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Re: Vanishing Hams



>> Then consider that APRS has had global text-
>> messaging (and email) via the keypad of the 
>> D7 and D700 radios for over 10 years now...

> ... the weakness of APRS is the lack of manufacturers...

More coming... D7, D700, D710, now Yeasu VX-8R and some DSTAR
GPS TX support...

> ... I would need integrated APRS support, D-STAR/D-PRS 
> capability (so I can do both in the one radio),

I sure hope we can work this out.  The DSTAR radio has a display
and D-PRS has defined the translations between DSTAR and APRS...
So it is all in work...

> Satellite APRS is certainly something that's 
> quite useful... for camping... in remote areas 
> to keep in touch.  APRS didn't gain that "WOW" 
> factor in the same time, it was always seen as 
> a useful niche application...

Because too many people only see it as a vehicle tracking system
(TX-ing GPS data) instead of the original intent (Receiving and
displaying all surrounding local information to the mobile
operator)... Think "tiny-web-pages" on the front panel of the
radio showing satellites in view(now), freqs, doppler, local
voice freq, local Echolink freq, local IRLP freq, club meetings,
net times.  A veritable resource of everything a traveler would
need to know when he entered an area...

> Also, lack of inbuilt GPS or wireless GPS 

In most APRS applications, and especially in satellite
operations, few people need a GPS unless they are lost or cannot
read a map.  No one cares exactly where most people are, just
approximately, and that is why APRS provides for 1, 10 and 60
mile ambiguity.  For satellite use, just set your 10 mile
position, so people can see what city and gridsquare you are in,
and don't bother with the GPS..

> For home use...  

APRS is more of an information resource display system for the
mobile operator.  Not much needed in the shack in competition
with the WWW.  Its value is in the display to the mobile
operator of everything going on around him in HAM radio.  Though
this does need home stations and active stations that are
actually doing something, to post those real time objects,
events, and bulletins on APRS for others...

> I can only run HTs and networked applications 
> (e.g. VoIP, local I-Gate) that don't require 
> physical presence in the shack...

Which is why APRS as an info display system in the mobile is so
valuable... Its where we spend a lot of our time with not much
else to do but sit in traffic...  Now when I drive into a new
area, the APRS radio displays the locally recommended voice
frequency/tone there and this alone makes ham radio so much more
useful when traveling...

Bob, WB4APR

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