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[aprssig] Fixed station Operator Present Bit

Bob Bruninga bruninga at usna.edu
Sat Sep 15 13:26:44 UTC 2007

>>>> It would have been cool if the spec 
>>>> allowed for a "live operator" bit.
>>> It does.  It was added... in the case 
>>> of the N/S byte in APRS addendum 1.2.
>> ... wouldn't lower case have been a better choice?
> Yes, Initially I set LOWER case as the way to 
> indicate a LIVE person since all the existing 
> unattended things were all UPPERCASE.  But...
> Uiview (which cannot be changed) would... ignore 
> the lower case posit.  Hence, All "attended" 
> stations would disappear from Uiview.  So,
> it was not the way to go.
> We reversed it so that Uppercase means attended 
> for those that send the bit. [and lower case means
> unattended].  It will take YEARS for software 
> to catch up...

What we need is someone to figure out how to reverse engineer UIview to make it case insensitive on the N/S byte like all other APRS clients so that it will tolerate this bit of very useful information.

Come to think about it, this will never happen.  And even if it did, not eveyrone would  upgrade.  I guess we need to look for another transparent way to signal "operator present."

One possibility is a symbol overlay character.  Maybe "O" for operator present?  Again, this mostly applies to fixed home stations, so it does not need to apply to all symbols, just ones who are using the HOUSE symbol.  Can someone confirm that a packet with an "O" overlay on a house symbol will not be ignored by UIview?

I do not care at all that the "O" is not displayed.  It will not be in any existing APRS software, but it will be there in the posit, so that any future software that wants to be able to SELECT for "operator present" can do so.


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