puzzle would be too complicated and not worth the effort... I could have archived the cache, but better option was just to leave a message in the checker with the new set coordinates. Automatic coordinates would incite a mistake, because puzzle solution is not final coordinates of the box in this case. 

FYI - Another option, besides putting a message in the online checker, would be to include a mention of the updated location in the cache description. Something like "Cache was moved slightly.  Add 00.021 to the solved N coords and subtract 00.015 from the solved E coords".  Otherwise, using a geochecker becomes an absolute requirement to get the final coords.

What if someone solves the puzzle and doesn't use the geochecker because they are confident about the solution they got?  They would end up going to the wrong place because they didn't see the coords in the geochecker. That could result in DNF's.  At the least, make it clear in the cache description that they need to use the geochecker to get the correct location.

 

8 hours ago, arisoft said:

Good example. Now think about a geocacher who has printed the description and is using his GPS-device to search this cache. What he might think when realizing that this multi-cache needs an online checker to be solved correctly?

"Needs"?  I really don't understand where you're coming from.  It's an "optional" checker.  Looks like I'll just have to agree to disagree with you on this topic.

Personally, I prefer to print out multi-cache instructions and I usually make less mistakes when I work through the instructions on paper. Although having the instructions on paper didn't help me recently when I misread one of the questions and ended up searching on the wrong side of the road, in the dark, while both cold and hungry. I couldn't understand how my calculated coords could be wrong and was sure that we were in the right place. We DNF'd and went for dinner and warmed up, which energized the hamsters in my brain and I suddenly realized my calculation error. Headed out the next day to different coords, on the other side of the road, and found it.  A geochecker could've been helpful in such a situation, so I could realize more quickly that I had miscalculated.

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31 minutes ago, NimfaBłotna said:

Automatic coordinates would incite a mistake, because puzzle solution is not final coordinates of the box in this case.

Standard procedure is to give offset from the original solution. See an example here  https://coord.info/GC2Q9ZE

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11 hours ago, arisoft said:
11 hours ago, barefootjeff said:

I don't think anyone's saying it needs an online checker to be solved correctly. None of my multis that have checkers need them, but they're a generally well-received confidence aid for seekers that can prevent a lot of wasted time and potentially hazardous searching in the wrong place because of a simple arithmetic or transcription error or any of the many other ways a non-trivial field puzzle can be incorrectly solved.

And how do you explain this to the geocacher with printed description on his hand? Cache should be equally safe for him.

That's on the cache owner for creating a field puzzle with an ambiguous solution.  If, what seems to be the correct solution to a puzzle turns out to be in a location a geocacher shouldn't be visiting, than those with just a printed description will have to use common sense.  If the CO adds a coordinate checker, at least those with a smart phone would be able to verify the solution to avoid getting into trouble.  It may not benefit everyone, but it could benefit more than if there were no coordinate checker at all.

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2 hours ago, noncentric said:

FYI - Another option, besides putting a message in the online checker, would be to include a mention of the updated location in the cache description. Something like "Cache was moved slightly.  Add 00.021 to the solved N coords and subtract 00.015 from the solved E coords".  Otherwise, using a geochecker becomes an absolute requirement to get the final coords.

I have seen a couple of other use cases for providing a CO with the ability to display "custom text" when someone has entered the correct solution.

Some puzzle cache creators will use the Hint on the cache page to provide a hint for solving the puzzle and put the hint for finding the cache in the coordinate checker.

I have seen a couple of caches which have a combination lock on the container.  The combination is shown on the coordinate checker page once the solution of the puzzle has been confirmed.  

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12 hours ago, niraD said:

One trap I've fallen into a couple times goes something like this:
A = the number of circles
B = the number of squares
C = the number of stars
D = the number of red shapes
E = twice the number of green shapes
F = the number of blue shapes

The tasks aren't really ambiguous, but it's easy to miss the "twice" in the definition of E

That easily overlooked mistake can be multiplied when the CO creates a formula for the actual coordinates.  For example,

The cache is at N42 23.XXX where XXX = (A -B) * E,  W76 30.YYY where YYY = D + E + F * C ...

At least when solving for single digits, if one is wrong (especially if it's a least significant digit) at least the cache will be in the general area of the incorrect solution.  Getting the "E" incorrect in that formula would produce a set of coordinates a fairly significant distance away

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4 hours ago, NimfaBłotna said:

Please make the coordinate correction optional and please allow CO to encode a message/spoiler photo.

To give you an example: I own a mystery with a long puzzle to solve, but over time the ground zero has changed (new parking lot has been built where the cache used to be).  Changing the puzzle would be too complicated and not worth the effort... I could have archived the cache, but better option was just to leave a message in the checker with the new set coordinates.

That's moving into having the checker be a generic puzzle solution checker. If the coordinates to be validated don't have to be the final, then they could be anything. I think the point GS was making it native for was specifically because the final waypoint is already a requirement for mystery caches, so the checker can be added to verify the final coordinate.

Making it allow +/- padding for larger projection calculations is helpful, but if a CO can effectively have any "correct" coordinates in the checker, then it allows a very different use, and without reviewer control it could go off the rails quickly.

Plus, it means that using the checker is no longer 'optional' to locate the cache, but the user MUST use the checker to verify the puzzle solution and retrieve the final coordinates, and that's not what it's there for. (at least at this point in time)

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6 hours ago, noncentric said:
7 hours ago, NimfaBłotna said:

To give you an example: I own a mystery with a long puzzle to solve, but over time the ground zero has changed (new parking lot has been built where the cache used to be).  Changing the puzzle would be too complicated and not worth the effort... I could have archived the cache, but better option was just to leave a message in the checker with the new set coordinates. Automatic coordinates would incite a mistake, because puzzle solution is not final coordinates of the box in this case. 

FYI - Another option, besides putting a message in the online checker, would be to include a mention of the updated location in the cache description. Something like "Cache was moved slightly.  Add 00.021 to the solved N coords and subtract 00.015 from the solved E coords".  Otherwise, using a geochecker becomes an absolute requirement to get the final coords.

What if someone solves the puzzle and doesn't use the geochecker because they are confident about the solution they got?  They would end up going to the wrong place because they didn't see the coords in the geochecker. That could result in DNF's.  At the least, make it clear in the cache description that they need to use the geochecker to get the correct location.

 Might be having a dyslexic day (had an official one on the 5th),  but  curious if a Reviewer sees this new change if it's only in the checker.

(To me) changing location after placement seems an easy way to bypass a Reviewer's view for proximity issues, sort of gaming the system.  It might also affect others looking to place nearby as well, when folks say "there's a cache only forty feet away" but the Reviewer may see otherwise.   IIRC, there's another thread just on this.

On a regular cache, one can move the cache a bit for issues.  Not fixing  a puzzle cache because it'd be too complicated and "not worth the effort" seems (to me)  like a good reason to archive.

But I agree, I'd like someone saying I need to use the checker.   :)

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1 hour ago, Team DEMP said:

Why doesn't the checker for this HQ GeoTour cache validate?

GC32A0H https://www.geocaching.com/geocache/GC32A0H_hqgt-ode-to-the-golgafrinchan-phone-workers 

The cache page says "This cache is at the posted coordinates" yet the checker, which defaults to the original coordinates, returns: 
Those coordinates are not correct. You have 9 tries left.

Interesting.  The native checker works if entering the previous set of coords:  N 47 38.964 W 122 20.860

The cache had to be moved because of construction.  The coords I noted above are for the previous location:  Update Coords log dated 6/3/2016   My guess is that the final waypoint in the listing wasn't updated when the Update Coords log was entered?

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On one of my puzzles I use the coordinate checker text to display info that is needed to find a bonus puzzle cache.

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Abstract Level

Adding a built-in checker is a good idea, because it offers some nice possibilities:

  1. Automatically correcting the cache coordinates (as already implemented)
  2. Ensuring that the checker is set to 0 / 0 (correct / wrong solutions) on publish
  3. Ensuring consistency of final coordinates and checker coordinates
  4. Push notifications if coordinates of a solved cache have changed

I see one drawback that is hard to fix in the near future:

  1. Beta tester of a cache should have the possibility to access the checker before the cache is published

 

Feedback for Current Version

  1. I immediately missed the possibility to enter (paste) coordinates at once in one input field (already mentioned several times).
  2. The recaptcha is really annoying. On one of my computers, it tries to load something for 30 seconds, then stops, and nothing happened; it simply doesn't work. I don't understand why you need a captcha for users that are already logged in (and limited to 10 tries every 10 minutes)?
  3. Solving the previous two items (one input field, no captcha) also makes the checker more compact.
  4. It would be nice if the checker provides the number of correct and wrong attempts (visible to all users).
  5. It would be nice if the the cache owner could see all entered coordinates (but not who entered them).

 

Bugs

  1. As already mentioned the recaptcha didn't work on one of my computers.
  2. If the final coordinates contain E 000° 00.000' and the users enters W 000° 00.000', the checker rejects the coordinates.
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1 hour ago, UniQP said:

It would be nice if the the cache owner could see all entered coordinates (but not who entered them)

I find this a very useful feature on the 3rd party checker I use, especially for puzzles where each task yields a different digit, so I can quickly see if there's a common mistake people are making and so modify the description accordingly to make my intention clearer.

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3 hours ago, UniQP said:

I don't understand why you need a captcha for users that are already logged in (and limited to 10 tries every 10 minutes)?

A robot army can be mobilized to enter unlimited number of tries. One robot can enter 1440 coordinates per day but 100 robots can do 144000 per day etc.

It would be better to limit also number of tries per day to get rid of possible robot accounts.

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On 10/19/2017 at 1:14 PM, MNofMind said:

I think we are definitely open to those changes and want to hear what people prefer. The thought was that normally the degrees don't change so we would leave it separate.

But leaving the degrees unchanged still requires pasting into twice as many boxes!  It's a very bad design decision.

I would prefer that there be no checker at all rather than this one, which is inexcusably poorly implemented. This so-called "feature" should have had some minimal user feedback before being deployed.

The addition of this poor excuse for a checker is going to make my life worse as a prolific puzzle-solver.  Now puzzle creators will use this horrible checker instead of the good ones that are available now.  As a result, I have to cut-and-paste into multiple fields or else come up with some Greasmonkey script to do it for me. 

I am Not a Happy Camper.

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20 minutes ago, fizzymagic said:

The addition of this poor excuse for a checker is going to make my life worse as a prolific puzzle-solver.  Now puzzle creators will use this horrible checker instead of the good ones that are available now.  As a result, I have to cut-and-paste into multiple fields or else come up with some Greasmonkey script to do it for me. 

This is not the only checker with many boxes. I have used years an another with same kind of user interface and it has proven sensitive for typing errors and difficult to use in mobile devices. I would use the same interface as the corrected coordinates is using. I think there was no one whining about why you have to enter corrected coordinates in a single box instead of splitting it to random number of separate boxes. Checker shoud check coordinates in every format as corrected coordinates are possible to enter.

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