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Import your logbook

If you are looking at this section it means you are considering moving more ascent data to theCrag - welcome and thank you! We try to make this rather complex process as easy as possible and are happy to provide support if you encounter any issues.

Contrary to other logbook providers theCrag liberates your logbook ascent data, whether you want to use it for other purposes or swap logbook providers. To that end theCrag provides importing and exporting logbook capabilities on the platform.

Importing to theCrag means that your logbook gets linked to the world's largest registered community index of routes and that you will be able to use all the features of theCrag, including analytics of your ascent data and Climber Performance Rating (CPR) on your profile page (e.g. look at Lee's profile page).

theCrag has been around since 1999, so we are committed to provide an enduring service. From the beginning theCrag had a unique approach to logbook service in that your logbook must be linked to registered routes in the community database. However, this also means you cannot put any old rubbish in your logbook if you can not link it to an actual route.

theCrag is the world's largest rock climbing and bouldering platform. However, we are the first to admit we have not yet completed the journey of registering a comprehensive list of routes from around the world. This means you should be able to easily import a large portion of your logbook, but you may have to create routes for the ones that don't exist in the database. Don't worry even if the routes are not in the database then the imported ascent is kept in a separate record so that it can me matched later.

To be honest, importing is quite complex. Firstly you have to work out how to get your logbook from your current provider - not every provider has such open policies. You then have to know how to create a CSV file format saved using UTF8 encoding. This needs to be uploaded to your account and you need to confirm the matches to routes in the system.

Don't let this complexity scare you off, contact us and we will do our best to help you through the process.

How to import your logbook ↑ Back to contents

Note that you can have a break from this process at any point and come back to it later - even months later if you wanted to. The system remembers where you were up to.

Step 1: Prepare Import File ↑ Back to contents

If you currently use 8a.nu then review the section Export ascent data from 8a.nu.

Prepare your logbook on your computer in an CSV file format using UTF8 character encoding. At a bare minimum you need crag and route columns, but also country is highly recommended. We can help with this if you want.

Step 2: Upload File to theCrag ↑ Back to contents

Log into theCrag and from the dashboard click the 'Action -> Import Logbook' link.

This will take you to the import manager page. Click the 'Upload CSV File' button.

Select your file and click 'Next'.

If successful you will be taken to a screen displaying the first 10 lines of your logbook.

... and the page continues ...

Here you need to tell the system how to interpret the CSV file. Based on the header row and the first content row the system will guess the format and there is a good chance you will not have to change the configuration at all. Assign data fields to various columns, indicate whether there is a header row or not, tell the system which grading system context you want to use for interpreting grades you import and set up the date format. When done select 'Confirm Configuration' radio button and click 'Next'.

You will be taken back to the import control panel.

Note on cancelling: You can 'cancel' an file upload and import at any time and start again (e.g. bad file format), which will remove all the unassigned import lines from being processed.

Here you need to decide whether you want to do one line at a time (time consuming) or do some bulk assessment (highly recommended). In fact the one-line-at-a-time mode should only be really used after you have done as much as you can with the bulk assessment. Note that you can do some one at a time, then do bulk or vice versa.

The one line at a time process is actually worth looking at the first line because it gives you a summary of the tick mappings, used to interpret the file. You should review this to make sure you are happy with how the tick types are being mapped.

Step 2a: One Line At A Time Entry ↑ Back to contents

Note: You can come back to this process anytime you want. It is highly likely that you will not be able to finish the process in one sitting because of missing routes in the database.

From the import control panel, click the 'Next Pending Line' button. You should get the following screen.

... and the page continues to show the tick map for the whole file ...

By default the system is configured to use the grade of the route, but a checkbox can be updated to change that. If there are multiple matching routes then you have to select one. You also have to tell the system if you want assign to node, skip (just go to the next line) or put the decision into a deferred bucket.

If the system grade for the route is close to the grade in the import file line then a tick is shown next to the route name, otherwise a cross. This should help aid your decision or to import.

Please note there are some additional hints to import individual lines using the one-at-a-time form.

  • To access the one-at-a-time form click the 'Next Pending Line' from the import dashboard.
  • If you cannot find a match in the list of system candidates then you can do a manual search by clicking on 'none' radio button and a manual search box should appear. If you select a result from this search it will be added to the list of candidates.
  • If you know the route is in the system but the search is still not matching using the manual search then you can put the route id into the search box to be added to the list of candidates.
  • You may revert a 'skipped' or 'deferred' line back to pending status by clicking on the 'report' link in the table of the main import dashboard screen, then find the line and click on the 'revert' link.
  • You may jump to a particular pending or deferred line by clicking on the line status in the import report, as above.

Step 2b: Bulk Entry ↑ Back to contents

Bulk entry still requires you to assess each CSV line, however all the system number crunching is done in bulk and multiple lines are presented for assessment on one page.

From the import control panel click the start the bulk assessment click the 'Start Bulk Assessment' button. The system has to do a lot of number crunching so this will take some time (maybe an hour or more depending on the size of the input file).

You should just go away and do something else. When the system has finished its number crunching it will email you - click the link provided in the email or the 'Report Bulk Assessment' button from the control page.

You should get a page with a filter near the top with import route assessments below that. The idea is that you need to confirm what the system thinks is the best match for each of your ascents you are importing. The system does a reasonable job at pre-selecting the most likely match so this is actually quite quick. Before you go on you might want to read the section on understanding assessment filters before you go on.

... and assessment report continues ...

... and assessment report continues ...

... and assessment report continues ...

Decide whether you want to save your ascent grades from the assigned route or you want them to be the same as the import file - set the 'Local grade' checkbox accordingly then scroll down the bottom and click the 'Refresh with filter' button to update the screen layout.

Review system assignments, and once you are happy click the 'Confirm update' checkbox and then the 'Save and continue' button. This will iterate you through the remaining routes of the filter selection.

Note that if you 'Skip assignment' for a particular ascent line then no changes are made to the database for that record and subsequent filter settings will find it again.

Repeat with different filter selections if necessarily working down to the harder cases.

Once you have confirmed everything you can you should be left with ascents that could not be matched to a route. See the section below on what to do about unmatched routes. Basically you wait until the index has been updated rerun the 'Start Bulk Assessment' process and see what new routes have been matched.

Your done for now.

Step 3: Review Report ↑ Back to contents

At any stage you can review your progress and ascent assignments.

From the import control panel click 'report' link next to the CSV file line. It should take you to a report looking like this.

If you click on the pending status link you will be taken directly to the assessment for that line entry.

If the ascent assignment has been made then the line item links to that ascent.

System number crunching ↑ Back to contents

When you start a bulk assessment, the system processes candidate matches for all unassigned import ascents. If you have already assigned a route to an ascent then this is not included in the number crunching.

When the system finishes it's number crunching it sends the user an email saying that bulk assessment is ready.

To find candidate matches the system progressively tries to match countries, crags, sectors, cliffs and routes using system search functionality. In other words if you are importing an ascent of 'Bart' in the United States then the system will not match other Bart routes in Australia and New Zealand.

Matching is done based on a fuzzy search logic, the same as index search. This means misspellings are usually matched. The search also takes into account alternate names, so if areas are know by different names then make sure the system knows this.

Finally the system compares grades to see if the grade of the candidate route matches the grade of the ascent. This system uses the standard grading conversion rules. If it does match then a is displayed next to the candidate route grade, otherwise a is displayed.

Understanding assessment filters ↑ Back to contents

The idea of the assessment filters is to make your assessment confirmation easier and quicker.

Whenever you change your assessment filter then scroll to the bottom of the page and click 'Refresh with filter' to get an updated screen.

  • Number lines left: Reports the number of ascent log lines yet to be assigned to a route. Filtering is only ever done on these unassigned ascents.
  • Filter: You can set this to group by similar matching patterns. It much faster to assess cases if they have the same patterns. Generally speaking you would start with the first filter 'Single candidate match with grade, country and crag matching', and work your way down.
  • Number lines shown: Number of ascent log lines to report on the assessment screen. For some filters, above, you may want to set this to 100 or more so you can quickly get through lots of matches.
  • Number lines skipped: This will allow you to start anywhere in a filter list. It is automatically updated when you 'Save and continue' so that you will get the next set of records by default.
  • Tooltips: This checkbox determines whether or not the matched index path is shown directly in the table or in tooltips that popup when you hover your mouse over the candidate route. Leave this unchecked until you get to the difficult cases.
  • Show stats: This shows area/route counts from unassigned ascent lines. Useful to know the concentration of routes not in the index.
  • Order by area: This orders the list by area, which can make assessment confirmation much quicker dealing with things crag by crag.
  • Local grade: Sets the import to use the grade of the assigned route for the imported ascent. If not set then the imported ascent will use the grade from the import file with an opportunity for you to manually override this.

What to do about unmatched routes ↑ Back to contents

Basically you wait until the index has been updated, then re-run 'Start Bulk Assessment' which will re-do all the number crunching for unassigned ascents.

Your choices are whether you wait for somebody else to do the work, or you create the missing routes yourself. In case you did not know there are benefits for contributing to the index - see Karma.

Let us know if you are choosing to update the index yourself and we will do everything we can to support your efforts.

You might be able to make some low hanging fruit corrections to the index by providing some alternate names to areas in the index, if theCrag search simply missed the route because the area is known as something different in the index.

Ultimately if you are left with unassigned rubbish in your logbook which you have no hope of ever working out what route it really was then this will just stay in your unassigned pile.