[aprssig] Sept ARRL's QST 2008 article

Keith VE7GDH ve7gdh at rac.ca
Thu Aug 14 14:24:30 EDT 2008

Bob WB4APR wrote...

> Simple answer.  VA means OPERATOR PRESENT.

Usually, but there's just as much chance as a mobile station as a fixed 
station beaconing with a 100Hz tone while not listening.

> 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....

I do realize the intent of "voice alert" but a fixed station beaconing 
with a tone and not listening is no worse than a mobile station 
beaconing with a tone and not listening. Of course, the average home 
station can have their APRS client (e.g. UI-View with VicinityAlarm) 
alert them when a station approaches whether they are beaconig with a 
tone or not.

> Whats the difference?  ALL Mobiles have a driver (human operator) 
> present.

Not necessarily. Lots of stations continue to beacon when parked with 
the driver absent.

>  Most non-mobiles rarely have an operator present, but run 24/7.

That is a generality, both with regard to "most non-mobiles rarely have 
an operator present" and the part about running "24/7".

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

No argument there. You seem to be saying that it's OK to let mobile 
stations know when you drive by them, but it's not OK for fixed stations 
to let mobile stations whent he mobile station drives by.

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

I'll go along with that.

I'm sure that MOST stations using VA are mobile. Hopefully MOST stations 
beaconing with the tone are actually listening with CTCSS. It's just too 
much of a generality to say that ALL fixed stations don't have an 
operator present. I think that VA is a good idea and that most of the 
time it will be used by mobile stations. I think it is wrong to just 
assume that operators of fixed stations don't know what they are 
doing... just like it would be wrong to assume that all mobile stations 
know what they are doing.

73 es cul - Keith VE7GDH
"I may be lost, but I know exactly where I am!" 

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