What is GSAK?
GSAK stands for Geocaching Swiss Army Knife. It is an all in one Geocaching and waypoint management tool. Made by an Australian geocacher Clyde, it was originally released in December 2003 and has many upgrades and major enhancements since then. Some of it’s major features include: Multiple databases, sending/receiving waypoints to GPSr, Google maps, conversion to many mapping formats, PDA output (including CacheMate support), HTML output, extensive searching, macro support, backup and restore, distance/direction from other waypoints (including caches, locations, post codes) and much more. GSAK only runs on Windows operating systems (2000, XP, Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8) not Apple.
Why do I want to use it?
GSAK allows you to keep an offline database of geocaches and other waypoints. You can store geocaching.com caches, along with geocaching.com.au caches and any other spatial data you can get your hands on the gpx format. Along with the list of features about, there is an even longer list on the GSAK website.
In addition to being able to store thousands of points in multiple databases, grouped as you chose, it also allows you to load this information to your GPS (or phone) this gets around the issue of pocket quires that only hold 1000 geocaches. You can also download more information and logs than come in standard pocket queries.
GSAK as has a lot of Macros. Macros are user written bits of code that expand the function of the base software. There are macros to produce statistics, to edit/purge your databases, plan trips, export geocaches, check challenges, you name it, there is a macro for it, and if there isn’t you can probable write one yourself!
Do I really have to pay for it?
No you don’t….BUT do think about paying the registration fee. The developer is an Australian, it only costs $30USD and although the ‘nag screen’ that pops up after 21 days doesn’t sty up for that long at the start, it gets longer and longer. There are a list of 6 reason on the registration page, I personally found reason 6 to be the most compelling and amusing.
How do I get started?
You need to be a premium member at geocaching.com to take advantage of a lot of the features of GSAK. There are getting started guides all over the place for GSAK, here are a few: