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[aprssig] APRS Symbol Names

VE7GDH ve7gdh at rac.ca
Thu Jan 11 19:58:08 UTC 2007

Bob WB4APR wrote...

> So the "humanoid" figure is not just a jogger, but it let me use
> "j" in the menu and refer to about what it looked like.  But the
> interpretation would be that anyone who was on foot or ski's
> or hiking boots, or snow shoes or was using an HT or other radio
> not otherwise in a vehicle or structure, would likely use that
> symbol.

That's a very diplomatic answer - hi! So, does that mean that there will
eventually be three symbols for scouts, and at least two symbols for
balloons per the recent discussions on this list, but there isn't room for a
skier icon??? By your argument, the regular "truck" symbol would have
been just fine for farm vehicles such as tractors, but there were already
separate symbols for RVs, 18 wheelers, vans, SUVs and "little red cars"
as well, and don't forget snowmobiles that have their very own symbol.
You can't have it both ways. Either there is no room for more symbols,
or there is enough flexibility to allow for changes such as additions or
even changes to drop little-used symbols and change the corresponding
characters over to something that will be used more often?

What about a third symbol set? Are primary / and secondary \ cast in stone,
or can more symbol sets be added? Why not add two more symbol sets?
That would get us up to 376 symbols. If others were added, how would that
affect legacy devices like the D7, D700 etc.? Would they be capable of just
displaying "unknown symbol" or whatever, or would they become obsolete?

Also, and more importantly, who gets to decide on issues like this? As near
as I can tell, there isn't an "APRS Working Group" anymore. Is APRS going to
be absolutely static within the current confines, or will it be allowed to
progress and grow as newer and less confining hardware and software is
developed? I think it's great that APRS can do what it already does, but if
there can't be any improvements, it might just reach a critical mass and
then collapse. If that happens, I hope I'm not around to see it. I'm really
excited about APRS and think that it should be integrated into more facets
of amateur radio instead of being seen as a separate entity.

73 es cul - Keith VE7GDH
"I may be lost, but I know exactly where I am!"

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