Okay. I know I’m a bit late getting this up. It’s been busy for me. I would have had this up last week but I was in Lincoln and the image files I needed were back here at home. So it had to wait. Today’s post will finish my overview of the features of Cache Stats. Here we go.
Last time, we took a look at the default information provided by Cache Stats, alongside the options of “Show All”, “FTF’s” and “Favorites”. Now we are going to look at the tabbed options provided along the bottom half of the screen. Let’s start with the Yearly Data tab.
From left to right, yearly data will show you the years you have caches, how many finds you had, you’re daily find rate and the number of days and frequency with which you have cached. Underneath this box is a projection for 2008 based on my overall rate and my rate for this year. It also helps show my yearly average. This little bit is interesting to me, as it shows that as of exactly one year ago, I had cached 27 days for 140 caches. This year, I’ve cached 28 days for 287 caches (I just updated my stats, but the images were from right after my trip at the beginning of June). My projected total based on the rate I’ve been going this year is 953 caches. If I work for it, I can break 1000 before 2009. Let’s take a look at the Milestones tab next.
I like the Milestones tab because of what it shows…your milestones. By default, it shows every 100th cache, the classic example of a milestone. You can change it to a different value. You can show every 50th cache, every 250th, or every 500th cache. But, there is a problem. This tab is dependent on how you enter your logs. Geocaching.com produces a “My Finds” pocket query with the caches in the order in which you logged them. If you keep track of your milestones yourself, it’s not big deal, but if you want a program like this to accurately show your milestones, you have to enter your logs in the order you found them. The example is my 100th find. It shows JAYCEE Park as my 100th find, but it wasn’t. It was my 100th log entered. It was soon after this that I began entering things in order. My true 100th cache was JP the Jet Plane. So if you plan on using a program to keep track of this information, plan on entering your logs in the order you found them. On to the Locations tab.
This information is pretty easy to understand. It will tell you the states and countries that you have cached in. Looking at my states, I’ve cached in 11 states within the U.S. and nowhere else. Now, if you want to get more detailed, click on the “Show Details” button underneath. This is where this tab is useful. If you want to view caches you have visited in a particular state, but don’t want to search through your list to find it, go here. This will allow you to click on a state and show only those caches found in that state, along with the date you found it on. For example, if I want to see what I did in Illinois, I just click on Illinois and it will show me that on 12/29/07, I visited a cache called Caverne dans Le Roc. A nice little feature. On to Size/Type and D/T.
I’ve decided to combine the last two tabs because of the similarity with which they are displayed. The first tab, Size/Type, shows a list of the different sizes and types of caches. Next to each one, it lists the number of finds you have made of that type, and the percentage of your overall finds that encompasses. The second tabe, D/T, displays the same information, only this time it is using the Difficulty and Terrain ratings that caches owners select when they place a cache. Both of these tabs are mainly stats tabs, meant to help show the frequency with which you go after particular types of caches. Looking at my information, I go after Traditional Micro’s with an average rating of 1.5/1.5 more than anything else.
Finally, we get to the bottom of the Cache Stats screen. Here we see an interesting option. First, you have an entry box on the left side. Putting a value in here and hitting calculate will show an estimated complete date for that particular goal. For me, if I put in a goal of 1000 caches, Cache Stats estimates reaching that goal on 3/27/09 using my overall rate and 1/27/09 using my 2008 rate. Use whatever value you want. The entry box on the right side allows you to enter a date and it will show you at what rate you need to find caches to reach goal on left side by that date. If I want to find 1000 caches by my birthday, I need to be finding 7.327 caches PER DAY! Definitely not an option near me right now.
There are a couple of buttons at the very bottom which we will hit on. First is the button for opening a GPX File. Every time you want to update your stats, this is the button to use. Next is the Export to HTML button. This will open a window allowing you to choose a selection of different statistics, including the US, Canadian, European and/or World maps, your FTF list, and your Favorites list. Choosing a header color and text, and with the option to put some additional text before or after the stats, you can produce a nicely laid out collection of information in HTML format that you can use online. One common use is for your Geocaching Profile. The last two buttons are a simple “About” button giving some company info and their website, and an “Exit” button to close the program.
This pretty much covers all of the current options on Cache Stats as of right now. Hopefully, we might see something new come up in a future version. For now, this provides a simple, easy to use stats program for anybody who is interested in that. If you have any questions, post a comment and I’ll see what I can do about answering it.