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Is the odometer about to roll over on caches?


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I submitted a cache this afternoon and was surprised to see it was assigned the waypoint GC9992.

 

http://www.geocaching.com/seek/cache_details.aspx?ID=39314

 

Does this mean that all of the GCxxxx waypoints have been exhausted? If so, what's next? (It looks like GC9999 is probably sitting somewhere in the pipe waiting to be approved - the highest number I could find was GC9995, http://www.geocaching.com/seek/cache_details.aspx?ID=39317)

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Jamie Zthat was my suggestion to the town on stop signs there should only be so many of them. When someone wants a new one they must find one that can be taken down first.

 

I like to call it the (proposed) law of conservation of stop signs.

 

as for the caches after gcffff - there will still be plenty of gps's that will only accept the 6 digits when we run out. I like the idea of dropping the c.

 

----(sig line)---> Did you ever do any trail maintainence? - if so you will know that all but the most worn trails need continuous maintenance to prevent mother nature from reclaiming it. herd paths are quickly reclaimed - k2dave

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What says that the codes couldn't be alphanumeric?

 

Saying that after GCffff comes GCfffg and so on, meaning that we can go on until GCzzzz.

If we go back and reuse the numbers that have been passed, i.e. not only GC0001 to GC000f, but all the way to GC000z, then we have 1697615, instead of 65535 possible combinations. Assuming GC0000 isn't used.

 

This gives one cache for every 303 km^2, oceans included. Since about 70% is water, there'll be one cache for less than every 100 km^2. Considering then how much of the earth that isn't too nice to walk on (desert, mountains, ice), it'll probably be enough.

 

Besides, who needs more than 640 K RAM in a personal computer, to quote mr Gates.

 

Anders

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quote:
Originally posted by k2dave:

... as for the caches after gcffff - there will still be plenty of gps's that will only accept the 6 digits when we run out.


 

Elias mentioned in another thread recently that when the current series of numbers runs out, the prefix would be changed to "GD" and the sequence would start again from the beginning. A few other possibilites were also mentioned.

 

Our earliest GPS (a Magellan 300) only accepted 4 numbers/letters. When we started geocaching, we liked using names better than waypoint designations, so we entered the first or shortest descriptive word of a cache name ... or the first letter of each word.

 

When we purchased the Maggie back in '99, we considered that 4th place a real luxury, because most navaids use only a 3 place identifier.

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Trippy,

 

You have your math wrong.

 

It's 16^4, not 4^16.

 

Look at it this way, we use a base ten system in everyday use... 0,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9.

 

If you can only use two digits, you have 10^2 combinations, or 100 (0-99). Not 2^10 combinations which is 1024 and equivilant to an 8-bit binary number.

 

Your suggestion that "even if only numbers were being used, we'd have

 

4^10 = 1,048,576" doesn't make sense. Four digits of base 10 is clearly 10,000, not 1,048,576. In fact, the idea is kind of silly, and I'm sure you'll laugh.

 

Jamie

 

(edit: corrected my own math error, oops)

 

[This message was edited by Jamie Z on October 10, 2002 at 12:23 PM.]

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quote:
Originally posted by trippy1976:

I'm pretty sure that the way to determine the total possible combinations that a string has is:

 

(number of items)^(possible values)

 

Which makes the total possible combinations of GC strings using the current setup

 

(4 spaces after GC) ^ (10 digits + 6 alphas)

 

4^16 = 4,294,967,296

 

We have a ways to go icon_wink.gif

 

--------

http://www.wunderware.com/mike/geocaching/

 

http://www.mi-geocaching.org/


 

You have it backwards. As an example, if you had only one space and 16 digits. Your version would put that at 1^16... which is 1. It should be 16^1 which is 16.. 2 places 16^2 =256, so 4 places is 16^4 which is 65536.

 

george

 

Pedal until your legs cramp up and then pedal some more.

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quote:
Originally posted by trippy1976:

I'm pretty sure that the way to determine the total possible combinations that a string has is:

 

(number of items)^(possible values)

 

Which makes the total possible combinations of GC strings using the current setup

 

(4 spaces after GC) ^ (10 digits + 6 alphas)

 

4^16 = 4,294,967,296

 

We have a ways to go icon_wink.gif

 

--------

http://www.wunderware.com/mike/geocaching/

 

http://www.mi-geocaching.org/


 

You have it backwards. As an example, if you had only one space and 16 digits. Your version would put that at 1^16... which is 1. It should be 16^1 which is 16.. 2 places 16^2 =256, so 4 places is 16^4 which is 65536.

 

george

 

Pedal until your legs cramp up and then pedal some more.

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quote:
Originally posted by Anders:

What says that the codes couldn't be alphanumeric?

 

Saying that after GCffff comes GCfffg and so on, meaning that we can go on until GCzzzz.

If we go back and reuse the numbers that have been passed, i.e. not only GC0001 to GC000f, but all the way to GC000z, then we have 1697615, instead of 65535 possible combinations. Assuming GC0000 isn't used.

 

This gives one cache for every 303 km^2, oceans included. Since about 70% is water, there'll be one cache for less than every 100 km^2. Considering then how much of the earth that isn't too nice to walk on (desert, mountains, ice), it'll probably be enough.

 

Besides, who needs more than 640 K RAM in a personal computer, to quote mr Gates.

 

Anders


 

There's a very good reason NOT to use the whole alphabet. Computer languages often use the base 16 (0 through F), and convertions between base 10 (0 through 9) are accomplished easily. If you look at the URL for a given cach page (http://www.geocaching.com/seek/cache_details.aspx?ID=19140) The ID number 19140 = 4AC4. Now look at that cache page you you'll see that the way point is GC4AC4.

 

The simplest way to go beyon FFFF is to add another digit, but that's still a ways off.

 

Byron

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