[aprssig] The best resolution of position from APRS

Wes Johnston aprs at kd4rdb.com
Wed Jan 4 07:06:08 EST 2006

Hmm... Without starting too much... I am pleased with my kenwood d700.
It fits nicely on top of my GPS display on a post sticking up out of the
floor of my car.  I'm not _so_ happy with it that if another radio manu
came out with another similar/better radio, I wouldn't consider buying
the other.  For that matter, if kenwood came out with an updated version
of the d700, I'd probably buy it.  But please don't think that just
because I (one of 10,000 users) have a kenwood that I _like_ the
features it has.  I especially don't like the part about it causes the
APRS spec to take a step backwards.

I would like to see things like:
1)ability to display aprs packets on screen AND send copies of the raw
packets out the serial port.
2)ability to extend the APRS protocol so that the radio would auto
program some of it's memories to the local repeaters as I travel thru a
new area.
3)ability to QSY the voice side of the radio to some other frequency and
report signal strength back on aprs in response to an APRS query.  This
would build an auto-df system very quickly.
4)some sort of a programmer accessible API interface... that would allow
some sort of attached "daughter processor" to receive raw aprs packets
and control the screen.  This one feature would future proof the radio!

I spoke with kenwood's programmer at DCC a couple of years ago, and he
seemed to indicate that the d7a was the holdup... no more room in it for
features and the two radios must stay compatible.  I just keep holding
my breath for them to update these two radios.


Robert Bruninga wrote:
>>>Dont think of it that way, think of it as 10,000 APRS
>>>users who bought a radio and want to continue to use
>>>if for what they bought it for.  It is those users and
>>>their continued satisfaction that is driving the spec
>>>to keep things working right.
>>>>scott at opentrac.org 01/03/06 11:26 PM >>>
>>And it's those 10,000 customers that Kenwood should 
>>worry about keeping happy.  
> They are keeping them happy.  The Kenwood radio still 
> does today, exactly what it did when they bought it.
> And they have not had to download new firmware every
> 3 months to keep it current with every whim of every
> programmer that wants to dink with the APRS protocol.
>>But how many Kenwood firmware updates have there 
>>been  in the last 10 years?
> None, other than a total recall back in 1999 to fix the
> very first model.  Isnt it great that the radio is still
> completely compatible with APRS.  Yes, it does not
> display positions to one foot, but in sometihng moving
> at between 10 to 90 feet per second, one foot precision
> is not that important to those users.
> But when you start sending objects using a protocol
> that they cant understand, then it is not Kenwood 
> that is making them unhappy, but the programmers
> that insist on using a part of protocol that has been 
> depricated and obsolete.  Especially when alternatives
> are avaiable to give the same 1 foot resolution that 
> WOULD let the kenwood users still see the object.
> I'm sorry, we must keep existing systems and users
> compatible.  It is counter productive for Xastir and
> Opentrack to set out to obsolete those 10,000
> radios.  When alternatives exist to give the same
> 1 foot resolution.
> de Wb4APR, Bob
> transmitting a
> Bob
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