[aprssig] APRS spec location and version (was: Re: are new symbols intended to be supported yet?)

Andrew P. andrewemt at hotmail.com
Wed Dec 4 10:12:26 CST 2013

OK. So the next question is: where is the spec, and what version are we at? Obviously, we're beyond APRS 1.0.1, but are we at 1.1 or 1.2 (or later)? 

All the websites referring to the spec either have a copy of the buggy original 1.0.1 spec, or a link to an appropriate page on Bob's website.

It's exceptionally confusing in that Bob has started a 1.3 proposals page (completely blank as of now), which would seem to imply that 1.2 is finalized.

Anyone got an idea what the official spec is and where?

P.S. Where is that difference between D-PRS I-gate symbol and D-star repeater symbol documented?

Just curious to get it right.....

Andrew Pavlin, KA2DDO
------Original Message------
From: Pete Loveall AE5PL Lists
To: aprssig at tapr.org
Sent: Dec 4, 2013 10:10 AM
Subject: Re: [aprssig] are new symbols intended to be supported yet?


I did not say you made the arbitrary changes.  Bob's web site is not the spec.  It is his unilateral, in many cases arbitrary, additions that he considers to override the spec.

The red diamond symbol (ARES in the text list) has always allowed overlays and the symbol has been used for more than just ARES for over a decade (I gave you the example of Winlink packet station objects).

Most, but not all, D-STAR repeaters that send a repeater object to APRS-IS are also D-PRS IGates.  However, those are 2 completely different functions and the D-PRS IGate packets are posits, not objects.  This is a significant difference.  There are also many D-PRS IGates that are not collocated with a D-STAR repeater.  Just because they are collocated does not make either one "more important" than the other.

Bottom line: that is what symbol is used for D-STAR repeater objects and has been for many years.  It was considered acceptable and recommended when implemented and any subsequent arbitrary change to the specification symbol list by Bob or anyone else doesn't make it any less acceptable or proper.

My recommendation: write to the spec, not Bob's web site and then add features from Bob's web site as you see fit.  Bob's web site does have some good clarifications of the spec and additions but they are not "the spec".  Also understand that there are and will be many clients that will not implement many of those "new features".


Pete Loveall AE5PL
pete at ae5pl dot net

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Andrew P.
> Sent: Wednesday, December 04, 2013 8:36 AM
> Then we have an inconsistency between the spec on Bob's website and
> current usage, which needs to be resolved. I didn't make "arbitrary" changes
> to the symbol set; I did what was documented in his symbols-new.txt file.
> Does seem kind of odd that D-star gateways would use the symbol defined
> for ARES when there is a gateway symbol defined (generally used for I-gates,
> although there is are multiple other D-Star gateways in my area using the
> gateway symbol with D overlay [ex: KC2QVT-B, less than a mile from the red
> diamond gateway I mentioned previously]).
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