Call Search
     

New to Ham Radio?
My Profile

Community
Articles
Forums
News
Reviews
Friends Remembered
Strays
Survey Question

Operating
Contesting
DX Cluster Spots
Propagation

Resources
Calendar
Classifieds
Ham Exams
Ham Links
List Archives
News Articles
Product Reviews
QSL Managers

Site Info
eHam Help (FAQ)
Support the site
The eHam Team
Advertising Info
Vision Statement
About eHam.net

   Home   Help Search  
Pages: Prev 1 [2] 3 Next   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: APRS is lost, or is it?  (Read 119966 times)
KF7CG
Member

Posts: 863




Ignore
« Reply #15 on: November 07, 2013, 10:36:57 AM »

Pardon the mention of the "Public Services" uses for Amateur Radio when supporting community events such as parades, marathons, and other spread out community events. APRS at that points is a good means to keep track of individual station locations.

Now to the FT1D. If it had P25 digital capabilities instead of just a basic digital mode only used by Yeasu it would be great. Will talk digital FT1D to FT1D and even send pictures, but is not P25 compliant though basic modulation scheme is.

KF7CG
Logged
K5LXP
Member

Posts: 4521


WWW

Ignore
« Reply #16 on: November 08, 2013, 02:13:42 PM »

At this point for me, APRS would be more of a toy vs. necessity. I'd love to have it, but won't buy it.

Entry level APRS is a used tiny tracker/open tracker, an old HT and an old GPS.  You'd be hard pressed to spend $50 for the lot.  Not sure where your threshold of value is but for the cost of a tank of gas one can be "on" APRS.  The whizbang $600 mobiles/HT's can be nice if you're really into it, but not a requirement to play.

Mark K5LXP
Albuquerque, NM
Logged
K6CPO
Member

Posts: 163




Ignore
« Reply #17 on: November 11, 2013, 02:18:25 PM »

Despite what it's detractors might say, APRS has a place, especially in location tracking. 

Case in point:  Two of the members of my club were on a jeep trip in the desert a couple of weeks ago and we were tracking them on APRS.  They managed to get stuck in an area with no cell phone coverage and couldn't get the vehicle out.   They contacted one of the other club members on a local repeater who in turn called the sheriff's department.  The sheriff flew in a helo, landed, and picked up our friends.  They were flown to "civilization" and after an overnight stay, they went back with a another vehicle and got their jeep out.  In this particular case, both APRS and amateur radio were a benefit.   
Logged
KF7CG
Member

Posts: 863




Ignore
« Reply #18 on: November 13, 2013, 10:01:44 AM »

Strange thing with APRS, the coverage is spotty at best. Our club was supporting a Veteran's Day Parade and was using APRS to keep a close check on unit locations via an internet website.

We had one problem, there was not an APRS receive site withing range of our handy-talkies. Those of us with APRS displays on our units could see the information from our other units but nothing made it to the web. We had to go to APRS cell-phone apps to get tracking.

We all would have preffered to use APRS on our radios, but handy-talkies and APRS do not mix well north of Nashille. The digipeaters and gateways just can't hear them.

KF7CG
Logged
K0JEG
Member

Posts: 672




Ignore
« Reply #19 on: November 17, 2013, 09:06:13 AM »

Strange thing with APRS, the coverage is spotty at best. Our club was supporting a Veteran's Day Parade and was using APRS to keep a close check on unit locations via an internet website.

We had one problem, there was not an APRS receive site withing range of our handy-talkies. Those of us with APRS displays on our units could see the information from our other units but nothing made it to the web. We had to go to APRS cell-phone apps to get tracking.

We all would have preffered to use APRS on our radios, but handy-talkies and APRS do not mix well north of Nashille. The digipeaters and gateways just can't hear them.

KF7CG

That's always going to be a problem with a network built by volunteers, to some extent. In this case, some scouting ahead of time could have pointed to setting up higher powered mobiles in key locations that could digipeat the HT signals to gateways. I've done this in fringe areas when out hiking, making my TM-d700 in the car a digipeater for my HT.
Logged
KE7TMA
Member

Posts: 472




Ignore
« Reply #20 on: November 17, 2013, 12:22:25 PM »

I'm just now exploring all the possibilities that APRS has to offer, after using it for several years just to beacon trip progress to my non-ham family members.  I'm not convinced that it is being under-utilized - any ham will develop their own interests.  The issue I see is that most mobiles do not have APRS and most mobile operators don't know that they can use the Kenwood RC-D710 to add APRS to ANY existing mobile from any maker.  It is very rare for me to find places where I can not at least receive APRS beacons on my HT or get them to an iGate without going deep into the bush.

Yes, people use APRS as a free LoJack but why not?  It works great for this purpose.  T the people complaining that there is spotty APRs coverage in your area, I can only ask, what are you doing about that?
Logged
KC3JV
Member

Posts: 20




Ignore
« Reply #21 on: November 22, 2013, 11:50:47 AM »

My 2 cents worth:   I think APRS would be really useful in search and rescue.   You would know where every searcher was and it could be coordinated.   Just a thought.

Mark KC3JV
Logged
AF6OF
Member

Posts: 27




Ignore
« Reply #22 on: November 24, 2013, 06:34:06 PM »

I manufacture the Micro-Trak line of products for Byonics and I am absolutely astounded by the variety of applications that hams, new and experienced, young and old, find for our products, and they sell as fast as we can manufacture and program them. Yes, it would be nice if people did not transmit every ten seconds while they drive their cars down the Quickee Mart for a six pack of bud, but I find these users to be very much in the minority ( We also won't program a transmitter that way, knowing that the transmission is going to really irk the APRS Police!) Besides Our Byonics equipment (TT3, TT4, Micro-Trak , etc.) Almost every Amateur Radio company in the VHF market produces or plans to add APRS functions in future products, as well as quite a number of other Small businesses producing new products all the time 9 And about a zillion guys on E-bay selling TT3 clones!) APRS is growing, not shrinking.

Allen AF6OF
Logged
KJ4RHB
Member

Posts: 5




Ignore
« Reply #23 on: November 30, 2013, 07:48:46 PM »

I beacon my position on my mobile, so other Hams can see I'm out there and contact me if they want to QSO. It works great!

I've been contacted many times like this while driving around town or across the country.

In addition, I keep an I-Gate active 24/7 to serve my community. Storm brewing? No problem - I'll transmit the position via APRS to warn others.

It has its uses and I really enjoy it along with many other modes of Ham Radio. That's the great thing about this hobby - everyone can decide what he or she wants to get out of it.

Logged
N1ZZZ
Member

Posts: 161




Ignore
« Reply #24 on: December 03, 2013, 07:15:30 AM »

Well I will share my recent APRS experience for what it's worth.

I was beaconing positions from a ship on a trip from the US east Coast, to the US Gulf, across the Atlantic, through the Med, in the Indian Ocean and back.  It took about 140 days to complete this trip.

I was able to work ships at sea, have numerous simultaneous keyboard QSO's on 4 continents via the message functions (both RF only and RF-Internet); including with a guy taking a hike on a mountain (RF only).

Googling my call sign now lists a variety of blog and forum posts of people who actually did care where I was and what I was doing, and took the time to write about it.  Personally, it increased my understanding of propagation on 30 meters. 

As an aside, when I am ashore and home, I randomly send messages from my home station to mobile trackers with message capability. 

I find it a great aspect of the hobby, and quite rewarding.  I understand that it's not some people's cup of tea, but it serves a purpose and is interesting to a large number of hams.

73
Jeremy N1ZZZ
Logged
K9MHZ
Member

Posts: 433




Ignore
« Reply #25 on: December 07, 2013, 08:02:21 AM »

I frequent SSB 10-80

Well, that's an interesting comment from a very new ham/General.

These "the end of (fill in the blank) as we know it" posts, especially from newer and inexperienced hams, are really laughable.  I've read about the impending demise of Kenwood on here several years ago, but then the TS-990 was introduced, so you don't read much about that any longer.  Lately, it's been Ten Tec's impending demise.  Good grief, they're very strong and ready to introduce some new gear.  Now this....an intense original posting from someone who's convinced that there's some kind of generational component to APRS, blah, blah.  

It is what it is, folks....it's a tool.  Many school scientific packages have used APRS in tracking and it's been a valuable tool.    Others who travel a lot use it to aid people at home to track their progress.   NOBODY has ever insisted that it's the best thing to ever hit ham radio, it's just another thing.

To attach so much intense obsessive thought and in-depth demographic analysis to something as small and simple as APRS is very, very odd.  A new ham should concentrate on enhancing the breadth of his understanding of the hobby, rather thinking of himself as an instant authority on such things.  
« Last Edit: December 07, 2013, 08:06:42 AM by K9MHZ » Logged
AB4D
Member

Posts: 298


WWW

Ignore
« Reply #26 on: December 08, 2013, 11:55:26 AM »

Same age-old and tired arguments since the inception of the hobby.    Roll Eyes   Narrow minded people can take any aspect of the hobby and apply the "my way is the only right way" of operation:

Real hams use spark
Real hams use CW
Real hams are QRP
Real hams make their own equipment/antennas
Real hams don't use repeaters
Real hams don't use Internet linked repeaters
Real hams don't use digital modes
Real hams ____________ (as nauseum)

I can attest that there are real hams who use APRS to serve the community to this day.  Does it really matter which technology is used to send the position information (RF or Internet via Smartphone)?  Not when it comes to health & safety, my friends.  APRS is alive and well; just maybe not in your life... and that's OK.  Lighten up a bit and enjoy whatever aspect of the hobby makes you happy.  Smiley


I agree 100%.  APRS is just one aspect of the hobby that many folks enjoy. I recently resurrected my old Packet station and currently have it operating on APRS using Aprsis32 and an old Pentium 4/Win XP computer. Great program and GUI.  I enjoy monitoring the network of other stations in my region and beyond, and that is just the tip of the iceberg.

73



« Last Edit: December 08, 2013, 12:12:28 PM by AB4D » Logged
N7KFD
Member

Posts: 39




Ignore
« Reply #27 on: December 12, 2013, 12:57:55 PM »

I would like to address the ARPSDroid remarks. APRSDroid has an AFSK option, I built a cable and connected my old Droid Bionic to my Kenwood TH-K20 which happens to have vox. Now I can use APRS with my non-tnc hand held and found a use for an old phone. I also have a TM-D710 which was an expensive radio but I don't regret the purchase. Someone also brought up digital modes, I happen to like PSK31 but JT65 doesn't do much for me. The result is, I don't use JT65. If APRS doesn't do it for you, don't use it.
Logged
AI4HO
Member

Posts: 80




Ignore
« Reply #28 on: December 15, 2013, 11:08:25 PM »

Eric,

I don't personally think APRS is lost, nor is it found either.  It will take a concerted effort from you, me, any one else willing to push forward with this technology.  I use my D-72A, which I agree  that the input system is less than desirable, but is functional, my D-700A dual band, and my Samsung Galaxy Note II running APRSdroid,pretty neat little program.  I have been using APRSdroid for well over a year, closer to 2 years, before I even knew a lot about APRS..well, even less than I know now, which isn't a lot.  We've had this talk before, you and I need to sit down and I'll have you show me a few tricks that you have learned in your usage of APRS.  One alone cannot ever hope to accomplish this task, but together, with more joining in later on, we can accomplish this and get APRS back and into the mainstream usage again.  Any how, it is just after 2AM here in Vero, gotta get up around 6 or 7 so its bed time, or sleep time...whatever.  I'll be looking for you on the 640, BTW, it was great catching up the other evening, be safe.

73 de Mark
AI4HO
Logged
KD6DCK
Member

Posts: 9




Ignore
« Reply #29 on: January 07, 2014, 05:50:40 AM »

APRS - love hate relationship.  Your own observation was how many stations you attempted to contact only to be ignored.  I would wager to bet the reason you were ignored is that the majority of stations we see beaconing across the map are just that; one-way beacons.  The operator has no receive capability.  He may have one of the new fangled units that has receive message capability, but they either don't know how to use it, ignore it, or are too busy driving the car to notice the bitty text on the screen.  (how many of you have configured APRS CTCSS for voice receive?)

YES APRS is very useful in a Search and Rescue environment.  It is also very useful when run through a computer with a big screen and nice mapping display. 

It is also very useful in the DF hunting, and most other parts of Emergency Management.

The problem of why APRS does not see more practical use?  I chalk it up to poor station configuration.  Unlike the rest of the VHF/UHF world, you can't buy a mobile APRS station that has lots of capability without spending lots of $$$ (Any radio +tnc +$600 AvMap) and when you are done, you have a huge investment in a system that does what for communication?  Unless you are in a club or group that is using it for more than watching blips on a screen, the toy looses its shine in a few weeks.

I think the guys with the HamHuds and other home brew non-mapping displays were on the right path - how do you present information to the operator (while operating a motor vehicle) to give him the most information in the least distracting manner?  And how do you do this in a project that a Ham can build or assemble and for a reasonable cost? 

The APRS data packet is a tricky thing to parse and decode, making hardware and software and programmers mandatory and becomes a daunting challenge for someone without the perfect skill sets. 

I have high hopes for APRS; if we can get beyond a pretty critter moving across a map.
Logged
Pages: Prev 1 [2] 3 Next   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.11 | SMF © 2006-2009, Simple Machines LLC Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!