[aprssig] 20th century radio (was: APRS MileMark data base)

Brian Webster bwebster at wirelessmapping.com
Sun Apr 13 21:17:24 EDT 2008

Jason and All;
	While the ease of getting GPS devices and such out there is cheap and easy
that is not the point Bob is trying to make. In any emergency or disaster
there will be plenty of times you will get information that would be very
useful to put on a map and then broadcast it for all to see. For instance
when a new shelter gets set up. Putting it's location MANUALLY on the map
and then broadcasting it works great and is a wonderful tactical tool. The
one to many concept is used more than you can ever realize because the many
don't always talk back to you, it is a passive method. These types of things
do not need GPS trackers. There are many other bits of information that are
also useful on maps. Road closures, hospitals, on scene command posts and
many others, none of which need a tracker or GPS/TNC combination. You could
easily have one person just passively listening to not only ham radio, but
other public service radio channels and update a tactical map. These
tactical maps/APRS programs can be run in an EOC, mobile command post,
shelters, fire houses and other places like a red cross or mayors office.
They all would get the updates and the data at once and without having to
ask for it. When this happens people can anticipate requests to their
agencies and do prep work to respond to the requests. We have proven that in
emergencies in the past. It works well on voice repeaters time and time
again, backing that type of data up with a visual display is awesome.
	While I also would love to see our technology advance, technology just for
technology sake is not always the best answer. Being able to get a job done
in less than ideal situations when all else fails is where we shine. If we
do it with 30 year old methods who cares? The fact that we can do it when
others can't is the point.

Thank You,
Brian N2KGC

-----Original Message-----
From: aprssig-bounces at lists.tapr.org
[mailto:aprssig-bounces at lists.tapr.org]On Behalf Of Jason KG4WSV
Sent: Sunday, April 13, 2008 7:42 PM
To: TAPR APRS Mailing List
Subject: Re: [aprssig] 20th century radio (was: APRS MileMark data base)

On Sun, Apr 13, 2008 at 5:21 PM, Bob Bruninga <bruninga at usna.edu> wrote:

>  Because 95% of important things that impact an event and that people need
to see, will never have APRS GPS gizmo's attached to them!

Yeah, we can't afford them because we blow $200 a pop on a KPC-3+,
then some more on burning a PROM to get them functional.

>  No, providing real-world communications in support of events is not just
about making our jobs easier, but to provide BETTER information than they
currently have now about the situation.

If you have better methods and better equipment, you can do a better job.

>  In my area, maybe 10% maximum of all volunteers that show up at these
events or situatinos have any APRS abillity at all.  The other 90% don't.
Do we ignore them?

I have noticed on our balloon chases (which frequently combine asset
tracking with SAR type activity) that those who do not have APRS
capability typically provide less help than those who do.

Part of using the tools we have is doing an after-action assessment,
and figure out what is useful and what to leave at home next time.

>  APRS had automatic DF interefaces to ALL existing DOppler DF units since

Bob, the rest of the world abandoned DOS years ago.  If you want to
provide something useful for the APRS community, do it in linux, or
even Windows (if you must).

And since when did APRS-DOS = APRS?

>  Maxwell's equations have not changed since the 1800's.

Maybe not, but our understanding of them and the technology available
to us has changed just a wee bit since then.

>  FEC would be nice, but what exactly about a LAT/LONG, a course and speed,
and a few bytes of text message would benefit from "better protocols",
"Higher data rates (but shorter range)", and better modulation (at higher
cost) provide?

Maybe it would provide the capability for more
stations/objects/messages on the air, for a start?  Maybe more data,
like vector objects to indicate storms, spill areas, recommended evac
routes, even complete maps or radar images?  D-STAR managed to get
voice and data on the same frequency (too bad they used proprietary
codecs to do it).

Shorter range is your (apparently intentional) mis-assumption.  Yes, I
would be an idiot to change to a more inferior technology, but that's
not the direction I meant we should go.  I have no idea where Maxwell
says that more efficient modulation techniques cost more - I guess I
should have paid more attention in physics class, and less attention
to things like those commodity ICs that do GMSK on 70cm.

>   (and an experimental playground for testing new ideas).

_Thank_ you.  That is my point, and we (APRS) are NOT doing anything
NEW.  Nothing.

>  The point of this thread was to the OPERATORS to learn to USE what they
have effectively while they wait for the wunder-kids to bring out something

Maybe I'm in the wrong place then - where is the new stuff being
developed?  Not in ham radio, and certainly not in APRS, as far as I
can tell.


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