Push without notifications

This article is a repost promoting content originally published elsewhere. See more things Dan's reposted.

On the first day of Indie Web Camp Berlin, I led a session on going offline with service workers. This covered all the usual use-cases: pre-caching; custom offline pages; saving pages for offline reading.

But on the second day, Sebastiaan spent a fair bit of time investigating a more complex use of service workers with the Push API.

While I’m very unwilling to grant permission to be interrupted by intrusive notifications, I’d be more than willing to grant permission to allow a website to silently cache timely content in the background. It would be a more calm technology.

Then when I’m on a plane, or in the subway, or in any other situation without a network connection, I could still visit these websites and get content that’s fresh to me. It’s kind of like background sync in reverse.

Yes, yes, yes.The Push API’s got incredible potential for precaching, or even re-caching existing content. How about if you could always instantly open my web site, whether you were on or off-line, and know that you’d always be able to read the front page and most-recent articles. You should be able to opt-in to “hot” push notifications if that’s what you really want, but there should be no requirement to do so.

By the time you’re using the Push API for things like this, why not go a step further? How about PWA feed readers or email clients that use web-pushes to keep your Inbox full? What about social network clients that always load instantly with the latest content? Or even analytics packages to push your latest stats to your device? Or turn-based online games that push the latest game state, ready for you to make your next move (which can be cached offline and pushed back when online)?

There are so many potential uses for “quiet” pushing, and now I’m itching for an opportunity to have a play with them.

Dan Q requested GC25CQR Baloo’s Run – 3. Sticks to be archived

This checkin to GC25CQR Baloo's Run - 3. Sticks reflects a geocaching.com log entry. See more of Dan's cache logs.

Suggesting that this is archived:

(a) definitely not there (no finds this year, as many DNFs this year as finds last year)
(b) CO appears to have not logged-in in over four years

Dan Q found GC43B3D HR1 – Mr Rusty

This checkin to GC43B3D HR1 - Mr Rusty reflects a geocaching.com log entry. See more of Dan's cache logs.

Between the coordinates and the title we were very soon hunting in the right location, but it took the combination of my sharp eyes and my geobuddy Robin’s hardy fingers to extract this cache from its tight and thorny home. Good location, and a fabulous hide.

Thanks for sharing this great series with us; we may not have done the whole thing (and didn’t do ANY of it in the approved order) but we enjoyed it very much. TFTCes!

Dan Q found GC43B36 HR2 – Round the Bend

This checkin to GC43B36 HR2 - Round the Bend reflects a geocaching.com log entry. See more of Dan's cache logs.

Funny: I’ve manufactured a cache container similar to this once, too, but for a very-different (and distinctly more-urban) environment (GC54F7V): seems like a bit of a strange design for a rural setting! My geo-sense spotted the hiding place right away but Robin struggled for a bit with this unusual container: he was determined to get “inside” it in some other way than the correct way, e.g. by poking, swinging, bashing, or blowing. It’s my fault, really: some of the Challenge Robin puzzle boxes were pretty devious and involved exactly that kind of manipulation to get at their contents, yesterday.

Soon, I suggested the correct way to open the container and all was well. Great location; TFTC.

Dan Q found GC43B32 HR3 – Maresy Dotes

This checkin to GC43B32 HR3 - Maresy Dotes reflects a geocaching.com log entry. See more of Dan's cache logs.

Swiftly found, but we stared for longer than might be expected at the container before working out which bit of it we had to interact with in order to get access to the log. Embarassing, really. Sploshing away through the mud, we pressed on.

Dan Q found GC4N9P4 HR4 – On the Road Again

This checkin to GC4N9P4 HR4 - On the Road Again reflects a geocaching.com log entry. See more of Dan's cache logs.

Again, we found ourselves reminded that we were doing this series backwards when we briefly puzzled over the title of this cache… before remembering that for others, taking the series in the expected order, they would be getting onto (rather than off, like us) the road at this point. We briefly overshot the GZ but Robin – his geo-sense really coming into its own now and flushed with success after his good showing at GC4HW6W – quickly spotted the “obvious” hiding place for this cache and retreived it.

Done heading East, we were glad to be able to turn to the North-West and start heading back to our accomodation, where snacks and a hot tub awaited.

Dan Q found GC4HW6W HR5 – Vandervalk

This checkin to GC4HW6W HR5 - Vandervalk reflects a geocaching.com log entry. See more of Dan's cache logs.

Robin’s first experience of a container like this one (combined with my GPSr, which for a little while couldn’t decide which side of the road we belonged on) slowed him down here: I found the cache quickly but let him find it for himself with as few clues as I could bare to provide. Log in spectacularly-good condition, but a little challenging to retreive without the preferred tool to-hand (I’d not brought out my usual geokit bag). TFTC.

Dan Q found GC43B2Z HR6 – Vamoose

This checkin to GC43B2Z HR6 - Vamoose reflects a geocaching.com log entry. See more of Dan's cache logs.

Despite having used the facilities in the pub we’d just left, Robin had needed to stop and relieve himself no less than twice during this stretch of the journey: somehow the three pints he’d enjoyed at The Packet had gone right through him. Meanwhile, I powered ahead for this, another quick find.

Despite the warnings in the cache description, we found the path here to be less wet than we had in the vicinity of GC1EA55, earlier: now that had gotten swampy underfoot!

Dan Q found GC4HW74 HR7 – Mid Stream

This checkin to GC4HW74 HR7 - Mid Stream reflects a geocaching.com log entry. See more of Dan's cache logs.

Another nice quick find for Robin and I. This was his first ever real geocaching expedition, and I think I’ve got him hooked: and he’s already beginning to develop a good sense of where to start looking for a cache, based on a survey of the GZ.

Dan Q found GC59ZR1 HR7a – Been Here Before

This checkin to GC59ZR1 HR7a - Been Here Before reflects a geocaching.com log entry. See more of Dan's cache logs.

The “ghost pub” Robin and I had sought (see my log on GC4HW7M) had turned out to be The Packet, not “The Track” as Robin has mis-remembered during his Challenge Robin adventure yesterday. After a delightful couple of pints and a roast beef lunch, we plodded on to this cache. We skipped HR9 and HR8 (although we almost didn’t, thanks to a wrong turn!) and found this one instantly: my geo-sense tingled at just the right moment.

Now we were on the way home, working our way up a damp path to the North once more.

Dan Q found GC4HW7M HR10 – Hedge Your Bets

This checkin to GC4HW7M HR10 - Hedge Your Bets reflects a geocaching.com log entry. See more of Dan's cache logs.

Skipping HR18 through HR11, we powered on down Packet Lane. Robin had come up this way yesterday – in the opposite direction – while navigating a (deliberately cryptic) map as part of the final leg of his Challenge Robin adventure, and insisted that there’d been a pub down here somewhere where he was suggesting that we stop for a pint and, perhaps, lunch. I was skeptical: I’d been monitoring his progress using The Gadget, a remote GPS-tracker I’d kitted him out with for his adventure, and from the route it’d looked like he’d taken from the (admittedly shonky) data I’d collected, I couldn’t see a pub that matched his description: he claimed it was called “The Track”, but that definitely didn’t fit.

As we made our way to this cache I continued to mock him for having found a “ghost pub” during his adventure. This was an easy find, so we signed the log and continued on our way to find this “ghost pub” (perhaps, Robin joked, they’d have a great selection of spirits…).

Dan Q found GC4K1Y7 HR19 – Stepping Towards Home

This checkin to GC4K1Y7 HR19 - Stepping Towards Home reflects a geocaching.com log entry. See more of Dan's cache logs.

Robin and I spent far too long examining the exact place where we’d (correctly) figured the cache to be before, in frustration, examining the recent log entries. One encouraged us to trust the coordinates, and these seemed pretty solid, so we redoubled our efforts and soon Robin had the cache in his hand: not what I was expecting at all from the description nor hint! Good hiding place. TFTC.

Dan Q found GC4HW8D HR20 – Big Histo Pot

This checkin to GC4HW8D HR20 - Big Histo Pot reflects a geocaching.com log entry. See more of Dan's cache logs.

Not ones to be told which way to walk, we took on the HRx series only partially. And in reverse order. This mostly proved okay, except when having to remember to translate hints that said things like “right” or “left” in them by remembering that we “should” have been coming from the other direction. This first cache in our run of the series (our fourth of the day) was a quick and easy find.