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Amateur Radio Data Transmissions - For discussion of all modes used to send data such as APRS and packet.

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Old 06-25-2016, 12:02 AM
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Default aprs becoming less popular / empty some places

has anyone noticed thar activity has dropped at least 80 percent in some locations were the aprs.fi site was overpopulated with activity in the past? ,,, example , las vegas ,,, maps like a ghost town nowdays compared to years ago

wonder if things will ever pick up again
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Old 06-25-2016, 1:00 AM
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I think one reason is has dropped in interest is the Kenwood d710 doers not match up with any GPS like the d700 did. Kenwood had been a leader in aprs.
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Old 06-25-2016, 7:24 AM
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I think one reason is has dropped in interest is the Kenwood d710 doers not match up with any GPS like the d700 did.
I owned a TM-D700 and I currently own two TM-D710s. What are you talking about? There is no difference in how a GPS receiver with NMEA 0183 communications interfaces with either radio.
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Old 06-25-2016, 11:26 AM
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I think general interest overall has been lost. The primary draw to APRS was data…over radio. Broadband data is so easy today in retrospective. Not a ton of application for traditional 9600 baud data.
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Old 06-25-2016, 8:01 PM
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Probably same reason packet is no longer popular. Unlimited data on smart phones. I agree all can benfit and our SAR team has been a Digi provider in our area for almost 20 years and continue to support APRS. I actually just built 2 trackers in boxes today for an upcoming event.
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Old 06-25-2016, 8:40 PM
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I think an enhanced awareness/interest in privacy too. I have no desire to drive around beaconing my location. While I certainly think APRS is neat and I have used it for specific events, I don't see a reason to use it daily. While aprs.fi is cool, anyone can follow where I am (a good thing, and a bad thing). It's not just a technical thing anymore...for use by a bunch of local ham friends to track each other.
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Old 06-25-2016, 9:15 PM
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I actuallly got a credit or reduction on my auto policy because I had aprs vehicle tracking. Explained that I could be tracked anywhere in the world, had the insurance company log in to findu.com. They located me, and they said that will work and got a reduction in auto rates. I liked it because I could send traffic without going "vocal" on the local repeater. Also I could tell whether a local was in simplex range, without the whole county listening in on the repeater. I wish the d710's had the keyboard option that the d700's offered.
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Old 06-26-2016, 12:58 PM
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It must be a regional thing.. APRS is still going strong where I am. We see new calls popping up every now and then.
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Old 06-26-2016, 1:27 PM
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"They located me, and they said "
Old argument, more than a decade old, that that is not a good thing. With a dedicated vehicle tracking system (cellular to a monitor or central station with password-protected access) you can do the same thing.
With APRS, I can look at any convenient location and say "Ah, George is at the ballpark. that gives me three or four hours to go burgle his house while no one is home." Ooops.

Yes, there are all sorts of people doing things like this all over the internet. If your local (or higher up) PD have a computer crimes unit, they can probably tell you all sorts of things you'd never believe. Phone calls that say "Hello this is Microsoft and there's a virus on your computer..." are just the tip of the iceberg. Sad, but still true.
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Old 06-26-2016, 1:37 PM
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As an ARES group in Calgary we use them for public service events all the time, on the MS Bike Ride this weekend we put out almost 20 trackers. We also use them for tracking members and sending everything from emails to SMS with SMSGTE.

We have also created objects all over Alberta for repeaters to allow for quick change of frequency. We also spaced out the digipeaters so if you have a 5w transmitter with a 1/4 wave antenna you have coverage through most of the province.

APRS is more fun and effective when there is more than just one person using it. If your Amateur Radio Club makes it a priority for your area there is a lot you can do with it.
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Old 06-26-2016, 4:03 PM
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APRS is still used a lot up here in the northeast. 30-40 local hams volunteered at the Trek Across Maine ( 2017 Trek Across Maine - American Lung Association of the Northeast) last weekend and the state map was so lit up those 3 days it was hard to figure out who was who unless you zoomed in on the map all the way ( aprs.fi ).
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Old 06-26-2016, 4:47 PM
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APRS is also used by lots of balloon experiments from Middle school to high altitude research
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Old 06-26-2016, 5:59 PM
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Quote:
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APRS is also used by lots of balloon experiments from Middle school to high altitude research
And most are not set up correctly. Two hops from 80+ thousand feet creates havoc
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Old 06-26-2016, 9:32 PM
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And most are not set up correctly. Two hops from 80+ thousand feet creates havoc
very confusing. what exactly are you saying about the popularity of aprs?
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Old 06-26-2016, 9:37 PM
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very confusing. what exactly are you saying about the popularity of aprs?


APRS is very popular with ballooning, unfortunately many do not know how to properly utilize it to its potential.
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Old 06-27-2016, 11:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kd7mxi View Post
has anyone noticed thar activity has dropped at least 80 percent in some locations were the aprs.fi site was overpopulated with activity in the past? ,,, example , las vegas ,,, maps like a ghost town nowdays compared to years ago

wonder if things will ever pick up again
Very poor ht coverage on the strip. I ended up using aprsdroid/aprsis to put out a couple of packets this weekend.

Sent from my SM-G900W8 using Tapatalk
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Old 06-27-2016, 2:33 PM
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Thats not surprising. Unless there was a digi on the strip I am guessing VHF doesn't get around all those buildings and such. I go out there yearly but have never taken my APRS. I am guessing from a hotel room far above the strip all is good.
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Old 06-27-2016, 3:41 PM
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With APRS, I can look at any convenient location and say "Ah, George is at the ballpark. that gives me three or four hours to go burgle his house while no one is home." Ooops. .
This has never happened. Cat burglars drive around a neighborhood and notice people's routines before committing the crime. They don't go on aprs.fi.

lol this is so laughably funny.


Anyone that has a mild interest in APRS and is worried about your privacy, there is a setting on the radio to make your GPS co-ordinates not accurate by hundreds of yards.


There is some activity in my neck of the woods. Mainly truck drivers that go by on the interstate. APRS messaging is really cool. Lately I have been able to send and receive text messages from and to my radio. How cool is that?
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Old 06-27-2016, 4:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kb2ztx View Post
Unless there was a digi on the strip I am guessing VHF doesn't get around all those buildings and such.
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Originally Posted by pinballwiz86 View Post
APRS messaging is really cool. Lately I have been able to send and receive text messages from and to my radio. How cool is that?
I have a ham friend who occasionally visits family in Las Vegas. Last time he was out there, I saw his beacon appear on APRS.fi. So, I fired up my APRS radio and sent him an APRS message. He not only got it, but he also replied.
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Old 06-27-2016, 10:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thundermedic View Post
As an ARES group in Calgary we use them for public service events all the time, on the MS Bike Ride this weekend we put out almost 20 trackers. We also use them for tracking members and sending everything from emails to SMS with SMSGTE.

We have also created objects all over Alberta for repeaters to allow for quick change of frequency. We also spaced out the digipeaters so if you have a 5w transmitter with a 1/4 wave antenna you have coverage through most of the province.

APRS is more fun and effective when there is more than just one person using it. If your Amateur Radio Club makes it a priority for your area there is a lot you can do with it.
I have been involved in a couple of public service events where APRS was used to show vehicle positions. One a disaster exercise but only a few vehicles with APRS. This past weekend, on the MS Bike Tour it reduced the need for communicating positions drastically so that voice could be used for other things but at a reduced level. I did not have a computer but had to call a SAG vehicle for a rider with a busted wheel and it was nice to look at the HT and see how far away the SAG vehicle was and let the rider know. The rider and friend where surprised that I could do this without use of a cell phone or computer. I don't worry about house break in with all the alarms and video monitors I have. And the rest of the family is not always with me on some of these functions anyhow. I'm more worried when I have to go to work. I have yet to get into a lot of messaging, SMS and email. I haven't gone on a balloon tracking trip yet, but have watched on the computer when some have flown near by. Although ferries may not have ham gear, I have used APRS.FI to track some ferries and boats when on Vancouver Island. APRS is whatever you want to make it do for you
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