Version 3.0.3 released: Find nearby caches, show cache icons

by doug April 05, 2009 17:22

Confused "Haven't we been here before?"  As I approach my 5th anniversary of geocaching, I find myself asking that more and more as older caches get archived and new ones are created to take their place.  Often I have a vague recollection of the area, but can't remember which cache (if any) used to be there.  It used to be that you could go to the maps at to see all caches in an area including the archived ones, but they removed that feature a couple of years ago. I was sad to see that feature go because I often used it to refresh my memory as to when and why we were previously in that area. This release of CacheStats contains a new feature that partially addresses the issue.  You can now show all caches (that you have found) that are nearby any given cache.  Here's how it works.

First, in the cache list, select the cache you would like to find nearby caches for.  For this example, I’ll select a cache called Hospital View:


Then select how far away you want to search, and click Show:


When you click show, the cache list will update to show just those caches that are within the given distance of the selected cache. When you click on those caches, CacheStats displays the distance away from the original cache in the cache description area.  In this example, I had previously found a cache just 1/10 of a mile away from the Hospital View cache:


When you are done, click Cancel to display the full list again.

This feature can also be used to explore cache density.  For example, pick a cache in a cache-rich area and see how many caches you have found within a mile of it.

Remember, your GPX pocket query only contains caches that you have found, so CacheStats can't show you nearby caches that you haven't found yet. Too bad, because the other situation I run into is that caches that I thought were in an area are no longer there when I'm ready to go look for them.  I like to know if it got archived recently, and if so, why?  Unless you can remember the name, there's no way to know.  Hopefully at some point will bring back the capability to show archived caches.

Another new feature in this release which you may have noticed in the first screenshot above: the cache list now shows type icons next to the cache name (e.g. traditional, multi, event, etc.)

Finally, I added a new blogger, TripCyclone, to the list of blogs to choose from on the news and status page.  If you know of any bloggers who write frequent articles that are of general interest, let me know and I can include them in the next release.

Hope you enjoy the new feature.

Combining Group with Search or Show

by doug April 02, 2009 21:05

I’ve noticed a couple of nice reviews of CacheStats 3.0 already: one at Geocaching Online and another at Trip’s GeoAdventures.  I especially liked TripCyclone’s suggestion to combine grouping with the show caches feature to learn interesting nuggets about your finds.  For example:

 Grouping ShowDNFs

With these settings, I can see whose caches I’ve had to log the most DNFs on (Did Not Find it logs).  One caveat about DNFs: only includes the caches you have found in the my finds pocket query.  So any caches that you’ve logged a DNF on but haven’t found yet won’t be included.  You can easily think of other interesting combinations:

  • FTFs (First To Find) grouped by status (see which of your FTFs have been archived)
  • DNFs grouped by difficulty
  • DNFs grouped by size (any surprise that Micros is at the top of my list?)

In the same manner, you can also combine grouping with search.  I previously suggested some interesting items to search on, for example weather-related terms. So if I search on “rain” while grouping by month, guess what?  No mentions of rain in December or January, but plenty in the summer months. No big surprise of course. But you might run into a few surprises too. I searched for “bike” and grouped by terrain.  The highest terrain that we biked on was a 3.5 believe it or not.

Give it a try, especially if you like to stroll down memory lane.  You might find some interesting facts about your finds.

Fix for Canadian map

by doug March 26, 2009 20:29

Oops.  One of the enhancements I added to 3.0 was to put Canadian geocaches into their own category instead of grouping them in “other states”. But by doing this, I accidentally broke the map that gets generated for Canada (no provinces were colored in).  This has been fixed and you can download now from the CacheStats main page.  When you install, your previous version of CacheStats will automatically get replaced (no need to uninstall it first).

Build number 3372.

Searching Logs

by doug March 24, 2009 22:52

SearchNo, I’m not talking about looking for a geocache in a fallen tree. Rather, I’m talking about one of the new features in CacheStats 3.0, the ability to search your logs, the cache names, or the cache descriptions for a particular word or phrase.  Searching for text in cache names or the cache description can be handy when you’re trying to look up a specific geocache but can only remember part of the name or a few details about the cache such as the name of the park it was hidden in.  But searching for text in your logs can be kind of fun and may reveal interesting facts about your geocaching adventures.  Here are some of the things that I found interesting to search for.

  • Weather conditions: rain, pouring, freezing, sunny, beautiful day, windy, cold, hot, humid
  • Animals and insects: deer, dog, mosquito, ticks
  • Scenery: beautiful, great view, steep
  • Cache condition and contents: wet, soaked, open, TB, McToy
  • Access mode: bike, hike, jog

So here are some stats from searching our logs.  Out of 616 caches found:

  • Deer is mentioned 4 times, but mosquito is mentioned 24 times.  There are a lot of deer in SE Wisconsin, but the mosquito is the unofficial state bird (as I’m sure it is in many other states as well), so this isn’t surprising.
  • Sunny is mentioned 12 times, but rain is mentioned 45 times.  But I think most of the mentions of rain are something like “decided to go geocaching after the rain stopped”.  (We don’t do much caching in the rain).
  • View is mentioned 13 times, dark is mentioned 12 times.  I’m guessing that view and dark are never mentioned together in the same log.
  • Bike is mentioned 48 times.  Geocaching definitely motivates me to get on my bike more than I would otherwise.  Jog is mentioned 0 times.  I’m clearly not into jogging.
  • TFTC is mentioned 483 times.  I wonder what it was about the other 133 that we didn’t include it?  Oh wait, we mention thanks 79 times, so overall we have thanked almost every cache owner.

So what words or phrases can you think of to search for in your logs? Do your searches reveal anything interesting? Feel free to post your comments here.

What's new in CacheStats 3.0

by doug March 16, 2009 21:00

CacheStats 3.0 is now available. Major changes include a grouping feature where you can group your found caches by specific categories (e.g. by owner or by difficulty), a news page which can display feeds from various geocaching blogs, including this one :-), search capability, and the ability to read the pocket query zip file directly.  Here's the full list of new features:


  • New user interface has 3 main tabs: news & status, statistics and caches found list
  • News page shows feeds from various geocaching blogs and geocaching forums 
  • Can now load the zip file from the pocket query (extraction of gpx file isn't required)
  • Difficulty/Terrain combinations grid

Cache List Enhancements

  • Group by a large variety of categories, e.g. show caches grouped by owner, by month found, by difficulty, etc.  Sort the groups alphabetically or by size of group.
  • Show all logs (not just found it logs), plus show log-type icons (e.g. smiley)
  • Search names, logs, description for specific text
  • Show cache description as html or plain text
  • Move identification of FTFs to cache listing tab to make it a more straightforward process
  • Show only: FTF's, caches with multiple finds, caches with DNF logs
  • Link to Google map showing cache location
  • Navigate to owner's profile from cache description
Enhancements when new GPX File is Detected
  • Now shows comparison information on the news and status page instead of a new window
  • Show caches that were archived (if any) since last pocket query
  • Show average difficulty and terrain of caches found since last pocket query

HTML Output Enhancements

  • Display non-english characters (e.g. umlaut) correctly
  • Show dates for most in day, most in month, etc.
  • Ability to open the profile editing page from the copy to clipboard confirmation dialog
  • Show Washington D.C. in US map
  • Show Canadian provinces in their own section instead of in "other states"
  • Show number of finds for each state and country in the locations list

I think that's most of them.  There were several features that I wanted to include that didn't make it into this release due to time constraints.  Hopefully it won't take me as long to get the next release out.  If you've got ideas for new features, feel free to post them here or send an email.

The CacheStats Blog

by doug February 22, 2009 18:06

Welcome to the CacheStats blog!  I am the author of CacheStats which you are probably already familiar with, otherwise you wouldn't be reading this.  In geocaching life, our family's team name is ABCDMCachers.  I plan on using this blog to inform you of CacheStats features and new releases.  But I also hope to add general interest articles about geocaching from time to time.  We'll see how it goes.  One of the new features of soon-to-be-released CacheStats 3.0 is that it can display articles from this blog as well as others.  This will make it especially easy for me to keep you informed of new product releases since the announcements will show directly in CacheStats.  Hope you enjoy reading - feel free to leave comments.

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