Archive for April, 2011

Our first GeoCoin

Posted: April 7, 2011 in Geocaching
Tags: , , ,

Our first geocoin has found its point for origin and is now ready for (knock on wood) its epic journey!

Check out its story at My Blackened Heart

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Basic Hardware/Software

Posted: April 4, 2011 in Geocaching, Tutorials
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Ill give you the short rundown of geocaching and what you want to do.

Granted you don’t need all of this stuff but it will tremendously add to your fun

I (currently) use the Magellan eXplorist GC as my GPSr and with that comes a program called VantagePoint detailed below. If you don’t use this hardware, there should be somthing similar to VantagePoint with the GPSr you purchase.

Priority: 9/10 (this is a must have)
Cost: $30/year

Make an account here… This is the central repository for everything geocaching. Groundspeak, the company that runs this whole thing not only maintains the site and keeps all the caches cataloged, but they they maintain a very strict set of rules that make it the most pleasant experience possible. There are a lot of caches that are premium only, but the main reason you want the premium membership (http://www.geocaching.com/membership/comparison.aspx) is so you can make pocket queries, which is the core of what you want to do.

 

VantagePoint (Software)
Priority: 9/10 (this is a must have)
Cost: Free

This should have come with your Explorist GC but i included the link anyway. This is the software which imports GPX files (this is what pocket queries make in the premium membership) to your GPS. There is a bunch of other stuff with it that works nice on streets, but for hiking its pretty much worthless.

Priority: 6/10
Cost: $25 (lifetime upgrades)

If you are a geocacher and you whip this sucker out, then people will know you are serious. This is basically your ‘offline’ database that shows a TON of information. When I am going on the road, i put this on a laptop instead of having to log into the geocache website. I can show you this if you don’t want to front the cash immediately but it is a GREAT tool.


Geocaching Phone Software
Priority: 7/10
Website: http://www.geocaching.com/android (for android phones)
Website: http://www.geocaching.com/iphone (for iphones)
Cost: $9.95
Website: http://cgeo.carnero.cc/ (android only)
Cost: Free

I always like to carry two GPS’s, one that is very accurate (the explorist) and one that actually shows maps, and can help me get home when i am lost. For the iPhone you only have one choice that I know of but there might be more. I just don’t know because I don’t have an iphone. For androids, there is an identical one (same as the iphone) which I bought, which seems very piggy on phone battery, so i switched to c:geo (the 3rd link). Both will let you directly to the geocaching website and read the descriptions, logs, clues etc but most importantly will give you satellite maps which will help you find landmarks like trees and big rocks.

The source of this dilemma comes from: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20110401/ap_on_he_me/us_arizona_medicaid_obesity_tax

I honestly say I have thought of this a million times, but as typical with the populace, people quickly jump to reaction, and lawmakers ask for it by being very terse. The controversy manifests itself from the following quote:

People who are obese or chronically ill, and those who smoke, would need to work with a primary-care physician to develop a plan to help them lose weight and otherwise improve their health

An interesting thought put into motion by our friends in Arizona. So let me put my opinion out in the open with the caveat that the bill has good motives but will need refinement as not to be a sweeping blow:

  1. Tax the fuck out of smokers… Period.. I have never been a smoker (but I have smoked a cigarette or two), I can’t stand the smell, it makes clothing stink and is bad for you.Unlike alcohol, which is somewhat socially acceptable, tobacco and its additives grants a smoker the gift that keeps on giving… Cancer.

    With alcohol the stupefying effects wear off after a couple hours (although sobering up does not cure stupidity), while the carcinogens in tobacco keep giving for years on in. You smoke, you get cancer, insurance gets charged, premiums go up, and people like me end up paying higher premiums.

  2. Obesity – First, obesity should never be used in any law because the definition is borderline retarded. I think the best definition is from Wikipedia where they state:

    Obesity is a medical condition in which excess body fat has accumulated to the extent that it may have an adverse effect on health, leading to reduce life expectancy and/or increased health problems. This makes sense to me, but it does not differentiate its origins, whether it is medical (genetic) or just being a negligent fat ass (eating crap and not metabolizing calories).

    To complicate things worse, BMI (Body Mass Index) is introduced which basically says, if you are over X lbs for fx(height, weight) you are obese. It takes no account of body type, build or distribution.

    Anyway, as in #3 (which i wrote before this one), I fully support abusers paying for the right, while those with true issues (genetic) need help.

  3. Diabetics… I am sensitive to this but I also know there are many types of diabetics… There is one class where it is debilitating and genetic. This is a bummer because its out of most peoples control and ill effects can be modified with drugs like insulin.

    Then there are the fat-asses…Yes, if you are a diabetic because your blood sugar is high because you pack down a party pack of Cheetos in an hour, you will pack calories. If you do not exercise those calories off, you will get fat… If you continue the cycle, you will get fatter, become disabled, get a blue-plaque, get free handicap parking, and I will pay for it.In more severe cases, you can go on state disability and ‘live on the dole’ which really pisses me off. Go ahead and kill yourself but when these eating habits of supporting you cut into my pay, and you pass these habits to your kids, something must be done…

    I am not even sure this person should be called a diabetic because it correlates them to people with an actual medical condition that can’t be helped.

    If you are 350 lbs because you cannot control your eating, refuse to exercise, refuse help and think you are entitled because it is YOUR LIFE, you should pay the $50 bucks.

    For this reasonI support the diabetic part for abusers, but NOT for clinically challenged people. There are contributing citizens with true diabetic challenges that should not suffer because of the indulgences of others.

  4. I would add ‘casual drinkers’ to this list also. That guy that always smells like Budweiser and can’t pay for clothing for their kids should be once again, pay for that luxury.  This includes people with multiple DUI’s, alcohol based police calls, those that believe alcohol makes them more effective, and alcoholics that refuse to get help.

    Unlike #2 and #3 and similar to #1, YOU ARE NOT BORN alcoholic. It is something you brought on yourself, like the guy that puts a cigarette in his mouth. If you want to live the luxury of liver failure, do not make us pay for it.

It is sad to me that we need to babysit people on life-skills that I learned as a kid. I sympathize with people with true affliction, I really do but I have an issue with those with the capability who change (or risk death) who choose not to and want to coast down life on a coach watching Jerry Springer on the backs of those who contribute to society.