[aprssig] APRS radios

Bob Bruninga bruninga at usna.edu
Sat May 24 17:53:55 CDT 2008

> I have been wondering why Kenwood was the only
> manufacturer for such a long time.
> Bob, can you tell us, was it because of your copyright 
> and perhaps for your strict specifications? 

Strict specs?  Since no one has implemented all of the protocol since the oriiginal APRSdos written in BASIC no less, it doesn't seem that one can call them strict....

> Maybe the other companies thought that the APRS 
> radios were just too complicated to manufacture? 

APRS is really quite simple.  There are only 4 types of packets, position, status, message and queries.  All one has to do is capture them and display them.  And provide a simple user interface...

> Of course the other features like messaging would 
> be nice to use,  but most of the mobile equipment 
> isn't yet up to it.  And the ones that are, have a
> user interface dated back to the birth of short-
> message services in the GSM mobile telephone network 
> in early 90's.

Interesting to hear you complain.  Teenagers have no problem text messaging using their phone pads and in fact, seem quite happy with it.  We have had local/global text messaging and email built into a ham radio APRS HT since 1998 (the D7).  

And in that same 10 years have seen text messaging capture the world of youth as the hottest commodity, yet we still have old fud hams complaining that they would never use a tone-pad to send messages.  How archaic...  And those same old fuds are still waiting for somthing better...

In the mean time, I have sure had 10 years an a lot of fun with it...

At the ARRL Technology FOrum at the Daytone Hamvention, the techincal committee was lamenting how we need something like text messaging to capture the spirit of youth.  My jaw dropped to the floor.  I could not contain myself, and jumped to my feet to exclaim that we have had it for 10 years!...  Its just that so many of us old fuds in ham radio will just never try anything new.  And yet we will sit around and complain that what is new, is just not new enough...  and therefore never use what we have...

Its amazing the kind of communicaitons we can acomplish if we just do it...


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