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[aprssig] A few clarifications for a club APRS presentation, Please

Bob Bruninga bruninga at usna.edu
Sun May 25 05:05:15 UTC 2008

>> Regular Packet:
>> 1 - Must address specific stations.
>> 2 – Must also specify specific digis.
>> 3 – Must specify the complete path to distant station.
>> 4 – Must "connect" (verify with a two way exchange)
> You can also exchange unconnected/unnumbered 
> information frames in regular packet, but typically 
> they were only used for things like announcing you 
> are on the frequency (beacons) and broadcasting 
> who has new mail in a given BBS. 

Which is exactly what caused me to write APRS.  I wanted to see the big picture, I wanted to capture every beacon, see where everyone was, see what was on every frequency and see what people were doing with packet.  We had dozens of packet channels and nobody had the big picture.  Hand drawn maps were obsolete the day they were finished.  

Capturing all that is what APRS was designed to do.  TO make use of those beacons to keep everyone informed of everything.  ANd have a system to capture them all and make sense of it to viewers.

On the other hand, the BBS crowed hated beacons.  They were officially banned from most channels, and the nodes even began to disable digipeating.  By the early 90's it was impossible to digipeat through anything.  Hence we had to build the APRS network entirely from scratch.  We got our own frequency (145.79) and began to grow.  THen when the ISS began to use 145.800 from space, we agreed to move to 144.39 and the rest is history.

So that is why to this day, I want to see any ham radio activity beaconed to inform others in the area what is going on in ham radio.  APRS is just the single collecting and distribution channel for this information.

Not just tracking vehicles!


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