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Position Ambiguity [was] Re: [aprssig] findu.com....

James Jefferson Jarvis jj at aprsworld.net
Fri Jun 9 18:12:09 UTC 2006

The issue that I have with KC2MMI's complaints on position is that he wants me 
to fix the data APRS World maps are drawn from. That data is from the Census 
Bureau. If they have money and a staff to put TIGER together, how can I (with 
no money and no staff) possible be expected to "fix" their data. I don't even 
have the GIS tools to easily modify the TIGER data. 

> Traditional cartographers *solicited* corrections, better known as "ground
> conformation" in military mapping circles. Fifty years ago if you sent a
> map maker a correction note, they sent you a thank-you letter AND a copy of
> the next edition of the map, gratis. They were quite happy to pay (maps
> cost money) to get their ground conformation done for free, it was an
> expected part of the business.

My point EXACTLY. I'm not a cartographer. The US Census Bureau apparently is. 
Submit your changes to them and when they come out with new TIGER data, I'll 
load it. Complaining to me about their map data is like complaining to the 
gas station where you bought a incorrect road map at - IT DOESN'T DO ANY 

But tell ya what: I'll happily give you a free week of use of the APRS World 
map server.

> The *authors* fix them, not the users. That's the
> norm on this planet.

US Census Bureau is the author.

> Mapping errors can KILL. They are not something to laugh at and say "Cheap
> is good". Sure, cheap often is good but there's no excuse for intentionally
> presenting bad data after the good data is known. Especially after five+
> rounds of annual data updates, in the case of the hospitals on software
> that is updated annually.

I can't fix the data. My choices are to present the data as given to me or to 
not provide the service at all. I would be happy to add a notice to APRS 
World that says it is not to be used for life support applications. Should I 
do that?

> And WinAPRS? Sure, it needs better map availability. What makes you think
> the Sprouls don't know it has problems because of using the TIGER maps? The
> difference is, the Sprouls don't come here to say "OK Mister, you write the
> new code for us!".

The Sproul's charge money for their application. APRS World doesn't. APRS 
World's source code is open source. Part of the open source model is the 
users contribute their changes and improvements and the software grows in 
quality. My asking you to contribute code is a perfectly reasonable thing to 


-James Jefferson Jarvis KB0THN

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