Comments on another great geocaching blog

17 10 2010

I discovered another geocaching blog the other day and found it very interesting and educational. I was intending to make a comment to the blog geocass but decided it would be difficult to add the pictures, so I have written my own blog posting.

There is a shorter way to get a sorted list in GSAK than was suggested. This uses the field UserSort and a tweak to the Options document. (Ctrl A).

Step 1
Start by setting the User Sort Current value to 0 and the Increment By value to 1.

GSAK Options page

GSAK Options page


Step 2
Filter out the caches on the track you want to follow and manually add the sort order by double clicking in the cell one at a time in the order you want them sorted. In this example, from near to Wokingham, the order of the waypoints is sorted by distance from my centre point location. Obviously, in a real case you won’t show the distance column.
Filtered GSAK list

Filtered GSAK list for a track


Sorted GSAK list

Filtered and sorted GSAK list


The result is roughly what was achieved in the Excel example shown in GeoCass blog.

Step 2a (optional)
If you make a mistake when using the User Sort you can purge the listing by doing a Global Replace. You will find this in the Database menu. Replace User Sort with “blank field”. That will clear the list and you can then go back to step 1 and reset the counters. It’s good practice to do this every time after extracting your track waypoints.

Global Replace

Global Replace in GSAK


Step 3
Export as a CSV file and continue to manipulate it in Excel as described. The final result on http://maps.the-hug.net/index.php looks good but unfortunately for me it only works in the UK. Good for those geocaching trips I make there though! 🙂

ABS Track on OS Map

What would be really great (and a challenge for a GSAK macro designer) is to get a macro in GSAK to do this.
-Filter out columns manually?
-Sort manually?
-Concatenate each line to get the needed XML format
-Add some XML preamble text
-Create and save a text file

The Google Maps API could be the next stage of development. I started playing with it but don’t have the time or skills to get it working really well. A simple use is seen here ds8300.com/Maps

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