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EnergySaver
WGA Member



Joined: 2004-05-28
Posts: 1440
Location: Ozaukee County

PostPosted: Thu Jun 16, 2005 10:28 am Reply with quote Back to top

Wayyyyy too much going on with that AZ Home Page. I got dizzy and closed it, before finding anything I wanted to check out further.
 
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Cheesehead Dave
WGA Member



Joined: 2002-04-06
Posts: 1030
Location: Kenosha, WI

PostPosted: Thu Jun 16, 2005 2:16 pm Reply with quote Back to top

quote:
Originally posted by EnergySaver:
Wayyyyy too much going on with that AZ Home Page. I got dizzy and closed it, before finding anything I wanted to check out further.


Their sidebar information extends farther down than the actual content in the middle of the page.

I like how our site is organized. The main page is a sort of table of contents with little other information. I'm not a huge fan of the "blog" style of home pages. The information just looks a bit too cluttered.
 
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Opossum
WGA Member



Joined: 2005-05-11
Posts: 210
Location: WI, USA

PostPosted: Thu Jun 16, 2005 2:56 pm Reply with quote Back to top

Whoa there, doggies! I did not suggest we copy the AZ web site style, and
humbly said it is a bit much for me. The point was that other states have more
advanced scripts than WI, they work, and they might be willing to share.

Some of their scripts mine data from GC.com for generating statistics, and other scripts
generate graphs from that data. The section on the left titled "Geocaching Stats" has
some things we might consider using. For those of you who's heads spun, use this link
to see a nice table: http://www.azgeocaching.com/cache_stats.php

Conversely, in WI it seems we can't manage to mine GC.com for new WI members, or for
that matter, even update our Monthly Article (last updated September, 2004). That tells
me that the volunteers are busy with other WGA things, quite possibly the many
fantastic events WI holds, and possibly trying to find time to write the scripts to
power the neat features of the website, some of which are now defunct.

Since everyone has limited amounts of time, I'm suggesting there may be a way to pool
resources and get our features working at a lower cost than asking a limited number of
WI volunteers to maintain everything. This is such a popular concept that
sourceforge.net is based around the idea of sharing code and has more than
100,000 active projects. Surely we can manage a small handful with fellow
geocachers.

(Edited to make it read better on the extremely wide-page.)

[This message has been edited by Opossum (edited 06-17-2005).]
 
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EnergySaver
WGA Member



Joined: 2004-05-28
Posts: 1440
Location: Ozaukee County

PostPosted: Thu Jun 16, 2005 3:16 pm Reply with quote Back to top

You "bit much" was noted ... I just wanted to indicate a "much much" for myself.

Have you by chance ever checked out?:
"HouseofBrew's Website of WI Geocaching records!" at http://www.igotsomestuff.com/

A WGA member with some cool stats ... referenced from the WGA Links page.
 
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Cathunter




Joined: 2003-09-10
Posts: 1263
Location: Bristol WI

PostPosted: Thu Jun 16, 2005 3:55 pm Reply with quote Back to top

quote:
Originally posted by Opossum:
Some of their scripts mine data from GC.com for generating statistics, and other scripts generate graphs from that data. "Geocaching Stats" has some things we might consider using. For those of you who's heads spun, use this link to see a nice table: http://www.azgeocaching.com/cache_stats.php

Conversely, in WI it seems we can't manage to mine GC.com for new WI members, or for that matter, even update our Monthly Article (last updated September, 2004)



I think the truth in this case is that the association chooses NOT to post stats on the WGA web site, to prevent from imposing the idea that stats carry an undue amount of importance within the membership.

As for the article of the month- Any member who has an interest is highly encouraged to write and submit an article to Kbraband for review. Unfortunately, there just has not been many submissions to utilize.
 
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kbraband
WGA Historian



Joined: 2002-02-19
Posts: 2461
Location: Mequon, WI US

PostPosted: Thu Jun 16, 2005 5:10 pm Reply with quote Back to top

quote:
Originally posted by Cathunter:
I think the truth in this case is that the association chooses NOT to post stats on the WGA web site, to prevent from imposing the idea that stats carry an undue amount of importance within the membership.


I agree, but I also aknowledge I may be in the minority on that one.
quote:

As for the article of the month- Any member who has an interest is highly encouraged to write and submit an article to Kbraband for review. Unfortunately, there just has not been many submissions to utilize.



Actually, the most recent Article of the Most was posted in Feb. 2005, not last year as the other poster stated. We also have another one in the works. But yes, we welcome your ideas and submissions for Article of the Month.

 
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Opossum
WGA Member



Joined: 2005-05-11
Posts: 210
Location: WI, USA

PostPosted: Thu Jun 16, 2005 6:54 pm Reply with quote Back to top

Am I fighting an uphill battle or what? (Did anyone notice the link provided was to cache
statistics, not cacher stats?)

The WGA volunteers have done a lot to make this work in Wisconsin. Just on the website
front, thanks needs to go to the people who got this site working, and those who
continue to make it work and donate a connection and hardware. I'm not suggesting
we put more on their plate, but try to lessen the load and fix things that exist
but aren't working.

May be dis here atti-tude of youz is why dat dere tingie don work an I'm jus stickin my
nose where it don buhlong. I got plenty of othuh stuff to be doin dan buggin youz. To
show no hard feelins, youz all can tell me what a mo-ron I am Saturday at Jeepers
Creepers - Get A White Jeep!
Youz can bet I'll be dere. (Oh yeah, I saw dat dere
Febuary ting an tought it waz duh two-tousand-an-two arch-ive, not bein re-cent-
ly. My mis-take.)
 
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Jeremy
WGA Member



Joined: 2002-02-19
Posts: 3249
Location: Milwaukee, WI

PostPosted: Fri Jun 17, 2005 12:27 am Reply with quote Back to top

quote:
Originally posted by Opossum:

The WGA volunteers have done a lot to make this work in Wisconsin. Just on the website
front, thanks needs to go to the people who got this site working, and those who
continue to make it work and donate a connection and hardware. I'm not suggesting
we put more on their plate, but try to lessen the load and fix things that exist
but aren't working.



First, what thing exists on the WGA site that is not working? Definitely there are things that could stand some improvement or more frequent updating but nothing that is outright busted (I hope)...

Second, thanks for your ideas and opinions about the WGA site Opossum. It is definitely great to hear what people want to see on the site, what they don't like or think could be improved, and have discussions about the merits of various features. As the title forum says, this is a "Suggestion Box"... people should be free to make whatever suggestions they want and then these suggestions should be debated openly... no person should be attacked for making a "bad/stupid/dumb" suggestion. All suggestions are good even if they aren't implemented, and those who make suggestions should be commended for having the courage to speak up.

Third, cache/cacher stats. Personally I think writing and keeping up to date scripts that "harvest" all kinds of information from geocaching.com is relatively easy, but is not something the WGA should bother doing. Somewhere I have a set of scripts that grabbed information for all Wisconsin caches back in 2002, generated statistics, graphs, and waypoint data files... this was in the pre-pocket query days.

But eventually the folks at geocaching.com figured out what I was doing, my IP address was blocked, I got a nasty note from Jeremy Irish, and I had to agree to not run my set of scripts again. Other people have run into similar issues when they attempted to harvest data... the most visible example is the fights between geocaching.com and the Buxley folks. Right or wrong, geocaching.com frowns on people grabbing and republishing "their" data. From the geocaching.com Terms of Use page (you did read the fine print, right? Image):

"Much of the information on the Site is updated on a real time basis and is proprietary or is licensed to Groundspeak by our users or third parties. You agree that you will not use any robot, spider, scraper or other automated means to access the Site for any purpose without our express written permission."

House of Brew does an excellent job with the cacher stats. Using the information we already collect (with permission) from geocaching.com for our recent logs page, I was planning on offering some very high level cache statistics and graphs, basically tracking activity across all WI caches over time, similar to the following pages on the AZ site:

Growth/Progress Graph
Miscellanous Graphs

Of course we would not have historical data going back to 2002 because we have no way of harvesting it... we would start saving recent log information from 2005 on forward.

I feel that offering statistics on individual caches and waypoint/text/Palm files of cache info is not something the WGA needs to get into. Since geocaching.com has all the data, they should provide the better cache (and cacher) statistics. The need to have waypoint files/text files/Palm files containing cache information for download is pretty much eliminated by pocket queries and the ability to manipulate pocket query data with tools like GSAK.

[This message has been edited by jvechinski (edited 06-17-2005).]
 
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Jeremy
WGA Member



Joined: 2002-02-19
Posts: 3249
Location: Milwaukee, WI

PostPosted: Fri Jun 17, 2005 1:00 am Reply with quote Back to top

quote:
Originally posted by Opossum:
Since everyone has limited amounts of time, I'm suggesting there may be a way to pool resources and get our features working at a lower cost than asking a limited number of WI volunteers to maintain everything. This is such a popular concept that sourceforge.net is based around the idea of sharing code and has more than 100,000 active projects. Surely we can manage a small handful with fellow geocachers.


The WGA has actually been asked by several other state geo organizations about our "Recent Logs" page, and we've provided assistance to a couple of them. Currently there are 2 state geocaching organization websites, Maine and Maryland, waiting to see what I put together for the new Recent Logs system to see if it is something they can "borrow" for their own site.

In my opinion the Maryland geocaching site is set up well, and I've been getting some ideas from it. If there are features on that site people would like to see moved to the new WGA site, we could definitely contact them for the code... I think they'd be open to sharing. Since they are also using PHP-Nuke, it would require basically no work on our part to get the same thing working on our new site...
 
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Opossum
WGA Member



Joined: 2005-05-11
Posts: 210
Location: WI, USA

PostPosted: Fri Jun 17, 2005 5:27 am Reply with quote Back to top

Didn't I read somewhere the Membership scripts didn't work and people need to be
entered manually? It seems not all members are listed, although that may not be
entirely bad... Wasn't there other data that was also mined and presented on the WGA
site in the past?

I was also thinking of the need to finish the scripting in order to migrate to phpBB.
My point was that it's sometimes easier to not re-invent the wheel.

I think we beat "adding new stuff" to death, so I'll decline to comment on that. Most of
the features I'd like to see come with phpBB anyway, like being able to click on a
user name and e-mail them directly, if they choose to enable it.

Edited to add: All serious comments are meant to be constructive and benefit the WGA
members, and in no way be negative or condescending. ( Image You can't take Miata and
EnergySaver seriously anyway, which is why they appear "slightly refocused." Image )

[This message has been edited by Opossum (edited 06-17-2005).]
 
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arffer
WGA Member



Joined: 2002-02-17
Posts: 1375
Location: Darien, WI US

PostPosted: Wed Jun 22, 2005 8:16 am Reply with quote Back to top

Opossum, thanks for all the ideas and feedback! A couple of answers to your last post...

quote:
Originally posted by Opossum:
Didn't I read somewhere the Membership scripts didn't work and people need to be
entered manually?


The opposite of being entered manually is being entered automatically. No one becomes
a member of WGA automatically. Each member has to choose for themselves if they wish
to become a member of this association. There is no way a script could ever know the
desires/intentions of a geocacher to know if they wished to join WGA.
Quote:
It seems not all members are listed,

If someone isn't listed, then they are not a member of WGA. Everyone who joined WGA
and took the steps to become a member are listed.

quote:
Wasn't there other data that was also mined and presented on the WGA
site in the past?


As one of the three original designers of the site, I don't have any recollection
of any feature of the site that has been removed.
 
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Opossum
WGA Member



Joined: 2005-05-11
Posts: 210
Location: WI, USA

PostPosted: Thu Jun 23, 2005 10:01 am Reply with quote Back to top

Thanks for the information. I was under the impression that only WGA members could post, so it's good you set me straight!
 
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arffer
WGA Member



Joined: 2002-02-17
Posts: 1375
Location: Darien, WI US

PostPosted: Fri Jun 24, 2005 7:28 am Reply with quote Back to top

quote:
Originally posted by Opossum:
Thanks for the information. I was under the impression that only WGA members could post,
so it's good you set me straight!


We have wanted to link together the registrations for some time now, and this is a feature
of the new site Jeremy has in the works. It has always caused confusion that there are TWO
places on the WGA site that require registration; membership and the message boards. Yet
this was somewhat by design, and that's why it has been difficult to link together.

When someone registers as a member, we want them to also be registered on the message boards.
But someone that registers on the message boards should NOT also be registered as a member.

The reason is that there are requirements to becoming a member that do not exist to use the
boards. And not everyone who wants to post on the boards even wants to be a member. The
desire has always been for the boards to be available to anyone.

Additionally, many people register on the boards under a team name where a team has more
than one person. Yet the membership is based upon the individual; you register with a
specific name and nickname, and list what team you are a part of (if any). This results in
a one to many relationship between the message boards and the membership; multiple 'members'
may share a single message board identity.

Bu Jeremy has some great ideas on how to reconcile all this on the new system!

[This message has been edited by CacheCows (edited 06-24-2005).]
 
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