Forum Index » General Lightweight Backpacking Discussion » Keeping track of weight


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Aaron Spjut
(aspjut) - F - MLife

Locale: Southern Oregon
Keeping track of weight on 05/09/2009 10:48:47 MDT Print View

Hi,
I just created a simple web app called GearGrams to help keep track of gear lists and weight. I'm not sure if others will find it useful or not but it was fun to make.
You can find it here: http://www.geargrams.com

Edited by aspjut on 05/09/2009 11:45:20 MDT.

Greg Mihalik
(greg23) - M

Locale: Colorado
Re: Keeping track of weight on 05/09/2009 10:57:01 MDT Print View

Requires a log-in.
Yes free, but...

Aaron Spjut
(aspjut) - F - MLife

Locale: Southern Oregon
Some kind of account system is needed on 05/09/2009 11:09:09 MDT Print View

Its multi user so someway to separate users is needed.
I guess I can ditch all the personal information like email, first name and last name since they aren't used at all. Would that help?

Aaron Spjut
(aspjut) - F - MLife

Locale: Southern Oregon
Personal info is no longer required on 05/09/2009 11:36:29 MDT Print View

Personal info is no longer required to make an account.

Here is an example of a list you can create and share:
http://www.geargrams.com/list?id=171

Edited by aspjut on 06/10/2009 14:58:28 MDT.

Matt Foehrenbacher
(matt_f) - MLife
more categories? on 05/09/2009 12:47:33 MDT Print View

I think its great - very user friendly, and definitely will feel familiar to anyone who has used iTunes before. I like that you can maintain many lists at once in a simple fashion. One idea: is there a way you can add more "categories"? Gear like packs, p-cord, and general miscelaneous gear (headlamps, first aid kits, packliner/cover, stuff sacks, sunglasses, etc) seem a little homeless right now. Perhaps a "packing" category and a "misc" category would cover the gaps quite well. Also, some sort of designation for clothing worn vs packed would be nice.

Anyway, these are nitpicks, and overall I really like what you've created.

Matt

Edited by matt_f on 05/09/2009 12:49:51 MDT.

Aaron Spjut
(aspjut) - F - MLife

Locale: Southern Oregon
Work in progress on 05/09/2009 17:25:25 MDT Print View

Thanks Matt.
Great comments.
I agree that different categories are needed. The next feature I add will be user created categories so you can organizes things however you want.

I've also been thinking a url field for items would be nice so you can link them to the manufacture or other site.

Mark McLauchlin
(markmclauchlin) - MLife

Locale: Western Australia
Re: Work in progress on 05/09/2009 18:47:21 MDT Print View

This is great Aaron, I would love to see an export function :)

Aaron Spjut
(aspjut) - F - MLife

Locale: Southern Oregon
Can now add your own categories on 05/09/2009 19:07:50 MDT Print View

Matt: You can now add your own categories. There is an "Edit Categories" button bellow the categories select in the edit item view.
That sounds a little complicated but I think its hard to miss.

Mark: Good idea. Plain text would be easy to add. What other format would you like to see?

Ashley Brown
(ashleyb) - F
Re: Can now add your own categories on 05/09/2009 23:04:16 MDT Print View

Hi Aaron,

Nice work. Two suggestions:

* when you select "grams" or "ounces" down the very bottom right for the Total weight, it would be good if all of the individual weights in the list could change to the correct units at the same time

* another column called "Hide" or "Deselect" or something would be good, so that we can select items which we don't want to take on a particular trip. When you 'hide' an item, it would be great if the text for that line turned a light grey colour, and the weight was no longer included in the total weight calculation.

I hope you keep developing it, because it looks like a really useful application which I would like to use. Being able to export in csv format would be useful for some spreadsheet programs, but I suppose plain text should work for that too.

Cheers, A

Ashley Brown
(ashleyb) - F
Re: Re: Can now add your own categories on 05/09/2009 23:27:54 MDT Print View

Just to add to my previous suggestion, you could perhaps put the "deselect/hide" option in the existing "Options" column.

Adam Behr
(justsomeguy) - MLife
Keeping track of weight on 05/10/2009 00:45:14 MDT Print View

I'm impressed by the program you've developed, and think it might end up being useful to me.

It's been even more impressive to watch it improve significantly between the time I checked it out this morning and took another look at it just now.

As usual, this site is full of great suggestions, but I've particularly enjoyed seeing them so swiftly implemented.

Nicely done.

Mark McLauchlin
(markmclauchlin) - MLife

Locale: Western Australia
Re: Can now add your own categories on 05/10/2009 01:35:39 MDT Print View

Plain text, csv or PDF would be great.

Usually csv is enough for most people to do something with,

Cheers

Ashley Brown
(ashleyb) - F
Re: Keeping track of weight on 05/10/2009 01:38:11 MDT Print View

Is there a reason why the program changes 1.9 ounces to 1.892857.... each time I log back in? Very odd. I have other numbers like 9.5 ounces which are unaffected, but for some reason it does something weird to one of my numbers.

Also, "copy list url to the clipboard" doesn't seem to work for me. I'm using Firefox 3.0 on ubuntu.

Ashley Brown
(ashleyb) - F
Re: Re: Keeping track of weight on 05/10/2009 02:25:33 MDT Print View

Another problem... I can't see an explicit "save" button. But when I leave the page and come back and log in later, not all of my changes are still there. Is there a "save" button that I'm missing, or is it meant to be saved automatically? If so, it's not quite working right on my system.

Happy debugging! ;-)

Aaron Spjut
(aspjut) - F - MLife

Locale: Southern Oregon
Thank You! on 05/10/2009 10:09:54 MDT Print View

Wow! thanks for all the feedback. Super helpful!

Ashley:
If I understand correctly you would like a way to change weight unit for all items in a list. I'll play around with ways to do this but I'm not sure the total drop down is the best place for this because I can see people wanting there individual measurements to stay the same. For instance if you have a spoon that weighs 5 grams its nice to see 5 grams rather than .01 pounds.

A hide or deselect is a good idea. I was hoping that having multiple lists would negate the need for this but I can see where toggling things on and off would be useful.

I'll look into the 1.9 to 1.892... issue. Weight for all items is stored in grams then converted so there is probably a problem with unit conversion.

Saving: Saving is automatic. When you change something the system will wait less than half a second to collect more save data then send it to the server. Also, only one save can happen at a time. So if you change something then close the window fast the changes probably wont make it to the server. I'll look into adding some feedback or alert that shows if you try to close the window before data has finished saving.

I'll look into the firefox url issue. It looks like nothing happens when you click on the button but the link should be copied to the clip board. I don't like the nothing response so I may add a pop up widow of some kind instead.

Mark, Ashley: I'll add plain text then csv. PDF can be a pain so I'll probably hold off on adding it unless people really wont it.

Adam: Thanks! I hope I can make these changes just as swiftly. Working on these fun side projects can be dangerous because I end up spending more of my time on them rather than paying work :)

Edited by aspjut on 05/10/2009 10:29:29 MDT.

Jim Colten
(jcolten) - M

Locale: MN
Re: Thank You! on 05/10/2009 12:30:30 MDT Print View

Aaron,

Have you considered a "gear closet" feature? A place to list all owned gear. With the ability to select items that would produce a gearlist for a particular trip.

Bill Fornshell
(bfornshell) - MLife

Locale: Southern Texas
Re: Keeping track of weight on 05/10/2009 14:07:34 MDT Print View

Hi Aaron,

Nice program. I didn't have a way to create a gear list and this program of yours will do what I need just great. Thanks.

What kind of computer are you using?

Do you know about the iPhone Apps Store?

You might think about adding to this to the Apple Apps Store.

Aaron Spjut
(aspjut) - F - MLife

Locale: Southern Oregon
Re: Re: Thank You! on 05/10/2009 14:14:26 MDT Print View

Jim: I think you just described how the app works. The gear library is the same as the gear closet. You can then make lists and add items to those lists. There is a video in the help section that shows basic use.
I can see how this wouldn't be obvious. Maybe a welcome message that shows for new users and directs them to help video will help?

Aaron Spjut
(aspjut) - F - MLife

Locale: Southern Oregon
Re: Re: Keeping track of weight on 05/10/2009 16:49:22 MDT Print View

Bill: I'm on a mac. Funny you should ask about iPhone. Along with S&P inc, I just completed my first iPhone app Surf (shameless plug :)

Originally I thought of doing this on the iPhone as a learning project but decided to do it in flash first since thats what I know best. I may do an iPhone version but it all depends on if I can find the time.

Edited by aspjut on 05/10/2009 16:55:43 MDT.

Ashley Brown
(ashleyb) - F
Re: Thank You! on 05/10/2009 18:25:31 MDT Print View

Hi Aaron,

Regarding changing the units from grams to ounces, I would like the ability to switch the units of everything (including the totals) from grams to ounces and vice versa. Being an Aussie I usually work in grams, but since most folks on BPL talk in ounces I often use that too. So it would be nice to instantaneously look at my gear list in either grams or ounces depending on what I am comparing it to.

Saving... I think I probably left the page too quickly. The problem is, under Firefox 3.0 when I make a change I get a message in the info bar at the bottom left of the page which says "Transferring data from geargrams.com..." but the message doesn't disappear and say "Done" or anything. So for example, I just edited something, and 5 minutes later it is still saying "Transferring data from geargrams.com". There's no indication as to when it has finished saving. If I click around for a bit without editing anything, and then come back a few minutes later the status bar says "Done". If I don't do any clicking it doesn't. But presumably saving doesn't actually take that long.

Copy url... I didn't really expect anything to happen when I clicked the button, but I did expect to be able to paste the url using Ctrl-V after clicking the button. This didn't work, and I suspect it may have more to do with ubuntu than firefox. Perhaps you can try it out on Firefox under windows to confirm that.

One final suggestion, for when you are really bored with paid work and wanna have some fun ;-) It would be excellent to have a "category" view, where you get subtotals of weights for each category. At the moment I can click to arrange the items by category order, but it would be nice if there was a special "view" which divided the page up into different category sections like a traditional gear list with subtotals.

Oh, one other thing! =-) One thing that I do (and presumably many others do to) is keep a "wishlist" of gear that I want to buy. With your program I can make a separate "wishlist" gear list, which is great. In the description field I've written a url which links to webpages related to the gear item in question... basically the place where I would probably buy it from, or a link to reviews of the item, or a link to the product's specifications. For some items I might have several links. At the moment it's not possible to click on any of those urls and I have to click "edit" then copy and paste. I don't suppose there is any way to make easily clickable links?

I don't know about you, but as a bit of a gearhead it would be great for me to store useful links (even to BPL threads) in a convenient place where I do all of my gearlist stuff. Might be too tricky though, so don't worry if you put it on the backburner.

Great job so far, very impressive!

Cheers, A