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Forums —» General Caching —» General —» opencaching.com
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scruffster



Joined: Sep 29, 2004
Posts: 1207
Location: Burnaby

PostPosted: Tue Dec 07, 2010 9:27 am    Post subject: opencaching.com Reply with quote

Garmin just published their new geocache listing website opencaching.com.

I thought I'd try it out. It's definitely easy to instantly publish a cache. No review process. I haven't tried to download a geocache directly to my GPS but it looks like opencaching.com are doing their best to make it easy.

Although groundspeak has a basic monopoly on geocaching I'm not sure it's a bad thing. If opencaching becomes popular, will it lead to major cache saturation? It looks like existing geocaches will not be taken into account if people decide to use the new service. Also, without the review process, the geocaching community is given total responsibility to police itself -- something that the geocaching community hasn't been very good at in many areas of British Columbia.

Although it is a nice site, I have the feeling Garmin is ten years too late. I would have no problem posting my existing geocaches on the new site (if for anything to make sure others don't hide a cache ten meters away) but for now I think geocaching.com has been doing a good job.

What do you think? Opencaching.com is popular in Germany. Do you think it will become formidable competition to groundspeak? And if so, do you see problems with travel bugs, geocoins etc.
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Gorak



Joined: Jan 05, 2004
Posts: 354
Location: A little left of centre

PostPosted: Tue Dec 07, 2010 3:14 pm    Post subject: Re: opencaching.com Reply with quote

Competition is good. It seems that the Germans also embraced Navicache more than the rest of the world. Hopefully Garmin will create more marketing exposure for Opencaching to help it become more mainstream. I, for one, would like to see alternatives to GS for listing caches and variations to the game that wouldn't be considered by GS.

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titelines



Joined: Oct 15, 2007
Posts: 143
Location: Abbotsford BC

PostPosted: Tue Dec 07, 2010 5:44 pm    Post subject: Re: opencaching.com Reply with quote

You are right it is fast (immediate!) I just tried it with one of our already placed caches. I don't think it will be a good thing..... Hummmm, too many conflicts I see that could develop.
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HwyGuy



Joined: Oct 25, 2005
Posts: 129
Location: Langley BC

PostPosted: Tue Dec 07, 2010 9:31 pm    Post subject: Re: opencaching.com Reply with quote

The main problem I would worry about is abuse of good caching policies. A cache could be placed with no concern for the policies that the Executive of this Association has spent a lot of time and effort in helping to shape with BC Parks, Surrey, Metro Vancouver etc.

On the positives - the interface of the maps is certainly fast in the new site. I also liked the extra ratings for portions of the cache over and above terrain and difficulty (Awesomeness and Size) . Tags being written rather than symbols is nice too.

Of course - the gpx file that can be downloaded of the 19 caches listed in BC doesn't have logs, etc

Don't think I will spend too much time there.
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_canadianbacon_



Joined: Jan 05, 2004
Posts: 1154
Location: Surrey, BC, Canada

PostPosted: Wed Dec 08, 2010 10:04 am    Post subject: Re: opencaching.com Reply with quote

It does have an Open API, and will have an exportable database (how they do this if they ever get big, I don't know). So anybody can build a web-site or mobile app on it , Open Source of course.

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Teddy2k



Joined: Sep 12, 2008
Posts: 358
Location: Rosedale, BC

PostPosted: Wed Dec 08, 2010 10:35 am    Post subject: Re: opencaching.com Reply with quote

It seems that they're making it as easy as possible to have people simply upload their entire find history and entire list of owned caches, meaning that most of the 2100+ caches that are currently listed on opencaching.com are just exact duplicates from geocaching.com. I'm not sure what purpose this serves... I don't think that I'm going to be spending twice the time to log the same cache on both sites...

I also totally agree with HwyGuy... the lack of reviewing and moderation could devastate the relationships that we've worked so hard on creating with the regional, provincial and national park bodies.
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IRLPGUY



Joined: Mar 01, 2007
Posts: 174

PostPosted: Thu Dec 09, 2010 3:52 pm    Post subject: Re: opencaching.com Reply with quote

The word has been going around for some time that Garmin was likely going to compete with GC and other listing services in the Geocaching world. It is an interesting site, which loads quickly and provides very good mapping. It was very quick to upload a basic cache listing which I did with one of my cache listings.

Without any guidelines or form of review, this site could potentially do considerable damage to Geocaching in BC and the hard work that has been done in working with Provincial, Regional and City parks in establishing their Geocaching policies. Not to mention having caches placed on PP without the owner’s consent, caches being placed in all manner of area’s that for the caching community who follow the “established” guidelines and rules, would be off limits. The potential is limitless.

I believe we have reason to be concerned as to the effect Opencaching will have on caching overall. That effect won’t likely be known for some time. In the meantime we must consider the effect of our own cache submissions through Groundspeak that do not meet the requirements of established policies, for they are just as likely to be the undoing of a lot of hard work that has previously been done.

MOD EDIT: Removed off-topic content.
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Chilcotinsam



Joined: Mar 18, 2008
Posts: 41

PostPosted: Thu Dec 09, 2010 3:57 pm    Post subject: Re: opencaching.com Reply with quote

Even though I started out with a Garmin and have used a couple I think that for my finding and logging I will continue to use geocaching.com. gc.com has so much to offer...I like the member only features. What I didnt see in opencaching was satelite views. I think GC.com has good guidelines and with reviewers it helps people keep to a standard. For myself I always try to simplify caching with the uploading, finding, logging so I dont really think opencaching can offer all that yet...its kind of like a seperate community although you can transfer caches...it just wouldnt be the same. I will keep watching it though and see what happens. Plumbrokeacres set up the first opencaching cache today in Prince George...none here in Williams Lake yet though and Im still on crutches so I wont be hiding any too soon but I probably will give it a try one day down the road.
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Teddy2k



Joined: Sep 12, 2008
Posts: 358
Location: Rosedale, BC

PostPosted: Fri Dec 10, 2010 9:17 am    Post subject: Re: opencaching.com Reply with quote

Folks, this thread is for discussion of Opencaching.com. Let's please stay on-topic when posting new replies. In order to bring the topic back on track, I've done a bit of "cleaning".

Thank you.
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plumbrokeacres



Joined: Feb 16, 2007
Posts: 172
Location: Prince George BC

PostPosted: Fri Dec 10, 2010 11:21 am    Post subject: Re: opencaching.com Reply with quote

There are things I like about Opencaching, It's a lot cleaner. Maps load faster (probably because they have 1.2million less caches)
I like the ability for finders to rate the caches.
I'm not crazy about the fact a cache can be hid and there is no review process. as well as you don't have to sign in to get coordinates to find the caches.
It will be interesting to see how this site develops.
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Chewy_06



Joined: Sep 27, 2009
Posts: 158

PostPosted: Fri Dec 10, 2010 5:23 pm    Post subject: Re: opencaching.com Reply with quote

Well... I dont know.

I see lot's of potential downside for the game itself & while i noted the site says its a beta, it really doesnt work worth an um, pooh. Or at least not on my laptop here.

What i'm really scratching my head about is what Garmin's angle on this is. Developing an entirely new site to do essentially the same thing as some existing well established ones doesnt really make sense. The rating system is interesting, but, since i couldnt actually see how the caches got their awesomeness ratings, i cant say whether i like it or not.

I cant help but wonder if this is an indicator that Garmin has something else up their sleeves that we dont know about yet. If their angle was to drive GPS sales, they could have probably done that with groundspeak. If however, they wanted to introduce a game changing feature set & wanted it to be proprietary for their devices I dont see groundspeak going along with that (for less than a truckful of money).

My theory is that what we see now is just the tip of the iceberg & something else, that ties into garmin GPS receivers (it may already be built into the wireless capable models and isnt active in the firmware yet...) is around the corner. I dont see too many other logical reasons for them wanting to do this.

Then again, who knows.
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jangor



Joined: Jan 05, 2007
Posts: 144
Location: Surrey, BC

PostPosted: Sun Dec 12, 2010 4:17 pm    Post subject: Re: opencaching.com Reply with quote

I tend to agree with Chewy on this. Garmin probably has something up their sleeve at this point. They do have the marketing machine in place as a Corporate entity, and they have deep pockets. Their press release when they opened the site seemed to stress that they felt caching should be "free" to everyone which may or may not have been a shot at Groundspeak. We have been noticing a lot of "Premium Member Only" caches being published lately and that will probably just drive more people to Opencaching at the expense of Groundspeak.

I read that Groundspeak was totally blindsided by the "chirp" technology and seemed a bit offended that Garmin had not given them a heads up on it. If they were unhappy about "chirp", one can only assume they are really unhappy about Opencaching.

Is there a downside for geocaching? Probably not. The biggest issue down the road will probably be cache saturation in urban areas and Municipal reaction to that problem. The only thing that having a second caching site will do is accelerate that problem.

Is there a downside for Groundspeak? That would seem to depend on how much money Garmin wants to throw at Opencaching and what little tricks they have up their sleeves.

Only time will tell.
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savant9



Joined: May 02, 2009
Posts: 198
Location: Langley

PostPosted: Sun Dec 12, 2010 6:00 pm    Post subject: Re: opencaching.com Reply with quote

jangor wrote:

I read that Groundspeak was totally blindsided by the "chirp" technology and seemed a bit offended that Garmin had not given them a heads up on it. If they were unhappy about "chirp", one can only assume they are really unhappy about Opencaching.

I can understand Jeremy's surprise with the chirp since it was essentially his idea from 2008.
www.locuslingua.com/no...ppened?c=1
Perhaps we are not seeing the whole story but this sure seems like a slap in the face to groundspeak.

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