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jon

New Trip Report Tool - It's Beta

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It's Friday, the weather suck, the forecast sucks. Everyone probably needs something to cheer them up. Maybe this will.

 

I've posted some teasers for a map based TR search system. It's still in the pipeline, and I'm as excited as ever about it, but it's got some challenges involved in putting it out there and doing it right.

 

One of our goals is making each critical function of cc.com more intuitive and easier to use. Everyone spends a ton of precious time posting TRs, and we want to make that easier. Along the same lines, it doesn't make sense to have all these killer TRs but it's a pain to find them.

 

So today I'm going to drop something I've been working on. It's beta. It still needs some work and polish, especially to make it pretty. But it works and I think it's going to make people's life easier, so I feel good about putting this out there even in a crude form.

 

http://cascadeclimbers.com/forum/ubbthreads.php/ubb/tripreportsbeta

 

Basically what this tool allows you to do is do real-time searches of the TR database without any page reloading. It allows you to filter by column and sort by column. It's fast. There is a small delay after you are done typing until the query runs to keep our database from getting overloaded.

 

There are a few bugs that need to be worked out. Right now your search string is literal, so if you search for 'North Ridge' it will not find 'Ridge North'.

 

I welcome feedback on this; I'm building it for you guys.

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One thing I'd like to point out where this tool really excels: misspellings. Here is a great example. A common misspelling is Rainier and Ingraham. So if you were looking for TRs for that route you could search location with 'Rain' and route with 'Ingr' and it will catch all the TRs.

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Nice. An ajax loading icon would make people know the DB is refreshing. I was put off by the time lag and couldn't tell it was refreshing. And I think you should query each result and pull out the first image from the TR and display it as a thumbnail!

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I agree the loading is a little slow due to the built in delay. It wasn't as bad on my development environment so I've cut it in half, so the refresh happens a half a second after typing. There are many things I'm looking into that will speed up the results.

 

Again I would love suggestions, this is just the first version. Thumbnails is a possibility and could be accomplished with a row that drops down with more info.

 

I forgot to mention if you are living in 1998 and have javascript disabled this will not work. :)

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I wanted to address a few things that have been mentioned privately.

 

There are a number of TRs that are not in the database, due to people putting [TR] in the title versus clicking the "New Trip Report" button. I believe there are about 500 of these, so one of my near future tasks will be to write a script to pull these into the system.

 

Both the Route Type and Region would be better served with a drop down menu, so that will be on the list for the next version.

 

One cool thing you can do with this new system is search for FA/FFA/FWA/etc. Moving forward I hope to catalog all of these. There are appears to be at least 35.

 

Keep the feedback coming!

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Great tool. I like the partial word search. Can you set it up so that when you hit the back button on your browser, it returns to the search results instead of refreshed search page?

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Great tool. I like the partial word search. Can you set it up so that when you hit the back button on your browser, it returns to the search results instead of refreshed search page?

 

Consider it done! :)

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I just wanted to bump this up. I'm going to spend some more time on this tonight so I'd love some feedback.

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the only issue I am having with this otherwise awesome search tool is that I cannot seem to clear my previous results.

 

Example: I serched for Prime Rib and got a great list of results but then I try and manipulate another field after clearing the route name field of Prime Rib but I get 0 results but if I clear the new text in the field my Prime Rib results show up again.....

 

Just me?

Quite possibly.

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the only issue I am having with this otherwise awesome search tool is that I cannot seem to clear my previous results.

 

Example: I serched for Prime Rib and got a great list of results but then I try and manipulate another field after clearing the route name field of Prime Rib but I get 0 results but if I clear the new text in the field my Prime Rib results show up again.....

 

Just me?

Quite possibly.

 

I have experienced this problem but it seems intermittent and I cannot replicate it at the moment. Can you guys give me an exact example, as well as OS and browser version?

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My posted example is exactly my end user experience.

 

IE 9 for Windows 7

 

OK. I at least know what the problem is. If you type in "prime rib" and then delete it and go to another field and type something else before the results update, you get no results because the way I have setup the typing delay it still sends "prime rib" in the query to the server. So, until I rework this as a user what you guys need to do is make sure when you delete a field to make sure the results update before you type something else. I'll work on a fix asap.

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The issue with the trailing slashes in the results has been fixed. Thanks for everyones feedback on this, keep it coming.

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What kind of capability do people want when searching by date? Do they want to be able to pick a month range for all years or between a specific time period. I'm trying to sort out what dimensions people would like to search for. I think in a lot of cases it's not necessary as you can visually pick out the right dates, but in other instances where there are a lot of results like Hood and Rainier you might want to pick a specific season.

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I like the idea of seasons. I certainly won't remember certain dates from TRs, but seasons will stick out in my mind. By the way, I love this new tool. It seems so much more effective than before. Thanks!

 

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I think I've decided on checkboxes for each month, since that is the only way of really effectively choosing one or more months for all years.

 

BTW this might interest people; number of TRs per month first column number of TRs per month second column month.

count(*) monthname(FROM_UNIXTIME(tr.TR_POSTED))

985 July

783 August

706 June

683 February

562 May

493 January

490 September

406 April

399 March

352 December

310 October

237 November

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I've updated the tool with month faceting. Again it's pretty crude and I have not added "Check All" or "Remove All" buttons yet, but it works.

 

Suggestions and Feedback are welcome :)

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I've included a link in the trip report page to the new tool so you no longer need to visit this page unless you are providing feedback :)

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Hi, Friends. If you could add that feature where each profile could be linked to all the members in the climbers party (i.e. the climb will show up in the profile of those in the climb, not only in that of the one that post it), that would be awesome :-)

 

Thanks!

 

GA

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Hi, Friends. If you could add that feature where each profile could be linked to all the members in the climbers party (i.e. the climb will show up in the profile of those in the climb, not only in that of the one that post it), that would be awesome :-)

 

Thanks!

 

GA

 

I second this motion. That would great.

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It's a great suggestion and we have it in the plans for the upgraded system.

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I just pushed some functionality on my lunch break that I was banging away on last night.

 

http://cascadeclimbers.com/forum/ubbthreads.php/ubb/tripreportsbeta

 

You now have the ability to select the Months, Route Type, and Forum which you want to see results from. So say for instance you are looking for Alpine or Ice routes to do in Jan or Feb in the North Cascades or BC, you now can do that.

 

In the development process for this we came to realize a few things, mainly that searchers can be grouped into several categories: you specifically know what they want info, you in general know what they want to do and are looking for ideas, and lastly you are just browsing around.

 

I feel like we are serving the first and third group pretty well at this point, but what we are striving to do is improve functionality for the second group. There are a lot of gems and obscure routes hiding in this system and we are looking for ways to make those easier to find. I think the final piece of the puzzle is displaying all the results on a map.

 

Lastly, I'm purely focusing on functionality at this point. When we have the feature set nailed down then I will work on putting some design polish on things so they look purdy.

Edited by jon

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