KeyResults

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Everything posted by KeyResults

  1. Yeah, welcome back! The south side lost a few really active cachers in the past few years, but me thinks there's fun caches aplenty for you and da boys P.S. the Cacher loss I refer to is due to job-related moves out of our area. I just thought I ought to clarify the above statement.
  2. Awesome news! Glad we get one much closer to home. Thanks for the heads-up. Can't wait to make a go of it. Sounds like it's no slouch.
  3. A New Version of BOINC is out for Windows and MAC: Which is currently 7.6.33 Here is a link to release notes. https://boinc.berkeley.edu/wiki/Release_Notes_for_BOINC_7.6 Several notable things have been fixed and updated including NVidia video GPU recognition. BOINC is a program that lets you donate your idle computer time to science projects like SETI@home, Climateprediction.net, Rosetta@home, World Community Grid, and many others. BOINC is the software behind the World Community Grid. You only need to install or upgrade BOINC 7.6.33 For World Community Grid, Our own Thot's (Jim) team HGCS. If you already are participating in the World Community Grid, chances are you are using version 7.4 of the software, or older. I strongly recommend you upgrade and re-run the benchmark from the BOINC Manager menu at the top of the screen. It only takes a minute or two. The upgrade for me on Windows 10 Pro was flawless. Here is the UC Berkley download link for BOINC: http://boinc.berkeley.edu/download.php You can follow a link or two and read about the virtual box download and decide for yourself if you'd like to help scientists and researchers in other initiatives such as SETI@Home, which require Virtual Box along with BOINC. Your choice. Speaking for myself, I'm quite proud of my participation in this program to help stomp out cancer in children, and the daunting task of mapping cancer markers. A few years ago, on this HGCS.org website, Jim (aka THOT) invited anyone who was willing to loan their PC or MAC's idle time to science. Several of us did. I for one am really glad Jim did that. I cannot tell you how good it makes you feel to get the occasional updates from the appreciative research scientists. You see your little laptop or desktop PC just sitting there, and you know that when you're not using it it's helping to unlock the cure or solution to many of man's nastiest or toughest problems. Here's the link to the World Community Grid: https://www.worldcommunitygrid.org/ It's just a little thing, but as part of tens of thousands of other little things all over the world (the World Community Grid), you are making a difference over time. The status reports prove it. It's pretty cool. If you have a computer, that you're willing to leave on at night, or share while you're not using it, please consider this extremely worthwhile donation of some of your idle computer's processing power. It's free and absolutely secure, and fully configurable. Thanks again Jim! (TFP: Dude! You da man)
  4. If they were mine, I'd enjoy twice the anguish and frustration of TB ownership
  5. Bass Pro mailer today has Garmin GPSMAP 64S at $199.00 in Greater Houston area which is $100.00 off reg price. The 64S is a very good product for anyone thinking about upgrading or buying a handheld for Geocaching. I personally believe it is the best consumer handheld GPS unit available right now, especially for Urban Caching, and matched with a good smartphone for satellite images, is about as good as it gets right now IMO.
  6. I recall some chit chat about souvenirs where some were suggesting that HQ has kinda cheapened them by using them in many of their membership promotions. One was the 31 days thing awhile back. Personally, I like collecting em when life permits it. I mostly hear about the souvies via the member emails or the Groundspeak blog promoting various events. With activity and membership down, the achievement of participation using the souvenirs is added motivation for some. I admit that I am slightly more likely to try and participate in stuff to collect new souvenirs. What can I say? I'm a lemming.
  7. Talk about your fixer-upper
  8. Perhaps one day we'll attend an event or something and I can take a look Jim.
  9. I cannot take em, as much as I LOVE that park. But, I really appreciate your posting them for possible adoption.
  10. You now know why your compass jumps around. My calibration is smooth and quick. I'd consider calling tech support and let them decide if your unit is defective. The calibration process isn't normally very difficult Jim. I just did mine in first pass, in 35 seconds, beginning to end.
  11. Updated my Garmin 64s GPSr from firmware version 4.20 to 4.50 this past weekend and the unit performed without a hitch all day long. You can update your Garmin using a variety of methods supported by Garmin and all methods are free. I usually use Basecamp, or Garmin Express (Windows or Mac) to handle the update for me. If you wish to check your Garmin model for latest firmware (i.e. 62, 64, Oregon, Montana, etc.)
  12. Thot~ I am uncertain about the "wide jumping around" thing. I do not generally experience anything of the sort. That's not to say that when my calibration is off, or when I am standing under high power transmission lines, or other sources of geomagnetic interference, that my Garmin 64s won't jump around on me. It will. As a rule, it is very stable. As far as the hollow arrowhead indicator on the map screen, it is indeed tied to the internal electronic compass. When the compass is switched off in the Garmin GPSMAP system settings, you'll note that it ceases to function in any useful way while standing still. When you switch on the compass in settings, the pointer will reflect either magnetic or true north reliably according to settings, assuming, of course, the unit is calibrated correctly. The compass pointer will point to north regardless of the GPS target indicator being used while it is turned on. The compass settings are found in the SYSTEM > HEADING menu page. The two options are Auto or Off. As far as I know, the triaxial digital compass in the 62s is identical to the one in the 64s. They should behave the same in either unit. They can, and do fail, but as a rule, they are fairly hardy and reliable components. After all, the digital compass in these units should be treated just as gingerly as any mechanical magnetic compass would be. At the end of the day, they are sensitive magnetic devices. You should do your best to avoid putting your GPSr in close proximity to electronics or magnetic objects as they surely will affect the performance. I hope this helps. K
  13. Appreciate the heads up. I do need the T ( and to clean up a few in Alphabet Soup too) It would be nice to have it all completed
  14. Thot: Given all your personal criteria listed above, I'd say keep your 62s as long as it's functioning and be sure to calibrate the compass often, at least with each battery charge/change. $200 is $200, and it doesn't sound like you'll get enough value to justify the upgrade IMO. FWIW I LIKE THE DISPLAY I'm surprised you find the display unsatisfactory, I consider it to be pretty darn good, in daylight especially. I trust you've been able to mess with the brightness settings in various conditions, as well as the backlight settings in low light. To get great battery life, compromises have to be made. I think Garmin has done a good job here. I do not think they've gone far enough on the Montana, and other large touch screen models using lithium rechargeables. Screen resolution should, at least, equal good smartphone screen resolutions IMO.
  15. I just realized nobody answered Thot's question about the usefulness of the Barometer in the 64s and 64st models. My take is that many mountain terrain hikers and backpackers use the GPSMap family of handhelds to assist in tracking elevation, and also for weather changes. The Altimeter function of the unit has several modes that determine how you might use it. Essentially, in auto mode, the altimeter self-calibrates to current ambient temperature and barometric pressure. This sensor data can now aid in the tracking of elevation changes coupled with GPS position fixes for a fairly reliable elevation. In barometer mode, assuming a fixed position, one can monitor for pressure changes that may signal a storm coming (drastic pressure drop) or clearing weather (sharp pressure rise). I sometimes fly fish in some steep canyons, like the Black Canyon on the Gunnison River in Colorado. It takes a good amount of time and effort to hike down into the fishable water. It can be dangerous when a storm passes, raising the water level rapidly. The only warning you have in these cases is to monitor barometric pressure, calibrating it after you get down to the water. It turns out that the pressure drop usually happens ahead of the storm, affording the fisherman plenty of time to hike back up to a safe area. I have used the altimeter function once on a geocache, an Earthcache I think. It was handy then too, but I haven't personally seen any other geocaches like that since. To be honest, I don't really think it's THE reason to buy the Garmin GPSr. It's just another goodie that might prove useful somehow in your travels. For me personally, my watch has the barometer I actively use when fishing (hiking) in the Rockies, or any place else where the horizon is blocked from view. When I cannot see an approaching t-storm in the distance, my watch does through pressure drop detection. Could my Garmin do that for me, yes, but my watch is more convenient when I'm fishing, so the Garmin stays in the caching pack. One last thing, hikers that are using USGS maps, paper or digital, may use contour elevations that are really helpful at pinpointing a position when coupled with a compass and barometer. It's old school, but tried and true to be sure. Most Serious Alpine hikers wouldn't be caught without a good mechanical compass and barometer along with a detailed contour map of their area. Digital GPS units are fairly useless in subzero temps on glaciers for days at a time.
  16. Hi all. Sorry, I decided to shut off all digital communication for a few badly needed days of unpluggedness. THOT: Re: The Digital Compass The digital compass has progressed rather nicely and has improved substantially since the 60 series Garmin handheld receivers. For one thing, they became triaxial, which meant it no longer needed to be held flat to render an accurate bearing. To render an accurate direction, however, it requires regular calibration. The chip used for this triaxial compass has improved substantially in performance and lower cost thanks to cellular smartphones and automobile navigation systems that also use the technology. Garmin uses a very sensitive device in its handheld GPSr units. I believe I described the compass in some detail previously on the board. In a nutshell, if you wish to use the digital compass, in ANY handheld device, and you wish for it to function properly, you must calibrate it regularly. Yes, that includes smartphones too. This is especially true in Garmin 62 and 64 series units because of the rechargeable batteries. Each type of battery affects the sensitive digital compass. Software compensates for the various chemistries. That is why it is important to select the correct battery type in the user configuration settings of the GPSr. It's good practice to then calibrate your unit's compass after changing the batteries out. Also, because of geological differences, it's a good practice to recalibrate the compass when you travel to a different location. Sometimes that calibration process can be a little wonky, but if you do it regularly, it becomes second nature, and it only takes a minute. Muddy Buddies, Stan, by all accounts a very experienced and exceptional geocacher, has told me that he really doesn't care about the compass, at least in the past. And, I agree that, as long as you are moving, and have good satellite lock, you do not need the compass for a reasonably accurate COG and you should probably ignore the compass screen altogether. I counter, that the calibrated compass can be very helpful when you are standing still and you want to know which direction you are facing. The "assist" that a calibrated compass affords the geocacher is considerable in my opinion, so why not use it? Re: Bluetooth The Bluetooth wireless functionality built into the Garmin 64 family have so much potential in my opinion, for wireless connectivity to smartphones in the field, and connections wirelessly to the PC for logging and file exchange. Thus far, to my knowledge, this hasn't happened. So as far as I am concerned the BT doesn't bring much to the party. However, the 64 family of GPSr units are by far the best of the button type handheld receivers yet produced by Garmin. Why? (1) The GGZ file format replacing the GPX format, which allows efficient storage of unlimited geocaches. (2) GLONASS support. The addition of the GLONASS satellites network of 24 "birds" provide for much faster satellite position upon power on, and substantially better fix in Urban geocaching scenarios because there are more points in the sky at any given location. Two satellites are simply better than just one! This has benefitted many newer smartphones too, by the way. (3) Mature software is the product of all that Garmin has gleaned from the previous GPSr units. The 64 series is now a mature and stable platform which performs really well for the price. The accessories are all backwards compatible with the 62 series too which makes the upgrade easier on the pocket book if you have handlebar mounts and stuff like that. My recommendation: Get a 64s and use it with your modern smartphone. The Garmin gets great battery life, is rain resistant, tough, and is excellent in most situations. The smartphone allows detailed logging (I prefer dictating my logs), satellite views in real-time when and can be really helpful. I hope this helps. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year fellow cachers!
  17. I have noticed wonky behavior on their website from time to time also, but not so much lately. Seems ok now.
  18. GSAK has a routing macro for just this kind of thing. It doesn't do much for trees and trails outings, but excels at highway outings and geotours.
  19. Makes me appreciate the building achievements of the Ancient Civilizations that much more; Assuming the Ancients weren't helped by advanced intergalactic visitors, or future Us traveling back in time to mess with ourselves in the present.
  20. 000 of a dec inch! That will make for a few geo emails to CO's of the future
  21. until
    Fun Family Friendly event on Sunday afternoon/evening on NW side of town. Usually well attended and a lot of fun. Gift exchange is always good for laughs and fun. My BFF Caching Buddie 2katz and I hope you ALL can make it out this year. We'll try to save some yummy 2katz cookies for ya Rudy's Grill and Cantina Sun Dec 11, 4-7 PM https://coord.info/GC6XGX0 (should publish soon)
  22. Picture this: You've fired up your gadget and found that HGCS.org is suddenly gone. It died. You are compelled to write a eulogy and say a few words in response to this news. What say you?
  23. I knew it was bound to happen eventually. The best app for geocaching on the iPhone may be down for the count with the latest IOS 10 update. On my iPhone 6s Plus, I tried to log a few this am and the process seemed okay from the app perspective, but when I checked GS, my logs weren't there. Also, other functions seemed to be misbehaving too even though the map, compass and geocache filtering still seemed to be ok. This REALLY stinks, even without updates for the last 3 years, Geosphere outperforms groundspeaks piece of junk by a fairly wide margin. What to do? What to do...
  24. LOL great event title. Doubtful for this one, but will definitely try if other commitments permit. The Fall cannot come fast enough for us!
  25. Well, at least you didn't get tagged with the needs archived flag! Great post. Some of the newbies have been rather sour and belligerent lately. Bummer. But they still don't cancel out those wonderful logs that show up from appreciative visitors now and then. I understand about the premium thing, but I also would urge you to pick and choose a percentage of good, easily maintained caches you own stay regular and accessible to the newbies. In our densely populated area, rich with hides, publishing as premium has become necessary because of some bad apples. Premium tag is not fool-proof, but it does help with jerk vandals and bored teens. However, I also agree that it is essential that we have a selection of geocaches, good ones, available to the newcomer. The barrier to entry to play this game is still pretty high when you consider the need for tech to play, but it's gotten better with GPS enabled smart phones. Having a good selection of free geocaches must be maintained to help recruiting IMO.