Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Touring
Reload this Page >

Putting Tour Plans on-line

Touring Have a dream to ride a bike across your state, across the country, or around the world? Self-contained or fully supported? Trade ideas, adventures, and more in our bicycle touring forum.

Putting Tour Plans on-line

Old 03-28-11, 12:59 PM
  #1  
raybo
Bike touring webrarian
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: San Francisco, CA
Posts: 1,896

Bikes: I tour on a Waterford Adventurecycle. It is a fabulous touring bike.

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 52 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 8 Times in 4 Posts
Putting Tour Plans on-line

I often spend more time planning my tours then actually riding them.

By the time I'm ready to leave, I've got dozens of links, emails, names and address, and other information that I'd like to take with me. But, it has always been a hassle to get all these details into a format I can easily carry. On every tour, I've managed to miss something that later turned out to be important.

To solve this, I've created a Bike Tour Planning page that can hold all my planning data and make it accessible over the internet wherever in the world I end up. These plans can be made "public", allowing me to get comments on them!

You will need to be logged in to create these on-line plans (registration is free) and all plans are private unless made public by their owners. Here are my current plans for a tour in the UK (I leave in two weeks!) to give you an idea of what it looks like.

I've written an article about these Planning Pages that describes them in more detail, should you be interested.

In addition to making tour planning easier, it is my hope that others will create plans and make them public so that other bike tourists can benefit from the work of others.

Ray
raybo is offline  
Old 03-28-11, 01:33 PM
  #2  
Rob_E
Senior Member
 
Rob_E's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Raleigh, NC
Posts: 2,573

Bikes: Downtube 8H

Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 258 Post(s)
Liked 7 Times in 6 Posts
That's a neat idea. I am planning my next trip using Evernote. Whenever I find a potential stopping place, I make a note for it and tag it as "camping" or "hotel." In addition I have a separate note with gear I'd like to have before I leave and a separate note for a packing list. Those two won't be much use on the road, but they're helpful in planning. I have no idea if Evernote is as shareable as your website, but I like the fact that my notes can be kept on line or downloaded to my device. And, now that I think about it, I bet I can add geographical data to some of those notes, which might be handy when looking for the next, closest place to stop for the night. I'll have to see if that's possible.

Your solution has the added benefit of letting other people look over and comment on your tour, which could get you some good input. But however you do it, I agree that having a central, on-line place to keep your data is nice. It means that no matter where I am, I can add a note and/or retrieve notes from before. Otherwise I'd look up a bit far in advance of my trip, lose it, forget it, look it up again, and still never be certain to take that information with me.
Rob_E is online now  
Old 03-28-11, 02:03 PM
  #3  
bradtx
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Pearland, Texas
Posts: 7,579

Bikes: Cannondale, Trek, Raleigh, Santana

Mentioned: 13 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 304 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Ray, As a newbie I didn't know about such a service, as a boater it was always a good idea to get a float plan distributed in case I didn't show up at an expected place at an expected time.

Brad
bradtx is offline  
Old 03-28-11, 02:28 PM
  #4  
staehpj1 
Senior Member
 
staehpj1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Tallahassee, FL
Posts: 9,245
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 156 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 3 Posts
Pretty cool.

Personally I tend to use Google Docs. I also found it useful on our last tour to save my documents as pdfs on my daughter's Kindle. That way we could get to them whether we were online or not. Now that I have a Kindle myself I will use it in a similar manner.
staehpj1 is offline  
Old 03-28-11, 09:39 PM
  #5  
safariofthemind
Life is a fun ride
 
safariofthemind's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Raleigh, NC
Posts: 643
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Nicely done.

One caveat though, recently there have been news reports of folks getting robbed because of posting a little too much info online that alerted thieves when they were not home/where they live. This is something to consider with a service like this.
safariofthemind is offline  
Old 03-28-11, 09:57 PM
  #6  
Chris L
Every lane is a bike lane
 
Chris L's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia - passionfruit capital of the universe!
Posts: 9,652
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 16 Post(s)
Liked 5 Times in 3 Posts
Originally Posted by safariofthemind View Post
Nicely done.

One caveat though, recently there have been news reports of folks getting robbed because of posting a little too much info online that alerted thieves when they were not home/where they live. This is something to consider with a service like this.
That's an important point, although I don't think it detracts from the value of the original service. I guess the trick is to log in under an alias and don't give out your home address.
__________________
I am clinically insane. I am proud of it.

That is all.
Chris L is offline  
Old 03-28-11, 10:43 PM
  #7  
MTBMaven
This is Shangri La
 
MTBMaven's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Pasadena, CA
Posts: 724
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by safariofthemind View Post
Nicely done.

One caveat though, recently there have been news reports of folks getting robbed because of posting a little too much info online that alerted thieves when they were not home/where they live. This is something to consider with a service like this.
The main story that drove this popular concern was pretty much debunked. Basically the person that was robbed was burgled by a friend on Facebook. It is common for people to be robbed by people they know when on vacation. Facebook was just a new means of someone finding out that they were out of town rather than word of mouth.

Kudos to the OP for creating this service! A quick suggestion, consider adding an about page that succinctly describes the site: what it does, why to use it; how to use it. Include a short video; there are plenty of free and open source programs to records sound and edit video. Or include screenshots of the major functional areas. Most people will want to check something out before going through the trouble of registering.

Happy travels!

Last edited by MTBMaven; 03-28-11 at 10:46 PM.
MTBMaven is offline  
Old 04-04-11, 03:23 AM
  #8  
charly17201
Senior Member
 
charly17201's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Tulsa
Posts: 582

Bikes: RANS Formula LE, Giant Escape 1

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
To carry with you..... what I'm doing is saving all the info to either a text file or pdf and sending it to my Kindle. Small, light weight and the battery lasts a month as long as I turn the wifi off and am not using the aux light constantly.
charly17201 is offline  
Old 04-04-11, 03:41 AM
  #9  
contango 
2 Fat 2 Furious
 
contango's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: England
Posts: 3,996

Bikes: 2009 Specialized Rockhopper Comp Disc, 2009 Specialized Tricross Sport RIP

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by MTBMaven View Post
The main story that drove this popular concern was pretty much debunked. Basically the person that was robbed was burgled by a friend on Facebook. It is common for people to be robbed by people they know when on vacation. Facebook was just a new means of someone finding out that they were out of town rather than word of mouth.

Kudos to the OP for creating this service! A quick suggestion, consider adding an about page that succinctly describes the site: what it does, why to use it; how to use it. Include a short video; there are plenty of free and open source programs to records sound and edit video. Or include screenshots of the major functional areas. Most people will want to check something out before going through the trouble of registering.

Happy travels!
One or two specific stories might be debunked but it's still a pretty dumb idea to post enough information online that people might figure out your home address and then describe in great detail the 4-week tour you're planning. Some time back the BBC reported a new site some wag had started that picked up on people who left enough identifying information on sites like Facebook and Twitter and then posted helpful hints like "At the airport now, waiting for the flights, two weeks in the sun here I come!" from a mobile device.

Discussing the merits or otherwise of specific rest stops and specific routes is a great thing, especially from the perspective of providing information for people who are considering a similar route.

ETA: I personally wouldn't put detailed tour plans online. An outline perhaps, and writing about it after the event via a blog or similar could be interesting for people who are following the journey with the right kind of interest. Too much information about where you're going to be and when in the future tense could be a gift for people with the wrong kind of interest - it's effectively an advert that an individual, travelling alone, is likely to be arriving in a particular area one evening, probably very tired from a day's cycling, and will have a bike and all sorts of other stuff with them that could be readily taken. If you're planning on staying overnight with someone then they need to know details like what day and what time, but it's hard to see how anyone else needs advance plans in any detail.
contango is offline  
Old 04-04-11, 05:00 AM
  #10  
staehpj1 
Senior Member
 
staehpj1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Tallahassee, FL
Posts: 9,245
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 156 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 3 Posts
Originally Posted by contango View Post
One or two specific stories might be debunked but it's still a pretty dumb idea to post enough information online that people might figure out your home address and then describe in great detail the 4-week tour you're planning. Some time back the BBC reported a new site some wag had started that picked up on people who left enough identifying information on sites like Facebook and Twitter and then posted helpful hints like "At the airport now, waiting for the flights, two weeks in the sun here I come!" from a mobile device.

Discussing the merits or otherwise of specific rest stops and specific routes is a great thing, especially from the perspective of providing information for people who are considering a similar route.

ETA: I personally wouldn't put detailed tour plans online. An outline perhaps, and writing about it after the event via a blog or similar could be interesting for people who are following the journey with the right kind of interest. Too much information about where you're going to be and when in the future tense could be a gift for people with the wrong kind of interest - it's effectively an advert that an individual, travelling alone, is likely to be arriving in a particular area one evening, probably very tired from a day's cycling, and will have a bike and all sorts of other stuff with them that could be readily taken. If you're planning on staying overnight with someone then they need to know details like what day and what time, but it's hard to see how anyone else needs advance plans in any detail.
I tend to think that the dangers of that are extremely minimal.

First the part about not being home... There are much easier ways to know when a house will be empty. For one thing it would be a bad assumption that if someone is on tour that no one else is home at their residence. Many of us do not live alone so the only thing a would be thief knows is that one person from the household is away. I bet that more than half of bike tourist's homes are not empty when they are on tour. There are still likely to be spouses, housemates, parents, siblings, and offspring there. It would be much easier for the would be thief to just monitor the comings and goings in a neighborhood than to try to find someone who isn't home by reading journals.

As far as folks knowing where I am on tour and seeking me out... That seems like a huge stretch to me. Having a bike, some dirty clothes, and used camping gear is unlikely to make someone seek me out. If the goal is theft bike tourists would seem to be a pretty poor target. They might be a target for grabbing their bike or gear outside the library in a larger town, but seeking them out because of their journal... Not likely.

If the fear is that some crazed stalker will find me... Then I figure that I am better off worrying about more likely dangers like cars and trucks.
staehpj1 is offline  
Old 04-04-11, 06:03 AM
  #11  
contango 
2 Fat 2 Furious
 
contango's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: England
Posts: 3,996

Bikes: 2009 Specialized Rockhopper Comp Disc, 2009 Specialized Tricross Sport RIP

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by staehpj1 View Post
I tend to think that the dangers of that are extremely minimal.

First the part about not being home... There are much easier ways to know when a house will be empty. For one thing it would be a bad assumption that if someone is on tour that no one else is home at their residence. Many of us do not live alone so the only thing a would be thief knows is that one person from the household is away. I bet that more than half of bike tourist's homes are not empty when they are on tour. There are still likely to be spouses, housemates, parents, siblings, and offspring there. It would be much easier for the would be thief to just monitor the comings and goings in a neighborhood than to try to find someone who isn't home by reading journals.
I wouldn't worry too much about a would-be thief reading journals hoping to find details about someone who might be away, my concern would be more about someone who happened upon a journal and concluded from the journal who was away. Watching a house to observe the comings and goings takes effort and draws attention, while figuring from an online entry that someone probably isn't home and passing by a couple of times is much less visible.

As far as folks knowing where I am on tour and seeking me out... That seems like a huge stretch to me. Having a bike, some dirty clothes, and used camping gear is unlikely to make someone seek me out. If the goal is theft bike tourists would seem to be a pretty poor target. They might be a target for grabbing their bike or gear outside the library in a larger town, but seeking them out because of their journal... Not likely.
Depends on the nature of the tour. It doesn't take much reading between the lines of a journal and preparation log to figure someone will have a GPS (possibly $4-500 worth) to navigate, maybe an iPhone ($2-500?) for the overnight stays, maybe a Kindle ($200?) and potentially an emergency cash supply, on top of a bike that might be worth $50 but might also be worth $2500. I wouldn't expect a thief to travel any great distance in the hopes that their cyclist victim wasn't riding a $50 bike with a paper map and the kind of MP3 player you can't give away but someone in the area up to no good might misuse any information they can lay their hands on.

If the fear is that some crazed stalker will find me... Then I figure that I am better off worrying about more likely dangers like cars and trucks.
I'd just take a simple comparison of the benefits against the risks. Sure, the risks may be small. But what are the benefits? I'd say they were smaller still.
contango is offline  
Old 04-04-11, 06:24 AM
  #12  
staehpj1 
Senior Member
 
staehpj1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Tallahassee, FL
Posts: 9,245
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 156 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 3 Posts
Originally Posted by contango View Post
I'd just take a simple comparison of the benefits against the risks. Sure, the risks may be small.
Different strokes, but I consider those particular risks not merely small, but minuscule. I try to not spend my time dreaming up things to worry about.
staehpj1 is offline  
Old 04-04-11, 07:28 AM
  #13  
contango 
2 Fat 2 Furious
 
contango's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: England
Posts: 3,996

Bikes: 2009 Specialized Rockhopper Comp Disc, 2009 Specialized Tricross Sport RIP

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by staehpj1 View Post
Different strokes, but I consider those particular risks not merely small, but minuscule. I try to not spend my time dreaming up things to worry about.
As you wish, I just look for a specific benefit before putting my life plans in a place where anyone can read them. As you say, different strokes
contango is offline  
Old 04-04-11, 06:13 PM
  #14  
raybo
Bike touring webrarian
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: San Francisco, CA
Posts: 1,896

Bikes: I tour on a Waterford Adventurecycle. It is a fabulous touring bike.

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 52 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 8 Times in 4 Posts
Originally Posted by contango View Post
a pretty dumb idea to post enough information online that people might figure out your home address and then describe in great detail the 4-week tour you're planning.
I'm sorry, but this is ludicrous. Bike touring plans like the one I have posted neither lists my home address, passport number, bank account balance, credit card numbers or shoe size. Are you seriously suggesting that links to route maps, train schedules, and on-line forum discussions are "great detail?"

Contango, have you actually ever been on a bike tour? If so, what did you answer when someone asked where you are going? Did you lie to them because you were afraid they would call a confederate to hijack you on the road?

Originally Posted by contango View Post
it's effectively an advert that an individual, travelling alone, is likely to be arriving in a particular area one evening, probably very tired from a day's cycling, and will have a bike and all sorts of other stuff with them that could be readily taken.
Just so I'm clear here. When you are tired from a day's cycling, you aren't concerned about someone taking your stuff because you haven't advertised where you will be? It is the "advertising" that makes this a bad situation? Or, are you one of those people who think touring with gun "for just these situations" is the best way to handle them?

Originally Posted by contango View Post
But what are the benefits? I'd say they were smaller still.
Benefits:

1) People can comment on your plans.

2) People could co-ordinate ways to meet up with you.

3) You have access to any and all information on the road that you thought might come in handy before you left. Examples are ferry times, train schedules, local maps, etc.

4) It provides a single place to store information instead of having to copy it (either on paper or electronically) and take it with you.

Risk:

Someone somewhere in the world might happen upon a plan, use their expert internet skills to figure out who you are and when you will be in a specific place and then take your stuff or break into your house.

Maybe I'm completely wrong here, but I don't think the Risk (singular) outweighs the benefits.

By the way, if people are really concerned about exposing information on a bike touring plan, they can mark it private and no one will see it but them.

Ray
raybo is offline  
Old 04-04-11, 06:45 PM
  #15  
unterhausen
Randomhead
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Happy Valley, Pennsylvania
Posts: 18,225
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4 Post(s)
Liked 35 Times in 32 Posts
the local newspaper circulation director was part of a theft ring that would rob people when they stopped their newspaper. How many people at the post office know that you'll be out of town? At work? Seems like a difficult problem to solve in general
unterhausen is offline  
Old 04-05-11, 09:55 PM
  #16  
Chris L
Every lane is a bike lane
 
Chris L's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia - passionfruit capital of the universe!
Posts: 9,652
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 16 Post(s)
Liked 5 Times in 3 Posts
Originally Posted by raybo View Post
By the way, if people are really concerned about exposing information on a bike touring plan, they can mark it private and no one will see it but them.
Or better yet, just be careful what you put online in the first place. For example, the information I have placed online on this board (and other websites) would allow someone to conclude that I live *somewhere* in a city of 500,000 people, so while they might know when I'm not home, good luck finding my specific apartment to rob while I'm not there. And while they might know that I'll be *somewhere* on the Atlantic Coast in France in late September, good luck finding exactly where.

Even if I post the specific address of a specific place of accommodation in Paris on my day of arrival, good luck guessing exactly what time I'll get there (something I won't even know, given the possible things that could delay my arrival), or what time I'll be going to see the city. As someone said, different strokes, but really, you just need to be careful about the specific information you put online.
__________________
I am clinically insane. I am proud of it.

That is all.
Chris L is offline  
Old 04-06-11, 04:54 AM
  #17  
staehpj1 
Senior Member
 
staehpj1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Tallahassee, FL
Posts: 9,245
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 156 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 3 Posts
Originally Posted by Chris L View Post
Or better yet, just be careful what you put online in the first place. For example, the information I have placed online on this board (and other websites) would allow someone to conclude that I live *somewhere* in a city of 500,000 people, so while they might know when I'm not home, good luck finding my specific apartment to rob while I'm not there. And while they might know that I'll be *somewhere* on the Atlantic Coast in France in late September, good luck finding exactly where.
That may be prudent, but I would be easy to find based on info on the web both at home and on tour. That doesn't especially worry me since I am not an especially desirable target for would be thieves or others with bad intentions. Knowing where some guy (me) with a few relatively low priced bikes lives isn't exactly a hot lead for a thief. Like I said knowing I am on tour does not indicate that no one is home, so how much is that info worth to someone who wants an easy mark? In all probability the house will not be empty any more than it would be when I am not on tour and there is no reason to think it would be.

Similarly knowing where I am on tour isn't exactly a great find for a thief for at least two reasons. Places I tour the towns are few enough, small enough, and far enough between that I would be super easy to find. First even if someone would rob me they wouldn't be getting much, and second everyone that passes me on the road or sees me in a town can easily deduce where I am headed in the rural places I tend to tour.

On the other hand I have been happy to have had other people who share my interests find me both on tour and at home. As a result I have been able to both offer and receive hospitality. In other cases I have just had a chance to meet folks that I knew from online forums.
staehpj1 is offline  
Old 04-07-11, 04:31 AM
  #18  
wahoonc
Membership Not Required
 
wahoonc's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: On the road-USA
Posts: 16,852

Bikes: Giant Excursion, Raleigh Sports, Raleigh R.S.W. Compact, Motobecane? and about 20 more! OMG

Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 66 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by staehpj1 View Post
Pretty cool.

Personally I tend to use Google Docs. I also found it useful on our last tour to save my documents as pdfs on my daughter's Kindle. That way we could get to them whether we were online or not. Now that I have a Kindle myself I will use it in a similar manner.
Last long tour I took: Gore hadn't invented the internet yet, so plans were written in an analog version. Now I use Google Docs, accessible from just about anywhere via multiple devices. I quite often carry a flash drive with a bunch of information on it, some encrypted and some not.

Aaron
__________________
Webshots is bailing out, if you find any of my posts with corrupt picture files and want to see them corrected please let me know. :(

ISO: A late 1980's Giant Iguana MTB frameset (or complete bike) 23" Red with yellow graphics.

"Cycling should be a way of life, not a hobby.
RIDE, YOU FOOL, RIDE!"
_Nicodemus

"Steel: nearly a thousand years of metallurgical development
Aluminum: barely a hundred
Which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?"
_krazygluon
wahoonc is offline  
Old 04-08-11, 01:17 AM
  #19  
Camel
Caffeinated.
 
Camel's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Waltham, MA
Posts: 1,541

Bikes: Waterford 1900, Quintana Roo Borrego, Trek 8700zx, Bianchi Pista Concept

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by raybo View Post
<SNIP>...By the way, if people are really concerned about exposing information on a bike touring plan, they can mark it private and no one will see it but them.

Ray
Ohh but YOU could see my information and sell it to gangs of thieves where I'll be going. I'm onto you now. You can't fool me...
Camel is offline  
Old 04-08-11, 03:40 AM
  #20  
contango 
2 Fat 2 Furious
 
contango's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: England
Posts: 3,996

Bikes: 2009 Specialized Rockhopper Comp Disc, 2009 Specialized Tricross Sport RIP

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by raybo View Post
I'm sorry, but this is ludicrous. Bike touring plans like the one I have posted neither lists my home address, passport number, bank account balance, credit card numbers or shoe size. Are you seriously suggesting that links to route maps, train schedules, and on-line forum discussions are "great detail?"
You'd be surprised what people post online. A guy I chatted with on another forum was very skeptical about the value of small pieces of information here and there but based on what little he had told me I traced his home address, home phone number etc. From then on he posted a lot less online.

Contango, have you actually ever been on a bike tour? If so, what did you answer when someone asked where you are going? Did you lie to them because you were afraid they would call a confederate to hijack you on the road?
Yes I have, and only gave very basic outline details. The people I tend to talk to in any meaningful detail are people I essentially trust, the kind of people who I wouldn't mind telling when I'm away for several weeks even though they know my home address. Heck, some of them even have keys to my house.

Just so I'm clear here. When you are tired from a day's cycling, you aren't concerned about someone taking your stuff because you haven't advertised where you will be? It is the "advertising" that makes this a bad situation? Or, are you one of those people who think touring with gun "for just these situations" is the best way to handle them?
I just don't believe there is any benefit in telling a bunch of total strangers where I'm going to be and when.

Benefits:

1) People can comment on your plans.
They don't need much detail for this.

2) People could co-ordinate ways to meet up with you.
If I'm passing near someone I might want to meet I can talk to them without posting plans all over the internet.

3) You have access to any and all information on the road that you thought might come in handy before you left. Examples are ferry times, train schedules, local maps, etc.
I can put all that on a USB flashdrive and hang it around my neck.

4) It provides a single place to store information instead of having to copy it (either on paper or electronically) and take it with you.
How is a single online location any benefit on a single USB drive? I can convert stuff into HTML format and store it on my phone. Why would I want to put it online where I can only access it if I can find an internet connection?

Risk:

Someone somewhere in the world might happen upon a plan, use their expert internet skills to figure out who you are and when you will be in a specific place and then take your stuff or break into your house.

Maybe I'm completely wrong here, but I don't think the Risk (singular) outweighs the benefits.
Depending on how much is posted it doesn't always take "expert internet skills". The guy I mentioned in the first paragraph had posted enough small snippets of information I traced his home address within about 5 minutes.

With a few internet smarts the risks can be minimised, but at the same time I just don't see the benefit in posting information where I can only access it if I can get online, where complete strangers can read it, when I could just put the whole lot onto a MicroSD card and plug it into my phone. In my phone I can read it anywhere and if my phone dies all I need is a couple of AA batteries and I can recharge it.

By the way, if people are really concerned about exposing information on a bike touring plan, they can mark it private and no one will see it but them.
Assuming "private" means as private as you hope it means, and then at a stroke you remove most of the benefits you listed above.
contango is offline  
Old 04-08-11, 03:43 AM
  #21  
contango 
2 Fat 2 Furious
 
contango's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: England
Posts: 3,996

Bikes: 2009 Specialized Rockhopper Comp Disc, 2009 Specialized Tricross Sport RIP

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by Chris L View Post
Or better yet, just be careful what you put online in the first place.
Yep, I've had my email address harvested from a generally reputable company and spammed with everything from 419 frauds to offers of improbable anatomical enhancements.

For example, the information I have placed online on this board (and other websites) would allow someone to conclude that I live *somewhere* in a city of 500,000 people, so while they might know when I'm not home, good luck finding my specific apartment to rob while I'm not there. And while they might know that I'll be *somewhere* on the Atlantic Coast in France in late September, good luck finding exactly where.
Generic is good. It's no secret online that I live in London (England), a city of several million people. If you were to put together all the information I've posted here you'd get a fat guy in London who rides a mountain bike, generally on the road. Good luck finding me with that.

Even if I post the specific address of a specific place of accommodation in Paris on my day of arrival, good luck guessing exactly what time I'll get there (something I won't even know, given the possible things that could delay my arrival), or what time I'll be going to see the city. As someone said, different strokes, but really, you just need to be careful about the specific information you put online.
I've known people who post their full address and home phone number in their email signature. It always seems to me that if someone needs my address I'll tell them my address, I just don't want to tell everyone I ever email where I live.
contango is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Thread Starter
Forum
Replies
Last Post
jamesmoore80
Commuting
66
01-09-11 10:13 AM
guapo337
Road Cycling
26
07-30-08 12:34 PM
ronito6
General Cycling Discussion
2
05-09-08 08:13 AM
Meek
Mountain Biking
56
05-27-06 09:09 PM
patentcad
"The 33"-Road Bike Racing
81
03-24-06 10:05 AM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

Copyright 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.