Zonemaking

We often gets question about how the zones are made, I figured a blog post regarding it would be interesting for most of you.

First of all, lets have a short description of how the zonemaking has changed since I started with it. Dacop posted a nice description in the Facebook group Turf Stockholm which I have translated below:

When I became zonemaker in 2013 we had fixed responsibilities for the regions, there was not often that a zonemaker changed region to add zones and the whole process was rather slow. In February 2014 we introduced zonemaker rotation which means that responsibility raffled off in the four-month periods. This meant that the pace of new zones increased significantly, many ZM wanted to make his mark in the region before it was time to change again. It also led to uneven construction and perhaps a bit shitty quality zones in places. So in 2015 we introduced which some called “zone starvation”, a guide which tells you how many zones will be built in the region for the period time, while the focus was much more on “fine or special locations”, adding values to the zones . During the past year, management refined even more, the regional grouping has become municipal division and the focus is largely on catching up with few zones per inhabitant, or too few zones per active turfer.

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Dacop

This system is only applicable for Sweden for now, in the other official Turf countries we’re still working according to the old fixed system but in the future we will have the same system as in Sweden.

So that’s how it is. How do we see your suggestion made in the application then? I’ve checked with our Zone general that this was ok so here we go:

The zone creation tool

zones-in-karlstad

This is Karlstad as we see it. We have checkboxes for what we want to show. In this picture I have chosen to show the existing zones, which you see in blue color, the 200 meter radius around them and the suggestions, which are the pink dots. Some dots have numbers, here there are many suggestions close to each other, then they are summarized to make it easier to look at.

I often read in the forum or on Facebook that someone has added a great suggestion in the application and called it “something”. We have no possibility to search for that name which you suggested, so we’ll have to guess which of the pink dots it is, would you like to take a guess? Therefore we often nag about adding a map to the zone suggestion or a screenshot from the application with your turfman standing there. Here is why.

So why not add the possibility to search for it? You may ask. Well then you have to suggest a unique name for your suggestion, a name that no one has ever suggested before. And with 3 possible suggestion per turfer each round it would be hard to find suitable names sooner or later.

closer-zones

So lets go a bit closer. Here I have zoomed into a central spot of Karlstad where we have 12 zone suggestions close to each other. As I mentioned before, the blue areas are existing zones and the red circles are the 200 meter radius which are our distance limit between zones. As you can see, all of these suggestions are too close to existing zones and are likely never to be created. But. I know this area well and know that the southerly zone is placed on a relatively high hill which makes an natural obstacle and therefore the real distance to the nearby suggestions are much longer. I also know that the only way from the eastern zone to these suggestions are via Älvgatan or Klaraborgsgatan, there are no shortcut beneath the railway. With these facts the zone suggestions are not that bad, but a zonemaker with no knowledge about this area will never know this unless you tell it. This is the reason we like you to motivate why this would be a good zone, preferably adding some pictures to motivate it even more. Of course we can use google street view but those pictures are not always up to date and most often only show pictures from the roads and not the bike lanes.

Please remember that it is YOU, not me, who want a zone on the suggested spot. This is why I get tired when someone write that I should google it for information and photos. If I was to do that for all suggestions in my 20 municipalities it would take a lot more time to create zones.

Bad suggestions

bad-suggestion

Lets have an example of a bad suggestion. This is one of the suggestions placed in Karlstad, when we click on the pink dots we gets to see the suggested zone shape. This zone suggestion is about one square kilometer in size. There are many suggestions like this in the cities so it’s not always easy to find the better ones without any directions.

bader-suggestion

Another example of bad suggestion. Centered over the highway with no chance to reach it other then by armpit turfing or breaking some laws. This zone is just a waste of time but it adds to the number of suggestions which a zonemaker gets in the cities and as I said, makes the better placements disappear in the blur of suggestions.

Recently we have been given the possibility to delete really bad zone suggestions. A feature that as you see comes in hand from time to time.

Good suggestions

lost-zone

This kind of zone suggestions are always fun. Most of the time these suggestions is made from someone who has downloaded the application and believed that he could create zones on his own, adding a suggestion on his backyard. But this zone has a great motivation in the forums (Swedish): Link.

Here we have a photo from the suggestion, coordinates specifying its location and also some history to it. This is an great example of a zone suggestion which I gladly would had approved if this was my region of responsibility.

Another great way of presenting zone suggestions is to add them in your own map, like this example from DaddyKing in Karlstad (Swedish). Here the zone suggestions are clearly marked with some description added to them and for some also a photo of the location. I really like these maps and often search for these in my regions of responsibility.

But please be aware that even if you follow all of these advises you can still be left with your suggestion never being realized. All zonemakers has their own valuations and your suggestion might not be according to what your zonemaker for this period values the most. Me for instance prefer to add zones in the outer areas of the town and not in the center where it most of the times are stiffed already.

Example

This zonemaking period I’m responsible for Borlänge municipality and they might have noticed what my valuations are. I have checked the forums but there is not much of  recent suggestions and it’s much work for me to check which of the older suggestions has not already been realized. The turfers in the town knows this much better but it is always not that fun to update the suggestions made earlier. Therefore I’m only working with the suggestions in the application for know, leaving me with this:

borlange

Already I have created two zones in Stora Tuna, the southernmost parts and one zone in the northernmost parts of the town. If I don’t receive any further suggestions  I will probably add the remaining zones for this zonemaking period in similar areas or in the smaller counties around.

Feel free to ask any questions regarding zone making if you have any, I will try to answer as much as I can without telling you the “secrets” 🙂

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Unique turfer ratio

I have realized that there is no chance for me, or someone else outside the larger cities, to get a spot on the toplist of unique turfers on warded. Instead I’m trying to hold an good ratio as possible and compare it to others.

So what is the ratio? It is actually something that the turfer DaddyKing in Karlstad came up with, you take the amount of turfers that you have taken zones from and divide it by the amount of turfers who have taken zones from you.

ratio

It is harder to keep a good ratio than just increase the amount of players you have taken from since you have to look out for losing your zones to players as well. Best chance to approve this number is to be active and hunt for unique turfers on the last days of the round and not to hunt for yellow ones.

My stats today is:
You have taken zones from 1365 different turfers.
1141 different turfers have taken zones from you.
Which ends up in the ratio 1.196… (4 digits should do it).

For fun I have compared my stats with the ones who have reached a spot on both lists on warded. I have also included the ones that have given my their ratio in the past.

 

Ratio chart

No changes in the top, bubblan and embeoo are the giants in this category but behind hem it is very even.

What is your ratio? Please write a comment if you want me to include you.

Turf commuter

Since I moved to Kristinehamn last summer I have been traveling mostly by train to my work in Karlstad. This has given me a lot of opportunities to practice the noble art of “armpit turfing”.

What is “armpit turfing”? Some may ask. Basically it is all about tricking the mobile to think it is still inside the zone by blocking the gps-signal. My tactic is to quickly place the mobile in my armpit and squeeze until Jossan tells me that the zone is taken. I have also heard that others are blocking the signal by pressing the phone between their thighs, sitting on the phone or placing the phone beneath the table. I haven’t tried these other techniques myself so can’t tell what works best, try for yourself.

My trip from Kristinehamns train station to Karlstads consist of 10 zones that I have been able to take so far. Fieldislet, VarnumFågel, ÖstervikView, Wilhelmsbron, Alstertunnel, DoNotCross, VälsvikenStn, Tågbrozon, ÖstraKilen, and InBetween. Some are of course easier than others, the ones placed where the trail goes straight are easy if you just have the timing but the ones placed over the rail next to a turn requires some luck because the turfman doesn’t always stay on the track. There are some additional zones near the track which I have been closed to take some times but haven’t succeeded yet like BodyZone or VäseNorra but shame on the one who gives up!

VälsvikenStn

VälsvikenStn was the first one to become purple but I had it colored in orange before moving so it doesn’t really count. Next is ÖstraKilen which was yellow before I moved, I have 7 takes to go for the purple color.

When I visited Stockholm this summer for the AC/DC concert I took MossZone in Järna which is far from the track, that one I was really satisfied with. Besides the normal station zones on the way to Stockholm in Degerfors, Hallsberg, Katrineholm and Södertälje was I also able to grab the zone LonelyBridge when the train was traveling in over 200 km/h. Then I really felt that the training gave result!

11753677_10154046560567538_289112314709964117_n

In November I was able to grab both ÖstraKilen and InBetween on my daily trip to work. That felt really nice since you only have a few seconds between receiving the take on the first zone until you are inside the next one. The speed recorded by the server between these zones was above 100 km/h and I could find myself on Pobes list of possible cheaters: http://www.hoddmimes.com:8080/turf/TurfIrregularities. I took that as a compliment.

HighSpeed

 

But I’m not a Jedi yet!

Crew meeting

This weekend the Turf Crew had a gathering for the second time ever. The event, of course, was the release of Turf 1.0 for android. It was really nice to see everybody, I have meet each of the ones that was present in the past on some events or out in the field but it is always fun to meet them all at once in real life and not only through our normal channels.

DrassenDrassen was the chairperson and had a power point presentation with some history. One fun fact was that Android version 0.9 was released back in 2012. Then Drassen and Simpan thought that version 1.0 would come up soon after but it took 3 years before they was satisfied.

 

 

SunYour and Simpan, the masterminds behind the programming.

Simpan                  SunYour

 

DSC_0206      Eddyueue, the master of Stats (ceo of Warded)

Crew, Spix in the front giving his biggest smile! Other people in this picture is Byggaren, Drassen, StarDust, Dacop, Eddyueue, MasterOfTurf, Velocipedrytta.
Crew with Spix

Crew, only picture with my self in it, also SunYour, Eddyueue, Byggaren, StarDust, Dacop, MasterOfTurf, Embeoo, Velocipedrytta, Spix and Moskeroll.
Crew

For the first time ever it was 100% attendance in the Crew Meeting, the ones that couldn’t attend physically was there mentally and was very silent except Jojje who shouted “BMW” or “Bil” every once and then.
DSC_0209

Crew on the wayLooked kind of an ongoing event when we took the town.

Unique zones

Beside the meeting I managed to grab some unique zones. From my earlier visits with friends and family, most of the innertown had been finalized so this time I took a longer tour around Djurgården and Kungsholmen. Kungsholmen was very impassable and the peak of it was when I tried to reach Atterzone by bike after I took Tunneltaket (wrong aproach). Djurgården was nicer to cycle around but unfortuanetly the view over the archipelago left a lot to be desired..

View from RosasBrygga

View from RosasBrygga

Correction and summation

Correction

Someone with a sharp I and similar interest for statistics as me noted that the takes per week table was incorrect, at least the order of the players. The correct tables looks as below and I find it really interesting to see that Recycling, Loaf and Pedlan can be found that high, gives a different perspective on their efforts.

Points per week

Takes per week

Summation

Now with some distance and some bitterness out of my mind I must say I’m pleased with last round and the result, regardless what you read in my last post.

A player in Karlstad told me that I should learn “humility and compassion” by cycling as much as Simpson did so I guess I have learned it by now since I cycled more than him? And I didn’t ask for any help from other players to reach the top, I did that last time and I have regretted it ever since, now I have a silver medal that is my own. After some groundwork outside of Karlstad I received greed 250 during last week of the round which was another personal goal for this round and I passed take 25 000 as expected. I was level 48 when I started this round, now I’m level 49, to reach level 50 I had to break the million and I felt I didn’t had time for that when working full time.

“Ja’ ä inte bitter”

Sorry for the Swedish header, translated it say “I’m not bitter” in an ironic meaning. I will also start this post with apologizing to anybody who might be offended by this post, most of it is written in an ironic way.

Round 60

This was the round which I had focused on for quite some time, it was the round I would go all in because the round after I would leave Karlstad for Kristinehamn. I did go all in but somebody else did it even more, congratulations Plux.

So lets take it from the beginning. In my old blog (Link) I told you the story about my first second place and that I probably never would go for it again, oops! But when I signed the contract for our new house in Kristinehamn I told my girlfriend that I would like to try one more time before because I will not have the time to do it the same way when owning a house and maybe raise a family.

In the start of the round I mounted thinner tires on my 29″ mountainbike because my cyclocross was in need of a bigger service and the service time was on Monday. As usual the activity in Karlstad was high during round start but I succeeded with my tactic to start in the central areas and work my way out. After the first two hours I was in top 10 in the world and TBIT was surprisingly number 1. Later on he ran out of zones and I could pass him but Pobe was even faster than me and was number 1 after the first day. On Monday I took a day off from my work and I was able to take over the lead. I had it for some days until Plux passed me in the same pace that Hvalle had the round before.

My cyclocross then? I went to the bicycle repair shop early Monday morning only to discover that the frame had cracked.

cracked frame

I asked the store which I had bought it from if I could buy a new frame but for this certain model I couldn’t. At this time I thought of giving up the hunt for medals. But with this start and the knowing that this was kind of my last chance i continued with my mountainbike.

beginning

Different preconditions

After a week it stood clear to me that Plux would be a very hard competitive this round. We were close after the first week with me around 271 000 points and Plux with about 10 000 points more. But the following week Plux had over 1000 pph for about 4-5 days in a row and it was really frustrating knowing that I took more zones than him(?) every day but still he pulled away from me. I even read in Södermanlands facebook group that other players in Eskilstuna was afraid to go out and take his zones while the activity in Karlstad was as usual. On sunday the 21 of June I was out all day and took 295 zones while Plux ended up on 168 takes the same day, even then i pulled away and increased his lead with some points from the first day to the next thanks to his never ending stack of zones.

Again, “Ja’ ä inte bitter”.

I began to accept the fact that I could forget the gold medal and I began to think if I would let Björke pass me in order to add a bronze medal to my collection since I already had a silver medal. But the gap to the fourth placer Svenolov at this time was to small for me to risk it so I decided to go for the silver medal. Thunell told me that I wasn’t aloud to let go of a silver medal if I hadn’t more silver medals then him, thank you for the kick.

So this round ended with another silver medal, my third if you count the bonanza silver. When the round was finished I had about 600 more takes than Plux but still I was over 200 000 points behind….

You know the quote.

Comparison

I like numbers and for fun I did some comparison with Simpson who took the silver medal the round before. His result was 1 048 214 points which was a bit higher than me but he also had a week more to work with than me. Divided with the amount of weeks we had he still wins on points with 209 643 points per week compared to my 200 744 points per week but looking at the number of takes I win with 1251 takes per week compared to Simpsons 1113 takes per week. This is of course without counting the others factors such as the weather etc, it rained a lot during round 59 (Simpsons round) which probably affected both the numbers.

For my own fun I compared my numbers with the top 10 round points at warded, again this is without counting other factors as weather, number of zones in the city, urban terrain, asking other player for help, etc.

Points per week

Takes per week

Maybe this statistics would be interesting for warded also? Taking a way the advantage of having a week more gives a more appropriate comparison between the players efforts. At least it makes me more satisfied with my second (or third) second place.

Ending this post in the same was as we started, “Ja’ ä inte bitter”.

Thank you Peek

Some time ago I read about a button that Peak had discovered, link to post here (Swedish).

Yesterday on my way home from work I couldn’t find any unique turfers close by so I decided to try Peaks button. After some searching I found it, clicked it, and suddenly my road were highlighted!

After a few zones Spix woke up and started accusing me for attacking him? Talk about being paranoid. I was just following the way the application showed me.

The road was a bit longer than my usual but I think I will try it again sometime.