[aprssig] Changing visibility Weather Symbols

John Galvin jrgalvin2 at gmail.com
Wed Apr 16 20:06:30 EDT 2008

Good start, but Bob, we all have a stake in this.

73, John - N5TIM

Robert Bruninga wrote:
> WEATHER Groupies beware?
> In the initiative to upgrade APRS symbols, we are wasting some
> very valuable OVERLAYABLE symbol subgroups with a few nailed
> down legacy weather symbols.  We are proposing to consolidate
> some of these Weather symbols to open up much more space.  Since
> this is the first time we have considered actually CHANGING some
> symbol definitions, this can cause problems out there for some
> users of some legacy systems.
> That is why I am posting this plan to the APRS community.  If we
> do this, XASTIR and UIVIEW will be able to download new symbol
> definitions.  But some legacy clients that do not operate from
> external symbol files will show the wrong symbols for these. If
> users of those systems forsee some serious problems with the
> re-arrangement of these symbols, let us know the specific impact
> and your ideas for a workaround.. 
> The symbols that are impacted are as follows:
> First, consolidate all of the visibility symbols into the old
> SMOKE symbol and change its meaning to "VISIBILITY", and then
> differentiate them with the overlay characters.  
> "\E"  (existing smoke) the symbol with no overlay
> "HE"  (an H overlay) will mean Haze
> "SE"  (an S overlay) will mean Smoke
> "BE"  (a  B overlay) will mean Blowing Snow
> "DE"  (a  D overlay) will mean blowing Dust or sand
> "FE"  (an F overlay) will mean Fog
> Another category is to expand the RAIN symbol to make it kinda
> like lots of angled dots coming from the sky, but with an open
> center so that we can use overlays for a number of common
> PRECIPITATIONS.  The consolidations would be:
> "\`" (existing Rain) would be the symbol with no overlay
> "R`" (an R overlay) would mean Rain
> "F`" (an F overlay) would mean Freezing Rain
> "H`" (an H overlay) would mean Hail
> "D`" (an D overlay) would mean Drizzle
> "E`" (an E overlay) would mean slEEt
> "S`" (an S overlay) would mean Snow
> Etc. and other particulates coming from the sky
> Next, I propose expanding the existing RAIN SHOWER "\I" symbol
> to look like some kind of cloud symbol with specks in it that
> can be overlayed. (It needs to look different from the next
> CLOUD symbol). It can then consolidate these symbols:
> "RI" (an R overlay) would mean Rain Shower
> "SI" (an S overlay) would mean Snow shower
> "LI" (an L overlay) would mean Lightening
> Etc. and other things related to clouds
> Next, I propose expanding the existing CLOUD symbol to allow
> definition of any number of different types of cloud.  This
> needs to also look like a cloud but a different shape and allow
> for overlays  (Maybe this cloud is clear):
> "\(" is the existing cloud symbol (would have no overlay)
> "P(" with P overlay would mean partly cloudy
> "W(" with W overlay would be a wall cloud
> "F(" would be Funnel cloud, but the original "\f" will also be
> retained for now
> This free's up a lot of overlayable symbol GROUPS each of which
> can suport up to 36 different overlays in each group for the
> future:
> #H for 36 new Hazards (was only Hail)
> #[ for 36 new human symbols (was only Wall Cloud)
> #B was only blowing snow
> #b was only blowing dust/sand
> #{ was only fog
> #* was snow only
> #: was hail only
> #D was drizzle only
> #F was freezing rain only
> #e was sleet only
> #G was only Snow shower
> #J was only Lightening
> #p was only partly cloudy
> Of course future code can fully draw each of these overlays as
> distinct special symbols in any way they want.  But Uiview uers
> are stuck with only seeing overlays on basic group shapes for
> now.
> To keep the noise-to-signal rate down, I suggest replying only
> if you have something of significance that will be impacted by
> this proposal.  I especially want to hear from Dale Hugley who
> is a resource for weather, and Stephen Smith who will have to
> draw them for Uiview. And others with a stake in this...
> Bob, WB4APR
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John Galvin - N5TIM
http://www.qsl.net/n5tim for Public Service Info

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