[aprssig] No more "backward thinkers"! DOGOTP!!!

John Denison kd5you at houston.rr.com
Wed Dec 29 19:45:31 EST 2004


You have said what I was trying to say in one of my earlier posts. I 
don't think the current uses of 1200 baud should be pushed to faster 
speeds simply because of where technology is in the world, but rather 
new uses and new ideas should be implemented at the speeds they require. 
It is fine to send packet and APRS at 1200 baud, but sending a picture 
or audio files would never stand a chance at 1200 baud. I also think 
that it is fine to use what we have as a part of being a Ham, but it is 
hard to sell to newcomers who are already in touch with today's technology.

One example would be this: You can talk around the world on HF, but the 
catch is that you have to use large radios, long antennas, and where you 
contact depends on the time of day and of the atmospheric/ionospheric 
conditions. It's still amazing, but also inconvenient. Now there is 
IRLP. With IRLP you can put the signal where you want it, and can 
contact someone around the world on a small HT.

The trend of the world is moving toward smaller and smarter devices with 
bigger and better technology. Earlier I asked why 1200 baud was still 
being used. There were several good answers and all seem reasonable. The 
problem is that the capacity of the old technology remains the same. If 
we want to do more, then there needs to be allocations to allow us to do 
more. A good place for the higher speeds would be at the 1.2 GHz bands 
and higher...

Jim Duncan wrote:

> I've been following this thread for a couple of days now. It seems to 
> me that I proposed doing EXACTLY the same thing (node linking, etc.) 
> over three years ago. Now I'm reading where we should begin thinking 
> toward using connected protocol.
> In another post I read where the number of APRS stations worldwide is 
> estimated at 40,000 with ZERO growth.
> Why did packet radio (BBS, network nodes, etc.) die? Simple: The 
> Internet. It was no longer necessary to send messages by an outdated, 
> ponderous system. The novelty wore off just as the novelty of APRS is 
> wearing off.
> The underlying cause is the insistence on continuing to operate at 
> 1200 baud using equipment that is essentially the same as it was 
> TWENTY YEARS ago. Is it any wonder why people are staying away or 
> leaving? In 1984 I remember my excitement of being able to dial up a 
> BBS at 9600 baud. Moreover, as the internet took off and speed 
> increased amateur radio continued to tinker with equipment and 
> standards that were the cat's pajamas in the 80's but FAILED to keep 
> up with the changing technology.
> Once again, we are perceived as a bunch of old farts playing with 
> radios, set in our ways, unwilling to move forward. "Hey, it does what 
> I want it to do so why bother?" is the general attitude out there.
> Now our fearless, self-proclaimed godfather says "let's start doing 
> connected protocol" and I can't help but wonder why?
> Unless and until we face facts that we MUST bring our technology into 
> the 21st century then we are doomed to repeat the mistakes of the past.
> Amateur radio will be dead in 10 years if we don't. APRS will have 
> gone the way of the packet BBS system in less time.
> Forget old technology, folks. It's time to say that we are done with 
> 1200 baud, insist that the manufacturers put out equipment that is 
> capable of handling higher speeds and wider bandwidths.
> My interest in APRS has, quite frankly, waned to a point where I NEVER 
> turn on the monitor of the WinAPRS computer. It simply runs to 
> maintain the IGate and I literally ignore it except to periodically 
> reset the machine, clear out RAM, etc. It's a service to the amateur 
> community and I'll continue to do it until such time as it's no longer 
> productive or useful.
> Where I used to religiously have the laptop in the car running WinAPRS 
> no matter how far I was driving I rarely connect the laptop except 
> when going on an extended trip.
> My D-700A is now re-tasked to other services (ATCS monitoring 
> primarily) and the all-too-rare voice call (except during storm season).
> Why does someone who was a regional proponent and promoter of APRS 
> lose interest? APRS and amateur radio have failed to keep up with the 
> times (with the exception of the TCP/IP backbone). This is exemplified 
> by the insistence of Bob to continue to put out DOS-based software, 
> written in QBasic and still compiled in the same way for the past 
> TWELVE years (if I understand correctly).  Yes, I understand that 
> learning a new programming language is a challenge. What I fail to 
> understand is why continuing to write/update software for computers 
> that have long out-lived their useful lives and represent less than 1% 
> of the computers in homes now is even a factor now?
> Come on, folks! Wake up and smell the coffee here before we turn into 
> another bastien of sticks in the mud just like the AM'ers of the 60's 
> and 70's. It's time to ADVANCE the radio art, not look backward!

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