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HIGH SPEED Digital AMSAT Channels.


BACKGROUND: 10 years ago, the PACSAT protocol optimized the delivery of
data to all users in the footprint and allowed everyone to participate in
the downlink.  It was GREAT.  It served the mode and all users well...

NEW SITUATION:  Since then, and with the evolution of the Internet, there
are now hundreds of DIGITAL applications that we will all like to
experiment with through P3D and other new digital satellites.

OBVIOUS SOLUTION?  At first glance, the obvious solutions are to take the
Internet paradigm and apply it to our Ham satellites.  We gain
tremendously from off-the-shelf hardware and software.  

PITFALL:  THis is all well and good for using our HAM satellites for
point-to-point links, but it fails miserably at doing what ONLY HAM
Satellites do best, and that is let everyone in on the action.  I fully
support pt-to-pt links, but I also believe that the future of HAM radio is
to RELISH our differences, not just do what we can already do on the

Hams want to "tune the band", see what others are doing;  See what others
are seeing...  Join in on a QSO or a "video conference".  Most of the
straight-forward off-the-shelf things we may be thinking of doing via high
speed Amateur channels just wont work except for full duplex between two
stations A and B.  It will not let anyone else see or join the process
easily without planning for it in the protocol.  We better be
thinking about these things from the beginning...

I fully support all aspects of experimentation.  But not until today, did
it dawn on me how pt-to-pt links between stations A and B are of zero
value to the other 1000 stations on the downlink who might want to be
sharing in the action.  So, this message is NOT "against" anything (no
flames please), it just suggests that coming up with protocols that allow
everyone to play HAM radio (ie, read-the mail and tune in to a net in
progress) is not going to be the simple off-the-shelf "internet" solution.

Remember, there is NOTHING like HAM radio, and nothing like 1000 people
trying to join in on the same downlink when most of them might be happy
just participating in what someone else is doing.  Thus we need to be
looking at how we can use one-to-many and many-to-many protocols...

Just a thoght that came clear to me today...

Again, nothing wrong with pt-to-pt.  We just need GROUP protocols too...

de WB4APR, Bob

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