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[aprssig] Rant - Cross platform portability

Gregg Wonderly gregg at wonderly.org
Wed Sep 20 17:54:50 UTC 2006

Joel Maslak wrote:
> On Sep 20, 2006, at 9:20 AM, Gregg Wonderly wrote:
>> Yep, many people doing software development in the HAM community  
>> don't have enough training or information, or motivation to get it  
>> right.  That's a real problem for many people.  Some argue that  HAMs 
>> ought to be smart enough to figure it out.  I think it's  important to 
>> not waste unneeded time in peoples lives just because  you can.
> Your definition of "get it right" and mine differ.  Portability  appears 
> to be near #1 in priority for you.  That's fine, and I  respect it.  To 
> be honest, it's not near #1 for me - for me, writing  code to solve *my* 
> needs is #1 in priority, and #2 is to do it as  quick as possible.

My comment was aimed specifically in response to conversation about winlink2000, 
which is targeted at solving emergency communications problems.  My view is that 
this is a large target audience across a large number of OSes, languages and 
training.  Portability would seem important as would built in I18n support and 
other features of platforms such as Java.  For personal stuff, do what you 
need/want to do.  But, if you are thinking about letting a wide audience use 
your software, there are a lot more considerations that could allow a lot more 
people to take advantage of your efforts.

> I'd be all for someone starting an APRS GUI client project that is  
> designed to be cross platform capable.  I'd probably even run their  
> software.  But I'm not going to write it, nor am I going to criticize  
> others who write non-cross-platform apps.  Instead, if it bothers me,  
> I'll do it myself.  Otherwise I'll let other people make  contributions 
> to APRS that are different from the ones I might want  to see in an 
> ideal world.

I wrote http://jeaprs.dev.java.net about 4 years ago, advertised it here, got 
zero interest in assistance with development.  I don't have infinite time to 
contribute, just like most are arguing here.  I stopped at the point of 
providing mapping, because I couldn't find a useful source of data that was 

Now, I have my http://aprskml.dev.java.net project going, and I'll likely take 
the module architecture that I started with JeAPRS and push all those modules 
into APRSKML.  Thus, the mapping will be a secondary feature through google 
earth or whatever KML system you have.

Gregg Wonderly

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