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Re: some observations on the design intent of gpsd

From: Gary E. Miller
Subject: Re: some observations on the design intent of gpsd
Date: Wed, 5 Jan 2022 11:31:41 -0800

Yo Don!

On Wed, 5 Jan 2022 12:26:48 -0500
Don Rolph <> wrote:

> As part of the discussion during my efforts with gpsd, I am sensing
> what seems to be an interesting disconnect between the gpsd design
> intent and the usage to which gpsd is often used.

I see a disconnect, but not where you tnink it is.

> So gpsd is providing an abstraction layer over the gps (or AIS)
> receivers.


> This is a critical and laudable goal.

Maybe.  It does not actually pay well.

> Many users, however, are looking for an abstraction layer over
> location.

Care to clarify what is "over" location?  gpsd stops at giving you
lat/lon/alt.  If you want your street address, then pass that up to
a map program.  If you want your statistics, pass that to gnuplot, etc.

> In large measure, how location is determined is immaterial,
> they are simply looking for an abstraction layer over location (and
> possibly some supporting data).  An example is perhaps the location
> services in IOS.

Sorry, not an Apple user, so I have no idea what you mean by the

> While gpsd provides a location abstraction layer with the TPV
> message, the additional complexity of providing an abstraction layer
> over most gps receivers complicates the use of gpsd as an abstraction
> layer over location.

Uh, lost me.  That seems circular.  I look at it this way: you
start gpsd, you get lat/lon/alt out.  What more, or less, do you want?

> It feels like perhaps an additional wrapper is needed to simplify (and
> arguably stabilize) the interface to location data without limiting
> the enhancements required by gpsd to accommodate changes in
> technology in the satellite location functionality

Oh, wrappers we got.  Tons of them!  Have you ever looked in gpsd/clients?
There are C wrappers, Python wrappers, gpx wrappers, dbus wrappers, csv
wrappers, gnuplot wrappers, etc.  What wrapper do you want that gpsd
does not provide?

> You can actually see the Dire Wolf author's design includes this
> wrapper approach, although it is nascent at the  moment.

Please, don't bring up the broken Dire Wolf code as an example of
anything but laziness..  They copied a known broken stackexchange
example, and then can't make it work.  Attempts to help them
have failed for years.

Looking back, I have seen many Dire Wolf bug reports, but they seem
to ignore tham.

> These are my impressions from the effort.  Your mileage can and will
> vary.

Yeah, they do.

Gary E. Miller Rellim 109 NW Wilmington Ave., Suite E, Bend, OR 97703  Tel:+1 541 382 8588

            Veritas liberabit vos. -- Quid est veritas?
    "If you can't measure it, you can't improve it." - Lord Kelvin

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