Saturday, November 07, 2009

Taking another look at APRS

I noticed a tweet from Jerry, KD0BIK this morning saying that he'd just installed a copy of an application called iBCNU on his iPhone. I'd never heard of it, so I googled it and found the iBCNU application here iBCNU was written by David, AB3Y and looks to be a nice piece of work!

iBCNU is an APRS (Automatic Packet Reporting System) client for the iPhone. It allows you to transmit position reports or send short messages from your iPhone, through the APRS Internet server. Messages may be sent to other amateurs using APRS and position reports may be viewed through the Internet on sites such as APRS.FI

I quite like APRS, though I never really know what to do with it! I first became aware of APRS in the mid to late 1990s when I lived in Toronto. I remember connecting an Icom IC2E up to a TNC and hooking up a DOS APRS program to it, which showed simple (by today's standards) maps on the Ontario area. It was fun to get going but I wasn't quite sure what to do with after that!

Last time I looked at APRS was when we were running GB50 from Windsor Castle and I had the pleasure of explaining it to HRH Prince Philip!

Because I liked maps, radios and the internet; APRS does have a fascination, so I was interested to install the iBCNU application on my iPhone and it happily transmits position reports, which you can see on the Internet! And I think I can send messages to other APRS users, but I haven't tried that out yet.

So if you want to see where iBCNU thinks I am, have a look on Findu.Com and see!

1 comment:

Jonathan Jenkins said...

I've been interested to see recently that many people use Google Latitude for real-time position reporting with their mobile phones. It can work I think either by using the cell transmitter info, and/or built-in GPS if the phone has it.
But I'm hoping to see more radio applications for Android phones anyway - I guess the market will never be as big as Apple's though!


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