Date   

Receiving a bulletin message

g4ilo
 

Hi Lynn.

I have done some more experimentation and it appears that what I want to be able to do is receive bulletins. If my server sends a message to "BLNWOTA" then it shows up under "Other groups" in the Bulletin board page of aprs.fi.

In UI-View32 the only way I could get the bulletins to appear is to add a budlist filter for the call the bulletins are being sent from. If that is the correct way to do it then that's fine.

If I do this in APRSISCE I see the call the bulletin was from appear in the scrolling window but nothing happens when I click on it. Ideally it would be nice to have bulletins pop up with an audible alert just like messages do, but obviously without the options to reply to them.

Julian, G4ILO


Re: APRSISCE on battery power

g4ilo
 

--- In aprsisce@yahoogroups.com, "Lynn W. Deffenbaugh" <kj4erj@...> wrote:

However, even in that case, you should NOT need to reboot your phone.
Simply go to Start / Settings / System / Memory / Running Programs.
Click on your callsign (or APRSISCE or whatever looks like the client in
that list) and click Stop. There will be a delay and then Windows
Mobile will tell you the program isn't responding at which point you can
kill it. After doing so, I use Internet Explorer to verify a good data
connection and then restart APRSISCE.
It doesn't seem to happen like that for me. What happens is that the main window has gone. In the task list there is a window named WM_CLOSE. When I click on it I get a message box that says "There are unacknowledged messages. Really close?" I click No, to see what the messages are. But nothing appears. The message box is gone, the main window is still gone, there is nothing in the Running Programs list although the free memory shows something is still running. And even after waiting more than 90 seconds APRSISCE still won't start unless I reboot.

Julian, G4ILO


Re: Metric units

m6xsd <m6xsd@...>
 

I think just to be awkward we in the UK tend to use Miles for distance yet most maps show height in Metres.


Colin
M6XSD.

--- In aprsisce@yahoogroups.com, "Lynn W. Deffenbaugh" <kj4erj@...> wrote:

I have a metric option on my ToDo list already. One of the interesting
features of APRS, however, is the ambiguity in the transmission of
Altitude (at least, I think it's that one). It may be in meters or feed
with nothing to tell you which it might be. However, the majority of
the stations seem to be consistent with it, which is, I guess, better
than nothting.

Lynn (D) - KJ4ERJ

g4ilo wrote:
Although here in the UK we still use miles to measure distances as we can't afford to convert all the road signs to kilometres, most people here now use the metric system and of course nobody understands anything other than metres and kilometres in Europe.

I didn't see an option to set the units to metric. Is there one?

Julian, G4ILO

Blog: http://www.g4ilo.com/blog.html


Re: APRSISCE on battery power

David Shrum
 

Julian,
The "auto adjust backlight" does just that, if you are in a brightly lighted
room it turns the brightness up, so the other side of that, if you're in a
darker area it turns down the screens brightness.

Dave N8PU

-----Original Message-----
From: aprsisce@yahoogroups.com [mailto:aprsisce@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf
Of g4ilo
Sent: Monday, January 18, 2010 5:06 AM
To: aprsisce@yahoogroups.com
Subject: [aprsisce] Re: APRSISCE on battery power

Hi Lynn.

Thanks for the info. I will have a closer look at the screen backlight. I
definitely couldn't see it getting dimmer. There is also an "auto adjust
backlight" setting but I don't know what that does.

The idea of saving power by turning it on and off with the top button is a
good one, especially if/while there is no power saving mode in the software
itself. What would be handy in that case would be an audible sound when a
position report is sent, so you can tell without seeing the screen when it's
OK to turn it off again.

When I said the app had closed it really had closed - I used the task
switcher to try to activate it and it had just vanished. I don't know if
anything might have pressed the X button. The slip-in cases are a pretty
tight fit.

By the way Lynn why is it that I don't see the battery status indicator on
the APRSISCE title bar (which incidentally says APRSIS for Win32 for some
strange reason)? I have to switch to the Home screen for a quick check on
the battery status.

Julian, G4ILO

No virus found in this outgoing message.
Checked by AVG - www.avg.com
Version: 9.0.725 / Virus Database: 270.14.148/2629 - Release Date: 01/17/10
14:35:00


Re: APRSISCE on battery power

g4ilo
 

Hi Lynn.

Thanks for the info. I will have a closer look at the screen backlight. I definitely couldn't see it getting dimmer. There is also an "auto adjust backlight" setting but I don't know what that does.

The idea of saving power by turning it on and off with the top button is a good one, especially if/while there is no power saving mode in the software itself. What would be handy in that case would be an audible sound when a position report is sent, so you can tell without seeing the screen when it's OK to turn it off again.

When I said the app had closed it really had closed - I used the task switcher to try to activate it and it had just vanished. I don't know if anything might have pressed the X button. The slip-in cases are a pretty tight fit.

By the way Lynn why is it that I don't see the battery status indicator on the APRSISCE title bar (which incidentally says APRSIS for Win32 for some strange reason)? I have to switch to the Home screen for a quick check on the battery status.

Julian, G4ILO


Re: APRSISCE on battery power

Lynn Deffenbaugh
 

Greetings Julian,

Outside of one thing, there's an explanation for everything (I think).

g4ilo wrote:
For some reason on my phone the "turn off backlight if device is not used" power saving option doesn't seem to work. The screen only goes blank after xx minutes when the "Turn off device if not used for xx min" option is enabled. This option appears to have the same effect as pressing the button on the top. When the device is off, it is still connected to APRS-IS and can receive APRS messages but GPS tracking is off. The only way to keep tracking while portable is to disable the "Turn off device" option altogether and not to switch it off when putting it in your pocket. However having the backlight on while the phone is in a case in my pocket is a waste of current and doesn't help the battery endurance any.
The "turn off backlight" setting does just that, it turns off the backlight. However, on my AT&T Tilt, depending on my brightness settings, there's not much difference between backlight on and off. However, it really does save power and it dims down the screen, but it won't go completely blank. The best way to see this it to keep the phone laying out and set the timer short. You should see the screen dim when the timer expires. Touching the screen in any fashion or pressing any of the buttons on the phone will turn the backlight back on. Even pulling the phone out of the case is likely to turn it on.

When I go portable, I keep the "Turn the device off" settings disabled and control the GPS (and subsequently power consumption and tracking) via the on/off button. Lucky for me, the on/off button is on the top where it is nearly (but not totally) impossible to accidentally push. I usually notice that the phone is turned on in my pocket (reminders will turn it on) when I get a warm spot on my leg.

Another way to save battery power is to turn the screen brightness down to the minimum. However, this makes the screen very hard to see and therefore hard to get it cranked back up to see it.

On the plus side, the battery drain was a lot less due to the fact the GPS was only activated when I took the phone out of my pocket to check it. In fact after 3 1/2 hours it was still showing 75% capacity.
Yeah, that's the best way to save battery, keep it off most of the time! (Just kidding). Just as a reminder, you can view your battery levels as telemetry like:

http://aprs.fi/telemetry/G4ILO-12?range=day

But for some unknown reason I would often find that APRSISCE had disappeared the next time I turned on the phone. One time it had tried to close after a message had been received and the only trace was a window called WM_CLOSE that said "You have unacknowleged messages." The program would not restart after this and I had to poke the phone with a stylus to reboot it. Another time there was a messaage about "Odometer failure." Other times it vanished without trace. The only times the program kept running were when I pressed the button on the top to switch off the phone before slipping it into its case and putting it in my pocket. Because it was in quite a stiff case I don't think anything could be pressed to close the application while the phone was in my pocket.
The only two ways I've had that APRSISCE "disappears" is 1) an inadvertent click on the X (likely, especially given the unacknowledged messages" popup and 2) bringing another app up over top of APRSISCE (like the today screen). In the second case, simply re-activating APRSISCE brings it back to the foreground. You can tell the difference between a new copy and a restored copy by the absence or presence (respectively) of stations in the scrolling station list.

The current version of the program does appear to hang for up to 90 seconds at a time when you lose data coverage. Regardless of what dialog is displayed (like the Odometer failure which is caused by the loss of the APRS-IS connection), if the program is attempting to establish a new APRS-IS connection, it will "hang" for a while and be non-responsive to clisk.

However, even in that case, you should NOT need to reboot your phone. Simply go to Start / Settings / System / Memory / Running Programs. Click on your callsign (or APRSISCE or whatever looks like the client in that list) and click Stop. There will be a delay and then Windows Mobile will tell you the program isn't responding at which point you can kill it. After doing so, I use Internet Explorer to verify a good data connection and then restart APRSISCE.

The next version (as soon as I get it finished up) will not exhibit this hang during connect but will remain responsive enough to at least communicated that it has lost the APRS-IS connection. Reconnection will continue to be automatic, it just won't hang the user interface while doing so.

Lynn (D) - KJ4ERJ - APRSISCE as -12, APRSIS32 as -15, -AP and currently IGating as -1


APRSISCE on battery power

g4ilo
 

I took APRSIS-CE for it's first portable outing today, with my HTC Touch phone running on batteries only. I found a few issues that made this outing a bit less successful than I'd hoped for.

For some reason on my phone the "turn off backlight if device is not used" power saving option doesn't seem to work. The screen only goes blank after xx minutes when the "Turn off device if not used for xx min" option is enabled. This option appears to have the same effect as pressing the button on the top. When the device is off, it is still connected to APRS-IS and can receive APRS messages but GPS tracking is off. The only way to keep tracking while portable is to disable the "Turn off device" option altogether and not to switch it off when putting it in your pocket. However having the backlight on while the phone is in a case in my pocket is a waste of current and doesn't help the battery endurance any.

On the plus side, the battery drain was a lot less due to the fact the GPS was only activated when I took the phone out of my pocket to check it. In fact after 3 1/2 hours it was still showing 75% capacity.

But for some unknown reason I would often find that APRSISCE had disappeared the next time I turned on the phone. One time it had tried to close after a message had been received and the only trace was a window called WM_CLOSE that said "You have unacknowleged messages." The program would not restart after this and I had to poke the phone with a stylus to reboot it. Another time there was a messaage about "Odometer failure." Other times it vanished without trace. The only times the program kept running were when I pressed the button on the top to switch off the phone before slipping it into its case and putting it in my pocket. Because it was in quite a stiff case I don't think anything could be pressed to close the application while the phone was in my pocket.

Julian, G4ILO


Re: Hardware requirement for WM version

Lynn Deffenbaugh
 

David,

My build environment says Windows Mobile 6.1, but I know it runs on 5.0. As far as 2003, I suspect it won't work because I'm not sure the GPSapi goes back that far.

The best I can suggest is to put the .EXE on the device and see if it runs. If it does, you're good. If it doesn't, let me know what it says and maybe I can build a version that works around the issue.

I used to have an original Toshiba e755 before I left it in a loaner car, the dealer recovered it, put it on a shelf, and it disappeared before I got down to pick it up. They ended up reimbursing me for it because they knew they had it and knew they lost it. That's what paid for my AT&T Tilt because there were no other PDAs on the market by that time (well, there WERE PDAs available, but the Tilt with a 2 year plan was cheaper and more functional).

Lynn (D) - KJ4ERJ

ve7mdt wrote:

I tried to look for the info but haven't been able to find it (readme, release note etc).

Which Windows Mobile versions are supported? Are WM 2003 and 2003 SE supported, for example? Or only WM 5 or above?

The reason I asked is that I have an HTC Advantage x7501, a MWg 503g, both on WM 6.x right now, but I also have Toshiba e830 and e805 which are only WM 2003 SE, but I want to make good use of them as well.

Thanks and sorry if this info is easy to find, I just haven't been able to and I tried the search as well.

73,
David
VE7MDT


Hardware requirement for WM version

David Tse
 

I tried to look for the info but haven't been able to find it (readme, release note etc).

Which Windows Mobile versions are supported? Are WM 2003 and 2003 SE supported, for example? Or only WM 5 or above?

The reason I asked is that I have an HTC Advantage x7501, a MWg 503g, both on WM 6.x right now, but I also have Toshiba e830 and e805 which are only WM 2003 SE, but I want to make good use of them as well.

Thanks and sorry if this info is easy to find, I just haven't been able to and I tried the search as well.

73,
David
VE7MDT


Re: BitBit Error with APRSIS32

Jerome Lofton <LoftonJ@...>
 

Lynn,

That makes sense ... I think I noticed the errors after I entered the
password to unlock the screen saver after it had been idle for a while.

Thanks,

Jerome
WD4CWG


Re: BitBit Error with APRSIS32

Lynn Deffenbaugh
 

Jerome Lofton wrote:

Occasionally, I am getting a "BitBit Failed at line 5931 Error 6" pop-up.

However, when I click "OK, the error message goes away and the program resumes working normally.
That error occurs when the program cannot access the display. I'm guessing that you're on a laptop? It happens to me when I close the lid or suspend/resume the machine. The program actually tries to update the screen before the video card has re-initialized.

I removed that popup when the error matches the one generated by that situation. Hopefully I'll get some time later this week to polish up the configuration of the KISS TNC and NMEA GPS support so I can get the next release out the door.

Lynn (D) - KJ4ERJ


BitBit Error with APRSIS32

Jerome Lofton <LoftonJ@...>
 

Lynn,

Occasionally, I am getting a "BitBit Failed at line 5931 Error 6" pop-up.

However, when I click "OK, the error message goes away and the program
resumes working normally.

Regards,
Jerome
WD4CWG


Re: Sending a message to a group - spec!

Lynn Deffenbaugh
 

Ok, I thought about this some more and remembered something about message groups which was sort of mixed up with private nets in my mind. I went back to the aprs101.pdf spec and found the following on page 72:

Message Groups:
An APRS receiving station can specify special Message Groups, containing lists of callsigns that the station will read messages from (in addition to messages addressed to itself). Such Message Groups are defined internally by the user at the receiving station, and are used to filter received message traffic.

The receiving station will read all messages with the Addressee field set to ALL, QST or CQ. The receiving station will only acknowledge messages addressed to itself, and not any messages received which were addressed to any group callsign.

Note: The receiving station will acknowledge all messages addressed to
itself, even if it is operating in an Alternate Net (see Chapter 4: APRS Data in the AX.25 Destination and Source Address Fields).

If I read this correctly, I would need to add "additional received message" callsigns which will cause any received messages for any of those callsigns to be displayed. I've also read that the Kenwood radios automatically display any messages addressed to the base callsign regardless of SSID for your own call. Finally, it seems that ALL, QST, and CQ are always on the "additional received message" callsign list.

I'll add this to the ToDo list and see what I can do when I get around to beefing up the received message and bulletin section of the client.

Lynn (D) - KJ4ERJ

The only "group" APRS messaging feature that I'm aware of is via the
CQSRVR. If you and everyone else send a message to the CQSRVR with an
agreed-up group ID, every subsequent message sent to that group will be
sent to all members. However, CQSRVR does have a minimum time limit for
any single message sender to the group.

See CQSRVR documentation at:

http://www.aprs-is.net/CQSrvr.aspx

Maybe there's another "group messaging" feature in the Kenwood firmware
or UI-View, but I'm not currently aware of it and haven't noticed it in
any of the APRS specs that I've read.

Lynn (D) - KJ4ERJ

g4ilo wrote:
I would like to send an APRS message that would be received by anyone who wants to receive it. The only way I know how to do this is for everyone who wants to receive the message to tell me their call-ssid and I send the message individually to each of them.

I seem to remember reading somewhere that it is possible to send a message to a group name and individuals can then choose to receive those messages. For example it appears people can choose to receive NWS messages. But I can't find any information on how to do it. Is my recollection correct, and if so how do I go about it? And is anything special needed to originate a message to the group as distinct from receiving it?

Julian, G4ILO


------------------------------------

Yahoo! Groups Links


Re: Sending a message to a group

Lynn Deffenbaugh
 

The only "group" APRS messaging feature that I'm aware of is via the CQSRVR. If you and everyone else send a message to the CQSRVR with an agreed-up group ID, every subsequent message sent to that group will be sent to all members. However, CQSRVR does have a minimum time limit for any single message sender to the group.

See CQSRVR documentation at:

http://www.aprs-is.net/CQSrvr.aspx

Maybe there's another "group messaging" feature in the Kenwood firmware or UI-View, but I'm not currently aware of it and haven't noticed it in any of the APRS specs that I've read.

Lynn (D) - KJ4ERJ

g4ilo wrote:

I would like to send an APRS message that would be received by anyone who wants to receive it. The only way I know how to do this is for everyone who wants to receive the message to tell me their call-ssid and I send the message individually to each of them.

I seem to remember reading somewhere that it is possible to send a message to a group name and individuals can then choose to receive those messages. For example it appears people can choose to receive NWS messages. But I can't find any information on how to do it. Is my recollection correct, and if so how do I go about it? And is anything special needed to originate a message to the group as distinct from receiving it?

Julian, G4ILO


Sending a message to a group

g4ilo
 

I would like to send an APRS message that would be received by anyone who wants to receive it. The only way I know how to do this is for everyone who wants to receive the message to tell me their call-ssid and I send the message individually to each of them.

I seem to remember reading somewhere that it is possible to send a message to a group name and individuals can then choose to receive those messages. For example it appears people can choose to receive NWS messages. But I can't find any information on how to do it. Is my recollection correct, and if so how do I go about it? And is anything special needed to originate a message to the group as distinct from receiving it?

Julian, G4ILO


Re: Disabling GPS

warpedspeed
 

Lynn, this topic just answered the question that I was going to ask about, no position Tx without GPS data.

I installed APRSISCE on my old T-Mobile MDA (HTC Wizard 200) last week, and it is cool stuff. However, this phone does not have a GPS. I have been manually putting my posit in the XML file, but noticed that my "little phone" was not making it to the 'net via the IS servers. I can still Tx and Rx messages, so there is happiness there, but I am effectively in stealth mode. This is a great solution for days like today, when I am in the office, and my position will not change. When I leave the office later this afternoon, I will turn off APRSISCE, and a few minutes later my mobile symbol will appear on the map.

Installation of APRS software, and using the WAN at work to connect to APRS-IS would be violations of agency policy where I work. I know this, since I am one of the guys that enforces these policies. So being on APRS at work with a PC is not an option.

This is a great product that allows me to keep a pulse on APRS, while still doing my job.

I agree that it would be a great feature to be able to beacon without GPS. Of course you would have to add a time interval setting.

Thanks for your efforts on this Lynn.

Dean KD4TWJ


Re: Buddy feature

TIM KIRBY <tim.kirby@...>
 

Lynn,

That's perfect - I can easily add manual filter strings, I'm quite happy at command line prompts! Will give that a go.

Thanks again.

Tim, G4VXE


From: Lynn W. Deffenbaugh
To: aprsisce@...
Sent: Sunday, 10 January, 2010 12:29:10
Subject: Re: [aprsisce] Buddy feature

 

Good morning Tim!

tim.kirby@btinterne t.com wrote:
> Firstly, thank you very much for writing a really great bit of software. Julian, G4ILO introduced me to APRSIS for Win32 last week and I've been running it ever since.
>

You're welcome. It's like the folks at Google say, "I eat my own dog
food". I wrote the client for myself and then decided to unleash it on
the public when I figured it hadn't done anything strange to me in a
long enough period of time. The UI-View replacement when I heard a rash
of "why doesn't it do this" in the UI-View Yahoo Group. I can point
back to G4IDE and UI-View as my original inspiration, but quickly quit
using that software as I developed my own so as to introduce (what I
hope are) new ideas to APRS-IS clients.

> I was thinking this morning that it would be nice to be able to set some sort of alert up so that I could see a message when a particular station or stations appeared on the map or moved or something.
>

Actually, I'm hoping to implement an APRS-IS server (like CQSRVR) that
will monitor stations for various triggers and send out APRS messages to
a notification station. Maybe I'll consider adding that capability
directly in the client for RF use as well....

> Looking through the menu structure I can see View/Buddies. I'm guessing this might satisfy the requirement! I couldn't see a way to set a station as a 'Buddy' though. Is this something that you were planning to add in the future, or am I missing something obvious?
>

View/Buddies is the beginnings of the ability to see when one of your
friends (or in my case, my wife) sends packets. I have an item on the
ToDo list to make Buddie maintenance more straightforward, but for now
it figures out buddies based on scanning the Additional Filter string.
Just add elements like the following to define "Buddies".

b/KJ4DXK* b/KJ4ERJ* b/KJ4OVQ*

This will cause the scrolling station list to reverse-video any station
starting with that callsign as well as mark that station as a "Buddie"
for the View/Buddies display filter. When I get to the Buddie item on
the ToDo list, there'll be a separate configuration list of station
prefixes to define explicitly as Buddies and APRSISCE/32 will
automatically create the filter string.

> Thanks again!
>

You're always welcome. Keep providing the suggestions and together
we'll make the client better and better.

Lynn (D) - KJ4ERJ - Author of APRSISCE for Windows Mobile and Win32


Re: Disabling GPS

g4ilo
 

--- In aprsisce@yahoogroups.com, "tim.kirby@..." <tim.kirby@...> wrote:

I found that too, on my laptop! So I switched GPS back on and I'm beaconing again. I haven't got a GPS on my laptop, of course :-)
I wonder if disabling GPS and disabling beaconing ought to be separate functions? If I carry the phone in my pocket around the house disabling GPS is useful, not just because it can't get an accurate position, but to save the battery. But I still want to have APRSISCE running because I want to receive APRS messages. If you've seen my blog recently you'll see that I am implementing the ability to receive alerts of WOTA summit activations by APRS message.

Julian, G4ILO


Re: Disabling GPS

Lynn Deffenbaugh
 

Julian,

g4ilo wrote:
Following your advice on my blog yesterday I have disabled the GPS after fixing my position while my HTC is sitting in its desktop docking station and not moving, to prevent the problem of my position scooting off at high speed due to variable indoor reception. When I check aprs.fi, it appears that I am no longer sending beacons to the network so it looks as if I am not active.
Hum, that is a potential problem, isn't it? As I mentioned in the Blog, I toggle the GPS off when I go indoors to prevent the drifting caused by decreased satellite coverage, and mainly the "locked on one satellite and won't let go" 10s and 100s of mile drifts seen in my AT&T Tilt's GPS (same as an HTC TyTN II).

But you are correct, when the GPS is disabled, position beaconing is also suspended in the APRSISCE/32.....I was actually planning to add Status beacons (> datatype) to the client, I wonder if aprs.is would consider that "active" with respect to the timestamp. Maybe I'll just rethink the interaction between Enables/GPS and Enables/Tracking. It would seem that maybe Enables/Tracking should continue to send your most recent coordinate even if you disable the GPS, at least for as long as the client is still running.....

Consider it added to the ToDo list! Thanks for the observation and suggestion!

Lynn (D) - KJ4ERJ

PS. G4ILS's Blog that we're referring to can be found at http://www.g4ilo.com/2010/01/350mph-jogger.html


Re: Buddy feature

Lynn Deffenbaugh
 

Good morning Tim!

tim.kirby@btinternet.com wrote:
Firstly, thank you very much for writing a really great bit of software. Julian, G4ILO introduced me to APRSIS for Win32 last week and I've been running it ever since.
You're welcome. It's like the folks at Google say, "I eat my own dog food". I wrote the client for myself and then decided to unleash it on the public when I figured it hadn't done anything strange to me in a long enough period of time. The UI-View replacement when I heard a rash of "why doesn't it do this" in the UI-View Yahoo Group. I can point back to G4IDE and UI-View as my original inspiration, but quickly quit using that software as I developed my own so as to introduce (what I hope are) new ideas to APRS-IS clients.

I was thinking this morning that it would be nice to be able to set some sort of alert up so that I could see a message when a particular station or stations appeared on the map or moved or something.
Actually, I'm hoping to implement an APRS-IS server (like CQSRVR) that will monitor stations for various triggers and send out APRS messages to a notification station. Maybe I'll consider adding that capability directly in the client for RF use as well....

Looking through the menu structure I can see View/Buddies. I'm guessing this might satisfy the requirement! I couldn't see a way to set a station as a 'Buddy' though. Is this something that you were planning to add in the future, or am I missing something obvious?
View/Buddies is the beginnings of the ability to see when one of your friends (or in my case, my wife) sends packets. I have an item on the ToDo list to make Buddie maintenance more straightforward, but for now it figures out buddies based on scanning the Additional Filter string. Just add elements like the following to define "Buddies".

b/KJ4DXK* b/KJ4ERJ* b/KJ4OVQ*

This will cause the scrolling station list to reverse-video any station starting with that callsign as well as mark that station as a "Buddie" for the View/Buddies display filter. When I get to the Buddie item on the ToDo list, there'll be a separate configuration list of station prefixes to define explicitly as Buddies and APRSISCE/32 will automatically create the filter string.

Thanks again!
You're always welcome. Keep providing the suggestions and together we'll make the client better and better.

Lynn (D) - KJ4ERJ - Author of APRSISCE for Windows Mobile and Win32