[aprssig] APRS Frequency info?

Stephen H. Smith wa8lmf2 at aol.com
Sat Jul 5 01:03:25 EDT 2008

Robert Bruninga wrote:

> Good point.  Things on my APRS web pages first come to light as
> fuzzy ideas.  Then a web page goes up.  THen as we learn and
> refine, more and more gets added.  I agree, the result is a
> ramble.  Ill try to clean it up a bit.  But it should be noted
> that that page serves two purposes.
> 1) Educate all of HAM Radio, (not just APRS users) about the
> importance that Frequency can have in our daily communications.
> That was the original ARRL initiative to which we responded
> after Katrina.  
> 2) Show people how to do it.

If you are going to refer people to this page for instructions on HOW TO 
then the HOW TO DO IT paragraphs should be AT or NEAR THE TOP (Or at least
a link near the top to an anchor lower down on the page, with something 

"Jump to Detailed Setup Instructions Lower Down On This Page"

> OK, I tried to smooth up the details of the settings.  But I
> couldn't get rid of the background preceeding it, since I point
> to this web page all the time for non-APRS users and ARRL VIP's
> to hope they get the value of APRS in communicating local
> frequency info...
>> punctuated by a series of fuzzy low-contrast, 
>> low-res images of radio front panels.   
> You are right, some of them were taken with a Kenwood VCH-1 SSTV
> camera over a decade ago.  

AARRGH!!!!   One of the WORST imaging devices ever offered the public!   
(I have two of the VC-H1s and NEVER use the supplied camera head. I 
always use the NTSC monitor output of a decent digital camera as an 
image source for the VC-H1 -- it improves the image quality of 
transmitted images several hundred percent.)

> That is all I had at the time.  But
> on the other hand, they sure load quickly!  I for one, prefer
> speed over image bloat any time especially when all we are
> showing is text anyway.  Kinda like the amateur mantra of using
> the minimum bandwidth to communicate...  I scrunch 
> All 2 MB photos by 16:1 or more before placing on my web pages.

There is absolutely no reason whatsoever that these images should be 
remotely near 2MB, "scrunched" or "unscrunched".   Further, they won't 
be any larger if they are IN FOCUS with DECENT CONTRAST!!!  Invest 40 
bucks in a second-hand digital camera off Craigs List  (I just bough a 
two-year-old Canon A75 Powershot  for $45 that has zoom macrofocusing 
capability that can fill the entire field of view with a SHARP image of 
the screen of a TH-D7 at 18").  

Then twiddle the resulting images in Photoshop.  Jack up the contrast, 
crop and resize from it's native multi-megapixel resolution to something 
like 320x240, reduce the color depth from photographic high-color to 256 
colors (you'll never notice the difference on screen shots or images of 
maps) and save as a GIF image.  If you don't have PhotoShop, the 
freeware IrfanView program from <http://irfanview.com> can perform these 
operations just about as well.   

My webpage with the review of the Garmin Foretrex 201 wrist GPS shows 
what can be done to tweak images of small LCD screens (the Foretrex 
screen is only a little larger than the TH-D7s):

     <http://wa8lmf.net/Foretrex>      (None of  the images linked from 
this page are larger than 38K.)

> I would welcome any better photo contributions.  The ECHOLINK
> and IRLP photos on the D7 need to be re-shot since I left out
> the FREQUENCY on the second line....  Kinda silly, since that
> was the whole point.  And I only just noticed that tonight!
>> A template with the exact format of this kind of frequency 
>> object, along with a couple of example strings, needs to be 
>> the FIRST item on the page.
> I take your suggestions and cleaned up the presentation a
> little... But still, the formats come after intro and
> background, since that is the main point of this page to APRS
> and non-APRS users alike.  We need to get out the word that the
> concept of operating frequency is as equally an important
> parameter about any station at least as important as his LAT and
> After all, we have radios to commnicate.  And we have to know
> frequency to do that... Not just put little icons on FINDU.

This has nothing to do with effectively using page layout and  
typography to make the page readable, and the critical information 
easily findable.

I think you need a WYSIWYG HTML editor rather than a simple ASCII text 
editor so that you can more easily control page layouts with multiple 
columns,  multiple fonts, etc.    A  very nice basic  FREEWARE  HTML 
editor is available at:


This is NOT a bloated "Web 2.0" app for creating pages massively loaded 
with Flash Animation, video clips, Javascript popups, cascading style 
sheets, etc.   It is a small and fast open-source app for Windows, Mac 
and Linux that runs on modest hardware.   It can toggle between an edit 
page that resembles MS Word, a traditional HTML code view, and a browser 
preview mode as you edit.  

Think of it as a FREE diet-sized version of MS Frontpage.  Like 
Frontpage, it also includes a "site manager" feature that lets you see 
the connections between pages of the site, and an integrated FTP client 
for uploading to the server.    It is ideal for the kind of relatively 
simple, primarily    
text-oriented-but-with-some-formatting-and-a-few-images  pages needed 
for non-commercial websites without active dynamically-assembled 
content,  like  the typical  ham pages.   And it is FREEE!


Stephen H. Smith    wa8lmf (at) aol.com
EchoLink Node:      14400    [Think bottom of the 2M band]
Home Page:          http://wa8lmf.com  --OR--   http://wa8lmf.net

NEW!   World Digipeater Map

JavAPRS Filter Port 14580 Guide

"APRS 101"  Explanation of APRS Path Selection & Digipeating

Updated "Rev H" APRS            http://wa8lmf.net/aprs
Symbols Set for UI-View,
UIpoint and APRSplus:

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