[aprssig] findU Messages

Phillip B. Pacier ad6nh at arrl.net
Thu Jul 19 10:49:05 EDT 2007

Recently, there have appeared two sets of messages on certain folk's 
findU pages that I feel need to be addressed in open forum.  First of 
all, being a supposedly public "non-commercial" venture, I think it is 
ethically wrong to target these messages to certain people, let alone 
the fact that they are way outside the spirit of the ham radio hobby and 
the original idea of APRS as conceived by Bob Bruninga.  Here is the 
first message:

Warning: No data received for more than 30 minutes.
Please be certain your weather client is connected to the core servers 
before asking for assistance.
Information on the recommended servers and how to do this is at this page.

There are several things potentially wrong with this message.  First of 
all, let me say that if ANYONE connected ANYWHERE has a question 
regarding APRS or databasing, you are more than welcome to send me a 
personal email to ad6nh at arrl.net.  I'm sure you are also more than 
welcome to send a message to the sigs and you will receive help despite 
this message.  You do NOT have to be connected to a certain server to 
receive help despite what this message claims.  Secondly, this message 
appears on pages from folks who are RF only and have not had an updated 
packet for more than 30 minutes.  Again, feel free to email me if you 
have questions - I am and have always been happy to help.  Lastly, this 
message appears when stations are connected to core servers and have not 
had an updated packet for more than 30 minutes.  How do we interpret 
that?  I'm already connected to a core server... oh, well I guess I can 
finally get assistance?  Hmm... just ask someone else.  There are plenty 
of us out there ready to help and will not label your pages with 
ridiculous messages.

The second message appears on CWxxxx station pages:

Warning: This weather station is connected to an unreliable server.
Citizen Weather connection recommendations have changed.
Information on the new recommendations and how to implement them is 
found at this page.

Nothing much to say here other than this message is a bunch of baloney.  
In the spirit of ham radio and service, I think it is quite wrong to put 
such messages (particularly those that feed incorrect information such 
as this one) on targeted pages.  Again, send me a personal email if you 
would like and I will be glad to help.  Additionally, findU is not the 
end-all of APRS.  There are other databasing options available that do 
not place targeted messages at certain people.

The reason for this post was to inform anyone out there who has 
hesitated to ask for help, or who has received incorrect information 
about the reliability of certain servers, that there are other resources 
for your enjoyment and deployment of APRS besides findU.  Have fun, stay 
connected, and please, continue to ask questions!  Thanks.

Phil Pacier - AD6NH

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