[aprssig] Sept ARRL's QST 2008 article

Bob Bruninga bruninga at usna.edu
Thu Aug 14 12:33:13 EDT 2008

>> PACKETS!!! EVER... 
> Please go on....  What's the difference?

Thanks.  This is very *important*

Simple answer.  VA means OPERATOR PRESENT.

The mobile who is running VA is lisening to comfortable silence from his radio.  When he hears a VA packet, that is a *live CQ* from another LIVE HUMAN operator in simplex range that is also *calling CQ* on voice alert and also *listening for a call*.

The *worst thing* for Voice Alert is to have a home station sending VA packets and the operator NOT there, NOT listening, but still *calling CQ* 24/7/365.  It completely ruins VA over the entire area.  In each city where there is one of these aligators, VA is useless, because all VA mobiles have to turn their volume down to avoid listening to his empty CQ packets and then they forget to turn the volume back up and therefore those that were using VA propelrly also do not answer their calls because they forgot to turn the volume back up after they go out of the area of his VA SPAM.

THe ONLY way to monitor VA from anything but a mobile, is to use a NON-APRS radio with NO TNC attached.  Then it is perfeclty fine to monitor 144.39 24/7 with CTCSS 100, because then you are not TRANSMITTING a periodic CQ packet when you are not there.

Whats the difference?  ALL Mobiles have a driver (human operator) present.  Most non-mobiles rarely have an operator present, but run 24/7.

* It is warm and fun to hear a VA packet.  Another human calling out in the RF wilderness for a simplex contact.  

* It is frustrating and irritating to have someone calling out in the wilderness and not listening or responding to a call.

APRS does define an operator present bit, that could be used to activate VA from a shack, only when an operator is present automatically, but few clients have implemented it.  And none have tied it to VA.

Thanks for asking.

More information about the aprssig mailing list