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[aprssig] Universal APRS messaging

Steve Dimse steve at dimse.com
Sun Oct 19 19:30:21 UTC 2008


On Oct 19, 2008, at 1:11 PM, Robert Bruninga wrote:
>
> Iphone    -

I've resubmitted my iPhone app with a bit of a different focus. Unless  
it gets accepted it will not be distributed. It simply cannot be done  
given the way Apple has the phone locked down unless they approve it.  
If it does get approved then the future plans Apple has announced  
would make it likely I will eventually support messaging. Apple has  
announced a push API to be released soon which will allow an iPhone  
application to register for messages to be pushed to individual  
phones. Without that API, the iPhone user will have to check manually  
for messages, you can do that now using the regular findU interface. I  
have the ability to send messages already (same unreleased cgi I have  
had for 8 years to send messages via a web interface), but I will  
continue to hide it unless someone comes up with a secure system for  
sterilizing messages.
>
> The goal is to be able to send and receive (small) amateur radio
> APRS text messages aywhere in the world by callsign alone.
> This is a big project, because it will be hard to provide the
> security concenrs we all share over th epotential for abuse...
> But we do need to be working on it!

The only way I can think this would work is to institute a quarantine  
of messages, with a number of trusted people that can read and clear  
for transmission pending messages. Such a system is not hard to  
implement. I did it for the SuitSat reporting. When someone reported  
to the suitsat page, it was placed in the database with a pending flag  
set. A special page (actually the regular display page with a special  
password) showed just the pending reports, each with buttons to clear  
or reject the report. The page was set with a refresh of 30 seconds,  
and several AMSAT people shared the duty with me. If the message was  
rejected it was deleted from the database. If it was accepted the  
pending flag was cleared and the report would now appear on the public  
page.

For something like this where the messages would be less frequent, the  
system would probably send an email to each referee when a message was  
quarantined. That way you would not need to be checking the page  
constantly.

I could not support any system that would put the licenses of the  
Igate operators at stake. The design needs to take into account the  
licensing requirements of every country that participates in APRS, not  
just the US FCC rules. It would be wrong to create an additional  
feature now that would require entire countries to leave the APRS IS  
because of their government's rules about retransmission.

Steve K4HG






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