Spring break is upon us! I’ve not really introduced myself properly yet, however, I will say that am somewhat at the mercy of the U.S. school calendar. I won’t be posting next week due to changes to my routine because of spring break, but I believe that I’ve found something sufficiently engaging to make up for the lack of new daily content.
xkcd has been a comic I read for awhile now, and one of the many interesting things that Randall Monroe has presented through his webcomic is sort of a play on the concept of geocacheing. He calls it “geohashing” or the “spontaneous adventure generator.” (I prefer the latter.) Here’s the idea: Monroe has produced an algorithm which makes use of the numeric values of lattitude and longitude, the date, and a random number to generate local coordinates for any area around the world. The random number he uses is the opening value of the Dow Jones, so it’s both standardized for each day and impossible to know ahead of time (although weekend coordinates use Friday’s opening value).
There’s a geohashing wiki for those who want to know more, which does a much better job of explaining how it works, however, if you’re like me and you’re more interested in the end result, a Google map based version has been placed online by one of the wiki operators. Just click on your location and the map will mark the coordinates nearest you for that day with the red pin.
What’s the point? xkcd fans use the coordinates to meet new people, especially other fans, see new places, or just have some fun. Official xkcd meetups are Saturdays at 4:00pm local time. Other guidellines are also online at the geohashing wiki. So if you’re on spring break too, and tired of the usual, go geohashing! Who knows, maybe we’ll bump into each other.
See you all on March 26th!