Update 10/2020: GCC completely replaced with GCW 1.2.0

Update 09/2020: Comparison with GCW 1.1.0 instead of version 1.0.0

The version 1.0 of the GCWizard had the declared goal to be coequal with the more famous GCC, with new technologies and also to provide an iOS version. Well, how does the reality look like?

To make a long story short: No, GCWizard has not yet managed to catch up with the GeoCache Calculator completely. Some crypto functions and some symbol tables are still missing.

But why was a version 1.0 released and not a version 0.9, nevertheless?

Because the current GCW can already do much more than just replace the GCC. It is able to stand not only as a “shadow” of the GCC, but should be seen as a completely independent new tool.

What’s missing in the GCW (at the moment)?

  • Affine (GCW 1.1.0)
  • BCD (GCW 1.1.0)
  • Chao
  • DNA (GCW 1.1.0)
  • Gade
  • Gray (GCW 1.1.0)
  • some obscure Hashes
  • Heat Index (GCW 1.1.0)
  • Homophone
  • Projectile (GCW 1.1.0)
  • RC4
  • RSA (GCW 1.1.0)
  • Solitaire
  • and some Symbol Tables (currently 73 vs. 107 tables, but there are also some tables available in the GCW, the GCC don’t provide) GCW 1.1.0 now includes 111 tables, whereas GCC only includes 107. But this does not necessarily means, that all GCC tables are included in GCW. Some tables are still missing, I guess.

What does the GCW better, what changed, what’s new?

Clearer structure

The most obvious innovation of GCWizard is not certain tools, but its usability. A very important new function is the “Favorites” function. Instead of searching an endless list of meaningless terms for “your” tool, you can now collect your own tool set in the Favorites view. In the settings you can also specify that this view should be always shown directly at startup.

Furthermore, for each tool a small description and/or an example is shown in the list to give at least a small idea how a possible result could look like after using a certain tool. This eases the general guessing about certain codes and ciphers a little.

Coordinates: Precision and Map View

During the migration of the coordinate functions, several inaccuracies, even errors up to absolut incorrect results (e.g. Resection) have been noticed. Here a massive revise was done.

In addition, the strict axiom to not allow any app permission was removed. The GCW needs internet access – to be able to show the calculated coordinates on a map (alternatively OpenStreetMap or the satellite view of Mapbox), incl. high-precision graphical representations of geodetic lines and circles (incl. calculation of distortions caused by the map projection).

In addition to that, several new coordinate formats were added (Slippy Map, OpenLocationCode/PlusCode, Quadtree and the Waldmeister-ReverseWIG representation), as well as the often mentioned Variable Coordinates tool, which shows its power especially in direct interaction with the Formula Solver, and an insert function, which automatically recognizes and reads coordinates of different formats from the clipboard.

Symbol Tables

The symbol tables in the GCC were simply a graphical view, where you could view certain tables in (due to the limitation of data rates at that time) lower quality only as the whole overview

The GCWizard now shows the single symbols and you are able to write and interact with them.

Formula Solver

The Formula Solver became much more powerful and now fits better into the overall system.

The entered values are now limited to certain formula groups. This means that you can create groups for different multi caches, for example, which get different values. The GCC applied the entered values to all formulas, which lead to the problem that the A of the formula of multi cache 1 was also used in the formula of multi cache 2 or vice versa.

The formulas can be easily copied and exported, now. So, other players can import your formulas and values directly, or you can simply prepare the formulas on your browser.

In combination with the new Variable Coordinates tool, missing values can be interpolated without any problems. Possible values are displayed directly on the map.

Additional New Tools

  • Abaddon
  • CCITT-1
  • Date and Time functions (Day Calculator, Weekday)
  • Decabit
  • Unit Converter
  • Duck/Robber/Chicken/Spoon language
  • Gronsfeld/Trithemius
  • Combinatorics
  • TomTom
  • Wind Force (Beaufort)

Since all functions have been reprogrammed from scratch, almost all of them, including their user interfaces, were enhanced (e.g. Alphabet Values) – and, if necessary, bugfixes were made.

And what about the promised iOS version?

Do I really need to say something about it? 🙂

What else?

Well, I think such a list is only complete when it is mentioned that the GCW is completely OpenSource and put under the free license GPLv3.

This means that everyone can view the source code, the graphics, etc. Everybody is allowed to participate in the development, create own tools with it, add new ones and even create an own app from it.

And, if I as the maintainer don’t want to develope it anymore, then everybody is free to take over the project and to proceed the development anyway. This was not possible with GCC due to its closed-source policy, which made the development come to a standstill.