[aprssig] RE: New Local Info Initiative

Ralph Milnes ralphmilnes at patmedia.net
Wed Jan 17 13:45:33 CST 2007


A question about the local-repeater object:

One of the APRS digis here in NJ has phenomenally wide coverage, so much so
that it surpasses the coverage range of several voice repeaters. In fact,
it's possible that a traveler could see the APRS digi's voice object, yet
not be able to hear or reach the voice repeater it was announcing. So, it
would seem that a super wide area digi would NOT be the best station to
announce a local voice repeater. 

To me, it seemed better if a home station -- with much less range than the
digi --transmitted an object better tailored for the area. My solution was
to have my KPC3 transmit the object. I used one buffer for the object, set
it to NO hops as you recommend, and had it beaconing every 3-4 minutes, in
hope that someone traveling quickly through my area (near I-287) would see
at least one or two of the voice repeater objects before they passed by me.
(One drawback to this fast beaconing rate was that I received a complaint
about too much QRM from my APRS neighbors. Maybe your suggested rate of 10
minutes would have been adequate. BTW, because of the complaints and because
I had no assurance the beacon was ever used by a traveler, I have since
discontinued transmitting the object.)

Any comments or suggestions about super WIDE digis and my semi-baked

Ralph KC2RLM

--- original message ---
Date: Tue, 16 Jan 2007 20:56:17 -0500
From: "Robert Bruninga" <bruninga at usna.edu>
Subject: [aprssig] To: <aprssig at lists.tapr.org>
Message-ID: <01d601c739da$ad5f5bb0$42577a83 at SGSbb>
Content-Type: text/plain;	charset="us-ascii"

This is the launch of the New Local Info Initiative.

During  my 1800 mile round trip last weekend, I discovered that
most digipeaters have not implemented the recommendations of the
New-N Paradigm to include the local Voice repeater info in the
beacon text of their local digipeaters.  These objects are
supposed to show up on the front panel of the traveler's radio
so he can see what frequency is recommended in that area that he
is passing through.

Without this info, the passing traveler has no clue where to
tune his voice radio, and the ARRL repeater directory is
practically useless because it lists 10,s of thousands of
repeaters that in most areas have no one listening.  The
objective of the transmission of an APRS local-repeater-object
is to tell the passing traveler exactly what one-and-only-one
local repeater is best for the visiting traveler to either find
someone, get local info, or find a QSO on APRS.  See the web


It is important to note, that this info can be provided at no
cost to the network and will not interfere nor collide with any
other APRS traffic.  It is a free no-load part of APRS.  The
reason it is a non interfering addition, is because it is
originated at the digipeater which is listening to the channel
and will only transmit the object when the channel is otherwise
empty.  This pushing of locally valuable info to travelers was
part of the concept of APRS going back in the 1980's but seems
to have been lost in recent APRS usage which only seems to be
focused on mobile vehicle tracking.  APRS is supposed to be much
much more.

APRS is supposed to be the single local resource for all local
information of IMMEDIATE interest to the local user.  This does
NOT mean SPAM from out of area.  This is direct information in
SIMPLEX range of local users informing them of assets available
to them and local activities going on right now.

I have seen some of these repeaters on the air, but many of them
are implemented as objects from home clients and using the
clients default multi-hop path.  I was driving down I-81 in
Virginia and got a 440 repeater object from over 100 miles away
in a different state.  This is simply QRM and of no value to
anyone.  Please, only implement these local voice repeater
objects at the digi, and ONLY if the voice repeater really is
the one-and-only one that you would recommend to a traveler in
simplex range of it.

Anyway, this is a powerful part of APRS.  I think it is time we
start getting it implemented properly.  If you havent seen how
these objects appear to the traveler on his D7 or D700, please
see the web page above. 


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