TAG :: Toronto Area Geocachers » geocaching.com

Dec 15 2010

It looks like it’s a big news day all around today. Now, Groundspeak has added another killer feature to the geocaching.com website. They have purchased mygeocachingprofile.com and will be adding a “stats” tab to your geocaching profile page, starting next Tuesday. This is a welcome addition to the tools at geocaching.com.

Stats you can currently track on mygeocachingprofile.com include which states/provinces you have cached in, and various challenges like the Fizzy/Well Rounded Cacher 81 D/T grid and the days of the year caching challenges.  This type of information built into the site will reduce the need for some GSAK macros like FindStatGen.

From the mygeocachingprofile.com homepage:

Mygeocachingprofile.com Acquired by Groundspeak!

Great news for lovers of geocaching statistics! Groundspeak has acquired the mygeocachingprofile.com site and will be moving the statistics, charts, and maps into the geocaching.com website! They have already begun an initial transfer of several profile sections into a new “Stats” tab in your geocaching profile and they plan to move over more sections in the near future. Look for the new “Stats” profile tab in the upcoming geocaching.com release next week!

The mygeocachingprofile.com website will continue to be available in its current form so cachers can take advantage of any existing sections that haven’t yet been incorporated into the main geocaching.com site. We’ll also be passing along all of your fantastic development suggestions to the Groundspeak team so that they can continue providing new statistics and maps directly on geocaching.com.

Thanks to all of our users for your tremendous support and thanks to Groundspeak for bringing these fun features to the geocaching community!

Happy caching!

Cameron and Jan (Brainzane & Yossface)

This is great news for Groundspeak’s geocaching community.

Dec 15 2010

The secrets are starting to leak out now. Now we have a GoGeocaching twitter post that links to a video on their YouTube account. Check out the embedded video above to see a demo of the new map functionality. Very similar to Opencaching.com’s map with one notable exception – the Geocaching.com map blots out the map with the cache information when you zoom out to a state/province level.

Word is, this will be arriving next Tuesday (December 21), and this update’s gonna be major.

Dec 15 2010

Groundspeak is now reporting (via their Twitter account) that their large infrastructure update is complete. Users have been noticing glitches all morning, including problems with the Geocaching iPhone and Android apps, and the coord.info links. Judging from the chatter around on the blogs there is a lot more going on at Groundspeak than a simple server upgrade. No doubt the war chest is being armed against Opencaching (and others). The website appears to be operating more or less normally now.

The date was chosen for the upgrade as historically December 14 is the least busy time on the site. Guess most of us are Christmas shopping … well in the Toronto area we are

Dec 15 2010

While the Geocaching.com site may be back up after the update, it’s not without any hiccups. The site is very slow in responding currently.

Pocket Queries have also not run for today and the iPhone app can’t connect to the site.

Dec 15 2010

Found this one this morning at Teamvoyagr’s Cachemania blogsite. Looks like Groundspeak gave permission to one of their reviewers in the United Kingdom. Pyrocacher, to release a few screen shots from an upcoming software update at Geocaching.com. These features are not coming as a part of last night’s update but we “won’t be waiting long”.

Improvements coming for include:

  • Better maps – he has a screen shot showing every cache in North America
  • Cache favouriting
  • Stats

Stop by Pyrocachers blog for more details

Dec 15 2010

Well, it looks like the Geocaching.com update window has gone a little over the 6 hours. The original time estimate was from 11PM EST to 5AM EST for the site maintenance but here we are at 8:25 AM and the site seems to be down. The forums are up and running, but there’s nothing posted in the maintenance thread to indicate there’s a problem. Geocaching.com, Waymarking.com are down but Wherigo.com is up and running.

Dec 13 2010

Several Toronto area geocachers were interviewed for a new local magazine, Journey ON!. The magazine features articles about travel and adventure in Ontario. northernpenguin (yup, that’s me), teamvoyagr and chris-mouse were interviewed at the BFL Boot Camp event last October.

The caches I referred to in the article are the Tour de Matchedash series, and Languages.
The earthcache is Juicepig’s Sudbury Astrobleme

You can view the magazine online here, or skip right to the article text here.
The magazine is also embedded below, if you can view Adobe Flash content:

Dec 10 2010

Groundspeak has opened up a section on the feedback site for picking out the next souvenirs. Souvenirs are little FourSquare like achievement badges that show up on your profile when you complete a certain task – like logging a geocache in a given area, or at a certain event.

Here’s a list of all the active Souvenirs

If you have an active account on Geocaching.com, you can head on over and see the list that everyone’s pitching, and vote for the ones you’d like

Dec 09 2010

There’s an interesting thread that popped up in the Groundspeak forums today. We’ve known since the November site update that cache ratings are on their way. Now, we have a date – Dec 31.

In the feedback system, a quote was made by Jeremy Irish, that indicates we’ll be seeing a form of a rating system by the end of the year

We will complete our first attempt at a rating system by the end of the month. In lieu of a generic (and IMO unhelpful) 1-5 star rating system we have decided to let people rate a percentage of their finds as their favorites.

This favorite count will then be displayed on the cache listing. The beta feature will initially be introduced to Premium Members but will eventually opened up to all users.

We will also be exploring other ways to identify the best caches to encourage quality. Quality of the game is one of the major themes for 2011.

Now, this could be seen as a rushed response to Garmin’s 1-5 “awesomeness” rating system. It will be far simpler, being the Groundspeak equivalent of a “Like” button. You can favourite a certain percentage of your finds, and the number of “Favourites” will be visible on the cache page. No word about being able to filter on this yet.

One thing we do know from the November release notes is that this was planned before the Opencaching site came out of the woodwork. At the end of the day, it’s the geocaching community that will win out.

Dec 08 2010

Well, here’s an interesting little tidbit.  The day before Opencaching.com launched, Groundspeak announced they’re taking the entire site – the whole kit and kaboole – offline next Tuesday night for a major infrastructure upgrade. That’s everything from Geocaching.com, to the smartphone apps, to Waymarking. If it’s a Groundspeak site, it’ll be offline.

Elias posted in This Thread :

As Groundspeak and Geocaching.com have grown, the demands on our production network infrastructure have increased significantly. As a result, on Tuesday December 14, 2010 at 8:00 PM PST (GMT -8), we will be performing a number of major upgrades to our production network. These upgrades include a new network design as well as new hardware to help increase the performance, scalability, and security of the network.

We’re estimating that the downtime may take up to 6 hours, and during that time, all Groundspeak sites and services including Geocaching.com, the Groundspeak Forums, Pocket Queries, Geocaching Mobile Applications, and other 3rd party applications that access our API will be inaccessible.

While we’re giving ourselves a 6 hour window to cover anything unexpected that might come up, we’ll be doing everything possible to minimize the downtime and are confident that we’ll have the site back up much sooner.

When combined with the Opencaching.com launch timing, one starts to wonder just what Groundspeak will be making happen at the Lillypad? Are we just looking at scaling the servers to handle over 1 million active geocache listings, or are we seeing some of the chess pieces for the Garmin vs Groundspeak front being moved into place?

Garmin has already launched a few salvos with the site, the easy import from Groundspeak via GPX tools and that 5,000 cache at a time API access which could load up an Oregon 550 with one click.  Perhaps in the background Groundspeak is gearing up for the massive hit an official Geocaching.com API would place on their servers.

The release notes on Wednesday morning should be an interesting read